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Chrysler Pacifica Hellcat Baits FCA Global Head of Design

Consumers have a fascination with the Hellcat engine. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) recognizes this and has been busy shoving the Hellcat engine in whatever it can. So, Dodge Challenger, Dodge Charger, Dodge Durango, Jeep Grand Cherokee, and even the Ram 1500 TRX pickup have all seen the powerplant mounted on their platforms. Interestingly, someone recently rendered what a Chrysler Pacifica with the Hellcat widebody treatment might look like. Even more interesting is that Ralph Gilles, FCA’s Global Head of Design, saw the rendering and responded.

The Chrysler Pacifica minivan

2021 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid parked
The 2021 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid | Chrysler

Let’s get the obvious out of the way first. The Chrysler Pacifica is a minivan. Minivans are not likely going to be recipients of and V8 engines from the factory, much less the monster Hellcat powerplant. A minivan, any factory minivan, is not made for brutish horsepower to go down a drag strip or to carve up the pavement in the corners. Instead, it is made to be a safe, versatile, family, and people mover. But what if?

What if Chrysler decided to send out the internal combustion engine (ICE) with a big bang by throwing the highest horsepower engine it makes into everything it makes? You see, global governments are pushing their constituency to change into electric cars in the next two decades. So, ICEs are going to become increasingly more rare from a manufacturer. So, what if Chrysler decided to do one last hurrah by dropping a Hellcat engine into the Chrysler Pacifica? What would it look like?

Rendering artist create Pacifica Hellcat minivan

One expert digital rendering artist, Abimelec Design, decided to find out. The artist explored the styling cues of the current Hellcat equipped vehicles and transferred them onto a current Chrysler Pacifica platform. The result is captivating. It is a minivan, which is not normally all that exciting. Yet, this… this transformation draws the eye. The rendering is in the post below.

When soccer practice starts at 8, ballet class at 8:10, grocery store big sale is over at 8:20, and drag strip opens at…

Posted by Abimelec Design on Thursday, December 3, 2020

The rendering clearly shows that the widebody fender flares were incorporated into the new design. The artist also lowered the Chrysler minivan. So, there is very little fender gap. Additionally, the front fascia has changed. An air dam rides low to the ground, and the grille has a lip, a styling cue from the Dodge Charger or old Dodge Durango GT. Black wheels accompany wide, meaty tires. Finally, the hood receives a scoop inlet design that’s reminiscent of the Dodge Viper.

Ralph Gilles is smitten

The hood is up revealing a Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat engine.
2021 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye supercharged 6.2-liter HEMI® high-output V-8. It boasts 797 horsepower and 707 lb.-ft. of torque | FCA

RELATED: The 2021 Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat Revealed – Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Horsepower

Normally, independent renderings gather oohs and aahs from the general public. Somehow, however, the Chrysler Pacifica Hellcat rendering caught the attention of Ralph Gilles. He is kind of a big deal in the automotive design industry. So, to get a social media response from him on a design is impressive. But, Mr. Gilles did not just hit the like or heart buttons to approve of the design. He also offered his own personal thought on it. Over on Mr. Gilles personal Instagram account he wrote, “@abimelecdesign now you are baiting me…. well done…”

Praise from an automotive industry design mover and shaker is truly noteworthy. It would not be surprising if Abimelec Design did a screen capture of Mr. Gilles’s comment and added it to their digital portfolio. Rightly so! The accomplishment of taking anything from the minivan segment and turning it into a headturner is a feat that has not been accomplished in the almost 40 years the minivan segment has existed. So, kudos to Abimelec design for venturing into the unknown V8 minivan segment. Who would have thought of a widebody Hellcat minivan?