Hey Ram: Give Us the 1500 SRT Hellcat

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Even if you're are a casual internet peruser, you've seen many stories and videos about how throaty and absolutely insane with power the new SRT Hellcat powertrains can be inside special high-performance versions of the two-door 2015 Dodge Challenger and four-door 2015 Dodge Charger.

The key to these modern-day muscle cars begins with the engine — in this case with a supercharged 6.2-liter V-8 (which is basically a destroked 6.4-liter Hemi) and the same ZF eight-speed (8HP70) that Ram, Jeep and Dodge use in their high-horsepower and high-torque applications.

We recently had the chance to drive a Challenger SRT Hellcat and thankfully survived the adventure without any highway patrol stops or marks against our license. From the second you slip inside the vehicle it moves with a smooth throttle response that we've never felt before.

Hit the start button and the exhaust note will let you and your neighbors know that you've got something special. The SRT division has clearly done its homework, and, we're sure the engineers had a great deal of fun putting this power package together. The engine makes 707 horsepower but the software that controls the throttle response and traction control — drivers can choose from Track, Sport and Street settings — creates a controlled and predictable strong acceleration wherever you push the throttle.

Our favorite aspect of the vehicle is how Dodge has included a dedicated SRT screen for the multimedia display that allows the driver to see exactly how the different settings change traction control, throttle response, paddle shifter activation and adaptive damping in the suspension. The electronic controls even have a valet mode that prevents "guest" drivers from gaining access to all the power the Hellcat has to offer.

For all its rumble, monster acceleration and strong cornering ability, the Challenger Hellcat starts at just less than $65,000 including destination. Sure, we'd rather pay that kind of money for a Ram 3500 Longhorn with a Cummins engine, but there are a few things that a Hellcat can do that nothing else can. Which begs the question: Why is this powertrain not in a Ram 1500 SS yet?

Ram's parent company Fiat Chrysler Automobiles has all the parts and pieces, and it looks like all the software and safety testing (to a certain degree) is already done. We'd guess Ram could pair it with some kind of all-wheel-drive setup to help with traction, given the bed is likely to be empty much of the time. Who knows? This could be the beginning of another Guinness World Record attempt.

All we need now is the Ram SRT Hellcat to make it happen.

Cars.com photos by Mark Williams

 

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Comments

LOL! What an _____! Diesels do not burn gas so ANY gasoline engine would more gas than a diesel.

2013 2014 Ford F150 3.5L Ecoboost New Misfire TSB!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ozZd0oK-86Y

Ok, papa jim I forgot about that Dodge. Wasn't the SRT-10 the one with the Super Bee decals? I have seen a yellow one on the road recently. Ram/Dodge is the only one that has brought out a street performance truck in a while unless you count the Ford Raptor which to me is more of an off road truck. It has been a while since the Chevy SS truck and the GMC Cyclone. I would think the demand would be limited for a Hellcat Ram but I think enough people would line up to buy one and the halo from such a product would help. Chrysler or Mopar had a real reputation in the past especially in the 60's and 70's for production performance vehicles.

@Jeff S. The Ram with the Super Bee decals was called the Rumble Bee. They never had the exclusive high performance Viper derived V10 engine that the SRT-10 models had. They came equipped with the normally available 5.7L Hemi V8 just like the regular models. They were a nice package though with some pretty jazzy colors. They were certainly better than the lame special editions GM is doing nowadays with their fullsized trucks.

I really liked the SRT models especially the quad cab Ram version. If they ever do a Hellcat Ram, they should do it both in single cab and a quad cab body style.

However, I would first like to see a convertible drop top variant of the new Challenger. Why no one at Chrysler has not thought about doing one surprises me. Imagine the appeal of a Hellcat powered convertible Challenger.

@the other mike--Yes I have wondered why Chrysler does not offer a convertible Challenger. Today's Challenger reminds me a lot of the first 70 1/2 Challenger in that it looks at lot like it. I was a Senior in High School when the first Challenger came out and always loved it. I like the Camaro and Mustang as well. Oh for the glory days of the muscle car!

Why doesn't Ram look at the success of the Hellcat Challengers and try to use that to their advantage? Much of the engineering is already completed, all Ram would have to do is tweak it for use in a pickup. Dodge did this with the Ram SRT-10 with the Viper motor. So why can't they do it with the Hellcat 6.2L?



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