Dodge tucked the resto-modded Super Charger concept in a corner of the Fiat-Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) booth at the 2019 Detroit auto show. The Super Charger wasn’t introduced in Detroit; it made its debut during the 2018 SEMA show. Many enthusiasts — myself included — saw it in person for the first time in Detroit.
Dodge built the Super Charger to showcase Mopar’s Hellephant crate engine. It’s a monstrous, 7.0-liter V8 supercharged to deliver 1,000 horsepower and 950 pound-feet of torque. Its name is a tribute to the 426-cubic-inch Elephant V8 introduced by Chrysler in 1964.
At SEMA, Mopar explained it developed the Hellephant engine to power pre-1976 vehicles. It’s available as a kit that includes a powertrain control module, an engine wiring harness, an accelerator pedal, oxygen sensors, and a variety of other parts needed to make the installation process as straight-forward as possible. Mopar called it an “almost turn-key” solution.
The Super Charger concept built to showcase the Hellephant engine started life as a 1968 Dodge Charger. It received redesigned front and rear ends, fender flares, a lowered suspension, and a full body kit. The full-width grille hides a set of headlights borrowed from the Challenger Hellcat, while the rear end gains a pair of dual exhaust tips borrowed from the Alfa Romeo Stelvio.
Though continuation cars are becoming increasingly popular, Dodge is not planning on building the Super Charger, even as a limited-edition model. The Hellephant engine will be available during the first quarter of 2019. Pricing information has not been released yet.