Little Red Convertible: 1963 Plymouth Valiant

1963-plymouth-valiant-v200-convertible

The early ’60s was an odd time for Chryler, they were transitioning from the big curvy cars of the late ’50s to smaller more compact designs that could compete with foreign imports. They tried to keep some of the curving lines and fins of the ’50s, which produced some very interesting looking cars. In 1960 they introduced their import fighter, the Valiant, and the looks were a bit polarizing. Thankfully, in ’63 they redesigned it and the convertible you see above is one of these second generation cars. The looks are still a bit different, but the more I look at it, the more it grows on me. This example is a V200 convertible and has had a ton of work already done to it. It’s said to be a nice driver and I can believe it. This nice little convertible can be found here on craigslist in East Hampton, Connecticut.

1963-plymouth-valiant-v200-interior

Personally, I don’t know if I would want to restore one of these cars. Finding parts is challenging, well at least when you compare it to restoring a Mustang or Camaro. There is a dedicated following that can provide guidance and advice. Even still, I would rather buy one that’s already done and ready to enjoy. At $8k I wouldn’t call it a steal, but considering how nice it is and all the work that has already been done, it seems like a decent buy! You’d be hard pressed to buy and restore a project to this level for less.

1963-plymouth-valiant-v200-engine

The engine has recently been rebuilt and has about 200 miles on it. It’s the 225 cui inline six, which is a fantastic engine. It probably won’t win any drag races, but it should have more than enough power for this little convertible! Really the only thing I’d want to change is going from the column to a floor shifter, but I’m sure I could get use to the three on the tree.

1963-plymouth-valiant-convertible

This really is a lovely little Mopar, but I’m a sucker for little red convertibles. The fact that it’s ready to hit the road is rather appealing if you ask me. So what do you think of this topless Valiant? Is it worth $8k?

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Comments

  1. Rex Kahrs Member

    It is difficult to argue with the price, as nice as this car looks. These cars drive well, handle pretty well, and the 6 is plenty for a cruiser like this. Two thumbs up.

  2. Fred W.

    Everything depends on the quality of the paint and body, but if it was built as good as it looks in the photos, not a bad price at all.

  3. dirtyharry

    I think a column shift is perfect for this car, don’t cut a hole in floor, it won’t be any faster.

  4. Rocko

    Depending on how it looks underneath, these are usually a bit scaly~ i would say anything under 5k for this beauty would be a good deal. 8 is a bit high, specially with that coluum shift. Nice job.

  5. JW454

    It sounds like a fair deal to me if it looks as good in person. I would have preferred they not cut the dash just to add the aftermarket radio but, otherwise, I’d be happy with it.

  6. Joe Haska

    I think it is absolutely worth it. These are great cars, I had a 65 convertible with the V-8, and sold it for $8500, and that was at least 10 or 15 years ago. I recently, last week, sold a 67 Mustang, twin to this car, red convertible, 6 cylinder , auto for $18,000, was a very nice car. But I think this car would be just as much fun and 10 grand less. These two cars are perfect for what they are: A bright red vintage convertible to drive and enjoy, and not spend a fortune on.

  7. Ed P

    I learned to drive on a ‘three on the tree’. I never found it to be difficult and I actually prefer that for a tree speed transmission. I think this Valiant would be fun to drive.

  8. David Frank David Frank Member

    Thanks Josh for a great writeup. While not the most popular car, many of us would love to own this. Some folks like to be one of the crowd, one of those folks with a red mustang, tri-fives and such. Some of us don’t mind being a bit different and love driving something unique. Some even prefer it. That’s one of the things that makes barnfinds such a fun and interesting site. Many of us would actually prefer this valiant little drop top to a humdrum Chevy or Ford. Many love their muscle cars. Some of us even like creaky old prewar cars. Mostly, we love cars and love loving cars whatever the heck they are.

  9. Rocko

    No power brakes, i guess those little 9″ dont need them, i sure hope there is power steering and power top at that price!
    Are those wheels 13″ ?

    • Ed P

      13″ wheels were standard equipment for Valiants at this time. I doubt it has power steering. These cars were not hard to steer without power assistance.

  10. Jim Mc

    “…..but I’m sure I could get used to the three on the tree.”

    Super simple on these old MoPars, it’s an ‘H’ pattern. Neutral in the middle on the crossbar of the H. Forward and down is 1st, back & up is 2nd, back & down is 3rd. Forward & up is reverse.
    Forward – 1st & reverse are on the same gear, back – 2nd & 3rd are on the other. The shifting becomes muscle memory, you just row thru it. In traffic you spend most of your time in 2nd, governing you speed with the accelerator. 2nd is good from 5 to 50 mph. 3rd is highway / open road.
    Love this slant sixes. This looks like a really sweet ride.

  11. geezerglide85

    Neat car. I remember in ’72 when my brother was looking for a car for back and forth to college, we came across a ’65, white with a blue int., 273 v8. buckets, auto. on the floor,
    in almost showroom cond. I couldn’t talk him into it, he didn’t want a Valiant, that was a grandma car. I think if Chrysler had put Barracuda badges on the conv. they might have sold another million of them. I have even seen these with factory 4-speeds in them. As for my brother he bought ’67 Dart GT with ugly white interior that turned out to be a real clunker.

  12. Eddie

    To High Price I Could Buy A Nice Used Corvette For That Price !!

    • moosie Craig

      huh ?

  13. stillrunners stillrunners Member

    Rocko…..only one beat down per post…….

  14. Peter K

    thanks for all the positive comments. I bought it 10 years ago because I wanted something different. I didn’t care about going fast. Just for something that was different than the fords, chevy’s and benz’s out there.

  15. Glen

    Very nice car. I would thoroughly enjoy owning this. Top down on a beautiful Summer day! …. I can’t believe Summer is over already.

  16. Rocko

    Spring price in the fall! Why fix it up to sell ? Shoulda bolted in a more recent 318 Magum instead, same gas mileage as the super six. Careful when you buy a car, make sure you like it, you might have to own it for a while.

  17. Jay E.

    Seller forgot to mention what amazing fuel economy these get. Had a 64 225 ( for almost 20 years till it was totaled in a read end accident) and often saw 30MPG. They are also very quiet and comfortable and very, very reliable. Surprisingly nice car compared to a base 64 Mustang. You won’t believe how many people want to talk about this car, a very dedicated following.

  18. chad

    had it’s 2 younger bros (64 & 66 wagons) in early ’70s. Both w/170s (300K milage motors). B nice to have this to swap out on a Sunday drive. Put some discs up frnt and the 3 2v carbs on the Offy intake (refine the suspension)…
    8^ 0

  19. Skip

    Now, this is one I’d grab if I could afford it. My second car was a ’63 two door slant-six Valiant. It had 28K on the odometer when my parents gave it to me for Christmas in 1965. It replaced my old ’55 Plymouth Belvedere that I had gotten for high school graduation in 1963, and on which I had put mega-miles.

    I drove that Valiant everywhere! I went to work as news director for a small local radio station right after I got that car, and it became our mobile news unit. I put a C.B. radio in it and later a converter that tied into the AM radio, with which I could hear police calls (there were no scanners back then, of course). I took that little car to college with me at Texas Tech, and in 1972 the old slant six went at just over 100K. My dad replaced the engine with one out of a ’62 Dart and I got a couple of more years out of the car before letting a friend have it for a school car. I still miss that ol’ critter!

  20. Ron

    I like it. Was it 64 that they came out with the push button?

    • Ed P

      No. The push button shifter first appeared on 56 Chrysler corp vehicles. 64 was the last year.

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