• Jan 22, 2008
It looks like the Hemi engine, an icon for the Chrysler Corporation, won't be included in forthcoming applications due to changing fuel economy standards. Rising gas prices have already hurt sales of vehicles featuring these engines, causing Chrysler to cut back production. Now co-president Jim Press has declared, "The Hemi is not the powertrain of the future." Similar to the direction taken by GM, Chrysler is banking on newly developed V6 powerplants to take the reigns from current V8 options. These Phoenix engines are scheduled to hit production in 2009.

The Hemi engine's downfall is its inability to adapt to features proven to increase efficiency. The large combustion chamber design and dual valve structure leads to blow-by of unburned fuel, thus producing large levels of undesired emissions. The use of dual spark plugs has improved burn in the hemispherical combustion chamber, however, it's a solution that increased cost and complexity. More modern and efficient chamber structures, unlike the Hemi, can fit four valves and utilize dual overhead camshafts. Chrysler plans to implement these features into their future V6 engines, along with cylinder deactivation and variable valve timing.

[Source: Automotive News - Sub. Req.]


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  • 68 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      The Hemi was never more than a marketing scheme anyway. The design is decades old and inefficient. Inefficient is not powerful. These engines were powerful because they were big, not because they had hemispherical heads or some other genius design.

      This is just more propaganda threatening people that car makers are going to stop making exciting cars because of the government. Most Chryslers weren't being sold with Hemis anyway, so I doubt it affected their average fuel economy as much as cars like the Sebring and Caravan anyway.
      -N
        • 7 Years Ago
        I believe the Volvo XC90's Yamaha V8 was a fairly clean design (greenhouse gases aside) and, while it didn't push Hemi power, it was pretty respectable.

        It probably cost a small fortune, though.
      • 7 Years Ago
      Now let an old HEMI owner clue you in to how to make the HEMI emissions acceptable! I was having trouble getting rid of burned fuel! My uncle who owned an automotive machine shop suggested I use the same method he used on some engines he did for Ford (he was a consultant to Ford on the old 59AB flat hesd V-8)! I pulled the heads and took them to him and he cut a small grove 3/32 wide X 1/64 (I'm not up on METRIC so I use the old SAE measurements)deep in each combustion chamber starting about half way from the center of the outer diameter of the intake valve and had it circling 300 degrees of the exhaust valve! In theory this grove would set up a "tornado" in the combustion chamber pulling unburned gasses to the exhust valve and out the tail pipe! It worked, we put the carbon monoxide probe from an Allen Engine Analyzer (which was all we had in those days unless you went to a dealer with the big systems) and got an increase in unburned fuel! My uncle also installed something he had developed for Ford, a one way valve that pulled any blowby back into the engine and reburned it! today we call it a PCV (POSITIVE CRANKCASE VENTILATION) i'M SURE THE ENGINEERS AT CHRYSLER ARE AWARE OF THIS METHOD OF "EVACUATING" A COMBUSTION CHAMBER! I KNOW A POSITIVE DESPLACEMENT SUPER CHARGER DOES THE SAME THING BUT I COULDN'T AFFORD THE COST OF THAT AT THE TIME! MY COST TO DO THE GROVE WAS THE COST OF A VALVE GRIND GASKET SET, OIL, AND 4 BEERS!
      FENNIX
      • 7 Years Ago
      HEMI? SEVERAL OTHER COMPANY'S HAVE BEEN BUILDING HEMI-CHAMBERS OVER THE YRS & DEVELOPED THEM SUCCESSFULLY BMW,MERC,FERRARI, LETS JUST SPEAK THE TRUTH CHRYSLER JUST CAN'T BUILD COMPLETE CARS, THE MOTORS GOOD, INSIDE'S FIT & FINISH IS POOR THE TRANNY IS POOR, I'VE OWNED CHYRSLER HEMI PAID $38 K FOR A MOTOR W/ NICE BODY TO GET EATEN ALIVE BY A WRX WHAT I AFTER TRADED IN FOR, NOW TO PULL MY 40'BOAT W/MY F-350 7.3 DUALLY BURNS McD VEG OIL
      • 7 Years Ago
      I guess I don't understand why everyone thinks that OHC is so high tech and futuristic. Wasn't the first OHC engine produced in 1912 by Fiat or Bentley??? And I believe the pushrod appeared only 5 or 10 years before. Maybe all the auto manufacturers need to get with the times huh?
      • 7 Years Ago
      Hey Jerk Face Show us some data to back up your claim that a Toyota truck is cleaner than a Hemi. EPA shows a advantage of @ .6% in Toyotas favour. Both trucks get at score of 6 out of 10. EPA says 1mpg advantage for Toyota. Gee that is huge, but next years Hemi is said to be 4-5% more efficient so I guess if you drive a Toyota for a couple of years you might save a tank of gas.
      • 7 Years Ago
      The angst shown here about the demise of the Hemi (about time) demonstrates the concerns Ford has with it's EcoBoost engines. The EcoBoost isn't about using the latest technology to get 118hp/L out of the same size engine. It is about getting large engine power and performance out of a smaller engine. To make it work commercially, they need to make it acceptable to North Americans to have an EcoBoost V6 in a high end Mustang.

      Ford seems to be in a more favorable position in that they already have a modern award winning OHC V8 in the 4.6L, so they don't have to kill any OHV V8 development programs like GM and Chrysler. They can probably coast with the 4.6L until the EcoBoost V6 is well established before dropping the V8, which I'm sure they will.

      I wouldn't be surprised (or too disappointed) if the only V8 we will see in NA in a few years will be the OHV V8 in Corvettes, and I'm OK with that.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Lets say Ford decides that an 'ecoboost' 3.5 V6 Mustang makes 350hp 350ft-lbs on 87AKI with 0.75 bar of boost.
        and if you can find E85, it would make 400hp, 400ft-lbs with 1 bar of boost.
        That is fine for a middle model mustang.

        Would an 'ecoboost' 250hp 2.0 I4 (on 87AKI) be the the base engine? (300hp on E85, 285hp on E70, 265hp on premium)
        Will Ford upgrade the Mustang (halfway though the next generation) to the ZF 8 speed automatic?
      • 7 Years Ago
      It looks like i will be keeping my 300c for a long time. Oh well, by 2020 there will be nearly 130 years of used cars to choose from, i welcome our cuban-esque automotive future.
      • 7 Years Ago

      Sigh. The passing of an era.
      JACK
      • 7 Years Ago
      where to start...
      well, i havent read every comment, but those of you that say the new Tundra iForce V8 will out-tow a hemi.... REALLY? hmm, i wouldnt want to tow 10,000 lbs on a 5 lug axle, even though the engine makes more power. power means jack if you cant control it. bigger brakes, stronger axles.. you can get a 3/4 ton Dodge with a Hemi, and tow MORE controllably, and it would be cheaper. not only that, this year Dodge is comming out with a new 3 valve design that will make 380hp and 404 lb-ft of torque, and still have the MDS.
      i am not sure how credible the source is on this "axing the hemi" info, but i highly doubt the Hemi V8 is going anywhere.
      • 7 Years Ago
      You know what? The Hemi SHOULD die. When companies like Honda and Toyota have been using four valve, DOHC engines since the late eighties to produce clean, reliable power, technological dinosaurs like the Hemi are a shameful mess. Time to put the old beast out to pasture.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Um, The Tundra only out-towed the OLD Ram Hemi, the one with 345hp and 375 tq. There is no comparison yet to the new Hemi with 380hp and 404tq.
        • 7 Years Ago
        *sigh*

        Fine.

        http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/noframes/23858.shtml

        http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/noframes/23936.shtml

        The Toyota Tundra 5.7 is classified as a ULEV-II vehicle, as well.
        • 7 Years Ago
        1, there's more to towing capacity than the engine

        2, "You're actually going to argue that the Hemi is the winner there because of 3 pound feet of torque?"

        no, I'm saying your argument is crap 'cos the "primitive, dinosaur" Hemi can match your oh-so-advanced DOHC VVT engine for the same displacement (And fuel economy, the 2009 Hemi improves)

        3, you still have to support your argument that the Toyota engine runs cleaner as it is. It isn't true just 'cos you keep saying it is.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Yeah, but your argument is completely lacking with regards to efficiency and emissions. Yeah, the HEMI can move the chubby, overweight vehicles they are shoved in; but it also is spewing far more pollutants than is reasonable in these times of needed environmentalist efforts.

        I am not saying that the next Dodge Ram is going to be able to pull a bed full of bricks with a 1.8 liter engine, but the antiquated technology used in the Hemi engines specifically have got to go. The necessary torque can be achieved in different ways. Turbochargers? Diesel? It can be done and done BETTER that old dinosaur of an engine is doing now.

        There is nothing 'idiotic' about wanting auto makers in America to step up to the plate and put some effort towards building cleaner, more efficient engines.

        And so it looks like that is what Chrysler (and indeed all U.S. auto makers) seem to be realizing lately. This is a good thing. So rest in peace, Hemi.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Oh yeah, and a rice burner makes tons of torque just like a hemi. I bet you can tow a 40 foot tri axle with your Honda.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Uh, the "old dinosaur" GM 3800 is a SULEV engine...
        • 7 Years Ago
        The new Hemi doesn't have variable valve timing, it has variable camshaft timing. It is more of a mileage/emissions thing versus torque/power. The dual length intake manifold is what helps out the hemi.
        The toyota 5.7 has the dual length intake manifold & it has variable intake and exhaust timing (4 phasers instead of 1)

        Does the new Hemi take premium fuel now, it currently takes mid-grade.
        Maybe toyota will add direct injection, jack up the compression ratio, and calibrate the engine for premium. Bam, matches GM's premium fuel 6.2 V8, 403hp, 417ft-lbs.
        Maybe toyota will put an 8 speed auto in place of the 6 speed.
        Maybe Chrysler will put a 6 speed automatic in the Ram in a few years.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Thanks for commenting on a post I made almost two years ago, guy.
        • 7 Years Ago
        The dodge has variable camshaft phasing, not variable valve timing.
        Dodge hemi (new), Ford 4.6/5.4 V8, GM 6.0 & 6.2 V8s, 3.5 & 3.9 pushrod V6s
        http://www.mechadyne-int.com/vva-media/display-media/dual-equal-cam-phasing.gif/400/400/dual-equal-is-always-a-compromise
        Variable valve timing
        http://www.mechadyne-int.com/vva-media/display-media/dual-independent-cam-phasing.gif/400/400/dual-independent-cam-phasing-gives-total-flexibility
        Adding VCT isn't a bad idea, but misleading the customer is. Ford's 6.8V10 doesn't have VCT, but does have a dual length intake manifold.
        I like toyota's breakdown of the four main operating conditions of variable intake/exhaust valve timing
        'There are four main operating scenarios:

        Low engine temperature, engine start, idling or light load: inlet camshaft on full retard, exhaust camshaft on full advance. This eliminates valve overlap, thereby reducing volume of exhaust gas blowback into the cylinder and inlet ports, providing stable combustion and improved fuel economy.

        Medium load range: inlet timing is advanced and exhaust timing is retarded for increased overlap. This creates two parallel effects - increased internal exhaust gas recirculation to reduce oxides of nitrogen and hydrocarbon, reduced pumping losses and hence improved fuel economy.

        High load range, low-to-medium engine speed: inlet timing is advanced to close the intake valve earlier, thereby reducing the volume of intake air blowback into the inlet ports and improving volumetric efficiency.

        High load range, high engine speed: inlet timing retarded, exhaust timing advanced. Retarding the inlet timing (according to the inertial force of the inlet air) improves volumetric efficiency and hence power. '
        The overlap is fixed with VCT, only when it occurs changes.
        • 7 Years Ago
        2009 Hemi:

        5.7 liters, 380 hp, 404 ft-lb.

        2008/9 Toyota 5.7 liter (Tundra)

        5.7 liters, 381 hp, 401 ft-lb.

        I'm sorry, what was your argument again? Fat lot of good that 32-valve, DOHC VVT-i seems to be doing.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Well I suppose the latest Toyota Tundra is a 'rice burner.' If you look at this test right here:

        http://www.trailerboats.com/output.cfm?id=1210051

        .. and many others like it, the new Tundra out-towed that wondrous Hemi you're all so amped about, and it even gets an extra mile per gallon as well. And I'd be willing to be that emissions are GREATLY reduced in the Tundra as well. There is something to that, gentleman. Get off your "American cars rule and everyone who says otherwise is wrong" soap boxes. Our country's auto makers have some catching up to do.
        • 6 Years Ago
        you are stupid, the Toyota 5.7 engine doesnt do the towing moron, its the 6 speed transmission with 3 very high gears in the transmission itself, and then i think 4:30 gears outback compared to the hemis 3.92s with a 5 speed transmission, tundras also have mid length headers stock, almost Maxed tuning stock, and it is one ugly ass truck!!!!!!!!!
        • 7 Years Ago
        Thank you for this incredibly uninsightful post. Jesus.

        The new HEMI is a thoughoughly modern engine in all respects. This article is saying they simply can't adapt it's design for some of the even newer efficiency improvments. It'd need a complete redesign, and rather than that, they'll do V6s.

        This lingering belief that DOHC is somehow inherently better than pushrods makes my brain hurt.
        • 6 Years Ago
        dodge Hemi 2009 comes with vvt not vct look it up. The toyota tundra has had many many problems. The brakes the engine wheel hop on the freeway . Transmission vibration, engine vibration, look up problems with the 2008 toyota tundra. The dealers refuse to admit that there is a problem and tell you to just live with it I sold my tundra and will be buying the new dodge. Thge dodge comes with a life time power train warrenty> if the toyota was so good they woul offer a life time warrenty also but they dont
        • 7 Years Ago
        oh, and by the way, "Jerk Face,:"

        "Yeah, the HEMI can move the chubby, overweight vehicles they are shoved in; but it also is spewing far more pollutants than is reasonable in these times of needed environmentalist efforts"

        are you claiming that it doesn't meet emissions requirements? I'm afraid you're going to have to come up with some supporting evidence for that.
        • 7 Years Ago
        MikeW- If you go to GDI, there's no need for premium, even if you crank up compression as high as you dare.
        Emissions- If anyone here has actually seen certified emissions tests, I'm very curious. If not, it's just meaningless noise.
        • 7 Years Ago
        Hey, Jerk Face, you posted the wrong link for the Ram. That was for the 4.7L engine, not the 5.7L hemi.

        Here is the right link for the Dodge: http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/noframes/24518.shtml

        To summarize:
        Toyota 5.7L DOHC, VVT: 14/18
        Dodge 5.7L OHV, variable cam: 13/19

        Both make almost the same power, have almost the same fuel economy, have variable valve timing, and the Dodge uses a more modern valvetrain, so which one is more advanced?
      • 7 Years Ago
      The "old" 5.7L 340hp/390 torque hemi used in the 300C gets a BIN4 rating by the EPA, which is a 50 state rating that's equal to the 5-state-ONLY rating the Tundra's 5.7L "high tech" V8 gets.


      • 7 Years Ago
      A beautiful used-car market place for us. So many gems will be available when people start trading in.

      Oh, here's a good way to save some gas, get better economy (sometimes much better than EPA posted numbers) and still drive your toy :

      Slow down! Even dropping 5mph can make a huge difference. I used to drive 120-130kph on 400 series hwy's in Ontario. Now I lock my cruise at 110kph MAX and it's been saving me quite a bit. When I'm in no hurry, I'll even drive the speed limit. That's when my mileage goes through the roof! The best mileage I've had was 46mpg in a car rated 30mpg by the EPA.

      Here's a good video of a HEMI 300C (I'm pretty sure these are AWD cars in the video, they stand taller and the wheels are different - however, EPA says the AWD should be the same as the standard RWD)

      http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/videos/Fuel_Economy_Tips.wmv

      It's just one study - for TV, but sometimes pictures hit home a bit better than a lone blogger's POV. Also of note, I was able to get 27mpg of sustained hwy driving from Toronto to Pocono in my rental 300C RWD. Summer, not too hot, light traffic, and the speed limit. What a comfy trip that was too :)
        • 7 Years Ago
        "slow down!"

        that's the best solution I've heard of yet.

        people....drive....too.....darn....fast! instead of barrelling down the interstate at 80mph, leave a little earlier and drive 60, it saves gas.

        I drive the speed limit all the time because I'd rather not get a ticket, and have also noticed my mileage increase, especially on the streets where the stop lights are timed for cars that travel the SPEED LIMIT, and I will usually hit the next green light where the people who sped ahead of me had to come to a complete stop for the red light, and I will coast on past them without ever having to touch the brakes.
        • 7 Years Ago
        I am far from a grandpa driver as well. I'm 26. I just appreciate my toys, take care of them, and not act like a freaking lunatic to save 5minutes on a commute. The whole ''I drive that fast because everyone else is'' is BS and just compounds the problem.

        I had an 84' Buick Park Avenue with a 307 Olds 4bbl and I still managed to get 25-28mpg on the hwy, and thats when I was driving 70mph (albiet, it had a tall final gear and loafed along at 1900rpm) - not bad for an inferior fuel delivery system and a 4speed truck transmission.

        http://www.cardomain.com/ride/2285332
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