Early 426 Hemi Example: 1966 Plymouth Satellite

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The Plymouth Satellite was introduced in 1965 and initially carried the torch as the crown jewel trim line for the Belvedere lineup.  Standard under the hood was a 273 cubic-inch V8, with several other optional engines available, up to and including a 426.  However, the 426 from ’65 featured a wedge-style combustion chamber, not a bad offering at all, but if a buyer could hold their horses for one more year you could drive off with a 426 Hemi instead.  This 1966 Plymouth Satellite is one such equipped example, so if you’ve been in the market for a mid-sixties B-Body the search may be over.  The car is in South Salinas, California, and can be seen here on Craigslist, where the owner has set the price at $55,000.

Barn Finds reader Kyle K. spotted this one and sent it our way, and we’d like to give him a thumbs-up for the tip!  According to the seller, the Satellite was purchased new in South Carolina, but in early 1968 was brought to California where it has resided ever since.  It’s been under the current owner’s watch since 2008, and the body is said to retain most of its original Butternut Yellow paint.  The passenger side seems to be missing a rocker molding, but overall things are looking pretty good on the outside.

Mopar mastermind Galen Govier decoded the build sheet and fender tag and reports the Plymouth did indeed roll off the assembly line with a Hemi, plus he also detected it was one of the first such-equipped cars of its kind produced.  Mr. Govier went on to find this one also came with an A-833 4-Speed, a Dana 60 rear-end, plus a 26-inch radiator.  If I was getting serious here, the one thing I might want clarification from the seller about is to make sure these are all the same components the Satellite left the factory with.  The seller does use the word original in his title, but I couldn’t find anywhere else in the ad where it’s specifically stated that this is a numbers-matching drivetrain.  I’m not trying at all to imply it isn’t, but I’d just want to make absolutely sure one way or the other before committing to make this purchase.

Although nowhere near perfect, most everything inside still looks fairly decent to have this much age, and some good news here is there’s a brand new Year One interior still in boxes included in the sale.  Another positive is the seller states that the car runs and drives well, so if you’re only wanting a driver-quality Hemi just installing the new inside parts and finding a lower molding for the outside may be satisfactory, at least for a while.  How would you move forward with this 1966 Plymouth Satellite?

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  1. poseurMember

    is it just me or does this seem like a dang strong value for an original first year 4-speed Hemi car? if the engine is original i’m guessing at least $20k low. love to own and enjoy driving this beast

    Like 16
    • Gary

      I always liked these, but I like 68 Chargers slot better. These have never held the value the other b bodies have. Even the butt ugly 66 67Chargers bring more money. There is a 66 or 67 Belvedere on eBay that’s been on there forever, wild paint, two door sedan (my fav) for near this price with 30k? on it.

      Like 1
  2. Will Fox

    This will be gone in a couple days, easily. Especially if the Hemi is original, and the early-build claim now verified.

    Like 6
  3. Rick R

    What was the hp ratings for the 426 hemi engines in 1966?

    Like 1
    • Gary

      425hp, 550hp I believe for a SS race engine, from what my dad’s buddy told me (West Virginia HemiCharger fame)

      Like 3
      • Don SiegerMember

        I would say that the 425hp rating was way low for these early 426 hemi engines, from what I’ e read in the past was that these were full blown race engines, not super charged but they didn’t need to be.

        Like 3
  4. Maggy

    Like the other commenters , if this is a #’s car this is a steal at 55k. Love the period wheels and pencil blue lines! Even if it’s not a #’s car it’s priced just about right if it looks as good in person as it does in the pics. Nice car.

    Like 10
  5. Glenn Hilpert

    A rare one indeed but has been 4-sale for close to a year and possibly longer. Maybe the price is scaring people away, it is not a #’s matching vehicle or it has too much rust based on the vehicle’s location. I don’t own the car so who knows why it has not sold after all this time.

    Like 1
    • losgatos_dale

      Being on the market for a year and less than an hour away from Silly Con Valley, if this car was even remotely close to being a 55 thousand dollar ’66 Hemi, it’d have been long gone.

      Like 2
  6. MGM

    This beast will fetch$80-90k ,watch they’re rare and someone will invest another 50-60k .auction $3-400k The markets there .

    Like 0
  7. Greg Gustafson

    The claimed HP rating was low for insurance rate considerations.

    Like 0
  8. Rick R

    If commenter Glenn is right about this car being for sale around a year and hasn’t sold yet maybe there is a problem with the numbers matching and, or it could need a full restoration. Seems like this rare of car would have been snatched up!

    Like 2
    • Grant

      Insurance wasn’t so much of a problem in 1965 as it was half a decade later when the finally caught on. I think 425 is close to being correct. These were over rated. A good 440 would eat them alive all day, esp in six pack form. (and do it at less than half the cost and with a lot less fussiness). Sure, in full unreliable race form, they couldn’t be beat, but to make them streetable (at least a little) they lost most of that ability. I knew several people who owned these from new, and all of them regretted the purchase. Back then, the standard V8 in 318 poly form was always the best choice for the adult.

      Like 1
  9. Danny B

    Not gone at 55…there has to be a problem here.

    Like 2
  10. Glenn Hilpert

    I remember these Hemi cars while in High School for my neighbor bought a brand new 66 Coronet 440 model with the Hemi and he took the time to teach me the basics of automotive history and mechanics. Of course the price of this Satellite is out of my reach and age to acquire one.

    I read more of the ad info and the car had been in the S.F./Oakland Bay area for 40 years. That is a lot of salt air and moisture even if garaged. This seller acquired the car 15 or so years ago, about 100 miles due south and again in the Monterey Bay area known for also salt air and moisture. I would like to see photos of the floors, frame, rockers, trunk areas etc; if I had serious thoughts of purchasing. Just curious on my end as to the elements this car may have encountered.

    Like 1
  11. Ward William

    How would I move forward with it ?? I’d get the seller to knock 15k off it before I would even consider it. It’s nice but I see bodywork and interior trim that needs attention. And that kiddies, will not come cheap. That passenger side quarter panel looks sketchy at the bottom behind the door. I’d hate to peel it back and find rotten rocker panels. I love it but 55k would only be acceptable if it was in much better condition.

    Like 0

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