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Hear a 331 Hemi running.

Early Chrysler Hemi Engine

With the introduction of its 1951 models, the Chrysler Division of the Chrysler Corporation announced the new, high performance Chrysler Firepower engine. This power plant, Chrysler's first entry in the "V" type engine field, incorporates several revolutionary design features which make it the most powerful passenger car engine in the United States.

Designed and developed over a period of five years by the Chrysler Corporation, this engine is extremely compact. A unique combustion chamber and overhead valve arrangement is chiefly responsible for the number of advantages it holds over competitive engines of similar type and size. Exhaustive tests have proved that this new engine possesses exceptional operating characteristics and excellent durability. Through parallel programs, the engine accessories were developed to insure optimum performance during all operating conditions.

Performance features
1.- Hemispherical combustion chamber
_ _a) High volumetric efficiency.
_ _b) High thermal efficiency, low specific heat rejection.
_ _c) Superior combustion characteristics.
_ _d) Excellent adaptability to higher compression ratios.
_ _e) Lateral valve arrangement, greater valve durability.

2.- Superior manifolding.

3.- High valve lift.

4.- High mechanical efficiency.


Presented here is a chart for all of the Early Hemi engines produced by the Chrysler Corporation. Intermixed with the Hemi head engines is details of the Poly head engines.

What in the world is a Hemi head?
What in the world is a Poly head?

The Graphics are of a Chrysler 331 cubic inch Model.


  • Click on the images for a larger picture.

     Image of left side of a early Chrysler Hemi engine Left side  Image of right side a early Chrysler Hemi engine Right Side

     Image of front cross section of a early Chrysler Hemi engine Front Cross section.  Image of right side cross section of a early Chrysler Hemi engine Right Side Cross section.

     Image of top open block of a early Chrysler Hemi engine Top Open Block.  Image of bottom open block of a early Chrysler Hemi engine Bottom Open Block.

     Image of bottom side a early Chrysler Hemi engine head.Cylinder Head - Bottom  Image of top side a early Chrysler Hemi engine head.Cylinder Head - Top

     Image of bottom side a early Chrysler Hemi engine head.Rockers  Image of top side a early Chrysler Hemi engine head.Cylinder Head - Installation



    A note about Early and Late Block castings.

    In the following graphic there are two styles of castings. It is believed that the early casting was changed to the late casting style for the model year of 1954.

    The service manual for 1953 shows only the Early casting. The preliminary service manual for 1954 shows both castings.

    In the graphic the castings are depicted from the distributor C/L rearward.
    The Later Casting is the preferable one because of lack of the extended bell housing. The Later casting is more easily converted to other transmissions.
    Block casting sectionsCastings-Click on the image for a larger picture.




    How to identify Chrysler Early Hemi engines.

     IMAGE OF SERIAL NUMBER LOCATION Chrysler Hemi engine

    Note: The Serial/Model number is on the top of the block, between the valley cover and the edge of
    the block, near the water pump. It is generally centered between the two heads

    From the Serial/Model on the block, match the first 3 to 6 characters to the
    Model chart below. This should identify which engine that the Serial/Model number is on.

    If the Serial/Model number is not in the chart then I have NO info on the engine.


    ChryslerChrysler 300DeSotoDodgeDodge TruckIndustrialImperialMarinePlymouthTop of page

    ModelYear Car LineChamber TypeDisplacementFuel DeliveryComp. RatioHorsepower
    PP = PowerPack
    Chrysler Early Hemi and/or Poly Engines
    C51-8 1951 ChryslerHemi3312 Barrel7.5:1180
    C52-8 1952 ChryslerHemi3312 Barrel7.5:1180
    C53-8 1953 ChryslerHemi3312 Barrel7.5:1180
    C541-8 1954 ChryslerHemi3312 Barrel7.5:1195
    C542-8 1954 ChryslerHemi3314 Barrel7.5:1235
    NE55 1955 ChryslerHemi331N.A.8.5:1250
    WE551955 ChryslerPoly301N.A.8:1188
    WE561956 ChryslerPoly331N.A.8.5:1/ 9:1225/350
    WE561956 NANA331N.A. NA188
    NE56 1956 ChryslerHemi354N.A.9:1280
    LE57 1957 ChryslerPoly354N.A.9.25:1295
    NE57 1957 ChryslerHemi392N.A.9.25:1325/375(PP)
    WE571957 ChryslerPoly354N.A. 9.25:1285/295
    WE571957 NANA354N.A.NA280
    58N1958 Chrysler Hemi392N.A.10:1345

    ChryslerChrysler 300DeSotoDodgeDodge TruckIndustrialImperialMarinePlymouthTop of page

    ModelYear Car LineChamber TypeDisplacementFuel DeliveryComp. RatioHorsepower
    PP = PowerPack
    FI = Fuel Injection
    58S1958 Unknown - Probably ChryslerPoly354N.A.10:1310
    58W1958 Unknown - Probably ChryslerPoly354N.A.10:1290

    ModelYear Car LineChamber TypeDisplacementFuel DeliveryComp. RatioHorsepower
    PP = PowerPack
    FI = Fuel Injection
    Chrysler 300 Early Hemi and/or Poly Engines
    3NE551955 Chrysler 300Hemi331N.A.8.5:1300
    3NE561956 Chrysler 300Hemi354N.A.9:1/10:1340/355
    3NE571957 Chrysler 300Hemi392N.A.9.25:1375
    3NE571957 Chrysler 300
    Limited Production-*
    Hemi392N.A.10:1390
    58N31958 Chrysler 300Hemi3922 4bbls
    FI
    10:1380
    390
    * Special Thanks to Wayne Graefen author: The 1957 Chrysler 300C Handbook

    ChryslerChrysler 300DeSotoDodgeDodge TruckIndustrialImperialMarinePlymouthTop of page

    ModelYear Car LineChamber TypeDisplacementFuel DeliveryComp. RatioHorsepower
    PP = PowerPack
    DeSoto Early Hemi Engines
    S16 1952 DesotoHemi2762 bbl.7.1:1160
    S17 1953 DesotoHemi2762 bbl.7:1160
    S19 1954 DesotoHemi2762 bbl.7.5:1170
    S21 1955 DesotoHemi2914 bbl.7.5:1200
    S22 1955 DesotoHemi2912 bbl.7.5:1185
    S23 1956 DesotoHemi3302 bbl.8.5:1230
    S241956 DesotoHemi3304 bbl.8.5:1255
    S24A 1956 DesotoHemi341N.A.9.5:1320
    S25 1957 DesotoHemi3412 bbl.9.25:1270
    S26 1957 DesotoHemi3414 bbl.9.25:1295
    S26A 1957 DesotoHemi3452 x 4 bbl. **9.5:1345
    ** Thanks to Scott Hughes

    ChryslerChrysler 300DeSotoDodgeDodge TruckIndustrialImperialMarinePlymouthTop of page

    ModelYear Car LineChamber TypeDisplacementFuel DeliveryComp. RatioHorsepower
    PP = PowerPack
    Dodge Early Hemi and/or Poly Engines
    D44 1953 Dodge Red RamHemi241N.A.7:1140
    D50-1,2,3 1954 DodgeHemi241N.A.7.1:1/7.5:1140/150
    D50A 1954 Dodge Red RamHemi241N.A.N.A.140
    D55 1955 DodgePoly270N.A.7.6:1240
    D553 1955 Dodge Super Red RamHemi270N.A.7.6:1183/193(PP)
    D500 1956 Dodge D500Hemi315N.A.9.25:1260/295
    D63-1 1956 DodgePoly270N.A.8:1266
    D63-2,3 1956 DodgePoly315N.A.8:1309/316
    KD500 1957 DodgeHemi325N.A.9.25:1285/310(PP)
    KDS 1957 DodgePoly325N.A.8.5:1320/335
    L325/LD2 1958 DodgePoly325N.A.9:1252/265

    ChryslerChrysler 300DeSotoDodgeDodge TruckIndustrialImperialMarinePlymouthTop of page

    ModelYear Car LineChamber TypeDisplacementFuel DeliveryComp. RatioHorsepower
    PP = PowerPack
    Dodge Truck Early Hemi and/or Poly Engines
    VT-334,-336,-3381954 Dodge TruckHemi241N.A.N.A.N.A.
    VT-342,-344,-3461954 Dodge TruckHemi270N.A.N.A.N.A.
    B8,C8,D8,F8,G81955/56 Dodge TruckHemi259N.A.N.A.N.A.
    FS8,GH8,HS81955/56 Dodge TruckHemi259N.A.N.A.N.A.
    J8,JS8,KA8,KS81955/56 Dodge TruckHemi270N.A.N.A.N.A.
    RS,RS8,T8,V81955/56 Dodge TruckHemi331N.A.N.A.N.A.
    VT-434,-436,-4381955/56 Dodge TruckPoly259N.A.N.A.N.A.
    K8-D4,K8-D5,K8-D61957 Dodge TruckHemi315N.A.N.A.N.A.
    S4,S5,S61957 Dodge TruckHemi315N.A.N.A.N.A.
    VT-534,-536,-5381957 Dodge TruckPoly315N.A.N.A.N.A.
    K8-D7,K8-D8,C5,C6,C71957 Dodge TruckHemi331N.A.N.A.N.A.
    P3,P4,S7,W5,T7,T81957 Dodge TruckHemi331N.A.N.A.N.A.
    K8-D9,T91957 Dodge TruckHemi354N.A.N.A.N.A.
    K8-D7,K8-D8,C7,T7,T81957 Dodge TruckHemi354N.A.N.A.N.A.
    C5, C6, P3, P4, S4, S5, S61958 Dodge TruckHemi315N.A.N.A.N.A.
    L8-D1, L8-D2, L8-D31958 Dodge TruckPoly315N.A.N.A.N.A.
    L8-D4, L8-D5, L8-D6, WS1958 Dodge TruckHemi354N.A.N.A.N.A.
    L8-D7, L8-D8, L8-D9, C71958 Dodge TruckHemi354N.A.N.A.N.A.
    T7,T8, T91958 Dodge TruckHemi354N.A.N.A.N.A.
    C7,S7,T7,T8,T91959 Dodge TruckHemi354N.A.N.A.N.A.
    M8-D6,C6,S61959 Dodge TruckHemi315N.A.N.A.N.A.
    M8-D7,M8-D8,M8-D91959 Dodge TruckHemi354N.A.N.A.N.A.

    ChryslerChrysler 300DeSotoDodgeDodge TruckIndustrialImperialMarinePlymouthTop of page

    ModelYear Car LineChamber TypeDisplacementFuel DeliveryComp. RatioHorsepower
    PP = PowerPack
    Industrial Early Hemi and/or Poly Engines
    I/IND 20,20a,24,24a,56N/A Chrysler IndustrialN/A331N.A.N.A.N.A.
    I/IND 56AN/A Chrysler IndustrialN/A354N.A.N.A.N.A.
    I/IND 18, 18aN/A Dodge IndustrialHemi241N.A.N.A.N.A.
    I/IND 52N/A Dodge IndustrialHemi259N.A.N.A.N.A.
    I/IND 53,54N/A Dodge IndustrialHemi315N.A.N.A.N.A.
    I/IND 56A1N/A Dodge IndustrialHemi325N.A.N.A.N.A.

    ChryslerChrysler 300DeSotoDodgeDodge TruckIndustrialImperialMarinePlymouthTop of page

    ModelYear Car LineChamber TypeDisplacementFuel DeliveryComp. RatioHorsepower
    PP = PowerPack
    Imperial Early Hemi Engines
    CE55 1955 ImperialHemi331N.A.8.5:1250
    CE56 1956 ImperialHemi354N.A.9:1280
    CE57 1957 ImperialHemi392N.A.9.25:1325
    58C1958 Imperial Hemi392N.A.10:1345

    ChryslerChrysler 300DeSotoDodgeDodge TruckIndustrialImperialMarinePlymouthTop of page

    ModelYear Car LineChamber TypeDisplacementFuel DeliveryComp. RatioHorsepower
    PP = PowerPack
    Marine Early Hemi Engines
    M44S-3 N.A. MarineHemi2702 bbl. 7.6:1155@3800
    M45S-3 N.A. MarineHemi3542 bbl.8.2:1225@3800
    M45SP N.A. MarineHemi3314 bbl.8.2:1250@4400
    M45SP-3 N.A. MarineHemi3544 bbl.8.2:1275@4400

    Image of model plate for a Chrysler marine engine with codes Marine Engine Model Plate Graphic ( Click Here )

    ChryslerChrysler 300DeSotoDodgeDodge TruckIndustrialImperialMarinePlymouthTop of page

    ModelYear Car LineChamber TypeDisplacementFuel DeliveryComp. RatioHorsepower
    PP = PowerPack
    Plymouth Poly Engines
    P27 1955 PlymouthPoly241N.A.7.6:1157
    P27 1955 PlymouthPoly259N.A.7.6:1167/177
    P29 1956 PlymouthPoly270N.A.8:1180


  • RUMORS

    Heard about a " VT 550 " from a 2 1/2 ton Dodge Truck. Any verification with some details out there?


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    Added page 14/Sept/96