38K Miles! 1973 Plymouth Duster

The like-new cars are crawling out of the woodwork here at One Barn Finds Tower. This 1973 Plymouth Duster looks amazing. I haven’t seen one this nice in quite a while, it seems like most of them have at least some rust to deal with. The seller has this gem listed here on eBay in Sanford, Michigan and the current bid price is – are you sitting down? – $12,600 and there are eight days left on the auction!

A true time capsule car would be another way to describe this beautiful Duster. I almost thought that it was a “roller” from how high it appears to be sitting in the front end, but it does in fact have a beautiful V8 in it that we’ll get to in a minute. No, it’s not a Hemi.

The seller says that this is a 38,000-mile survivor, it was kept in a garage its whole life when it wasn’t being used, and has been maintained. I can’t imagine a nicer one anywhere, at least a nicer original car. The Plymouth Duster was the sister car to Dodge’s Dart, of course, and they were introduced for the 1970 model year. The Plymouth Volare took over when the Duster was discontinued after 1976. They only offered this two-door coupe body style with the sweeping fastback. I like Dodge’s blocky two-door Dart but they also made a similar sweeping body style.

The interior of this car looks amazing. It looks like it’s been restored but I think it may be all original. The seller doesn’t go into specifics really at all, but they do say that the car is a survivor. The seats look great both front and rear, with maybe just some seam popping on the passenger side front. We don’t see any underside or trunk photos, but I would have to assume that they look great, too.

I expected to see a 225 slant-six here which would have been fine, but this is Plymouth’s 318 cubic-inch V8 which in 1973 had 150 horsepower and 265 ft-lb of torque. This one has a new carburetor and new master cylinder and everything works as it should. Hagerty is at $12,400 for a #2 excellent condition car, as a reference. Have any of you owned a ’73 Plymouth Duster?

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  1. Bmac777 Member

    My friend had one in 82′, same as this but in white.
    I drove it a few times and it was a fast little car. Even with the drop in power ,I drove a few cars 71-73 318/ 2bbl’s, and found them Torquey with a quick responsive throttle up to around 50-60 mph.
    They were great for stoplight racing, zipping around town or weaving through traffic and could jump out to a quick lead and even stay right in it with a faster car ,but eventually start to fall behind at around 55.
    Great and dependable stock motors

    Like 6
  2. stanley kwiecinski

    being a old Moparman. had to look; Kawi on the left about the same era. Went from Mopes to Kawis’ now i’m an old Harley fart! everything looks spotless in his shed? must be nice.

    Like 4
    • Dave

      Looks like a nice KZ900, the successor to the legendary Z1. I had a Z1, worst touring bike I’ve ever owned. Wrong tool for the job.
      Gotta give kudos for cleanliness.

      • Motorcityman Member

        The Z1 motor was too much motor for the suspension. VERY scary ride!

  3. Keith

    I don’t see this car worth any more than 5k, I guess its a mopar thing?

    Like 5
    • Steve Clinton

      Ya think? LOL

      Like 4
    • Howard Kerr

      You are a bit out of touch, prices for old Plymouths and Mopars in general are climbing…even the 4 doors are going for ridiculous asking prices.

      Like 5
  4. Chester

    I’m guessing someone’s Grandpa died. Sorry about that, but nice for the old girl to see daylight once again. At one time these were everywhere, and I mean, everywhere. They rusted pretty bad, so long gone. Never cared for a vinyl roof, esp in this color combo. Blue or red and no vinyl, I might have bid on this. Are those Volare wheel covers? Interesting to see why that might be.

    Like 2

      This car is original.
      Roof looks FACTORY snakeskin and pinstriped at dealer.
      The 318/2 bbl had only single exhaust, some added the 340 over the wheels section and ran true duals out.
      Good for 10-15 hp.
      The gauges are perfect original for a VL coded car.
      L means low dollar optioned car.
      How do I know this?
      My first car was a 318 GOLD DUSTER…I still own it.

      Like 8
      • bone

        Except this one has been repainted . Its been on this site before . A 73 Gold Duster (which this is) , would have a stripe on the side and tail, and have “Gold Duster” stickers on the front fenders. It was very common before reproduction parts were available to have them sanded off during a repaint. Also, look at the instrument cluster. No way this car has that low mileage , I’ve owned dozens of these A bodies ,and you can have over 100k and they wont look that worn out. As a VL – Valiant Low, this would have been a slant six low optioned car ; a 318 car with power disc brakes vinyl top, carpeting, bumper guards, wheel arch and rocker moldings ,dual mirrors ,light package etc. would have been a VH , for high line Valiant . The hubcaps look to be off of a 65 Fury.

        Like 2
      • DrillnFill

        The “G” in the 5th digit of the VIN denotes that this Duster was born with a 318 even though it’s a “VL”

  5. Boatman Member

    Who can tell us what those wheel covers are from? And what is that blue hose draped over the radiator?

    Like 2
    • DrillnFill

      As close as I can zoom in, that may be the red Pontiac arrowhead in the center caps. Not sure though, but they don’t appear moparish to me

      Like 2
    • Boatman Member

      Amos, that may be, but they aren’t original to this car.

      Like 2
  6. Steve R

    Without detailed up close pictures of rust prone areas I’d take a pass. There are signs of rust in several pictures, yet no mention of anything relating to the condition of the body in the description. The bids are priced for perfection, the ad hadn’t earned it.

    Steve R

    Like 3
  7. Motorcityman Member

    U obviously haven’t priced Very Good condition V8 Dusters lately if u think its only worth 5K.

    Like 14
  8. Tom

    My first car was a 73 Gold Duster. Complete with the Snake Skin Vinyl Top. It also has the 318 under the hood.

    Like 3
  9. DrillnFill

    My Mom had this exact same ‘73 Duster in this color combo with the tan half-vinyl roof. Only difference is moms was a slant-6 that she grenaded on the NY State Thruway when I was 6. Nice time capsule and probably scoots around pretty well too. Gotta lose those wheels and get some Rallye wheels with white-letter tires😎

    If fleabay is any indicator for these, I’ll wager it sells between $18-20,000 (provided there’s no hidden rust issues of course)

    Like 4
  10. Jeff Weir

    My first thought when I saw this was Al Bundy, but I think he had a Dodge.

    Like 2
  11. Marc

    YEP, mine had a clutch it could burn rubber hi ha

    Like 1
  12. George Louis

    This is a Low Line Duster. The dash panel does not have the upgraded simulated plastic wood grain panels that the higher priced Dusters came with. Engine compartment is missing the radiator coolant overflow bottle that should be on the passenger side of engine compartment. The side post battery does not cut it either. I would like to know what happened to the wood grain finish on the gauge cluster, headlamp switch area looks like someone stripped the finish off down to base metal. Wheel covers are definitely not Plymouth Duster. The pin striping on the body is not Factory applied. I am surprized that a 38,000 mileage required a “NEW” carburetor. No factory A/C either. Car probably sold new for $3500.00. $12,600.00 is out of the question!!!!!!!!

    Like 4
  13. timothy herrod

    In 1981 I had the opportunity to buy a 68 GTX that was said to need a clutch but as it turned out to only need a clutch rod for 300 bucks, while i was thinking about that one i came across a 73 duster /6 auto for 500 that I could drive with out having to do anything to it, care to guess which way this dumbass went, I most likely would have gotten in more trouble with the GTX anyway. What a time to be alive hot rods everywhere for about two weeks pay or less that were in reasonably good shape

    Like 2
    • Chester

      Yeah, but what did you do with the money you saved? Did you pay college tuition? Did you court the girl you eventually married, buy a house? If the money was used for any good long term reason, you made the right choice. Face it, in 1981 that GTX was already a rusty hulk that got horrible MPG when gas had recently doubled in price. ( You can never go wrong with a rumble, yet loyal slant six.) Bottom line, why lament on the choices you made in a different time and place? You made the right choice for you in 1981, none of us has an hour glass to see into the future. I bet at the time you were padding yourself on the back for making the right choice.

      Like 3
      • Motorcityman Member

        There is no “rumble” to a slant 6.
        More like a funny, chirping sound. My uncle had a 71 Swinger with the slant 6, I know what they sound like.
        Great reliable motor, just no rumble.

        Like 1
      • Skorzeny

        You may like the slant 6 Chester, I hate ‘em. I think Ford made a much better inline 6.

        Like 1
      • DON

        How do you know it was a rusty hulk ? He doesn’t mention what state he was living in ?

      • Curt Lemay

        Don, I don’t know what he spoke of, but from my experience, by 1981, most GTXs, at least where I live, had serious lower body rust. maybe not structural, but ugly rust. Motorcityman, I bet he didn’t mean to say rumble, but humble. That describes a slanty. Humble, but loyal. No rumble there.

  14. George Mattar

    This will sell for $20,000 plus. Mopar mania continues.

    Like 5
  15. Al

    There will be a lot of these surfacing. My friends grandmother had one back in ’77. They have that granny car look to them. Gotta be a diehard Mopar fan to love these, sorry. Condition wise, of course, very nice. This actually looks identical in color & interior as what she had. Was used for the usual, church & groceries. And of course, my friends drivers ed 1st car.

    • Motorcityman Member

      Why will there be a lot of these surfacing??

      • Al

        I’d guess granny’s expiring & they end up in estate sales. Haven’t seen this particular one out here yet, but many plain variants thereof, mid size square ones, Dart, etc.. It’s kind of funny, but take a drive through church parking lots, long established ones. The early service as they get up early lol. Then you’ll see what I mean. Friend scored a few just by leaving notes on the windshields. Hey, we’re not talking combing the obits lol. Just depends if you are really serious at desiring one. Get it before a son in law does to flip or ends up at the estate sales, which are pretty popular out west than back NE.

  16. James Grolemund

    This is on Pittsburgh’s Craigslist at $16k.

  17. Jimmy H.

    I had a 72 Duster 340 78-81, that while it had a few (72k when I got it) was from NM and absolutely rust free. Should have put it away, but sold it for $1000, as I was in college and needed the money to pay tuition. Figured that graduating with an Aerospace Engineering degree was more into @ the time! A clean Duster 340/360 commands huge $$$ these days.

    Like 1
  18. Motorcityman Member

    Put some nice wheels on it and like most cars TOTALLY transforms the look!

  19. Motorcityman Member

    6 days left and its already at $13,500, im betting it’ll sell close to $20,000!

    • KARL

      13,500 for a repainted 318 Duster ? WOW

  20. George Louis

    You could order a VL Valiant Low Line with a 318 V 8 Automatic Transmission , Power disc Brakes, remember for 1973 Chrysler made single-piston disc brake calipers standard equipment, you paid extra for Power assist. I would like to see the VIN number to see which plant this was built at : A “B” means Hamtramck, Mi plant Code 4030 a “G” designates St. Louis, MO Plant Code 4090 You should also see this off the silver label affixed to the front driver door if it wasn’t painted over or removed.

  21. glenn marks

    Yes, a 318 would have come out of the factory with some pretty decent rallye type wheels and nice looking tires because of the braking system. Had a brand new ’74 Duster slant six, three on the floor ($3,003 sticker) and various other slant six Valiants and a LeBaron. The dashboard plastic looks like that of a lower price model where some of the dash is painted metal, no plastic. Front passenger seat needs better pictures. Nice car over all tho.

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