That Thing Got a Semi-Hemi?
There's some good news from Chrysler for all those pisotnheads who prefer old-fashioned horsepower to silly things like low CO2 emissions. In the past, the Hemi's V8 alternative was really only hanging around to provide genuine torque for a lot less dough: 290 ft-lbs. of twist to be specific. Unfortunately, the 4.7-liter mill's horsepower clocked in at a relatively puny 235. The combo was best suited to Jeep Grand Cherokee and Dodge Dakota owners pottering over hill and dale, towing lifestyle gear and little else. And so Chrysler, post-35 by 2020 Energy Bill, have upgraded the 4.7 liter V8 from ground chuck meat to New York strip steak. For the 2008 model year, the 4.7's horsepower has been raised by 70 fillies, rising to 300hp. Torque takes a nice little jump as well, ascending to 330 ft.-lbs. Since the improvements come from mechanical features borrowed from the 5.7 liter Hemi, Mopar fans are taking to calling the new 4.7 the "Semi-Hemi." Since neither of them has hemispherical combustion chambers, no harm, no blasphemy. No word on the effect on mpgs, but Chrysler's revamped MDS (multi-displacement system) should make it seem frugal enough. Bottom line: Chrysler's got a nice V8 to to slot into the majority of its vehicles as a genuine alternative to Hemi power. Now all they need is a midsize car, a compact car, an interior makeover for the Charger and 300, and some profits.