BUILT 440CI MOTOR, TORQUEFLIGHT WITH GEAR VENDORS, EXCELLENT PAINT
As the old saying goes, when all you own is a hammer, eventually everything starts to look like a nail. Well, consider this 1972 Dodge Challenger R/T tribute a hammer, because when you've got more than 500 horsepower on tap, all you're going to do is look for fast cars to humiliate.
If you're going to build a resto-mod, the best place to start is with one of the later Challengers. They're a lot less expensive than the early matching-numbers versions (you're going to tear the engine out anyway) yet carry the same great look. Dressed in an eyeball-searing bright yellow, this R/T clone definitely has the right look for a street brawler. Forget going low-profile, this car just dares everyone else to come get some. Fortunately, it's also easy to see that the bodywork is nicely done showing excellent panel gaps and alignment and a lot of time invested in block sanding the final surface. When the two-stage urethane paint went on, the car was ready for it and today looks spectacular under any conditions. Of course, it's hard to top the Mopar factory designers when it comes to graphics, so a set of R/T stripes were affixed to the flanks, the hood was blacked out, and the tail panel was shot with its own coat of satin black. The look is quite authentic and definitely aggressive.
It's hard to improve on the factory look inside, where you'll find bucket seats, a console, and a very driver-oriented dashboard that was unusual for the era. The seat covers, door panels, and carpets appear to be very recent, with the dash and instruments perhaps being original and in good condition. A white-faced Auto Meter oil pressure gauge was added down low to keep an eye on the sizable investment up front, but that's the only real deviation from stock inside. Heck, even the AM/FM radio is factory-issue. Everything is in fine condition and in working order, more proof that someone has invested a sizable amount of time and energy in the build of a very good original car. The trunk is nicely upholstered with matching black carpets, including a cover for the full-sized spare.
The engine is a period-correct 440 cubic inch V8 that's been upgraded with a long list of performance parts to crank out an estimated 500 horsepower. Edelbrock provided the intake, carburetor, and a set of chrome valve covers, while the rest of the block was dressed in bright Hemi Orange. Custom ceramic-coated headers and a cackling Flowmaster exhaust system give it plenty of aural attitude, and the suspension has been lowered just enough to add a predatory stance. That '6-Speed' badge you see is due to the combination of a TorqueFlite 3-speed automatic transmission and a bulletproof Gear Vendors overdrive unit that can be engaged at any speed in any gear, effectively giving you six gears. Combined with 3.55s on a Sure Grip, it's quick around town but cruises easily at highway speeds without getting excessively busy. Flashy chrome wheels that look like deep-dish Torque Thrusts and wearing staggered 215/60/15 front and 265/50/15 rear white-letter radials finish the street predator look.
With this much horsepower on tap, you're going to have to keep yourself in check, but the pure joy of letting this sucker unwind itself is something you'll look forward to every time you turn the key. Call today!
- AM/FM Radio
- Front Disc Brakes
- Power Brakes
- Power Steering
- Vinyl Interior
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