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500-cubic-inch Hemi

Based off of Chrysler Corporation's Hemi engine, the 500-cubic-inch (NHRA maximum) engine is the heart of the Top Fuel Dragster. The Top Fuel Dragster engine uses 12 gallons of the nitromethane and methanol mix per run. A 14-71 (semi-trucks use an 8-71) supercharger is needed to burn at that fuel in such short amount of time.

The Hemi engine got its name from the hemispherical shape of the cylinder head. This hemi shape allows the fuel-air mixture to be compressed more before igniting it which creates more power. The 426 Hemi is regarded as the best muscle car engine, so using the best engine design for horsepower makes sense when you are trying to go as fast as possible in mile.

The engine used to be in front of the driver until Don Garlits had a sever engine explosion that almost cost him his life. The engine exploded severed the chassis right where his feet where. Luckily, he only lost small piece on one foot. Garlits decided to make a new rear-engine dragster for safety concerns. After beating all the front-motored dragsters with his new design, the rear-engine dragster became the standard. Front-engine dragsters are still raced today in nostalgia class.


Warming up the engine


The result of an engine failure