We have some solid evidence that the Challenger ’s new Hellcat engine will be making a lot more power than people are giving it credit for. What we have here is an exclusive image of the prototype phase of the Hellcat’s intecoolers.
You may be yelling at your monitor right now that many supercharged engines don’t use intercoolers, and you are correct, sort of. When you compress air, it gets hotter. Superchargers traditionally don’t add much boost pressure, so the need for an intercooler is mitigated. The Challenger does have an intercooler system mounted in the front of the car, but the correct term for it in this case is "integral charge cooler."
An integral charge cooler has a very similar function to a normal intercooler, cooling air, but it is integrated into the supercharger system itself. It the last thing the forced air passes through before reaching the engine. This makes sure the air is as cool as possible before combustion to provide the greatest level of power and performance.
This unit here is a water-to-air style cooler, which looks to be larger than most units I have encountered. This suggests that Dodge is likely playing boost levels over the 11 pounds they are quoting, or perhaps an overboost function. As a bonus, even at lower boost levels the cooler air is much more dense, helping the engine to make more power.
Either way, it seems that Dodge still has a few tricks up its sleeve about what the Hellcat is really packing under its hood.
Suddenly Viper -beating horsepower doesn’t seem so unrealistic. Cue the maniacal laughter, folks.
Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat and read more about this integral charge cooler.
Why It Matters
Having a massively improved cooling system is good for more things than more power. If Dodge can keep the air and the engine cool, it will make more power for longer. When you are beating this thing on a track, this helps it won’t overheat. You want to make multiple drag runs in an hour. This is the kind of system that keeps that possible. More power means more need to for cooling, and it is great to see that Dodge is not cutting any corners.
This pony car war is getting better and better every day.
Intercooler System in Detail
After watching the above video, we came to the conclusion that the intercoolers in this exclusive image are actually the two outermost ones in the above image. These appear to feed into one larger intercooler that feeds straight into the engine.
The Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat is poised to be one of the most powerful cars to ever come from the land of Mopar. It is based on a normal Challneger, but features a new supercharged 6.2-liter V8 dubbed Hellcat. Dodge is being coy when it comes to true performance numbers on this machine. They are only handing out the vague, "over 600 horsepower" line.
Some rumors have suggested that the car may produce much closer to 700 horsepower, and 200 mph top speed may not be out of the cards.