Detroit’s straight-six is back (in a crate) for 2023

The Direct Connection all-new HurriCrate series of crate engines will offer a lineup including a Cat 1 crate engine that delivers up to 420 horsepower and a Cat 3 engine (above) that reaches up to 550 horsepower, based on preliminary estimates. Stellantis | Dodge

Remember Chrysler’s inline “Slant Six” engine, so named because the block leaned at a 30-degree angle? It was introduced in 1959 as a replacement for the Chrysler flathead straight-six that essentially got its start in 1925 and it lasted, in one form or another, until the overhead-valve Slant Six replaced it. The Slant Six made it until 2000, when V-6s replaced the overhead-valve engine that originally came in everything from pickup trucks to passenger sedans. It had a deserved reputation for being bulletproof, and it made a lot of friends.

The 225-cubic-inch (3.7-liter) Slant Six was never much for hot-rodding, although some very successful dragsters and land-speed vehicles used a modified version of it.

Now comes Stellantis’ twin-turbo, 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder called the Hurricane, named one of Ward’s 10 Best engines for 2022, a prestigious award. And in the near future, Dodge’s Direct Connection aftermarket performance arm will market the “HurriCrate” engine, a hot-rodded version of the straight-six for, well, hot rods, restomods, and other performance vehicles. Debuting at the 2022 SEMA show, the HurriCrate, so named because it arrives at your garage in a crate, will be offered as a Cat 1 or Cat 3 model. The Cat 1 is expected to offer up to 420 horsepower, while the HurriCrate Cat 3 delivers up to 550 horsepower.

direct connection dodge hurricrate six
The Direct Connection all-new HurriCrate series of crate engines will offer a lineup including a Cat 1 crate engine that delivers up to 420 horsepower and a Cat 3 engine (above) that reaches up to 550 horsepower, based on preliminary estimates. Stellantis | Dodge

The Cat 1 utilizes the inherent torque advantage of the Hurricane engine’s twin-turbo, inline six-cylinder design to deliver 468 lb-ft of torque by 2500 rpm, while the Cat 3 delivers its max 531 lb-ft of torque at just 3500 rpm. If that isn’t enough, there are plans for a racing variant, the HurriCrate Cat X crate engine, including a future Drag Pak option.

Both HurriCrates employ two low-inertia, high-flow turbochargers for rapid response, plus Plasma Transfer Wire Arc (PTWA) coating in the cylinder bores for an ultra-thin, low-friction wear surface, and high-pressure direct fuel injection. Both have engine-mounted water-to-air charge coolers with a dedicated cooling circuit.

direct connection dodge hurricrate six
The Direct Connection all-new HurriCrate series of crate engines will offer a lineup including a Cat 1 crate engine that delivers up to 420 horsepower and a Cat 3 engine (above) that reaches up to 550 horsepower, based on preliminary estimates. Stellantis | Dodge

Both of the Mexico-built versions also have dual overhead camshafts with wide-range, fully independent variable valve timing, and dual water-cooled exhaust manifolds integrated in the cylinder head. The Hurricane, known internally as the GME T6, debuted in the new Jeep Grand Wagoneer L, with 510 horsepower.

Hurricane Twin Turbo Inline-Six
Stellantis

The performance version of the Hurricane could also be used in a car, but that seems like a long shot. After all, the Hurricane is the closest internal-combustion replacement for the Hemi V-8 as Stellantis is expected to have, as that company, along with everybody else, transitions to electricity.

So some fast aftermarket versions the inline-six are here, and somewhere William Weertman, father of the Chrysler Slant Six, must be smiling. HurriCrate prices have not been announced.

2023 Grand Wagoneer L Obsidian exterior rear three quarter
Stellantis

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Comments

    If you were building a hot rod or custom car, why would you use this 6 cyl engine instead of an LS V8 from GM?
    How much does this engine weight?
    Just from the pictures, it looks a lot bulkier than an LS V8, which can be a factor in a hot rod.

    I think that it would be cool in a Prowler.
    Still a 6, but 500 HP in a lightweight body.
    Still a Chrysler product.
    Hot rod? resto mod? What is it?
    Stellinis should build it for SEMA and then give it to me for the idea.
    You’re welcome

    LS CJs never really appealed to me, but I’m really hoping I’ll be able to fit this in my CJ5 with the right transmission.

    First stop saying slant Six. This is no slant six as that engine was a base engine that filled a cost cutting need.

    This engine is here to put in the trucks to get the MPGs up and Emission down. Less cylinders, higher boost for more efficient engines with similar V8 power.

    The real issue here is this engine will find a way into trucks/SUV and maybe some Jeeps. Long shot for a RWD car at best. It will never be in a FWD.

    In fact this engine may see a short life of 10-15 years.

    These engines are smooth and have torque but fitment is a real issue.

    This is an interesting motor. I’m not sure how I feel about all the composite/plastic bits but time will tell on the reliability.

    I rebuilt a 225 slant six into a high performance engine and it really was a fun drive. The head was milled and ported, I put the “purple cam” in the block with badger pistons. The engine had a 390 cfm Holley four barrel on a Clifford Research aluminum intake with Clifford Research 3 into 1 headers. Electronic ignition and a bunch of other mods that I can’t remember. I stuck it in a 66 Dart with a 4 speed. Those were the good old days.

    The Hurricane in-line six looks a lot more complicated and difficult to work on.

    I have a slant six in my 1974 Dodge stepside. I am using several parts from Aussiespeed and a 390 CFM Holley. I would love to learn more about what you did. Please contact me

    I for one will not give up my good American V8 sound and Versatility. I grabbed a 2022 Longhorn Limited with the non -Etorque Hemi. Never been a fan of the auto. Stop/start feature to save a few nickels on the front end.. Not a believer in all of this EV junk coming down the road. Would guess that in future years people will be begging me to sell them my clean hemi V8.

    Great story, again no pricing. If you are going to whet our appetite at least tell us what the adventure is going to cost. This could be useful in many applications.

    Not very compact and looks cluttered, so not sure who would pick this for a hot rod or resto mod. Those are applications where someone is either trying to squeeze in a bigger motor and/or wants to see a nice looking motor. Both are fails here.

    I’m with the guy who used all the Clifford Engineering parts on his Slant-6. Did same thing with my AMC 232″ straight 6, except I ran an automatic.
    14.82 in the 1/4 mile for a “six cylinder RAMBLER”.
    Yeah, a LOT of the local V-8 guys hated me 😉
    This engine looks too bulky/stocky/cluttered for a street machine, no matter how efficient it is.
    Might be a good retro-fit for a CJ, if it’s AMC designed engine has coughed it’s cookies !

    With the popularity of the Toyota/Lexus 2jz engine, could this be the reason that Chrysler has brought this engine out. It will NEVER be as good as the 2jz making 750 to 1000HP with modifications and still drive it to the grocery store and make 1500 hp and up in race mode. With as much trouble as Chrysler has had in the past wit valve seats coming out of heads and a few other things, I just can not se it.

    You can’t fool me, that’s not an engine, it’s a dishwasher.
    If you are thinking about a straight six hot rod, stick with the original Mopar slant six. Many clean low-miles slants have been pulled in favor of a V8 swap, and sit idle under workbenches.
    Think about the racing success of the NASCAR Hyper-Pak slant six Valiants.
    Currently, high-end full bodied slant six drag cars are running the 1/4 mile in the 11 sec bracket, and with relative ease you can build a dependable carbureted 13 sec slant six drag car.
    Chrysler will probably use this crate motor in some future pickup truck, but I doubt it will ever be a favorite with the gearheads. Just can’t picture one in an open wheel 32 Ford. … Gary

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