Hot E-Body Project! 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T

As Mopars go, it’s hard to beat an E-body (Dodge Challenger or Plymouth Barracuda / ‘Cuda) for making Chrysler fans drool and dream of days gone by. This 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T in Painesville, Ohio took a hard hit in the left rear, and holds a non-original motor, but came well-equipped. It would make a real stunner if returned to stock, as long as you don’t mind the all green color palette, and your wallet has enough green to cover the cost. Over ten bids have raised a pulse here on eBay, with over $4200 pledged, but it will take even more to meet the seller’s reserve.

Ouch! Yeah; that’s not going to buff out, and the seller graciously admits that the frame rail there is tweaked. Pictures from underneath show rust but far from the devastation you might expect on a nearly 50-year-old muscle car from Ohio.

The original 383 (6.3L) is gone, and that’s unfortunate as (generally speaking) the largely pre-smog ’70s are the most desirable in this body style. As the evolution of the 383, this 400 (6.6L) from 1974 makes a good visual substitute. Though lower compression in stock form, the 400 has the largest bore of its day, bigger than the 440, and can be stroked to 451 cid (7.4L) with a 440 crank. How often do you see a rusty classic with a belt on the air conditioning compressor… in Ohio?

While the front bucket seats were scavenged at some point, the air conditioning and other controls are present, as well as the original numbers-matching automatic transmission. Green over green is not everyone’s cup of tea, but it’s true to the era and certainly looks better when shiny new. What looks like moisture on the driver’s floor may raise a question or two. An owner who paid someone else to restore a similar car will say you’re better off buying one in better shape, but for a labor of love, or a multi-generational restoration project, you can do worse than a slightly bent, slightly rusty ’70 Challenger with a ’74 motor.

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Comments

  1. 36Packard

    Buy a replica body, put in the engine of your choice, save yourself a lot of money and headaches. 50 year old metal and rust to boot do not make for confidence. I love the body style, but will never pay big bucks for one. A cheap and reliable brand new body is the only way to go. We love these cars because of how they look and to drive, not to make money. The sooner that gets out of the hobby, the better. Capitalism is a good thing, but at its extremes, it becomes a problem.

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    • Arthell64 Member

      I believe the 1970 dodge challenger dynacorn body was cancelled a few years ago.

      1
      • 36Packard

        You don’t say. Such a shame if true. A true hobbyist could build the car of his dreams for HIMSELF at a fraction of the cost of what the investment boys have gotten the rusty old “real things” up to. The old car hobby used to provide so much pleasure for so many regular guys, now it seems it is just for the pampered few who have the cash.

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      • Nitehawk770

        Dynacorn still offers the 70 body. $17,500 plus $495 crating fee is steep for everything except the nose clip

        1
    • DonC

      My Mom owned a ’70 Dodge Challenger convertible R/T convertible. Yeah….what I wouldn’t do to have it. When we went to restore it, we wanted to buy a rust-free Challenger from Georgia and transfer ours to it’s frame, etc…but were told it wouldn’t work because the Challenger was unibody construction. True?

      • Chris M.

        Well Don, yeah that’s true. Wonder how you’d even consider such an undertaking without knowing that elementary detail regarding Chrysler automobiles.

        1
  2. Snowman Member

    What about the 2 different screw heads on plate?

  3. Del

    This is a parts car. So keep on parting it.

    1
  4. Gaspumpchas

    Decent bodyman could fix the damage. Possibly could be a nice buy. Good inspection a must. Kowalski would love it…..
    Cheers
    GPC

    3
    • canadainmarkseh Member

      I agree a good body man could fix this all it needs is to go on a frame rack and have everything pulled back into place. And that wouldn’t cost no $17 k and you’d still have the original body. Once it’s pulled and straightened a good DIY guy could take over and finish it. For the right buy in this would make a good project. Sometimes in our throw away world we are to quick to to scrap great old cars like this.

      4
  5. pugsy

    Pampered few? I’ve got enough coin to play with a hobby car, but I have a broken body from making them dollars…….not everyone that can afford to play is “pampered”

    7
  6. canadainmarkseh Member

    How true is that I to have been hampered by a broken down old body which has stalled my progress.

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  7. DonC

    I’m concerned with (a) the underside looks like one rear shock is disconnected and the other is missing; (b) completely wrong engine – unless you don’t care and just want to drive her; (c) what’s with the interior walls, especially the back seat, (d) how tough is it to get new front bucket seats, and (e) lots of other rust especially back past the passenger door.

    It’s a do-able project so long as you’re not after trophies or a trip down the Mecum auction line

    2
  8. sluggo

    Depends on the buyer, It will find a home one way or another. Too desirable not too. A good DIY guy can do this easily, especially if you are a hoarder and have the parts rat holed to do so. But well equipped shops buy up cars like this and rebuild as well, Thats where many of the auction cars come from, However the one in between is the dreamer who does checkbook restos and pays others to do all the work. For THAT person? This car is not a good choice, But its a viable project otherwise. ( I always wanted one, my #1 choice was a 340 SB Cuda, But a RT Challenger was #2, I missed out on several deals in the 1980s and now so rare and valuable, I might as well just buy a modern one and have fun. Last year I stopped for lunch on my way home from the VA drs appt and wandered over to the Dodge Dealer next to the resturaunt. They had one of the top optioned new ones in the showroom,, The demon? and I had a sales guy take my photo holding the keys sitting in the car, Texted it my wife and friends, Told them lifes short, & uncertain, But a hot rod muscle car cures depression so what if the payments are high? Small price to pay. My wife was not amused but relieved I didnt actually buy it)

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  9. George mattar

    Just checked. This car is almost at $9,000 on eBay. Truth be told, I have seen cars in much worse condition restored or at least rebuilt to drive not crazy about green, but the fender tag is present as is the door certification label. A 70 RT is a beautiful car and the most valuable year. And while I like the new Challenger, it is still an overweight luxury car with way too much high tech junk for me. My dad had an apartment building when I was 14. A tenant, Pete, had a brand new yellow 70 RT with black vinyl top and 440 four barrel. When he started that car, I was mesmerized. Never saw the car again after about 1973.

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