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Mist Green Mopar: 1973 Plymouth Duster

I was a senior in high school in 1973, the year this Duster came out. Since I lived across the street from school, I fortunately had to walk through the student parking lot to get to our school’s main entrance. Being a car geek, I had been paying attention to the wide range of student vehicles for years (VW Beetles, Mustangs, obvious 4-door hand-me-downs, the Powell twins’ hot ’63 Chevy, even a ’55 Thunderbird). There were a number of Dusters taking up parking spaces, too, and for good reason. They were inexpensive and “semi-sporty” considering it was basically a Plymouth Valiant, a car your parents or grandparents could’ve owned and approved of. Here’s a ’73 Duster painted in an attractive Mist Green (the seller says it’s a rare mid-year color) with its original interior and carpet. It’s currently located in Springfield, Oregon, and is for sale here on eBay. As of this writing, it had generated 17 bids with the highest bid hitting only $3,950, a figure that will surely be going up between now and Sunday, November 5th at 3:15 pm when the bidding ends.

The seller describes this Duster as a “Perfect starter Mopar muscle car without the muscle!” And he’s right. Mist Green is a much tamer color than, say, Rallye Red, but the sporty wheels and white stripes and dual exhausts might make you think there’s a V8 under the hood, but there’s not. Like the more than 70% of Dusters ordered in 1973, it has the optional Slant Six 225 under the hood. Fortunately, it wasn’t ordered with the full or canopy vinyl roof option, and the Mist Green paint, which the seller describes as “mostly original” is shiny and presentable and captures the colorful 70’s well. I’m not spotting rust and the chrome bumpers (minus the optional Bright Bumper Guards), glass, trim, white side and rear striping, and badging all look good.

The green vinyl original interior looks very good to be 50 years old and other than some wear on the driver’s seat upholstery, I’m not spotting any major issues. The original optional carpet (yes, these inexpensive Dusters came stripped, even a cigarette lighter was optional) looks a bit tired and there are no photos of the Duster’s headliner.

There are three aftermarket gauges visible under the dash and the original radio (a radio was optional on ’73 Dusters) and sound system has been replaced with what the seller calls a “Killer Kenwood Stereo.” Other options mentioned are power steering and a 3-speed manual on the floor with the original shifter and knob.

Under the Mist Green hood is Chrysler’s legendary, bulletproof Slant Six 225 and the seller describes it as, “2BBL Holley with Split Dual Exhaust…SOUNDS GREAT!” Mileage is listed as 117, 929. He also says, “This is a great little car that will allow you to cruise anywhere, anytime!”  So what do you think? Is it trying too hard to look (and sound) like something it isn’t? To each his or her own, I guess. If it were mine, I’d probably ditch the sporty wheels and put painted rims and dog dish hubcaps on it and enjoy it for what it is: a 50-year-old driver with a dependable Slant Six 225 under the hood.

Comments

  1. Louie

    As soon as you said Springfield Oregon I knew it had to be Mark Worman of Graveyard Cars selling it.

    Like 5
    • Jay E. Member

      I recently did business with Mark and he is a really stand up guy. A lot of good communication, very interesting to talk and email to.

      Like 5
      • Louie

        Very cool! Love the show and his knowledge of Mopars

        Like 2
    • PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

      Leave it to Mark to dig up some interesting Mopars. First one I’ve seen from him with a Slant 6.

      Like 3
    • James

      I had a 71 duster with air conditioning and
      Automatic transmission . It came with a
      225 Cid slant 6 Cyd . Sorry but the mist green though nice, duster you see has no
      A/C there for has a 198 Cid engine

      Like 0
  2. Paul

    Thats not a late 70s 2bbl set up, Austrailian company? The 2bbl was a nice litytle upgrade for the 225. Chrysler should have offered it here earlier, esp for the mid 70 sixes that had running problems and the 2bbl fixed that. Coupld have been a cheap option, of course a 318 was a pretty cheap option, but maybe people didn’t want or need that much power.

    Like 4
    • wallyum

      Mine was a 318. I don’t remember a lot of power.

      Like 5
    • eric22t

      looks like the mopar intake(still has the egr attached). but it is an upgraded holly 2barrel. the aussie company that does all the slanty upgrades has quite a few different intakes and they all look noticeably different from stock.

      this is a real clean ride and if 3 by your knee bothers you. the 833a bolts right in. and if you really like to row gears, one of the after market builders is offering an 833a 5spd setup.

      Like 3
      • eric22t

        passon make that 5spd and calls it an a855

        Like 1
  3. Zen

    It is nice to see one in nice, mostly original shape. These were everywhere when I was a kid, and my parents had two. It’s a shame they rotted so badly and so quickly. The 2bbl is definitely a badly needed upgrade, and that is an easy admission from a guy who is almost always a stickler for originality. The 318 and A/C would make it more fun. I don’t think I’ve ever seen one of these with a 3 on the floor.

    Like 4
    • Stan

      Zen, many refer to this configuration as .. a three..by the knee 🦵

      Like 3
      • Charlie Patterson

        I had a 74 Duster with the leaning tower of power wit a 3 on the floor. That car was my first clutch, pressure plate and throw out bearing job. Took me about 3 hours. It was a great car. I think this car is reasonably priced and would be a blast to drive.

        Like 1
    • Reed M.

      I had two of these with the 3 by the knee. One was a 1970 225 slant (my first car), and the other was a 1974 with a 198 slant. By 1974, the 198 was definitely a dog!!

      Like 2
    • bone

      They didnt rust any worse then any other car of the era, in fact much less than others, especially any import of the same era. You wonder why you dont see many Novas and Mavericks from the same time period even though they built more of those cars ?

      Like 3
  4. Smokey Smokerson

    As a kid, my buddy Richie’s parents had this car in the same color. I remember riding in it to watch an AWA wrestling match ( back when they wrestled in high school gyms). Though not wrestling that night, I got to meet Hulk Hogan. This was back when Bobby the brain Henen was still a wrestler.

    Like 8
  5. Todd

    I had a 1974 Duster with the 318 V-8. I know everyone around here loves manual transmissions, but that 3-on-the-floor made it no fun to drive (IMO). It was like driving a school bus!

    Like 1
  6. Philip G Lizee

    Talk to Clifford Research about 6 cylinders, their motto is 6=8. They have cyl. heads, intakes,cams carbs, headers, all kinds of stuff. I just saw somewhere that one of the hot rod magazines that they were building a Ford 300 inline six, i didn’t read the whole article(I cheated and went all the way to the end) that it went like stink. Had a Ford F150 with a 300 it go fast but, boy the torque! Anway, they say six in a row just don’t, maybe so, but I don’t know! Another thing about sixes, they are smooth, naturally balanced. Lots of foreign cars have sixes, some for performance, Nissan, (remember when they were called Datsun?) Jaguars, Mercedes, not to mention all the American Manufactures. So I would not be afraid to drive any inline six!

    Like 8
  7. Jay

    My older brother bought a new 1972 Duster 340. That was a great car. He drove the wheel’s off the Duster and never any problem’s. Wonderful memories of that Plymouth and it added to my life long love of Mopar’s.

    Like 4
  8. Not Again

    Unique color combo! However, I do believe to bring out the merits in this car, another color maybe required??

    Like 1
    • DON

      Its a 1973 only color on a 50 year old car – why would you change it ?
      I may be a bit biased on the color ; I still have my Mist Green Duster 340 , though mine has a black interior and black stripes

      Like 2
    • Brent

      Nice sweet Mopar ride….. wish it was closer to my location I’d snap it up.👍👍

      Like 0
  9. V12MECH

    Perfect 70’s Pro Stock starting point.

    Like 3
  10. arkie Member

    There’s a ton of possibilities with this beautiful offering. One could argue the sanctity of preserving that little tower of power which is in there now. We all know what an indestructible piece of plunder the venerable slant-6 is. Another choice could be to source a period correct 340 to drop in without too much hassle. Still a viable option. Someone else may go toward an all out 3rd Generation HellDemon160 something or other. My point is, I don’t care. Just keep that third pedal. If you’re not making an all-out drag machine, then keep that third pedal. 3, 4, 5 gears or more, keep that third pedal. If you’re missing your creature comforts, drive your Kia or your Lexus. Just keep that third pedal. I can’t get enough of these!

    Like 3
  11. Patrick

    The current bid and the over all condition says it all. What it is and what it could be.

    A perfect starter car. Although the bidding will most likely crest $10K, 🤘😎 Oregon doesn’t salt the roads.

    I live two hours north and grew up in that area, maybe worth a drive down I-5 check it out.

    Like 3
  12. Brad chipman

    If it’s a driver for me find a 340 6 pack motor with a 4 spd and 3:73 gears

    Like 4
  13. Nelson C

    Sweet ride. Modded slant six and 3 on the floor is pretty cool. Always liked a bench seat floor shift. Pretty common in the day. It even returned in the K-car as was my old Aries. Had an Aunt and Uncle who owned a first year Gold Duster exactly like this save for the obvious color difference.

    Like 3
  14. Wes Holliday

    In 1973 I bought a 340 Plymouth Duster, good all around car, not a street racer.

    Like 2
  15. Valentine

    Nothing rare or “mid-year” about F1 Mist Green (Pale Green on a Dodge). A close friend has an early-September-build Charger in F1 and points out every Mopar in that color he sees. There are a lot of ’em. Bad information on the cue cards providing MW’s ‘knowledge’, most likely.

    As far as Passon “making” the A855, he does nothing of the sort. He’s just marketing the GFI 5SR under his own made-up name. He’s years behind on deliveries and just as behind on resolving service issues. Unfortunately, it’s an overpriced, underdeveloped transmission that’s proven itself unreliable. It’s very difficult to warranty, particularly through Passon. Most folks end up doing an end-around to GFI, but still encounter issues.
    “Ask the man that owns one.” It’s a shame, because it could’ve been a dream transmission and a golden goose for GFI and Passon, but it seems the latter started marketing it several years too early.

    Like 1
    • bone

      Actually, it is a rare color , and a one year only color. It was not a popular color in a time when you could have a Mopar in about 16 different colors . I agree on the “mid year” thing , my 73 Duster 340 was built in Sept of 72 and I doubt it sat around for six months before springtime. Supposedly only 117 Duster 340 cars were painted Mist green . Back in the 80s when I worked in a salvage yard all the 10 year old cars were coming in daily, but we only had one Mist Green car come in , and that was a stripper model Duster

      Like 2
      • Nelson C

        Large dealers have been known to stock a car in an unusual color as a pharia, or ad car. The loss leader. You see the ad, you see the car and you ask to see something else.

        Like 1
    • eric22t

      thanks for that info valentine. i had just recently stumbled across it and was thinking seriously about it for the next rear drive project(whenever it manages to get to the top of the list lol). guess i’m still on the hunt for a 5sped for the car.

      Like 0
  16. Ronald Parker

    I own a 1974 Plymouth Valiant with the 225 CID Slant 6 with the 3 Speed Automatic. The Valiant avg 24 mpg around town and 28 mpg on the highway. The Slant 6 was more than adequate! The only complaint, it did not have power steering. Other than that I Love it!

    Like 1
  17. Ffred

    It was 1977 and found a ’73 340/4 speed Duster in this color but with a white bucket seat interior at used car lot down the street. The price was $700 because it was belching out black smoke. Brought it home and rebuilt the Thermoquad and it ran like new. I did this for my wife’s 17 year old brother while at the same time I was building him a 440 powered ’70 Duster street/strip car.

    Like 2

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