How Much Do You Know About HEMI Engines?

By: Annette

Why is it called a HEMI?

The name HEMI refers to the shape of the cylinder heads. They have a hemispherical design.

What was the first car to have a HEMI?

It was a Chrysler that was the first to have a HEMI. This was in 1951, and it was a new line of V-8 engines.

How much horsepower does a 5.7 HEMI have?

A 5.7 HEMI has 350 horsepower. There is one horsepower per cubic inch.

How many HEMI engines has Chrysler built?

Chrysler has built three different HEMI engines. The first one was called the Chrysler FirePower Engine.

Is Chrysler the only company that builds HEMIs?

No, Chrysler is not the only manufacturer of the HEMI. Many other auto manufacturers have mimicked the design.

Who trademarked the name HEMI?

Chrysler trademarked the name HEMI. Before that, many others had manufactured the engine, but Chrysler had dibs on the name.

How many valves are in a HEMI engine?

A HEMI engine can only have 2 valves. These valves are quite large, and they must be heavier than those in a multi-valve engine.

What is unique about a HEMI?

It's the cylinder heads which give the HEMI its name. They're hemispherical in design and shape.

The combustion chamber resembles . . . ?

The combustion chamber resembles the thick peel of an orange. That is because the piston crown is domed and protruding.

The intake and exhaust valve stems . . . ?

In the HEMI, the intake and exhaust valves point in different directions. That means that it needs a large, wide cylinder head.

Why can only certain cars have a HEMI?

A HEMI engine is incredibly wide. That's why there are only so many cars that it can be installed in.

What was the HEMI engine head referred to in the 1950s?

Chrysler referred to it as the Double Rocker Head in the 1950s. This was in reference to the complexity of the new engine.

When was the first experimental HEMI engine produced?

The first experimental HEMI was produced during World War II. It was for the Republic P-47 Thunderbolt fighter aircraft.

Chrysler and what other company else built a HEMI for tanks?

Chrysler and Continental actually built a HEMI for a World War II tank. It was called the M47 Patton tank.

Which of these was a HEMI name?

These were all names for HEMIs. They were from Chrysler, DeSoto and Dodge.

First generation HEMIs fall into which time period?

1951-1958 is the period that is known for the first generation HEMIs. You can tell it's a first generation by the rear-mounted distributor.

Chrysler eventually abandoned HEMIs in favor of . . . ?

I hope you got that right:) The HEMI was abandoned in the '60s for the wedge-head B engine. This was a temporary abandonment.

What is the bore/stroke ratio on an oversquare engine?

The bore/stroke ratio on an oversquare engine is 1:1. The HEMI is known to be an oversquare engine.

When did the HEMI have a revival?

The HEMI enjoyed a revival in 1964. For about six years, it went out of style, but came back!

When was a HEMI first designated as a HEMI?

A HEMI finally got its name as a HEMI in 1964. This was when it made a reappearance on the market.

What was the nickname for the 426 HEMI?

The 426 HEMI was massive in size and power. That's why it was referred to as the elephant engine.

What was the 426 HEMI intended for?

The 426 HEMI was actually built for NASCAR racing. It was used in a racing Plymouth Belvedere.

The 426 HEMI was also used in . . . ?

The 426 HEMI was used in drag racing. It could stroke to displacements that no other engine of the time could achieve.

Engine heads of today's HEMIs are . . . ?

Today's HEMIs, known as third-generation, have flatter cylinder heads. They're also far more complex.

Today's HEMIs . . . ?

Todays HEMIs are not truly hemispherical in shape. But we're still glad that they kept the name!

When was the 5.7 L HEMI released?

The 5.7 L HEMI was released in 2003. They were installed in Dodge Ram trucks, 1500, 2500 and 3500.

Today, HEMIs are popular for . . . ?

HEMIs and muscle cars go together like peas and carrots. The 426 HEMI is the design that is used.

Originally, the HEMI was produced as ​a 6-cylinder engine for . . . ?

Jaguar invented the 6-cylinder HEMI, before Chrysler got their hands on it. Harry Westlake developed it in 1948.

Back in 1951, 180 horsepower was . . . ?

When Chrysler introduced the HEMI, 180 horsepower was pretty phenomenal. It doesn't seem like much now.

When introduced in 1965, the 426 HEMI produced . . . ?

The legendary 426 HEMI produced 425 horsepower. Wait. Why didn't they call it the 425? Such a mystery.

The hallmark of the 1951 HEMI is the power of the . . . ?

The 1951 HEMI got its power from the combustion chamber. It was tremendously efficient for its time.

In a HEMI head, where is the spark plug?

The HEMI is known for having the spark plug above the combustion chamber, in most cases. The valves open on opposite sides of the chamber.

A HEMI is superior to a flat head engine in that . . . ?

The HEMI has less surface area, and that means less heat loss. With that, you're able to attain more pressure and power.

In a HEMI, valves can be . . . ?

The HEMI design allows for large valves. That means that you can get more air pouring through the engine.

A HEMI can never have . . . ?

The HEMI can never have four valves per cylinder. That's why its use is limited today.

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About This Quiz

They're loud, they're powerful, and they consume your spare time! But how much do you really know about HEMI engines? We're going to test your knowledge of the basic parts and lingo that go hand-in-hand with hot rods. By the end, you'll be ready to get your engine rolling!

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