Almost Factory: Dodge Shadow CSX Convertible

Allthough Dodge’s Shelby-built Shadows – known as the CSX – were well received by enthusiasts, the company never built out the product line beyond the fixed-head coupe. One enthusiast took matters into his own hands to build a faithful recreation with a drop-top, as seen here on craigslist. This turbocharged Shadow has popped up for sale a few times over the past few months, which is a surprise considering the thoroughness of the build. Thanks to Barn Finds reader Clarke B. for the find. 

The original builder of this CSX convertible completed the project sometime before 2014 (keep this little detail in the back of your mind). He utilized a clean convertible shell and then swapped in a completely rebuilt drivetrain in the form of a CSX-correct 2.5L turbocharged and intercooled mill. All of the other bits – from the Shelby-branded Recaros, steering wheel, gauge cluster and number plaques – were all added to make it as factory correct as possible. You can find the original build thread on Turbo-Mopar.com by clicking here.

Now, here’s where it gets a bit odd: near as we can figure, the original builder of this car did it because he simply wanted to see if it could be done. The seller and current owner says that the Shelby-tribute was built by Chrysler engineers for the annual “Eyes on Design” charitable car show in 2008, matching neither the timeline nor the story provided by the original builder of the car.  The Shadow has popped up for sale more than once since first being listed in 2014, and the price has swung wildly ever since.

You can check out another posting about this same car on Jalopnik, where their weekly “Nice Price of Crack Price” feature went live when the car was once listed in excess of $20K. Overall, the attention to detail is high on this custom CSX convertible, and the original builder deserves lots of credit for using NOS or nearly-new components to build this sympathetic tribute to Carroll Shelby’s turbocharged Mopar creations. While the irregularities of its last few years of ownership should be untangled, the bottom line is this is an unrepeatable creation worth preserving.

Fast Finds

Comments

  1. memikeyounot

    I bought a used ’91 Dodge Shadow Convertible in 1992; it was a rental car from Hawaii that for some reason had been brought to Salt Lake City. I had it about 2 years and overall, it was a decent car. However, the roof leaked,or more correctly, didn’t seal. The power window on the driver’s door sometimes went up and sometimes not. It was a convertible in Utah, where winter (as this year) can last until the end of May, (temperature dropped 20 degrees again) but it was still lots of fun to drive with the top down and impress the neighbors. Wish I had an extra $9138 and I get this one !

  2. RoughDiamond RoughDiamond Member

    Gone already! I think that was a great buy considering the thoroughness and detail of the build.

  3. Vern Christy

    I just listed this one for sale. Been in dry storage for over 3 years, charged battery & it fired right up. Pays to treat fuel system for storage. Selling for my Father (No longer drives) Reman engine put in at 14986 K’s. Now has 15795 K’s.

  4. John D.

    My wife and I rented one for the last few days of our honeymoon. It was a N/A 2.5 auto, it was a good running car, but certainly no performance behemoth like the turbo or the V6 have the potential to be. Overall, we enjoyed it and I would have another.

  5. Joe Muzy

    Gone

  6. Miguel

    I went to look at a Shadow Convertible when they were new. I asked the salesman where the switch was for the top. He said it was a manual top. I walked out.

  7. George Livesley

    Surprisingly, I like it and would not mind having it–thankfully it is already sold.

    It is a Dodge and prior my prior posts about my ’66 Charger show how much I hate Mopars–yeah, right!

  8. Nova Scotian

    I owned a regular hard top hatch back in the day. Had some motor/ head gasket issues. Seats were very comfortable…fir like a glove. We enjoyed the car for the time we owned it. The one here looks tastefully done. Something you wouldn’t be ashamed to be seen in, IMO.

  9. Bradley Clark

    I’m surprised that so many folks find ANY redeeming qualities to the styling of this car. Chrysler has tossed the American car buyer a few turds in the past, but I think this platform floats on the top.

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