After months of rumors and spy photos, it's now official: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has a new 6.2-liter supercharged V-8 engine that will be used for performance cars. The news was officially confirmed today in a slide shown to reporters previewing the Dodge brand engine lineup (pictured above).
We had long suspected a supercharger would be used for the engine that's been widely nicknamed "Hellcat." Designed to help SRT products -- which will now move back under the Dodge umbrella -- take on the more powerful Chevrolet Camaro ZL1 and outgoing Ford Shelby GT500, the engine is expected to produce anywhere from 600 to 700 hp, although 640 hp is likely an accurate number. Currently, the 6.4-liter Hemi V-8 used in the SRT cars (except the Viper) produces between 470 hp and 485 hp.
Another slide shown today (pictured at right) reveals that Fiat Chrysler plans to use the supercharged V-8 engine in both the Dodge Charger SRT and the Dodge Challenger SRT. It remains unclear when the engine will debut. Both the Charger and Challenger were refreshed earlier this year at the 2014 New York auto show, and all-new versions of those models will arrive by 2018. It's possible we could see supercharged Chargers and Challengers next year as 2016 models.
At the same time, a trusted source within Chrysler told our colleagues at Motor Trend not to put too much stock in earlier spy photos of a 2015 Dodge Challenger with a hood scoop (pictured below). Despite what our spy photographers inferred, the source tells MT the cars with scoops are not Hellcat test mules. In fact, he says even the name itself Hellcat is far from set in stone.
"I've stood next to it [the Hellcat]… [I] just got tired of seeing not Hellcats shown off as Hellcats," the source told MT.
Look for more information on this supercharged engine, as well as high-performance versions of the Dodge Charger SRT and Dodge Challenger SRT, later this year.