440 Six-Pack: 1971 Dodge Super Bee

Decisions, decisions. This 1971 Dodge Super Bee is a solid and complete car that runs and drives perfectly. It is in need of cosmetic restoration, so does the next owner tackle that, or do they take the opportunity to drive and enjoy it as it currently stands? This is one very desirable and potent car, and I really have to thank Barn Finder Ikey H for spotting it for us. It is located in St. Clair, Michigan, and has been listed for sale here on Craigslist. This classic can be yours by handing the owner $45,000.

The owner says that the Dodge wears most of its original Light Gunmetal Poly paint, and that rust issues are quite minimal. There are a few small spots at the bottom of each rear quarter panel, but these could easily be addressed with patches. The original Black vinyl top is looking a bit on the shredded side, and there is rust visible under the edges of it. It appears that this is all of the rust that is present, because the owner provides a good selection of photos of the trunk and the vehicle’s underside, and it looks to be solid and clean. Similarly, the lower doors, lower fenders, and the rockers, all look to be solid. From a panel and paint perspective, this is looking like a really straightforward restoration proposition. One nice feature on the vehicle is concealed headlights, which provide the car with a classy and smooth look. It appears that all of the external trim and chrome is present, although there are some pieces that will require restoration.

The Charcoal and Black interior of the Super bee is complete, but it has most definitely seen better days. All of the upholstered surfaces, the carpet, and the dash pad will require replacement. As the owner rightly points out, at least it is complete. It looks like the front seats might benefit from new foam as well as covers, and if I was doing that to the fronts, I would probably do the same in the rear. The owner feels that the interior features are interesting, because he finds it unusual that the original owner would have specified bucket seats, but a column shifter. There is an aftermarket 8-track player mounted under the dash, and it looks like the speakers for this have been mounted into the kick panels. The owner has been using the Dodge with the interior in its current state, but even if I didn’t touch the exterior of the car, I would still be inclined to undertake an interior restoration purely for personal comfort.

The Super Bee is not only a numbers-matching car, but it is also nicely equipped. Finding that the original owner chose to equip the car with the 440ci Six-Pack is pretty awesome, with this one backed by an A-727 heavy-duty automatic transmission. In addition, the Dodge has been optioned with power steering and power front disc brakes. With 385hp on tap, this is a pretty potent combination, capable of a 0-60 time of 5.9 seconds, while the ¼ mile could be despatched in 14.2 seconds. The owner says that the Super Bee runs and drives nicely and that he has taken it on a 5-hour road trip with no problems at all. He actually floats the idea of driving the car as it currently stands as an alternative to undertaking any major restoration work.

Now it’s decision time. This 1971 Super Bee is a very original car with a very desirable drive-train combination. Would you undertake the necessary restoration work to return it to its former glory, or would you drive it exactly as it stands today?

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Comments

  1. Nevadahalfrack Nevadahalfrack Member

    A lot of muscle car folks looked down their noses at this body style, but it was as sleek looking as the previous generation was brawny. That being said IMHO the first thing the new owner should do (after insuring the mechanicals are in order) is rip out and replace the hazmat interior then repaint! Yes, it’s a column shift, yes it’s not a firebreather like the new Charger Hellcat Widebody Super Zooto B!t*hin Bad Boy is marketed as, but there’s something to be said about enjoying what it is for the time it was..
    And no I wouldn’t push either of those Chargers out of my driveway! To quote gaspumpchas, to the new owner Caveat Emptor (and enjoy).
    Nevadahalfrack

    9
  2. Cris

    Redo the interior, spray it with flat clear, drive the wheels off 😉

    7
    • Johnny mac

      That’s exactly what I would do. Fix any rust redo interior and roof. Spray flat clear and drive. Love the color and sun dried look.

  3. OIL SLICK

    Remove that ugly top AND FIX THE INTERIOR then drive.

    3
  4. Dave

    Considering that 1971 was the final year for the 440-6 it’s gotta be low production numbers. Plus it’s not trashed to death. Worthy of restoring.

    10
  5. Desert rat

    I wouldn’t do either because I’m not paying 45 grand for a 4 or 5 thousand dollar car! Have we lost our minds 45,000 for this charger in this condition, for that much money it should be fully restored. Oh I wish this ridiculous over paying for anything old had never started so old guys like me could buy cars like this for 500 dollars and just in joy old cars because we always loved them.

    49
    • aero911

      Amen brother!

      18
    • CCFisher

      $4000 – $5000? No way. $45,000 is overpriced, according to Hagerty ($48,000 in “fair” condition, which this is not), but you need to set your wayback machine at least 30 years in the past to buy this for $5000.

      13
    • Steve R

      It’s not a $45,000 car, but $4,000-5,000 is just as ridiculous.

      Steve R

      14
    • J_Paul Member

      I, too, can make up an arbitrary number of what this car is worth.

      3
    • Chris M.

      Desert Rat, you’re completely clueless. While I agree 45 grand is too high for this car in its current condition it’s a joke to even think it’s “a 4 or 5 thousand dollar car.” And it would be beneficial, for guys like you, to come to the realization it’s no longer 1976 and the days of buying vintage cars for hundreds of dollars have been over for at least 30 years. Lastly, let’s stop blaming the big bad rich guy for hatching his evil plan to rid commoners out of the hobby!

      18
      • Steve R

        This couldn’t have been said better.

        Steve R

        13
      • GP Member

        Chris M., I know it’s not a super bee or a 440-6 pack, But I picked up a 1966 Chrysler 300 two door hardtop. It has a 383 4 barrel/ auto. Black Int., buckets and the red paint still shines. It has a couple small spots of surface rust and all the chrome and hub caps are on it. I paid 1100.00 for it in Oct. 2019. I do need to go through all the brakes and put new tires on it. Just saying every old car find doesn’t to cost tens of thousands of dollars. Happy Holidays

        4
      • Chris M.

        Great point GP and sounds like a great car. Enjoy every mile

        2
  6. Rhett

    Cool? Check. Rare? Check. Fast? Check. I’m going to break from the crowd and say that this car deserves to be painted – that color/stripe combo is super attractive and deserves to be as the factory intended. Love the hood and hidden headlights, less fond of the C-Pillar styling and bucket/column shift combo. 45k is an asking price, and I’d hope the purchase price is negotiated to much less than half that (there’s a 71 440 R/T on Ebay for 13k in not quite as good condition, if thats any indicator…) Speaking of R/T’s, Chrysler diluted valuable brand equity in this era, both with Charger Super Bee’s and Road Runner GTX’s – anybody who knows, knows those things dont go together …Lucky they ran into financial trouble before they could produce Fury Signets, Demon 500’s and Dart Imperials.

    All that said, cool car and good luck with the sale.

    9
    • Tom Bell

      Full agreement here, a restoration is in order. Finish is way to far gone to leave as-is or worse, clear coat over it. Just makes no sense.

      9
  7. James Martin

    Funny all the comments. Paint it flat black and drive it , oh just fix the interior and drive it.AT 45 LARGE I DONT THINK YOU WILL DROP ANOTHER 20 IN PAINT AND INTERIOR, YOU WOULD JUST DRIVE IT. Then at 60 plus it is a trailer queen. Doubt any of you have that kind of money to just drive around. Nice car but not 45 LARGE nice. Mopar guys have the best weed I swear.

    16
  8. Mike Akerman

    After a girl pulled out in frt of me and totaled my 68 Charger R/T 440 4 speed in 72 I bought one like this in R/T trim auto on the floor 440 4 barrel, same color with cassette deck on console . It drove good but it was a sled compared to my 68. So I traded for 70 road runner 383 magnum 4 speed, no regrets ever about that. I feel this could be a nice car after much $ thrown at it but already overpriced. I will sell my 67 coronet R/T hemi 4 speed for about the same and it needs nothing.

    6
  9. Mark-A

    Personally I’d leave it exactly as it is purely to harass all those kids with newer supposedly sportier vehicles! Always wanted to have something with more or less every panel a different colour & the cash spent in the correct places, drivetrain & suspension etc as a 10K paint job doesn’t win the Traffic Light Grand Prix 😉

    3
  10. jerry z

    $45K is a pipe dream but the man can try! IMHO, its a $25-30K car with amount of work it needs and NOM.

    7
    • Steve

      25-30 is a pipe dream. It will take 25-30 to make decent again.

      1
  11. John D.

    You guys! It is not what the car is worth, it is what is your dollar worth.

    What did your dollar buy in 1971? What did it buy in 2001? What can you get for a dollar today?

    The Fed’s ‘printing press’ has devalued the dollar greatly since 1913, it is worth pennies now compared to then.

    Winter is upon us so what a good time to throw on a good coat of paint, vinyl roof and re-do the interior before driving the heck out of it. A ‘cheap’ single stage paint job can look as good as what the factory did and you will have a nice looking driver.

    3
    • Jack M.

      I’m not a Mopar man, but this car probably left the factory with a single stage paint job. Clear coat finishes were still 20 years in the future.

      6
  12. 433Jeff

    Id pass on this and buy Akermans Hemi and be done with it. I painted all summer in 1981 and had about 600$( cheap labor)to buy a muscle car i ended up with a choice between one of these for 800, 440 auto or a 1970 chevelle ss 396 4 speed bench for 375$ i bought the chevelle. Yea those days are long gone

    8
  13. stillrunners stillrunners Member

    A six pak car you can hop in and drive 5 hours…….and last year……no wounder we are all over the map…..

    2
  14. Del

    Car needs a full resto and it will be expensive.

    His asking price is way to high.

    3
  15. Dave

    It’s a Rare car, I’m just horrified at the price. Someone is going to drop the coin to buy it too.

    3
  16. Mark

    Love it! In the mid-70s, I owned a ‘69 Superbee, followed by a ‘71 (which I drove for 15 years). Always felt the ‘71 fuselage-bodystyle was under-rated. Interiors were a little too plast-icky, but exterior styling still holds up well, IMO. The drivetrains were still bomber in ‘71, despite the lower (net) horsepower figures. Maybe not Hellcat fast, but no slug!

    $45k is serious money, but this generation Superbee with a 440 Six Pack is kind of a unicorn. The automatic would make it a lot easier to live with in modern traffic. It deserves a restoration and then to be driven!

    4
    • Superdessucke

      Problem is if you restore it you are going to be into it for well more than it’s worth, even if you got it for half the asking price here. I think this is one where you would leave as is, other than maybe fixing up the interior. I would prefer it to be like this over a resto with a bunch of Chinese parts.

  17. DG

    The usual more cents than brains

  18. Troy s

    Has the same ripped seat option and special cracked dash my ’68 Chevelle had that I drove daily, although mine had the racy grey primer/black primer hood. Ha, some of these cars are still better looking than the clunks I used to drive.
    This is a hot machine with that six pack 440, hope it stays a driver.

  19. w9bag Member

    I’m skeptical of the tail lights. In ’71, my Dad bought a new Charger 500, that had been “spruced up” by the dealership. Apparently, the dealership had it for a while, as a demo, and tried to improve it’s sales appeal. It was fitted with Super Bee tail lights, (among other goodies), which this not have. They should be rectangular, smooth corners, with louvers over them, (very cool), with reverse lights on either side the license plate. This style tail light are on the base model Charger. Perhaps they were an option ?

    1
    • David Moore

      Your thinking of a CHARGER.

  20. TimM

    This car is very restorable and should be saved but 45 large in my opinion is a little out of my league and overpriced for what needs to be done!!! It’s a shame that every car has to hit a home run!!!

    1
  21. MAXWEDGECHARLIE MAXWEDGECHARLIE Member

    The ’71 Super Bee website says 69 Six-Pack automatics. This car might be one of one, http://www.71superbee.com. It could be rarer than my MAX, 1 of 7 exactly alike.

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