Ex-Highway Patrol Car: 1974 Plymouth Fury 440

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The number of vehicle registrations in North Carolina in the 1920s went from 150,000 at the beginning of the decade to over 500,000 in 1929, and as such, accidents and deaths were also rising. The state legislature established the State Highway Patrol in 1929 to deal with the increasing number of drivers. This 1974 Plymouth Fury is a former North Carolina State Highway Patrol car, it’s listed here on eBay in Mooresville, North Carolina, and the seller is asking $3,500.

What those early Highway Patrol officers wouldn’t have given to have a ’74 Plymouth Fury with a 440 V8 in the 1920s. Most states in the U.S. have similar stories about how and why their Highway Patrol divisions got started. I’ve noticed a big lack of Highway Patrol presence in the last couple of years for some reason, have any of you also noticed that? Highway laws aren’t taken as seriously as they seemed to be prior to 2020, at least from my experience in driving 40,000 miles a year all over the U.S.

The Plymouth Fury spent one last year – 1974, for the sixth generation – on the big C-body cars. The following year they would move down to the B-body cars, losing a little heft and length. Dodge shared this body style for their Monaco, and Chrysler used it for several models, including the top-dog Imperial, although they looked quite a bit more elegant with a few design tweaks. The trunk is huge and I wonder what may have been in there when this car was on patrol.

The seller tells us that this particular car is in fact a former North Carolina Highway Patrol cruiser and it’s been parked for a painfully long time, since 1992, in fact. They don’t have underside photos, but they say that the floors have some rust and the frame rails are good as far as they know. The seats don’t look horrible, just horribly dirty, but the entire interior is also in fairly rough condition as you can see.

The big deal here is Chrysler’s 440-cu.in. OHV V8, which would have had 280 horsepower and 380 lb-ft of torque when new. The seller has made no attempts to start this car so we don’t even know if it turns over or not, and that’s a big consideration, value-wise. Speaking of value, how much would you pay for this ex-Highway Patrol car? Are there any law enforcement vehicle collectors out there?

Auctions Ending Soon

Comments

  1. angliagt angliagtMember

    PLEASE! – no quoting the Blues Brothers (again).

    Like 34
    • Scotty GilbertsonAuthor

      Ha! At least there won’t be any flux-capacitor quotes…

      Like 21
    • Stan

      🎶 🔊 Just a good old boys
      Never meanin’ no harm
      Beats all you never saw
      Been in trouble with the law since the day they was born
      Straightening the curves, yeah
      Flattenin’ the hills
      Someday the mountain might get ’em, but the law never will 🎶 🎸

      Like 21
    • R S Hodag

      Fix the cigarette lighter…

      Like 24
      • Michael Berkemeier

        Oy vey.

        Like 6
    • angryjonny

      Cop tires, cop shocks, cop suspension…

      C’mon man, this post was MADE for this.

      Like 26
  2. BA

    I’ve noticed new law enforcement vehicles using a hidden casually to the eye but
    when illuminated reflective law enforcement paint scheme usually dark body color . Dare I say the rest are undercover with with no markings just the hidden lights the go off like a UFO is landing or coming to take you away! I only notice these things because I use a Escort radar detector & it’s my belief most people don’t spend 500 bucks on a radar detector like me therefore have no idea about the more stealthy highway patrol cars till its too late! Just my observations & I also don’t get moving violations tickets so you do the math lol

    Like 12
    • Greg

      Huh??

      Like 12
      • Michael Berkemeier

        You know my thoughts on this already, and we know how well radar detectors work too. UFO…that explains it all.

        Like 5
  3. R S Hodag

    It’s a model made before catalytic converters, so it runs good on regular gas….

    Like 22
    • Greg

      It’s 156 miles to Chicago, we have a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it’s dark and we’re wearing sunglasses. Hit it!

      Like 21
  4. Sam61

    I see Indiana State Police fairly regularly on the Interstates. I don’t know the rules but notice certain county police trolling for a fast buck on sections of interstate that pass through their county along I-65.

    Nice find.. the next owner should throw away and fried chicken or dry white toast they find.

    Like 4
  5. Dave, Australia

    Thanks Scotty.
    The Subaru Microcar 1969 featured 2 cars before this would be a mere speed hump for this mighty Plymouth hulk

    Like 14
  6. Bill

    Scotty
    Not the case here in AZ. Highway Patrol and other law enforcement are ubiquitous on the roads. Perhaps less so because of radar cameras. In fact one Governor a few years ago attempted to solve a budget deficit by having multiple cameras installed along metro area freeways. Failed miserably for multiple reasons.

    Like 11
    • PaulG

      Just saw 2 silver Dodge Challenger (not Charger) unmarked at an accident scene outside Prescott a couple weeks ago. Saw a deep red one on the 17.
      Definitely get your attention…

      Like 6
  7. Rw

    Hunter first thought I had.

    Like 2
  8. Tim

    The car needs to be on an episode of the TV show “Dirty Old Cars” and “Roadworthy Rescues”. The police car restoration hobby is alive and well across America. Legitimate old police cars from the 1990’s and older are hard to find. Wishing I had the ability, skill and money to bring this former squad car back to life.

    Like 14
    • Johan

      I’d like to see Derek from Vice Grip Garage get this one running and drive it back to his shop in Tennessee. “Gotta check the spark-I-later” 🤣

      Like 14
      • Frank Drackman

        I thought it was the “Lightning Whirler”

        Like 8
  9. PL

    JAKE & ELWOOD approved! And it can make that bridge jump.

    Like 0
  10. SG

    I got a similar Mopar from Alabama a few years ago, and it had the same “sweaty” and moldy look to the interior. Took 2 solid days of cleaning and all the vinyl was still greasy afterwards. That heat and humidity are terribly for 70s interiors…Also – cockroaches!!

    Like 12
  11. Car Nut Tacoma

    Nice looking Plymouth. I can see this car being cleaned up and used either as a display car for a police dept. or a parade car. Anything but a demo derby. That’s a good way to destroy a car beyond drivability.

    Like 12
  12. Craiger

    HEY!! How ’bout a Rubber Biscuit!
    Where’s Jake and Elwood?

    Like 5
    • Frank Drackman

      I thought it was a Ricochet Biscuit, the kind of a Biscuit, that bounce off the wall, back into yo’ mouth

      Like 2
  13. Troy

    Ok I won’t quote the blue’s brothers however this thing is only $3500 bucks you can get it then make it a clone and probably triple your money

    Like 4
  14. Jcjc

    Blues Bros car was a Dodge, so I find some of these comments wholly inappropriate.

    Like 7
    • Troy

      Difference between Dodge and Plymouth those years was $15 bucks for the cost of the emblems

      Like 5
      • bone

        and bumpers , header panel and taillights – why not make a Knight Rider clone out of a Camaro ?

        Like 3
  15. Mike K

    A guy I knew back in the day had one of these, 440 and like 2.76 gears. He took me to look at a car one day and scared the heck outa me. He said the speedo said 130, and I completely believe it, it’s the fastest I have gone in my life, and won’t be doing that again.

    Like 10
    • Michael Berkemeier

      Yep, these cars were good for about 130…I appreciate your honest recollection. Most of the clowns out there claim they would do 160 mph, lol! Funny how many idiots believe that.

      Like 2
  16. Craig Walker

    Your right about less police presence &: the subsequent disregard of rules/laws ,it’s the same here in the UK
    Where it’s a case of might is right the more you shout/threaten others the more you care right.

    Like 1
  17. Michael Berkemeier

    Hopefully, this car is saved…I’ve owned over 100 MoPar cop cars and, a few years back, I would’ve bought this car sight-unseen and it would’ve been restored by now. I slaved tirelessly for years finding these cars, dragging them out of fields in BFE, trucking them half-way across the country, cleaning them up, and on and on. People hated me for buying them all and then re-selling them but, I genuinely loved these cars and still do, I just got tired of the whining cry babies. Now it’s gotta have a big-block, a 4-speed, and two less doors to garner a spot in my garage. I did my part. Good luck to whoever sngs this car, it’s the real deal and more rare than any muscle car out there. There are simply none left to be found. Finished, it will be worth a pretty penny if done right.

    Like 11
    • Michael Berkemeier

      *snags

      Like 2
  18. Matt

    The engines worth that. Even that year.

    Like 7
  19. Sam

    Did anyone else notice all the mold, This thing had been in some water at onetime or another, Might want to wear a HAZMAT Suit when cleaning it. If the floors look like the trunk your going to need some sheet metal or a bunch of old street signs / license plates. Another Mopar Old Parts And Rust.

    Like 0
  20. rayburn

    Had an ex-trooper car like it back around. 78/79, I think I gave like $275 for it and drove it home and around town for some time and then got rid of it to someone else. Who knew back then!

    Like 5
  21. Uncle Buck

    How can you not think of the blues brothers when u see this. I’d drive it and wear the sunglasses and suits and hat. Love it.

    Like 3
    • Car Nut Tacoma

      I think theirs was a Dodge Polara or possibly a Monaco. Although similar to the Fury overall, it had a different front end appearance.

      Like 1
  22. Frank Drackman

    my 03′ ex GSP Crown Vic with 202K miles isn’t as rare as this, but getting there,
    was surprised to see several Black/White Crown Vics at the scene of the unfortunate “Mass” shooting in CA last week? at best they’re 11 years old.

    Like 4
  23. Frank Drackman

    1990, looking for my first “Cop Car” had the choice of a 78 Fury with the 440, or a 78 LTD with a 460. Fury was at a shady used car lot, LTD sold by a local Police Department (upgrading to the Crown Vic!)
    Bought the LTD for $1,000 cash money (no credit cards/Pay pal in 1990) Remember their mechanic wanting to take off the nearly new Eagle GT police pursuit tires, Chief (I think he thought they were putting on better tires) yelled “No, it’s sold “As is”” I think the tires were worth almost as much as the car.
    Needed some brakes, hoses, Altenator, Shocks, but what a sweet ride, put your foot into the secondaries, painted her black (had to, illegal to have a Police Paint Scheme in GA) had to sell her when I bought a 96′ Caprice,

    OK, the 03’s faster, twice as fuel efficient,

    Frank

    Frank

    Like 4
  24. Dale Miller

    Had a ’76 Gran Fury many years ago, retired KHP cruiser with the 400 cid police engine. Wish I’d hung onto it, as with the many other A- and B- bodies I had back in the day. Hope someone saves this one, and gets a lot of enjoyment from it!

    Like 0
  25. Scotty GilbertsonAuthor

    Auction update: this one ended with no bidders.

    Like 1
    • Mark P

      A buddy had a Mopar of this sort back in the early 80s. It was from Washington State. Had the 440 and all the other cop stuff. He said it had a 50 gallon gas tank, that it did take up some of the front portion of the trunk, near the back seat. It had a small hose reel under the hood and you could pump gas, I suppose to a stranded motorist. Was in nice shape. I have a 2017 Ford Interceptor Utility, what a great car, fast, handles incredibly and has some cool drivetrain management software and other cop stuff still activated .

      Like 1
  26. Donny B

    Seems odd a cruiser of this vintage appears to have AC

    Like 0
  27. john v woods

    Pretty sure all 440 s after 73 were stroked 383 s.

    Like 0
  28. Car Nut Tacoma

    This has always been my favourite year for the Plymouth Fury until the 1980s version.

    Like 1
  29. Jed

    Tires gasoline tank alternator plugs brakes less than $6,ooo and it’s back to street patrol!!??

    Like 0

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