Big Block Barn Find: 1966 Dodge Charger

When a person takes on a restoration project where the vehicle has spent more than 30-years hidden away in a barn, it would be fair to expect that there is going to be a fair amount of work required before that classic coughs back into life. However, I have to say a huge thank you to Barn Finder Ikey H, because he has spotted a project car where that part of the job has already been completed. This 1966 Dodge Charger is a really solid vehicle, and if it ticks the boxes for you, then you’ll find it located in Oak Hill, Ohio. It has been listed for sale here on eBay, and while it has been set to open at what would seem to be a very reasonable $6,500 in a No Reserve auction, there have been no bids to this point.

The Charger is finished in Bright Red, and by and large, it is a really solid looking project car. The only rust of any significance seems to be this section in the passenger-side rear quarter. However, the owner is including the patch for this in the sale. There is also some rust in the spare wheel well, so that will also need to be addressed. Otherwise, that really does seem to be about it. He supplies plenty of photos of the floors and frame, and I have to say that it looks to be remarkably clean and solid. All of the external trim and chrome is present, and any items that aren’t perfect are certainly in the sort of state where they could be restored quite easily. One of the most important pieces of the exterior trim is the distinctive grille, and this one looks to be in really nice condition. The Charger is also fitted with a set of Magnum 500 wheels, and not only do these look to be in great condition, but I’ve always thought that they suit the car perfectly.

I know that you’ve been itching for me to pop the hood on the Charger, so I won’t make you wait any longer. What you get is a mighty 383ci V8, a TorqueFlite transmission, power steering, and power brakes. The owner refers to this as being a date-code matching car, which I would assume means that the engine and/or the transmission aren’t original. The good news here is that after being in storage for more than three decades, the Charger has been brought back to life. It isn’t clear whether that engine is still pumping out all of its original 325hp, but it does start and run nicely, with no smoke or odd noises. Even better, the transmission shifts smoothly, the car is said to drive well, and the brakes work as they should. It would seem that if restoration isn’t on the immediate agenda, then this is a car that could be driven and enjoyed pretty quickly.

While the mechanical package is one of the true highlights of the Charger, for me, the interior of the ’66 model is something pretty special. The whole concept of a full-length console, fold-down rear bucket seats, and that amazing electroluminescent lighting must have been mind-blowing back in 1966. Even today, it rates as one of the more special interiors that an American manufacturer has ever fitted to a muscle car. It is also an interior that, from a styling perspective, has aged really well. It is nice to see that the interior appears to be complete, so there will be no hunting around for some of the more unusual or rare items to bring this one back to life. The interior is certainly serviceable as it currently stands, but in reality, restoring it should actually be an easy and relatively inexpensive process. The bottoms of both door trims are damaged, and will probably require replacement. The same is true of the cover on the driver’s seat, while the dash pad is cracked, and the carpet is showing some fading. The vinyl on the side of the console in the rear seat has a tear in it, but I think that this might be repairable. Otherwise, the rest of the interior trim and the headliner look to be in great condition. So, it would seem that the shopping list for the interior is going to be extremely short.

Rather unusually, the Dodge Charger was introduced to the motoring public in mid-1966, rather than at the beginning of the model-year cycle. This should have been a recipe for disaster, but the Charger swam against the tide of expectations. It was so positively received that 37,344 people chose to take home a new Charger in that model year. This was extraordinary when you consider that barely more than 15,000 people chose to do the same thing in 1967. This particular car looks like an absolute beauty, and on face value, it would seem to represent a pretty straightforward restoration prospect. Today, it is possible to find relatively tidy examples equipped as this one is for around the $15,000 mark, but a really clean one will set you back $20,000 or more. Values haven’t been increasing outrageously in recent times, but they have certainly not been showing any signs of softening, either. Because the Charger is being offered in a No Reserve auction, there is a possibility that a single bid could secure this awesome car, and wouldn’t that be something?

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Comments

  1. Moparman Member

    Concealed headlights, check…full length console, check..383, check…Ticks all of the right boxes! Someone needs to snatch this solid project up right away! GLWTS!! :-)

    Like 17
    • 86_Vette_Convertible

      What he said.

      Like 5
  2. John D.

    Ok, a beauty of a Mopar at a very affordable price and still no bids. Its time for those cry babies who post that tired old trope about unrealistic Mopar prices and opine values based on what they could have paid to own the car a decade or more ago, to place their bids on a truly unique model. They won’t be sorry. Performance will be about the same as a 10 hp more 383 Roadrunner or Super Bee and the basics are there to make it better. A truly good buy here.

    Like 17
  3. Del

    We see a lot of these.

    They do not command price that later ones do and every second one seems to be red.

    But is a nice one at reasonable price. It deserves to be saved.

    Like 6
  4. George Mattar

    Beautiful and not $30,000 for a rotted 69 Charger. Truth be told, I prefer 68 and 69 over this first gen version. But in 1966, as a 10 year old, I went new car shopping with dad. There was a Dodge dealer a block from our house. In the showroom was a new silver 66 Charger with burgundy buckets. I am like dad get this. Not a car guy, dad said we needed a station wagon. Not being able to make a deal on a big Dodge wagon, we headed to a Pontuac dealer. Took home a white 66 Safari. This 66 is a great buy but my garage is full.

    Like 5
  5. Car Nut Tacoma

    Hey Charger! Sweet looking car! I’ve always loved this generation Dodge Charger. I find this way more attractive than later models. Assuming everything on the car works like they should, and parts are available, restoration should be relatively easy to do.

    Like 4
  6. Jerry C

    I love this Charger. Too bad no a/c. I would love to buy this, and the thunderbird, and the GTO.

    Like 3
  7. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    I might be in the minority, but I’m glad that you are featuring these ’66 and ’67 Chargers lately.

    Like 8
  8. John

    Beware of the wet car.

    Like 2
  9. jimmy the orphan

    I was 13yrs.old in 1966 when my friends Mom bought a new Charger like this one. It was just Robby and his Mother. No dad in the picture. She was young and good looking, She was the coolest Mom around. She had the Coolest car which made Robby the coolest kid in school. Young women didn’t buy cars like this back then often. This one is a peach and is a good buy in my humble opinion . And oh yeah its Cool. Later JIMMY

    Like 5
    • John Oliveri

      Maybe his mom was fast, like the car, it was the swinging 60s, my Spanish teacher, in 1968 had a Javelin, she was hotter than the car, but together, Caliente, 51 years later I still remember

      Like 2
    • PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

      Similar memory: Hot young 5th grade teacher had a brand new ’70 Mach 1 – white with Black Stripes. I would stay after school and do chores for her so that she would drive me home in that car.

      Like 2
  10. Timbo

    love those fastbacks…….

    Like 1
  11. chrlsful

    looks like the Marlin shown a few days back

    Like 1
  12. Mountainwoodie

    I too liked these early Chargers. It looks to me like a color change from white. Am I missing something?.

    Wonder why the seller isn’t interested in restoring it? (other than he or she is a dealer and the rust may be much worse) It seems like a good place to start.

    Like 1

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