Of the domestic engines, few have as much widespread recognition and admiration as Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ (FCA) Hemi V-8. The engine sees use in products as diverse as the Charger sedan, Challenger muscle coupe, Durango SUV and Ram pickup trucks, not to mention the Jeep Grand Cherokee. The flames of desire for the Hemi have gotten even hotter recently with the 6.4L high-output and the colossal 707hp 6.2L supercharged Hellcat. So it caught us by surprise when usually reputable FCA-enthusiast site Allpar.com is reporting that the bread-and-butter 5.7L Hemi V-8 could be discontinued as soon as 2018. The post cites “several” sources saying the volume Hemi configuration could be dropped next year. Production of the 5.7L is reportedly being accelerated to stockpile inventory before the engine’s discontinuation. The 6.4L V-8 and Hellcat will reportedly remain in production for the near future.
The model that would be most affected by this development would be the Ram 1500, of which many are powered by the 5.7L V-8. An all-new Ram 1500 is expected in 2019, and its powertrain offerings are a mystery, although up until this point, it was assumed the 5.7L Hemi would be among the offerings. Could Ram be considering a turbocharged variant of the Pentastar V-6 for the next Ram to counter Ford’s EcoBoost offerings? The availability of the Hemi was considered to be a strong selling point for Ram on the 1500 for buyers that didn’t want a turbo six. Even with the success of the EcoBoost V-6s in the F-150, Ford continues to offer the 5.0L “Coyote” DOHC V-8 in the F-150 and has made no indication that it plans to drop the engine from the lineup. Do you think Ram would be making a big mistake by not offering the Hemi in the next-generation Ram 1500?