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Anyone know MOPAR ?

Discussion in 'American Muscle' started by Tspringer, Nov 19, 2003.

  1. Tspringer

    Tspringer F1 Veteran

    Apr 11, 2002
    6,155
    Ive owned tons of cars over the past 20 years, just about any hot European sportscar a crazy car nut would want from Alfas, Healeys and Jags to Porsche and Ferrari. However, I have NEVER owned an American muscle car. I actually know very little about them, and for some unknown reason always sorta looked down on them.

    I think that attitude is changing. I have a guy who seems to want my 308 more than I do. I had pretty much decided to keep it, but now im leaning toward selling it. That of coarse got me to looking around at other cars.

    Someone I got to looking at muscle cars. If your going to mess around.... why mess with anything but the big dogs, right? So I started cruising the MOPARs on ebay.

    Hmmmmmmmmmm 1969 Dodge Charger R/T with a 440 6-pack and 4 speed. Somewhere around $35K it seems. Maybe more. Maybe lots more, I really dont know. Big power..... no brakes. It has a rear seat. Its bound to be loud. Hemi? Sure...... $125K... Uhhhhhh NO.

    The Charger sure is a mean looking car. Then again, so is the Barracude from around '69 to '71! Hmmmmmmmmm 440 and 4 speed 'Cuda anyone?

    Am I losing my mind? What to look for in these cars? Where to start to learn about them? Whats a "fender tag"? Are they junk? Should matching numbers and such really be worth 3 times as much? Would a Ferrari/Porsche kind of guy be happy laying long black marks with a huge V8?
     
  2. Bryan

    Bryan Formula 3

    Besides the 365 GTC/4, I have a heavily modified Omni GLH. Here's a couple Mopar sites to get you started.

    http://www.thedodgegarage.com/index.html
    http://www.houstonmopars.org/index.html
    http://www.moparwebring.org/
    http://www.moparmusclemagazine.com/

    and, of course, http://www.moparchat.com/

    A useful book:

    "Challenger and Barracuda" by Paul Zazarine

    Finally, see a Value Guide (1999 US dollars) I scanned on E-bodies at
    http://home.earthlink.net/~fml2811/images/E-bodyValueGuidePage1.jpg
    http://home.earthlink.net/~fml2811/images/E-bodyValueGuidePage2.jpg
    http://home.earthlink.net/~fml2811/images/E-bodyValueGuidePage3.jpg


    P.S. I like the E-body series (70-72), slight preference for Cuda, but Challenger is OK too.
     
  3. Horsefly

    Horsefly F1 Veteran
    Rossa Subscribed

    May 14, 2002
    6,929
    MOPARs are mostly unibody construction during the sixties. No frame like other cars. Also many have those goofy torsion bar suspension setups. A Dodge Charger might have a brutal 426 hemi engine under the hood, but it would still look like Grandma's Charger that only had a six cylinder or a 383 under the hood. So there is no INSTANT RECOGNITION FACTOR like a Ferrari or Corvette. And I still remember the days when these cars were roaming the streets. I remember alot of redneck looking guys in Chargers and Baracudas with fat rear tires, high lift shackles, and ladder bars. They all looked like a bunch of over-the-hill aging hot rodders to me. No class. I'm no expert on MOPARs, but I did spend last Saturday night unloading a 1958 Chrysler 392 hemi motor off the back of my trailer, in the dark, with a flashlight. About 1000 pounds of iron. Bought it for $275. Don't know if the motor is rebuildable, but I took a chance because they are so hard to find. Hope to use it in a '32 Chevy coupe project. I've not seen any MOPAR products that I would trade a Ferrari for.
     
  4. carguy

    carguy F1 Rookie

    Oct 30, 2002
    3,299
    Alabama (was Mich.)
    Full Name:
    Jeff
    I've owned many muscle cars in days gone by, and my favorite are the mopars. Their styling is great, and they aren't like having a Chevelle or Camaro where there are a billion of them on the road. I've worked on and driven some Hemi cars and 440-6 cars, and the performance is very close. The Hemi needs a bit of tinkering to stay in proper tune, but a good running one is VERY tough to beat. The 440-6 cars are very reliable and need very little attention. If I were to get another mopar it would be a very nice clone (no numbers matching) of a Hemi or 440-6 Cuda or Challenger. Close behind would be the '68 Charger. Of course only a big block would do. I would consider a really nice clone type car that has great cosmetics and you can drive and enjoy it without remorse. But it would be awful hard to part with the 308! I might do it if I could get a good mopar and have some money left over.
     
  5. Viper 10

    Viper 10 Formula Junior

    Nov 16, 2003
    616
    Manhattan Beach, CA
    Full Name:
    Brad Chang
    try these resources:

    www.moparts.com

    and

    www.moparstyle.net

    There is one differentiator between the Euro's and American muscle and that is torque. You will be buying something that has balls to the wall acceleration and massive torque.

    A couple of exclusive cars that you might consider are the Plymouth Superbird (based on the Road Runner chassis) and the Dodge Daytona Charger. These cars were built inlimited numbers and are pretty stunning styling statements.

    Here a couple of pictures...

    The Daytona
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    This particular one had a Viper engine in it...

    Here's some pictures of my buddy's Superbird with a 440 Magnum engine...

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Good luck.

    Brad
     
  6. girlgrammy

    girlgrammy Rookie

    Jul 18, 2003
    22
    Santa Monica, CA
    Full Name:
    Amanda
    In my humble opinion; if you're gravitating towards an American Muscle Car I would choose MOPAR over any American make for the originality/uniqueness factor and they're damn fast :) I used to have a 1970 Dodge Challenger in Panther Pink with a 340 however; we removed the six-pac carb set up as it was just too temperamental for everyday driving. The Charger would have been my second choice however a larger body style than the Challengers and Cudas "pony cars".

    It all depends on what's important to you...if you're looking for a show car and investment, then all original matching tags would be important but if you're just looking to have fun on the street, hit the local drag strip then I'd be less concerned. The hemi cars...are so AMAZING to get behind...we're talking serious muscle that will still take anything on the road out in the quarter mile. If you're seriously curious, my father is a very well known MOPAR restoration specialist named Bob Mosher, Mosher's MuscleCar Motors in Monrovia, CA.

    -Amanda
     
  7. bumboola

    bumboola Formula Junior

    Mar 7, 2003
    625
    Here in Detroit there is!

    There are some Hemi Mopars exchanging for so much money that they would give a new Ferrari buyer a nosebleed. :)

    Nobody built muscle like Plymouth and Dodge.
     
  8. thecarreaper

    thecarreaper F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed

    Sep 30, 2003
    15,344
    Savannah
    Full Name:
    name
    tspringer. think long on hard about giving up your 308 for a muscle car. i buy , sell and chop up / part out muscle cars as a hobby business ( hence my name) the 308 s are going up and getting hard to find. i have been in the market with cash in hand and i have yet to find the " right" 308 yet........ i do know that if i dont get one in the near future then i wont get one at all. i love muscle cars, my mopar knowledge is limited but few can argue with the 1970 --73 Z28 4 speed camaros and the 455 ram air and super duty trans ams. these are all i mess with as i have tons of parts to support my efforts. the mopars you are looking at are great but i WOULD NOT waste the money on a numbers matching blah blah blah . get a clone or good driver with a whatever engine and a 4 speed, and keep the 308.the Turkey rod run in daytona is a great palce to find cars like this (its like next week around thankgiving) if you get an expensive numbers matching car and plan to drive it a lot you CANNOT modify or change ANYTHING as the car will go down in value due to use and miles. muscle cars in this class are WORSE than ferraris in depreciation unless you get a hemi, ect. you can find a " something" for under 10k and drive the sheet out of it and keep the 308. i am 32 and have had over 100 muscle cars. i would take a slow , beat up 308 over a muscle car any day..... which is why i am hunting a 308 or a 308 project to restore and keep for a very long time. PM me with your needs as i have a network of connections to help you find what you are looking for. michael
     
  9. Kds

    Kds F1 World Champ

    Tspringer.........

    Great topic........

    I think that if you didn't experience them in the first place when you were 18-20 like I did among others here, you may not get the same rush from driving them today, that those of us who owned them before would.

    Having said that....you MUST have one or two in your lifetime and anything from Chrysler is #1 for me. Everyone built great cars back then, given their technology, but those guys were always on the edge with almost everything they did.

    I had a 1969 440-6 Pack Charger R/T (it was a metallic dark green on dark green leather with the white "bumblebee" stripe) when I was 18......BTW insurance was also $800 a year back then too.....I wish that I had that car again today...not to realize the monetary value by selling it, but to drive it !! In 1977 I spent about $5,000 to do the engine and the thing was a terribly fast, unsafe beast.

    These cars are also easy to fix and parts are readily available thru the aftermarket as well as MOPAR.
     
  10. rob lay

    rob lay Administrator
    Staff Member Admin Owner Miami 2018

    Dec 1, 2000
    49,195
    Southlake, TX
    Full Name:
    Rob Lay
    time correction
     
  11. Tspringer

    Tspringer F1 Veteran

    Apr 11, 2002
    6,155
    I do like the looks of the Challengers and Cuda. Im going to start doing some research and may get serious about buying one next year.

    With what I know now, I would lean toward a Cuda or Challenger, 440-6 with 4 speed, great driver condition, no rust and I could care less about matching numbers. I do want a BADBOY engine.... lots and lots of torque and power. How much is right for something like this?

    My 308 is as cherry as they come, Ive done everything to it. I wont really be sorry to see it go, but only because its not my only Ferrari. I have a great '69 Daytona. Ive also got a '69 911S hotrod setup for street/autocross/track. So, I've sorta got the Euro exotic and badboy handling angles covered, at least to my satisfaction. A really cool American muscle car seems like fun, particularly given I have no experience with them.

    Terry
     
  12. Nibblesworth

    Nibblesworth Formula 3
    BANNED

    Nov 29, 2002
    1,756
    Southern California
    Full Name:
    BillyBoy
    If you want American Muscle, go this route:

    Buy a 67 - 68 Mustang coupe. You can get a 6 cyl for pretty cheap - like 2 - 3 grand.

    Buy an SVO 460ci with Cobra Jet Aluminum heads, an Edelbrok intake, a Holley Double Pumper, and a Tremec T56 six speed manual. Have some knowledgable guy put the bastard together.

    You'll end up with well over 500hp and 500tq at the rear wheels, and you might not spend more than $15k.

    Have fun!
     
  13. whart

    whart F1 Veteran
    Honorary

    Dec 5, 2001
    6,485
    Grandview NY
    Full Name:
    Herr Prof.
    I grew up with those cars, down the street a bit was Don Yenko's Chevy dealership, responsible for these over the top big BLOCK camaros and novas, there were still greasers driving 57 chevys but the thing was big power, Hemi engines, etc.
    Today, most of these cars are either totally destroyed, or worth a ton.(The pristine ones are rare cause these cars usually got beat to ****, and were not usually bought by effete collectors, but by motorheads). This is probably not the right time to be buying an American muscle car, they may be the strongest segment of the "classic" car market today.
    I actually like the look of the '69 Camaro the best, along with the 63 vette and the 67 vette coupe. But finding the latter with an original big block, matching numbers thing can put you well into Ferrari prices these days.
    I agree with others who have said don't put the money into a matching number car, but buy a well restored clone, and enjoy it for far less money.Oh,the other thing is, the handling on these cars largely sucks. There is a reason why alot of car people went european in the 60's. While you could probably drive one of these things regularly, you just may not want to.
     
  14. Tenney

    Tenney F1 Rookie
    Consultant

    Feb 21, 2001
    3,363
  15. Mitch Alsup

    Mitch Alsup F1 Veteran

    Nov 4, 2003
    6,353
    After you encounter all that acceleration, you will be face to face with tripple digit speeds and single digit brakes hoping against hope that ther in not a turn in the road!
     
  16. BigTex

    BigTex Seven Time F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Dec 6, 2002
    70,751
    Houston, Texas
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    Bubba
    Carreaper, that's pretty well said!!!!
    I'm a long time Pontiac Firebird owner. '67 Convertible 400CI Ram Air,
    '76 Formula 350CI (Chevy) and now '94 Trans Am 6 Spd sits alongside my '77 308GTB.

    It's two different worlds to live in. Both cars get attention and thumbs up, but from different groups of people!

    The Ferrari of course is a thing of lasting value, as is "old" muscle.
    The newer car's value is dropping by the day until, as those old SD455 TAs have, become "collectible".

    I always start the Ferrari first, drive it 'till it breaks, then use the other.
    These new Pontiacs shed plastic parts like leaves in the wind, then cost just as much at the dealer to repair as the Ferrari does in the hands of an honest technician.

    My replacement sun visor at the upholstery shop just blew out 5 of ten speaker elements playing South Park Mexican. Does that sound like progress?

    FWIW, I met a great guy at Indy F1. With my Ferrari colors on, he admitted to be a Mercedes R&D engineer, from Germany, now in the Alabama plant.
    His latest project? An immaculate MOPAR restoration!
     
  17. Tspringer

    Tspringer F1 Veteran

    Apr 11, 2002
    6,155
    speedy and reaper....

    I do own a Daytona and a '69 911S track/street car, I wont sell either. So, its not choosing either a MOPAR or a Ferrari....

    Im just thinking a '70 Hemi Cuda clone with 4 speed and something over 500hp might be a new and fun means of terrifying the local soccer moms!

    Terry
     
  18. BigTex

    BigTex Seven Time F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Dec 6, 2002
    70,751
    Houston, Texas
    Full Name:
    Bubba
    Diversity is good, as long as you have a big garage.

    I'll put you in touch with this "Mercedes" guy, now that it's all Daimler/Chrysler.

    His remark, "I lived in the woods in Germany, but that's not like living out in the woods of Alabama." LOL

    Maybe he bought his MOPAR to blend in! His resto technique needless to say, was PERFECT. Made my Ferrari look shoddy by comparision.

    A recent auction in Dallas had some heavy US iron. Any F chatters go?

    It had one lone Alfa Spyder I was interested in, but I did not go.
     
  19. pdavis

    pdavis Rookie

    Oct 31, 2003
    37
    Morristown New Jersey
    Full Name:
    Preston
    I am a big Mopar fan. I have a 1970 hemi cuda. A 1976 blown Dodge Aspen pro-street car and a 1997 Viper GTS (blue/white) Go for it, you won't regret it! pd
     

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