Our spy photographer has what he claims are the first shots of a Ram Rebel TR mule, a non-supercharged companion to the upcoming Hellcat-powered TRX.
The truck spied is using a Limited body (the TRX mule borrows a Big Horn body) and is packing a naturally aspirated V8, as the Hellcat’s supercharger whine was noticeably absent. The photographer affirmed the rumor that it will have a “Banshee” 7.0-liter V8, created by boring out the 6.4L Hemi used in heavy-duty pickups and, somewhat differently tuned, in high-performance Grand Cherokees, Durangos, Challengers, and Chargers.
The rims are aftermarket pieces, and the frame rail support/bracket (which extends all the way to the rear doors) suggests that the Ram needs some extra support to handle the increased power.
The Rebel TRX concept was shown at the State Fair of Texas back in 2016. The TR, while not quite as potent as the 707-horsepower TRX, will reportedly generate 520 horsepower and 525 pound-feet of torque from 7.0 liters — the magical 426 cubic inches. It’s reputed to have an official debut sometime in 2020, which is too far off for many fans — who really, really want to see Ram wallop the Ford Raptor.
Will there be a new 426 Hemi? It’s possible, though it would be a little confusing to some. There are many rumors around it, and Allpar broke news of a forthcoming Hemi redesign years ago (really, two Hemi redesigns, one covering the current and aging — but still more than competitive — 5.7L V8).
One can cast some doubt on the 426 rumors as wishful thinking supported partly by a Mopar-rumor echo-chamber; that much boring out might merit a new block, which is a hefty expense, while FCA’s general rule seems to be downsizing motors rather than upsizing them. The 6.2L Hellcat is smaller than the 6.4L, and the new 2.0L four-cylinder is much smaller than the 2.4L; the forthcoming straight-six is reportedly just under 3.0 liters, well below the Pentastar’s 3.6-liter standard size.
On the other hand, stranger things have happened — like a supercharged Hemi pushing out 797 horsepower.
A version of this article originally appeared on AllPar.com