Edelbrock has been not so quietly slaving away in their workshop of goodness to create a supercharger that puts the rest of the competition to shame. They’ve done so for the C6 and the Camaro, now it’s our turn. The Hemi 5.7L and 6.1L are already in the final stages of production and should be released very soon. Edelbrock is quick to point out the engineering that went into the development of the new Challenger supercharger, and they should be considering what they’ve accomplished.
The traditional set up of a supercharger was tossed out the window when Edelbrock decided that they were going to go the forced induction route for the new Hemi cars. They decided that they wanted something that went above and beyond what the market dictated. Most aftermarket axial flow positive displacement superchargers have conventionally been arranged one of two ways, either A. front drive rear inlet, or B. rear drive, front inlet. These two designs each have their pro’s and con’s but the front drive rear inlet has a particularly nasty drawback of having to route air from the front of the car/engine bay to the rear of the engine to the supercharger inlet. The downside to this is a lot of plumbing and bends, all of which are restrictive and non-conducive to power gains, even if there is a supercharger. Why would you want to make the air that’s going to be utilized for maximum power, have to travel farther to be used and the supercharger work harder to use it? Another downside to a rear drive supercharger is the simple fact that since superchargers are driven off the crank pulley, the use of a jack shaft and an auxiliary drive belt on the rear side of the supercharger would have to be utilized. Again, not the most logical way to go about adding power, when there are other options. So, what if I told you there was a way to make a front drive, front inlet supercharger work for our Hemi’s? Would you be interested?
You’re answer better have been “%#!& yes!”
This is where Edelbrock steps up their game and really put some engineering minds to the test. What they’ve done is take the compact, reliable front drive set up and installed the rotors from the rear with a driveshaft that extends forward to be coupled with the drive pulley. This means a front drive setup. So, no jack shaft, no auxiliary drive belt, and a simple, yet extremely effective and reliable front drive setup. Now that that has been taken care of the next obstacle to be overcome is the dilemma of finding a way to incorporate a front drive setup with a front inlet. The way Edelbrock goes about this is by changing things up yet again. Where they’ve deviated from the commonly accepted setup of placing the intake manifold on top and having air move up from the charger, do a 180* turn down, then another 180* turn back up, only to then begin its descent down the intake runners, is to eliminate all of the 180* turns by incorporating the supercharger into the intake manifold. By doing so, the runner length has been maximized to eliminate turns and provide the most low-end torque. Edelbrock has utilized Eaton Gen VI 2300 TVS Supercharger rotating assembly which is an all new 4 lobe design incorporating 160* of twist for maximum flow, minimum temperature rise and incredible durability.
Another incredible idea that they put into production, was to incorporate the bypass valve into the manifold. The purpose of this vacuum actuated valve is to eliminate the parasitic loss that has become synonymous with superchargers. The way this works, is when the gas is only lightly used (when you can bear not romping on it-think in traffic) the manifold vacuum normally generated by the engine keeps this throttle plate valve open, equalizing pressure between the inlet and outlet plenums in the supercharger. So, the pressure after the supercharger rotors is equalized minimizing the parasitic power loss normally occurring due to a constant “charge” on the engine. What this means, is while the valve is open, the same amount of fuel is used as if the supercharger wasn’t there at all. SO, on your drive to work, or to the grocery store- there is no difference in fuel consumption (MPG) before and after the installation for normal driving. In a mark of engineering awesomeness they have taken what used to be a seemingly silly design and “fixed it” to the way it should have been done originally. It makes that much sense, one wonders why it wasn’t done before now…
So with a front-drive, front-inlet setup, what are the drawbacks? As far as we can see: none. The power gains of a supercharger are excellent; it’s pretty much the best bang for your buck when it comes to bolt-on power. So really the only question you should be asking yourself is how to get one- and when. Edelbrock has also gone the extra mile and made sure the kit is legal in 50 states. FIFTY STATES. That means even in California, C.A.R.B. can only admire the beast of a car all you rejoicing Californians will be driving. All in all we can’t wait for it to come out, and see what kind of power we can put down in our Hemi’s, legally!
For further reading and updates on the kits release for the Hemi, please visit Edelbrock’s website.