The Hellcat engine fits in both the Wrangler and Gladiator, but doesn’t make the production cut. Jeep’s North American Brand Chief, Tim Kuniskis, confirmed that the Hellcat crate engine does fit in both vehicles. He went on to confirm that technically it fits, but technically doesn’t meant it’s a symbiotic fit.
While speaking to the Austrian media, Kuniskis said that “everybody” keeps asking him if the supercharged, 6.2-liter Hellcat V8 fits in the Wrangler and Gladiator, and the answer is yes. He said, “Everybody always asks me that question: the Hellcat engine fits like a glove.” In an interview with Drive Kuniskis explained more about the engine fit, “There’s no air space around the engine so you have no crush space, you have nothing that can be used to absorb energy in a crash. It’s not a problem to put it in – other than emissions and fuel economy – except it would never pass any crash tests, and that’s a problem.” If it can’t pass the collision tests, it can’t be a production vehicle. Jeep hasn’t given any inclination that they plan to address the problem at this time.
Challenge Accepted! Jeep owners usually love the brand beyond the level of most enthusiasts. The hobbyists and aftermarket companies who build up Wranglers, and now Gladiators, will find different options. The “Hellcrate” engine is priced under $20K new, so whoever can afford it, will probably be building it. Several shops have already been working on a Hell-swap kit for the JL Wrangler, and with similar dimensions, it would fit the Gladiator too.
Kuniskis said that Jeep continues to “gauge interest” for the J6 concept, which can be seen at EJS this year. He continued, “The J6 is just a concept at this stage. But that doesn’t mean we’re not going to gauge interest for it.” Another EJS build, the Five-Quarter Concept, is running the “Hellcrate” engine. This isn’t the first time Jeep built a Hellcat-powered Wrangler concept. Jeep shouldn’t be surprised when people keep asking for a Wrangler Hellcat option.
Image Credit: Jeep