Chrysler considers producing more competitive Ram Runner

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Wards Auto is reporting that Chrysler wants to offer a competitor to the Ford Raptor with the Ram Runner. Traditionally, the Raptor is ready to go right off the production line, whereas the Ram requires its mods to be done at a dealership post production/

But that could soon Change. Vice President of Mopar parts, sales and field operations, Pat Dougherty, said that if volume was significant enough, it makes sense to have the Ram Runner off-road ready after it leaves the factory. “But if we don’t, then we’ll continue to do it the way we do it.” However, Dougherty said that more research is needed and Chrysler would be paying attention to how the Raptor does in the market.

Thoughts? Send us a tweet to @PowerBlockTV, or leave us a comment on our Facebook page.

Chrysler: Jeep and Mopar Reveal Six New Concept Vehicles for 47th Annual Moab Easter Jeep Safari

From Chrysler LLC:

Jeep® and Mopar will be showcasing a range of extremes at this year’s annual Easter Jeep Safari in Moab, Utah. Now in its 47th year and taking place March 23-31, the Easter Jeep Safari will be attended by thousands of die-hard off-road enthusiasts looking to enjoy a week of wheeling on some of the country’s most famous and challenging trails.

“Off-road enthusiasts will be pleasantly surprised by the range of Jeep models we’re bringing to this year’s Easter Jeep Safari,” said Mike Manley, President and CEO – Jeep Brand, Chrysler Group LLC. “We go to this extremely popular event in Moab each year to showcase the latest production vehicles from Jeep, as well as a host of new customization and personalization ideas. In doing so, we connect with and receive a tremendous amount of feedback from our most loyal customers.”

Jeep and Mopar sprinkled production and prototype Jeep Performance Parts on this year’s collection of concept vehicles. Jeep Performance Parts are specifically designed, built and quality-tested to meet strict Jeep specifications, 4×4 capability, craftsmanship and versatility to help transform stock rides into even more capable trail performers.

“We created our new Jeep Performance Parts portfolio for extreme off-road Jeep fanatics,” said Pietro Gorlier, President and CEO of Mopar, Chrysler Group LLC’s service, parts and customer-care brand. “Jeep owners who are passionate about customization, performance and personalization will have a long menu of Jeep Performance Parts from which to choose.”

Since 2002, Jeep and Mopar have teamed to create nearly 40 unique concept vehicles for enthusiasts who attend the popular Easter Jeep Safari.

 

Cherokee Trailhawk II

Jeep Grand Cherokee Trailhawk Concept

The recently introduced new 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee EcoDiesel V-6 has instantly delighted off-road enthusiasts across North America. With the introduction of the 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trailhawk Concept, Jeep designers have taken the most awarded SUV ever and created the most extreme Grand Cherokee yet. Powered by the new clean EcoDiesel engine, this Grand Cherokee has mountains of low-end torque to power over any obstacle. From its blood-orange paint, to its massive 35-inch off-road tires, there’s no mistaking this Grand Cherokee and its off-road prowess.

The 2014 Grand Cherokee Trailhawk Concept – the third Grand Cherokee created for Easter Jeep since 2011 – features 35-inch Mickey Thompson off-road tires on Wrangler Rubicon 17-inch aluminum wheels, enlarged wheel openings with custom fender flares, custom front and rear skid plates, dual rear tow hooks and modified Mopar rock rails.

Custom design cues include a Grand Cherokee SRT hood, SRT front and rear fascias that have been modified for extra ground clearance, a black front grille, a matte black roof and one-off custom roof rails. The body is finished in a vibrant, non-metallic blood-orange hue that also manages to draw attention to the larger wheel openings and off-road tires.

Mopar slush mats and rear cargo liner enhance Jeep Grand Cherokee Trailhawk Concept’s interior.

 

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Jeep Wrangler Mopar Recon

The Jeep Wrangler Mopar Recon features a gray exterior and a little extra firepower with a 6.4-liter HEMI V-8 crate engine from Mopar. The 470 horsepower engine is mated to a five-speed automatic transmission and Dana 60 front and rear axles with 4.10 gearing. The axles are suspended by a 4.5-inch prototype long-arm lift kit and roll on Jeep Performance Parts prototype forged eight-lug beadlock wheels with 39-inch off-road tires.

The Jeep Wrangler Mopar Recon includes a number of Mopar applications externally, including front and rear half-door and window kits, front and rear off-road modified “Stinger” bumpers, Warn winch, high-clearance flat fenders, rock rails, Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 10th Anniversary hood, prototype LED headlamps, a canvas soft top, swing-away rear tire carrier and body-color rear corner guards, taillamp guards, locking fuel door, and a Jeep Performance Parts badge.

The interior of the Jeep Wrangler Mopar Recon includes Mopar slush mats, black door-sill guards, a locking below-floor storage box, side sun visors, grab handles, trailside winch kit and a custom seat made from Navy blankets and Navy camouflage material.

 

Wrangler Stitch

Jeep Wrangler Stitch

One of the past Easter Jeep Safari concepts still loved today by enthusiasts is the light weight Pork Chop. For this year’s Safari, Jeep has created its first follow-up vehicle with the new Jeep Wrangler Stitch. Based on the 2013 Wrangler Rubicon, the Stitch has been lightened to a parse 3,000-lb. curb weight, giving it a power-to-weight ratio similar to that of the Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT.

Jeep designers shaved weight where ever possible: the frame, axles, body and interior. The audio system and all heating and air conditioning components have been removed. The front seats are taken from the new 2013 SRT Viper and the rear seats have been removed. Sections of the body have been cut out, the doors have been removed, and the hood is a custom carbon fiber version of the one found on the Jeep Wrangler 10th Anniversary Rubicon. The standard roll cage has been replaced with a chrome moly unit, and the Full-Traction lower control arms, floor pan and GenRight fuel tank are made of aluminum. Even the frame and axles were modified to remove weight.

Off-road hardware consists of a Mopar cold-air intake and Mopar exhaust kit, Mickey Thompson 35-inch off-road tires on lightweight 17-inch aluminum wheels, custom DynaTrac Pro Rock 44 axles with 4.88 gears and ARB front and rear lockers, King shocks with pneumatic bump stops and Tom Woods drive shafts .

Unique design details include a windshield that has been chopped two inches, a clear yellow vinyl soft top, black leather SRT Viper seats and center console with a yellow instrument panel and seat backs, Truck-Lite LED headlamps and the previously mentioned carbon fiber hood. The black body panels are wrapped in a unique, see-through silver architectural fabric that hides the cut panels at some angles, and makes them visible at others.

 

Wrangler Sand Trooper II

Jeep Wrangler Sand Trooper II from Mopar

After the popular Sand Trooper made its debut at SEMA in 2012, Mopar upped the ante with the Sand Trooper II to get it ready to take on Moab. The Sand Trooper II features a legendary 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 to give it 375 horsepower and 400 ft.-lb. of torque. A five-speed automatic transmission sends the HEMI power to Mopar eight-lug front and rear Portal axles for added ground clearance. Jeep Performance Parts prototype forged beadlock wheels carry 40-inch off-road tires, giving Sand Trooper II its menacing stance.

Mopar exterior enhancements include a satin black grille, hood lock, front and rear half-door and window kits, front and rear off-road “Shorty” modified bumpers, Warn winch, Mopar flat fenders, rock rails, a vented hood, LED off-road lights and headlamps, Rubicon 10th Anniversary swing away rear tire carrier, trailer-tow hitch receiver, black taillamp guards and locking fuel door, and a Jeep Performance Parts badge.

The interior features a rear back-up camera display, Mopar slush mats, black door-sill guards, under-seat and center-console locking storage, locking below-floor storage box, trunk storage box, side sun visors, grab handles, Trailside winch kit and leather seats.

 

flat top

Jeep Wrangler Flattop

The Jeep Wrangler Flattop is a paradox of sorts. Its highly styled and refined body and interior completely belies its phenomenal off-road capability. Jeep designers took special care to give the Wrangler Flattop an upscale appearance inside and out, but bolted some of the most hard-core off-road gear available to Flattop’s chassis.

Featuring a custom one-piece, windowless hard top, the body is finished in a metallic sandstone with copper and brown accents. The top and windshield were chopped two inches, and the b-pillar was removed creating a massive opening from front to rear. The door and hood hinges, tow hooks, grille slats and headlamp surrounds are finished in a copper tone, and the bumpers, side rails, side mirrors and hood decal are dark brown. The bumpers are customized versions from the Wrangle Rubicon 10th Anniversary model, as is the hood. Custom high line fender flares, Truck-Lite LED headlamps, LED rear taillamps and side markers, a massive Warn Zeon winch and TeraFlex spare tire carrier round off the exterior enhancements.

The interior features dark saddle Katzkin leather seating, copper accents on the steering wheel spokes, vent rings and passenger grab handle and Mopar slush mats.

Under Flattop’s rich exterior is some serious off-road gear such as a Mopar cold-air intake, Mopar exhaust kit, aluminum five-spoke wheels that carry 37-inch Mickey Thompson off-road tires, the DynaTrac Pro Rock 44 front and Dana 60 rear axles feature ARB air lockers and TeraFlex sway bars, and Full-Traction control arms. All of this is hardware is bolted to King shocks with pneumatic bump stops.

 

Wranger Slim

Jeep Wrangler Slim

The Jeep Wrangler Slim offers maximum performance that is significantly lighter in weight. The Rock Lobster color exterior of the two-door Jeep Wrangler Slim features full doors and a hard top. Powered by a 3.6-liter V-6, the Jeep Wrangler Slim has a 3:73 anti-spin axle. Rolling on prototype 17-inch Jeep Performance Parts forged beadlock wheels with Rock Lobster beauty rings, the Jeep Wrangler Slim features a special 10th Anniversary Rubicon front bumper, which complements the rear bumper, and is the lightest weight rear bumper that Mopar offers. The Jeep Wrangler Slim also sports lightweight rock rails, black grille, black hood decal, LED headlights, locking gas cap and Rubicon tires.

The black interior features leather seat covers and a CB radio, as well as Mopar all-weather slush mats and a hard-top headliner.

Jeep Performance Parts on the Jeep Wrangler Slim include a prototype Mopar 2-inch lift kit. A Mopar cold-air intake is also featured on the Jeep Wrangler Slim.

2013 Dodge Challenger V6 Models Recalled Due to Fire Hazard

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From Chrysler:

March 17, 2013 , Auburn Hills, Mich. – Chrysler Group is recalling approximately 2,500 model-year 2013 Dodge Challengers now in customer hands to address a potential short-circuit.

This condition could cause a wire harness to overheat and possibly lead to fire. Chrysler Group is aware of seven such incidents. None caused injury.

Affected owners are being contacted directly – by telephone and by mail. They are being advised to immediately refrain from driving their vehicles and to contact their dealers. Loaner vehicles will be provided, free of charge, until repairs are complete. Chrysler Group further advises affected owners not to park their vehicles in or near any structures.

Customers who are uncertain if they are affected should take the above precautions and inquire with their dealers.

This action affects only 2013 Dodge Challengers assembled with V-6 engines during an eight-week period ending Jan. 24, 2013.

The total recall population is 4,459 vehicles, of which approximately 1,900 are in dealer hands.

1971 Dodge Charger R/T could be last Hemi-powered Mopar

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This 1971 Dodge Charger R/T is believed to be the very last Hemi-powered muscle car produced by Chrysler, according to Hemmings Daily. The automotive site says that it’s just one of the 33 cars produced in 1971 with the 426 Hemi and TorqueFlite automatic transmission.

The car was assembled at the Lynch Road plant in Detroit on June 18, 1971, and according to the restoration shop quoted by Hemmings Daily, it was produced two weeks later than the final Hemi, as previously documented by researchers. This was based on the original broadcast sheet and fender tag, which were both still in the Charger before the car’s resto.

Fortunately, the Mopar has been put back in pristine condition, and it will debut to the public for the first time April 4-7 at the Food Lion auto Fair at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Thoughts? Send us a tweet to @PowerBlockTV, or leave us a comment on our Facebook page.

Photos from Hemmings Daily.

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Dodge Challenger to feature Redline package at Chicago Auto Show

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From Chrysler Group LLC:

While ice cold winter weather sweeps across Lake Shore Drive, the Dodge brand heats up the 2013 Chicago Auto Show by building on Challenger’s red-hot record selling year, and now at the show, the introduction of the new Challenger R/T Redline with modern muscle-car cues, a potent HEMI V-8 engine throwing down 375 horsepower and a performance-tuned chassis for world-class dynamics – this new Challenger delivers exactly what Dodge fans want.

“Building on Challenger’s all-time sales record in 2012, the new Challenger R/T Redline fuses our iconic heritage with a one-of-a-kind customized appearance,” said Reid Bigland, President and CEO – Dodge Brand. “Featuring unique body-side stripes and black chrome wheels with red accents, the new R/T Redline combines unmatched personalization with the unmistakable performance of the legendary HEMI V-8.”

The new 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline builds on the success of the 305 horsepower V-6 Challenger Rallye Redline model that arrived in the middle of the 2012 model year.

2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline
Based on the 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T – America’s Most Affordable V-8 Muscle Car at $29,995 MSRP – or R/T Plus, the new Challenger R/T Redline adds even more attitude and style with a right-from-the-factory custom look to the brand’s iconic coupe.

Following Dodge Challenger’s signature A-line bodyside character line, an all-new two-color Redline Red and Graphite stripe runs from behind the front wheel arches to the tail. For a distinctive look, the rear-quarter section of the stripe features the “Redline” name in Red over Graphite color scheme. For a distinctive look, the R/T Redline features a body-color grille surround.

Filling the wheel wells, the Dodge Challenger R/T Redline features 20-inch Black Chrome wheels with a Redline Red lip and inner backbone for a one-of-a-kind look. For even more performance and driving precision at-the-limit handling, the available Super Track Pak adds Goodyear Eagle
F1 P245/45R20 three-season performance tires, high-performance brake linings and a lowered ride height.

With its two-color stripe and four available exterior colors, including Billet Silver, Granite Crystal, Bright White and Pitch Black, each new Dodge Challenger R/T Redline will stand out from the crowd. Dodge Challenger R/T Redline features a Dark Slate Gray interior with Dark Slate Gray (R/T) performance seats, or premium Nappa leather performance seats in Radar Red or Dark Slate Gray (R/T Plus). Automatic transmission models also feature bright pedals, a Mopar® T-Handle shifter and remote start.

HEMI Power
For the performance enthusiast, the 2013 Dodge Challenger R/T Redline features the legendary 5.7-liter HEMI® V-8 engine that delivers up to 375 horsepower and 410 lb.-ft. of torque and gets up to 25 miles per gallon (mpg) on the highway. When paired with the track-proven Tremec TR6060 six-speed manual transmission, the Dodge Challenger R/T delivers smooth shifts, while delivering even more power through unique performance-tuned dual exhaust and under-floor mufflers with low-restriction bottle resonators. The result, 0-60 mph runs in the low-5-second range and a sinister exhaust growl for the cars left in its rear-view mirror; a trademark of the original Challenger HEMI from more than 43 years ago.

The 5.7-liter HEMI® V-8 engine is also available with a five-speed automatic transmission producing 372 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque. In addition, this version of the engine includes Chrysler Group’s innovative Fuel Saver Technology to seamlessly transition to high-fuel-economy four-cylinder mode when less power is needed and V-8 mode when more power is in demand. And for even more control, steering-wheel mounted paddle shifters with “sport mode” transmission calibration are included.

Loaded with standard features
Dodge Challenger R/T Redline also includes a tremendous level of standard equipment found on every 2013 Challenger R/T, including the legendary 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 engine with cold-air induction delivering up to 375 horsepower, Tremec six-speed manual transmission, performance-tuned suspension, performance-disc brakes, performance-tuned steering calibration, Uconnect Voice Command with Bluetooth, console-mounted USB port with iPod control and auxiliary audio input jack, SiriusXM Satellite Radio with 12-months subscription, automatic headlamps, LED-illuminated instrument cluster with 160-mph primary speedometer, instrument panel with mini-carbon bezel, fog lamps, “R/T” grille badge, “HEMI” hood badges and rear body-color deck-lid spoiler. Remote start, bright pedals and Mopar T-handle shifter are also included with the five-speed automatic transmission.

For drivers who want even more premium refinement and details, the new Dodge Challenger R/T Redline can also be built on the 2013 Challenger R/T Plus, which includes premium Nappa leather seating in Dark Slate Gray or Radar Red, heated front seats, six Boston Acoustics premium speakers with 276-watt amplifier, ParkSense rear park assist, power heated mirrors,
Electronic Vehicle Information Center (EVIC) with temperature gauge, location specific tire-pressure monitoring and compass, vehicle security alarm, and HomeLink universal transceiver. Remote start, bright pedals and Mopar T-handle shifter are also included with the five-speed automatic transmission.

Just in time for spring
The 2013 Dodge Challenger with R/T Redline Group is available for ordering now and arrives at dealerships this April with a U.S. MSRP of $1,995. When configured on the Challenger R/T or R/T Plus models, the MSRPs are $31,990 and $33,990 respectively (both prices exclude $995 destination).

 

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Mopar to introduce 2013 Dart at Chicago Auto Show

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From Chrysler Group LLC:

Auburn Hills, Mich. – Chrysler Group LLC today introduced the limited-edition Mopar ’13 Dart, marking the fourth special-edition Mopar-badged vehicle created since the company partnered with Fiat S.p.A in 2009. The car will be shown at next week’s Chicago Auto Show.

Building on the success of the Mopar ’10 Challenger, Mopar ’11 Charger and the Mopar ’12 300, the limited-edition Mopar ’13 Dart will be built and customized with Mopar performance parts and accessories. Production for a limited run of 500 units will begin this spring at the company’s assembly plant in Belvidere, Ill.

“Our new Mopar ’13 Dart will turn heads and stand out from the crowd,” said Pietro Gorlier, President and CEO of Mopar, Chrysler Group’s service, parts and customer-care brand. “For this special, limited- edition vehicle, we specifically kept the driver in mind as we added select Mopar parts and accessories.”

Inspired by the tuner scene, the Mopar ’13 Dart is designed for driving enthusiasts. Powered by a 1.4- liter MultiAir® intercooled turbo engine with a manual transmission, the Mopar ’13 sports a gloss-black finish with a pair of car-length Mopar Blue stripes, which mirror each of the three previous Mopar- themed models.

For enhanced handling, upgrades include a performance steering-gear calibration, a 7 millimeter- lowered suspension and low-profile 40 aspect performance tires (225/40R18). From the racing scene, Mopar added a premium brake kit with slotted rotors. Engine breathing is enhanced with a performance-tuned exhaust and to further optimize aerodynamics and increase downforce, the custom Dart features Mopar’s ground-effects kit, which includes a front-chin spoiler, one-piece deck-lid spoiler, as well as a unique and aggressively styled rear diffuser.

Unique exterior elements include a Mopar badge in the crosshair grille and gloss-black 18-inch wheels with a Mopar logo on the wheel center caps. The vehicle’s unique interior, featuring a serialized plate, gives the driver a custom Mopar Blue leather seat with black accents. To keep the emphasis on the driver, the driver seat is Mopar Blue while all other seats are black with blue accent stitching. The centerpiece of the interior is a floating island bezel that is accented with Mopar Blue paint and lighting. The interior is further enhanced with rich details, including Mopar Blue accent thread, as well as light- black chrome and gloss-black elements.

Along with a Mopar serialized badge on the dash, the special-edition Mopar ’13 includes industry-first wireless charging for smartphones, a blue-stitched leather-wrapped steering wheel with an identically garnished shifter knob, a bright sport-pedal kit, premium Mopar carpet floor mats, door-sill guards and an 8.4-inch navigation screen.

The limited-edition Mopar ’13 Dart will be delivered to each customer with a personalized owner kit. Assembled in a custom-made black case, contents include a personalized plate with vehicle specifications, the date of manufacture and the unique identification number (of 500) of the vehicle. Along with a Mopar ’13 brochure and other memorabilia, the kit will include a limited-edition sketch of the vehicle signed by Mark Trostle, Chrysler Group Chief Designer for the Mopar Brand.

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Chrysler Group LLC Gives Sneak Peek Inside New Mopar ’13

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From Chrysler.com:

Chrysler Group LLC released an interior image of its new Mopar ’13 limited-edition vehicle, which will be shown at next month’s Chicago Auto Show.

“This vehicle is the perfect canvas for personalization and customization,” said Pietro Gorlier, President and CEO of Mopar, Chrysler Group LLC’s service, parts and customer-care brand. “We couldn’t wait to get our hands on it and give it the Mopar treatment.”

The Mopar ’13 limited-edition vehicle follows the Mopar ’10 Dodge Challenger, Mopar ’11 Dodge Charger and Mopar ’12 Chrysler 300.

Mopar-first Features

Mopar has introduced numerous industry-first features including:

-Vehicle-information apps: first to introduce smartphone vehicle-information applications, a new channel of communication with consumers
-Electronic owner manuals: first to introduce traditional owner manuals in a DVD and brief user-guide format and first to offer complete vehicle-information kits in Spanish
-Wi-Fi: first to offer customers the ability to make their vehicle a wireless hot spot
-Wireless charging: first to introduce in-vehicle wireless charging for portable devices
-Electronic Vehicle Tracking System (EVTS): first to market with a new interactive vehicle tracking device that sends owner a text when vehicle is driven too fast or too far based on pre-set parameters
-2011 Mopar Challenger Drag Pak: first to introduce a 500-plus cubic-inch V-10 drag-race package car
-Brand-specific customer care telephone lines: first to offer Sunday service hours for customers
-WiTECH: first to support vehicle diagnosis and software updates leveraging off-the-shelf personal computers and a dedicated wireless tool network

Gearhead takes his blown 440 Duster around the block!

This week’s Gearhead of the Week, Preston Herrick, has a modified 1970 Plymouth Duster he’s not shy to show off, and we don’t blame him! Preston says part of his project was inspired by MuscleCar’s Pro Street Dodge Project for tips on modifying the steel hood for the blower. Below is a video of Preston’s Duster in action!

See more of Preston’s ride here, and feel free to leave a comment: Gearhead of the Week

If you’d like to be PowerBlock TV’s Gearhead of the Week, post your videos and photos to www.mypowerblock.com!

Check it out:

Cummins builds 2 millionth Ram Diesel for Chrysler

From Chrysler.com:

Cummins builds 2 millionths Ram Diesel for Chrysler

Cummins Inc. has produced its 2-millionth diesel engine for Ram Trucks, highlighting the latest milestone in a storied partnership that spans four decades.

The 350-horsepower, 6.7-liter, in-line 6-cylinder turbo diesel is distinguished by its “Cummins Red” rocker cover and breather. But despite its 800 lb.-ft. peak torque rating, the historic engine – feted today at a Cummins plant in Columbus, Ind. – will not see service. Instead, it will go on display, touring the U.S.

“The Ram Truck-Cummins diesel partnership is one of the industry’s most enduring and certainly fitting of such a tribute,” says Fred Diaz, President and CEO – Ram Truck Brand and Chrysler de Mexico. “Both companies have benefited greatly, but Ram diesel customers are the real beneficiaries. Every day they experience the toughness and capability a Cummins-powered Ram can deliver.”

Cummins began supplying engines to Chrysler Group in 1988. Today in North America, only Ram-brand pickups and chassis cabs feature the coveted Cummins “C” logo.

“I am immensely proud of our association with Cummins,” says Bob Lee, Chrysler Group Vice President and Head of Engine and Electrified Propulsion Engineering. “And I have no qualms matching our truck diesels against those of any competitor for performance and durability.”

Tell us what you think, PowerBlock fans. Send us a tweet to @PowerBlockTV, or leave us a comment on our Facebook page.

Mopar introduces Gen III Viper engine at SEMA 2012

Our PowerBlock correspondent has been out and about at SEMA and came across the Gen II Viper engine that comes with a performance upgrade kit.

The engine promises owners they’ll see a power increase of up to 650 HP (with headers) while retaining excellent low speed characteristics.

The upgraded kit comes with fully assembled cylinder heads, fuel rails, upper intake manifold, fuel injectors, hardware kit, machining of cylinder heads to fit a Gen III cylinder block and revised engine control software.

Other unique or modified parts include: modified GEN IV head assemblies, unique design fasteners for mating GEN III Block and Gen IV Head, unique length one-piece pushrods, a manifold that allows use of the GEN II throttle body and incorporates an air diverter to direct air over the trumpets of the lower intake, a modified Gen III wiring and connectors and Gen III JTEC controller with unique spark and fuel curves.