By on April 26, 2019

Apparently, today is Hemi Day in our vast autoverse, though Twitter tells me it’s also Lesbian Visibility Day, while Wikipedia informs me that John Wilkes Booth was shot through the neck in a Virginia farmhouse on this day in 1865.

But yes, Hemi Day. April 26th … 4/26. Get it?

Appropriately, Fiat Chrysler waited for choose this calendar date to open pre-orders for its monstrous “Hellephant” 426 crate engine, a 1,000-horsepower, 950 lb-ft beast of an powerplant designed to turn your pre-1976 Mopar into an object of fear and testosterone-fueled lust. It now has a price tag.

Officially named the Mopar “Hellephant” 426 Supercharged Crate HEMI Engine, the retro-themed tribute mill can be had for $29,995, which happens to be just five dollars more than the pre-destination price of an electric Nissan Leaf S.

Oddly, just last night a friend was mulling the feasibility of shoehorning an 8.0-liter Magnum V10 into a Leaf out of spite for the green crowd.

Available starting today via the Mopar brand’s crate engine site, the engine pairs with a $2,265 plug-and-play kit containing: a powertrain control module (PCM), power distribution center, engine wiring harness, chassis harness, accelerator pedal, ground jumper, oxygen sensors, charge air temperature sensors, fuel pump control module, and CAN bus interface device.

The Hellephant sits atop of mountain of muscle in the Mopar catalogue. Beneath it resides the 707 hp, 6.2-liter Hellcrate motor, a recent option for enlivening tired old iron. With the new 426, the company borrowed valve covers from the Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Redeye and a valve train from the Demon, then mated the all-aluminum engine with an improved supercharger. Metric displacement is a bored-and-stroked 7.0 liters.

Of course, the expense in replacing that smog-strangled 318 doesn’t end there. You might want that front end accessory drive kit, exhaust manifold kit, rear sump oil pan kit, and oil filter adaptor. Maybe a Tremec transmission, too.

Should you choose to drop money on the Hellephant, just know that you can’t boast of those 1,000 horses without 93-octane gas.

[Image: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles]

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21 Comments on “For Five Bucks More Than a Nissan Leaf, You Can Get a Hellephant Instead...”


  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    “For Five Bucks More Than a Nissan Leaf, You Can Get a Hellephant Instead”

    If I could, I’d have both in my garage (although I greatly prefer my Ioniq EV over the Leaf).

    As you point out, the Hellephant needs a lot of supporting equipment, not to mention a car to go with it.

  • avatar
    thegamper

    That is really pretty cool that you can buy such a thing. I would like to see a disclaimer about all the specialty parts you would need that can handle 950 lb-ft of torque in addition to findings a suitable vehicle to receive such a transplant.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      At least it is available.

      The 440 in our ’73 Southwind has been rebuilt twice and rings have been oversized to the max. When our 440 wears out, this Hellephant for $30K is a (relatively) cheap and potent replacement to power a coach that would cost more than $250K to replace.

      So why replace the entire Motorhome when the one we got only needs a new engine?

  • avatar
    craiger

    It belongs in a ’73 Dart. Preferably green but brown will do.

  • avatar
    TMA1

    But will it fit in a Miata?

  • avatar
    87 Morgan

    This is so great for the tuner crowd. Being able to purchase these stand alone should relieve a lot of the hassle that was built in to the hellcat drivetrain. It is my understanding with the hellcat optioned cars/suv the only way to make the entire system work was you had to use the dashboard, engine, transmission, & rear tail light assembly to get it all to work. So, a lot of fabrication. With the crate options, presumably, this is no longer required which while the price may be higher, one has to do a lot less work to get the engine to fire.

    Getting a setup to handle 1k HP is not that big of a deal in the end, any old school charger can handle it with a little modification, but no much considering the effort to do the transplant.

    • 0 avatar
      someoldfool

      “old school charger,” does that mean we’ll soon see a 69 Charger on Bitchin Rides waiting for one of these engines? We can hope. And the previous mention of Tire Rack, anyone see the Grand Tour episode with the Challenger Hellcat? Richard brought how many sets of tires along?

  • avatar
    Michael S6

    Does the price include the Gas station ?

  • avatar
    rudiger

    Call me out of touch, but I hate these so-called “Hemi” engines. The ’66-’71 426 Street Hemi engine had cylinder heads with hemispherical-shaped combustion chambers; the one made today does not. Chrysler has the Hemi name trademarked so they can slap it on whatever they want but, to me, unless it has true hemi-heads, it’s not correct, no matter how much horsepower it might put out.

  • avatar
    Oberkanone

    Hellephant powered Nissan Leaf
    That would be something to see on the dragstrip

  • avatar
    forward_look

    Alas, my yellow 1970 Duster is long gone.

  • avatar
    namesakeone

    Someone should put one in a Camaro (or better yet, a Pinto) just to piss off the Chrysler fans.


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