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$1,650 And A Few Weekends… 1979 Dodge Warlock II

I have a good friend who had a Dodge L’il Red Express, that was such a nice truck, literally a mint condition jewel box. This 1979 Dodge Warlock II is a couple of months of work away from being a jewel box but it looks like a pretty solid example. It’s listed on Craigslist, and when the ad goes away the photos and description can be found here. It’s located in Winterport, Maine so plan your shipping costs accordingly. The seller is asking what seems like a super reasonable price of $1,650. Thanks to AMXBrian for sending in this fantastic Warlock!

$1,650?! Seriously, I can hardly believe that low price for this truck. There is no way this truck will last long at that price once this thing hits the interwebs, as the kids say. Dodge made the Warlock from 1977 to 1979 along with the L’il Red Express and the Macho Power Wagon. The Warlock came in several colors and configurations and even the seller mentions that those dad-blasted “experts” are always spouting off on what they say is the gospel about every dang vehicle… well, I sort of paraphrased that a bit.. This one appears to be wearing its factory chrome wheels. The earlier models had gold painted wheels.

$1,650 seems like a steal for this thing so far, doesn’t it?! Come on, your spouse just spent more than that on a couch for your family room, wouldn’t you rather have a Dodge Warlock? I know that I would. There is a lot of work to do on this rig, however – your welder will get a workout on this one. The rockers need help as do the floors, but the bottom of the box/bed may need the most work. Still, a couple of months of work on weekends and I’m guessing that most of the Barn Finds family of readers could have this truck ready for paint. My winter beater isn’t in much better condition than this truck is if maybe not even in worse condition! The tailgate should say Warlock II, but I don’t even see a tailgate, d’oh!

In a cosmic twist of events perhaps greater than even the late, great Stephen Hawking could have predicted, this seller doesn’t provide any real interior photos but they have provided an engine photo! Let’s just guess that the interior will need to be restored (and/or “need restored). The engine is a 145 hp 318 V8, this isn’t the optional 360, 400, or 440 V8. A 225 slant-six was also available as the base engine. That may be another reason other than the rust as to why the price is so low on this one, a 440 V8 Warlock surely would command a higher price. This truck has a “New alternator, battery, plugs, wires. Needs front brake hoses but we have them, just haven’t put them in.” For anyone looking for yet another project, this seems like a heck of a buy to me. Have any of you restored a vehicle with this much rust? I’m guessing that a resounding “yes” will echo through the halls of One Barn Finds Tower.

Comments

  1. Spridget

    Maybe it’s just me, but does this thing look bent?

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    • dgrass

      The box is extremely bent. Like it fell off doing 30 bent.

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  2. Rube Goldberg Member

    Um, 1st of all, I think it’s a ’78, ’79 images I find have stacked quad headlights, anyone? 2nd, Warlocks were highly optioned trucks, different mirrors, sun roofs, bucket seats, up pipe dual exhaust, I just don’t think it’s a Warlock. It’s not worth much, especially if the Warlock claim is bogus.

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    • The Walrus

      None of what you posted is correct about Warlocks. I’ve heard many say the same thing as you did, and I understand why people think that. Basically any that you’ve probably seen were loaded with options, because the primary reason for buying one when new was because you could get anything in the catalog on them. It was effectively a factory custom.

      On the headlights. The quads were optional in ’79, not standard. At the beginning of the year, there weren’t any parts for the rectangle headlights. Over the course of the model year, they ran out the supply of parts for the round ones and the later ’79’s were all 4 headlight models, but over 50% of ’79’s are round.

      As for the other options… Warlock was more or less a stripe kit only available in certain colors. Red, Black, Green… Every other option in the catalog for any D-150 or W-150 was available. Any engine, any trans, any driveline, any interior. The bucket seats you mentioned were otherwise only available on L’il Red’s… but stripped down Warlocks were absolutely made with with 2 wheel drive, 3 speed stick, slant 6 and bench seat.

      Like 1
      • Rube Goldberg Member

        Well, I DID ask for someone’s opinion and thank you for that. I had some facts right. What would be the sense of someone buying a “stripped down Warlock”, kind of a contradiction of terms.

        Like 0
      • The Walrus

        Well, stripped down is not the right term, but it’s one that everyone knows. Think of it more as a base vehicle or one with no options. The warlock, aside from color and stripes was a blank canvas to be added to. Dealers back then weren’t keene on having high dollar vehicles sitting around the lot. Inflation and interest were high, so money/inventory was expensive. They’d often order ‘a looker’ with no options for the lot or showroom. Everything about car dealers was different then. These days money is cheap and and inventories are huge. Plus with limited available options, buyers don’t ‘order’ any more. There’s not that much choice on most things out there. So I think if you think about what 1978, 1979 and 1980 were like it actually makes alot of sense.

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      • Jerry Brentnell

        one other thing warlocks could be had orange as well although that color is rare not many built

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    • Lee Hooper

      That’s not the original cab it’s two squared off to be a 70’s model that’s 81 at HUB cab on that truck what’s 77 * 79 was round at all at the back of the couch and I’ll square off

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  3. Gene Parmesan

    There’s no way those awful sawblade-style wheels are original. I agree that the box is bent–and it looks like that is partially due to the box being ratchet strapped to the frame. These trucks are mega cool, but this is one sad, severely rotten example.

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  4. JW

    Well if you just have to have a Warlock and you have $$$ / Time / Welding skills then this is a bargain, otherwise Toast.

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  5. Wayne Pickhardt

    I’m a Chevy guy, but I don’t remember the Warlock’s looking like that. They weren’t plain Jane like this one. I agree it’s missing the quad headlights and the other options. I also remember two engine options, the 360 or 440. I could be mistaken though.

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  6. Miguel

    I don’t see a bent box. I see the bed straight and the cab facing down.

    It might be the frame on this one.

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  7. AMX Brian

    Anyone else notice the Cat Truck in the background. CT660

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  8. Canadian Mark S. Eh!

    If you ask me with today’s fuel prices the last thing I’d want under the hood would be a 440 gas sucking lump, the 318 is a plus. I’ve always liked the look of these short box step side trucks. As for the rust from what I can see it’s not that bad and fairly easy to do, replacement steel is readily available. If I were looking for a project this one I’d have no problem taking on. Sorting out what ever is bent is not that big of a deal either your going to want to pull the box off to restore it anyway and while it’s off taking the truck to a frame shop would have every thing trued up in an afternoon. The price is fair and leaves you some room for resto costs. I’d do all the body work then hand it over to a paint shop to spray it and restripe.

    Like 0
  9. Comet

    A couple of months of weekend work and ready for paint? You’re blurring the line between optimism and delusion!

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  10. Tricky

    I have a ’77 Custom with all the fruit. They are such nice trucks yet nobody wants them. Pity as they look the business I reckon and they are sooooo cheap….

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  11. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry

    Dodge,,,hum there’s the problem.

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  12. Bill

    The grille is from an earlier model. 77 and 78 grilles were the same except that the signals(which were to the inside of the headlights), 77 had clear lenses and 78 had amber ones. Yes 79 had stacked square headlights. Also the hood looks like it might be a later one. Just a guess with that ram on it. I believe the rims from the factory were chrome slots or keystone.

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    • The Walrus

      ’79 had round headlights standard, rectangles were options. It’s not an easy swap… the support behind the headlights are different, so the entire header and fenders need to be modified or replaced. Note that the turn signals are below the headlights, which means its a 1979 grille. The ’77/’78 grills did not have the turn signals there, they were in the grille. Thus, it’s unlikely the grill is from an earlier one. It’s definitely the grille it came with.

      Like 0
  13. fish56

    Anyone notice where it says…

    title status: missing

    Like 0
  14. Vince

    I bought a 1979 brand new. Not Warlock but same cab and bed combo. My vehicle did not have chrome steps but body color matched.

    318 engine. Worst vehicle I ever owned. I explained in an eariler post relating to Lil Red Wagon. This truck caused me issues from day 1. Was towed back to dealer with 19 miles. The problems never stopped. No good lemon laws yet.

    The dealer had racked up nearly the original cost of the vehicle in repairs.

    I can confirm these had standard round headlights and quad hallogen option. That was the new technology in lighting at the time. The truck cost me $5,000 new out the door with the quad option.

    What I think is up with the truck looking bent is the fact that the bed floor was wood slats with metal divders between the boards. When I had my truck I kept a tonneau cover on the bed because they were cool at the time and protected the wood bed. Looking at the picture I think the boards are gone and the right side bed wall has dropped with no floor to hold it up.

    The rear of my truck was always higher than the front.

    Like 0

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