While you might not have heard of Stellantis before, chances are you’ve experienced their product at one point or another. They’re the parent company of a host of brands, including 4×4 brands Jeep and RAM. They’re a big deal; big enough that they have just announced revenue for the last quarter of €42.1Billion. Remember, 2022 hasn’t exactly been smooth sailing. The fact that they’ve managed that sort of revenue. Not bad.
Stellantis attribute the strength of their earnings to “the enthusiastic response to our Dodge and Jeep EV”, and even tease that the Ram 1500 Revolution BEV Concept will make its debut in 2023. If you’re not up to speed with Electric Vehicles, here are a few acronyms you’ll see the manufacturers throw around.
EV: Electric Vehicle
BEV: Battery Electric Vehicle
HEV: Hybrid Electric Vehicle
PHEV: Plug-in Hybrid Vehicle
EREV: Extended Range Electric Vehicle
MHEV: Mild Hybrid Electric Vehicle
ZEV: Zero Emission Vehicle
FCEV: Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle
ICE: Internal Combustion Engine
The future is electric
The future of motoring, like it or not, is electric. At least that’s what the next step is from the internal combustion engines we know and love. Jeep is moving rapidly away from ICE, having recently launched the 4Xe Wrangler in the US which runs a 2.0L turbo four-cylinder hybrid powertrain. This one is a plug-in hybrid, which can take a full charge in as little as two hours. Not bad.
Now, before we get too upset about the electric future, Stellantis have given us petrol heads a parting gift. Meet Hurricane.
Hurricane is an all-new petrol-powered 3.0L inline six-cylinder twin turbo. It’ll replace the ageing Pentastar 3.6L V6, as well as just about every other big petrol engine in the Stellantis line up. Sadly, the end is nigh for the Hemi.
Two variants on offer
But back to the Hurricane. We expect to see it fitted to Jeep and Ram 4x4s early 2023, and we cannot wait to try them out. There’ll be two variants on offer; a standard-output version, and a high-output version. The big six is a double-overhead-camshaft, direct-injected aluminium engine with identical bore and stroke dimensions to the soon-to-be iconic BMW B58 and S58. The high-output S58 powers a host of sporty BMWs, including the M range, as well as the Toyota Supra. The B58 can be found in the not-so-sporty applications, like the X5, and even the Ineos Grenadier.
Again, let’s get back to the Hurricane. Stellantis tells us the standard-output engine will deliver around 310kW and 635Nm on regular old E10 fuel. They expect the high-output version to offer in the vicinity of 380Kw and 680Nm in standard form.
Let’s assume we do begin to see at least the standard output engine in Australian-delivered Jeep Gladiators and Wranglers some time in 2023. How does it stack up to the current Pentastar 3.6L V6?
Well, let’s just say… favourably.
Incredible. Considering the current Jeep Gladiator and Wrangler don’t actually feel underpowered, this will likely be a huge step forward in both technology, but also uptake in Australia. While the Pentastar V6 is probably best described as ‘adequate’, the Hurricane looks to be a weapon in comparison.
What is even more amazing is that this is coming from Stellantis; a company that makes no secret of their desire for electrification. They believe that by the end of the decade they can achieve 100% of European sales, and 50% of US sales to be BEV. We can be almost assured that the Hurricane has been developed with an eye on that EV future, and we expect to see hybrid versions in the not-too distant future.
We can’t wait to get our hands on the Hurricane, but more than that, we want the resourceful Aussie aftermarket to get their hands on it. Ponder for a moment what has been achieved with the early Toranas and Chargers, the Nissan RB range, the Toyota 2JZ and more recently Ford’s Barra 6. Here in Australia, we love our big six. Let’s hope this is the latest in a long line of legendary engines.