Starting within the past 8 years or so, Detroit (and some foreign makes as well) has seemed to be really tapping into the peoples’ need to reminisce in the past, by introducing “retro” cars such as the popular PT Cruiser and the latest generation of Mustangs. These cars carry a sense of history with them that seems to translate into great profits for Detroit automakers.
These days there’s a lot of Dodge commercials, with the big selling point of the Hemi engine. They must be doing something right in their advertising because I’m noticing tons of new Dodge/Chrysler vehicles in the area with the very evident Hemi badge of honor. Why is the selling point of the Hemi so successful, despite whether the vehicle it resides in is “retro” or not? I mean, it’s just another type of engine right? It’s so successful because of the infamous 426 Hemi that was put into a small percentage (very expensive option) of Dodge and Plymouths performance cars from 1966-71. The 426 Hemi was “the” engine to get during the muscle car era (though the Chevy guys may think elsewise… ZL1 ring a bell?), and its rarity and great value have put it at the top of American musclecar folklore forever .
So I ask again, why is the Hemi engine such a great selling point in today’s Dodge and Chrysler cars? Because everyone knows that it means it’s special; it’s the newer version of a legend that demands respect; that Hemi = lots of power (despite the new Hemi’s smaller displacement), now how could you NOT buy a Dodge or Chrysler with that engine! And just in case you were wondering, the term Hemi is short for “hemispherical combustion chamber”… I could explain it to you but I shall refrain from boring you to death.