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Big Block Base Model: 1970 Dodge Challenger

By Andrew Tanner

This is a familiar sight to many folks from the eastern United States: a run down barn with an old car sitting in front of it. Fortunately, prior to this picture the car was actually located inside the barn. Unlike many of the cars that can be seen in front of old barns, this one is actually for sale. After being parked for 25 years, someone has rescued it and brought it out to be sold to a lucky new owner. Find it here on eBay in West Virginia with bidding at $6,613 and reserve not met. 

Otherwise a somewhat option-less car, here is where things get interesting. This Challenger is equipped with a 2-barrel Chrysler 383 V8 and no A/C or power steering. Furthermore, this car has manual 4-wheel drum brakes. One thing I have always loved about cars of the 1960s and 1970s, especially Chrysler products, is how people could and would often order cars with as much power as they could get for as little money as possible. This Challenger is a perfect example of a car ordered by somebody who wanted some power, but didn’t want a fancy car. Unfortunately, the engine is currently seized but the seller is working on getting it to turn.

The interior is very nice minus the passenger seat. I’d be really curious to know what happened to it, as the rear and driver’s seats are in excellent condition for their age. The driver’s seat isn’t perfect, but the passenger side looks like the “before” picture in an ad for an upholstery company! It is a little hard to tell in the picture, but the interior of this Challenger is green. The dash pad is cracked and will need to be repaired or replaced as will the carpet, but as far as barn find cars in this condition go its really a good starting point for a restoration.

The seller has posted various pictures of the car after it was removed from the barn, and it really is not in bad shape. It will likely need a full restoration, or it could be driven as-is for a while should the buyer choose. Almost all of the metal is solid, though it will need some minor metal work. This car is very solid underneath and there are pictures to prove it. It’s almost a shame, as it looks like this car was in pretty decent condition when it got parked in the barn. Would you make this an “easy” restoration project? Or fix some of the bigger issues and drive it as a ratty old Challenger for a while?

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Comments

  1. BronzeGiant Member

    My first thought was perhaps they swapped the driver’s and passenger’s seats but then why bother?

    6+
    • Thomas

      Sounds probable. To save money and keep using it, especially if he never has a passenger, he might have. I would, just to prolong reupholstering, especially if money is tight.

      2+
  2. Walter Joy

    Perfect candidate for a Hemi clone…IMO.

    1+
  3. Rustytech

    Wow a true barn find! Lots needed here but, this could be a good investment if the reserve isn’t crazy!

    4+
    • KEN TILLY

      At last, a true Barn Find!

      4+
      • Rx7turboII

        Ken I’m glad you’re finally happy! Lol

        1+
      • BMW4RunninTundra Member

        So Ken,
        How many “Barn Finds” are you contributing to the site regularly? You sound like you have high expectations, so I have to assume, given the amount complaints you make, your “lead” level must be pretty strong! Seems to me, this site depends on its readers as much as it does on its writers, for material.
        I like the vast variety of the “leads” the readers and writers offer. If I didn’t, I would not complain, I would simply go find a site that gives me what I expect.
        It doesn’t appear you have stepped to a “Member Level” so you certainly have nothing to loose from moving on to a site that fulfills your requirements?

        1+
  4. R.hernandez

    Hahaha. Looks like the driver drove from the passenger seat

    1+
    • Neil

      Mayhaps he has a ” full sized ” wife?

      19+
    • Jimshoe

      Mailman?

      0
  5. Tom2

    JH23:
    Dodge Challenger
    Unknown
    2 Door Hardtop

    LOB: Unknown
    Unknown
    Dodge Main, Hamtramck, MI, USA

    157688: Sequence number

    E61: 383 cid 2 barrel V8 290hp
    D32: Heavy Duty Automatic Transmission
    FF4: Exterior Color
    H6F8: Trim – High, Vinyl Bucket Seats, Green
    000: Full Door Panels
    A13: Build Date: October 13
    012002: Order number

    VLX: Top Color
    C16: Console w/Woodgrain Panel
    C55: Bucket Seats
    M21: Roof drip rail moldings
    R11: Radio Solid State AM (2 Watts)
    V05: 69 Only Paint Buffed

    EN2: End of Sales Codes

    6+
  6. Terry J

    Well, I’d sure want to pop a 440 in there. But then those drum brakes up front would be next. That’s it though. 🙂 Terry J

    1+
  7. newfieldscarnut

    Not everyone ordered for speed and horsepower … decades ago I bought a 69 Charger with a 225 slant 6 and a three on the tree . I wish I had never sold it ! I think I got $800 for it …

    7+
    • Troy S.

      Obviously someone ordered this car with some speed and power in mind with hopes of catching a break from the insurance company.I look at the lack of power steering and ac as less weight and some free horsepower, but that’s just my warped opinion.

      1+
    • Larry Rigney

      I loved my 225 I had in a Volare. I put a set of Clifford Research duel exhaust headers and a ram flow intake with the 2 barrel from the 383. Wasn’t much that could touch it!

      0
  8. newfieldscarnut

    The condition of this Challenger would have been phenomenal had it been parked on the next floor up on the wooden floor and covered .

    2+
  9. Luke Fitzgerald

    Yeah, well – how brave would you be to trust that? – good find and going off

    0
  10. GP Member

    I give all of the comments above a thumbs up. My button has not worked for a month, so I guess I have to do it this way.

    4+
  11. cudaman

    here’s another “next to the barn” find

    10+
    • Glen

      What do you know about this one?

      2+
  12. michael streuly

    A little bit of rubbing compound and you will be good to go

    1+
  13. cudaman

    ….another one….

    0
  14. Jay E.

    A good set of 440 heads and a purple shaft bump stick on that 383 will make some magic. No need to change the entire motor

    0
  15. Brandon

    This car is how I love my muscle cars!!!!! Its a STRIPPER car! This is a perfect car to drag race with. The lack of options sure does lighten the weight! 😁

    1+
  16. John D.

    I believe on the 70 Barracuda this engine was the standard equipment, Dodge was probably speced the same way. Looking at the lack of other options, the dealer probably ordered it that way, with some popular options, for a price leader with attractive equipment. The 225/6 and the 318 were probably credit options. When new body styles hit the lot, there is a bit of a learning curve before you truly know how to equip a car for inventory.

    0
  17. Tyler

    Sold for $10,050.

    I owned an orange 70 Challenger back in the early 80’s. It was equipped with a 383/4 barrel & a 4 speed, but otherwise very much like this one. That car ran like a raped ape, as long as you didn’t run out of straight road. Handling on curvy roads & braking was pretty much non existent though.

    Other people mention 440’s & hemi’s, but if the 383 is toast, what this car really craves, is a mildly massaged 340 with some suspension & brake upgrades. Put a small stall, maybe 2800-3000rpm, in the auto transmission, add Vintage Air, & drive it without breaking the bank.

    Not every Mopar has to have a big block, the small blocks were fun cars without the headaches.

    0

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