Panther Pink Project: 1970 Dodge Challenger 340

Chrysler’s “Hi-Impact” paint colors were all the rage in the early 1970s. And one of the most daring – and fewest produced – was Panther Pink. Out of the nearly 65,000 of the new Dodge Challengers built for 1970, only 335 of the cars came finished in that bold color. This Challenger 340 with a 4-speed manual is one of them, but it’s in project condition and will need a ton of work. Located in Springfield, Oregon, this rare car is available here on eBay where the bidding has reached $13,100 but the reserve has not been met.

Dodge was the last make to get into the “pony car” frenzy that dominated the last half of the 1960s. The Challenger shared an all-new E-body platform with the revitalized Plymouth Barracuda, though it ran on a longer wheelbase, and the cars had no sheet metal in common. All sorts of wild colors could be had, including the likes of Plum Crazy, Green Go, Banana – and Panther Pink (called Moulin Rouge in the Plymouth camp). These Hi-Impact colors were not limited to the Challenger at Dodge as the Charger could also come with one of them.

What makes this Challenger even rarer than the 335 total assemblies painted this color, it’s also the performance-driven Challenger 340 with the potent small-block with that same number of cubic inches that were good for 270 hp. This car has a numbers-matching motor and 833 manual transmission with its original shifter and linkage. However, the engine has been apart and only hung together for the photo opp to help sell the car; it will need to be rebuilt once it settles into its new home. The tranny will need attention as well due to a cracked bearing retainer.

This Dodge is said to be a bit of a celebrity having appeared in an episode of the Graveyard Carz TV show. Someone must have gotten tired of all the pink at some paint as a low-grade finish of black is mostly on the lower half of the car now. It once wore a vinyl top and that’s gone, revealing more Panther Pink. There is rust in several places where that material once was as well as near the wheel openings on both rear quarter panels. The trunk floor has been bitten, too, but the seller is sending along a nice used one to swap it out. The right front fender has been replaced at some point.

As you might expect, the upholstery and headliner will need to be redone and there is no carpet remaining. The seat belts are worn out but the instruments and woodgrain on the dashboard are in great shape. This said to have been a factory A/C car and we assume all of the respective hardware and plumbing have survived.

There is a collection of items that are known to be missing: the air cleaner, right side exhaust manifold, spare tire and jack, and the car’s rear sway bar. Once restored, this could be a very valuable Challenger, perhaps only to be outdone in resale value by a Hemi or T/A.

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Comments

  1. Matt H. Member

    Nice write-up Russ. Wish seller ‘moparrevival’ (Mark Worman?) offered a ‘Buy It Now’ option that included a full Graveyard Carz restoration. I’m afraid that would be a frightening number however.

    Like 13
    • Steve R

      Top quality restoration shops always charge by the hour. It protects them against unforeseen cost overruns such as unforeseen rust, damage even delays by parts vendors. A couple of friends do restoration and fabrication work, potential customers routinely ask for a preset price, they won’t give one for the above reasons, especially on large jobs. They explain why, if the customer still insists, they decline the job. Shops that will give guaranteed quotes often do subpar work, they tend to cut corners in order to maintain their profit margins.

      Steve R

      Like 8
    • PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

      Now I know why this car looks familiar to me.

      Like 4
  2. JohnfromSC

    Exhaust manifolds $600, space saver spare assembly if so equipped with bottle $1K, correct dated jack assembly $400, sway bar $200.

    I’m more concerned with rust on A pillars. If they look this bad, then there is likely structurally affecting rust through in many other places that will take many hours of work. And orange spray can on top does not an engine make.

    There is a reason GC dumped it. Impossible to do this one, even with your own sweat equity and not be upside down.

    Like 12
    • daniel wright

      There is no A pillar only rust.

      Like 7
  3. JoeNYWF64

    I thought 15 was the max # colors avail back in the day – but now i see 21??!!
    Imagine printing & posting this on the wall of a dodge dealer today – i bet a lot of buyers would be angry when they see the “choices” they got NOW … http://paintref.com/cgi-bin/colorcodedisplay.cgi?year=1970&make=Dodge&model=Challenger
    & 22 colors for ’71!

    Like 6
  4. BW

    I’d be happy to trade my T/A for this Challenger properly restored. I’ve got a bit of a soft spot for Panther Pink although Sub-lime is my ultimate MOPAR high impact color.

    Like 3
  5. mainlymuscle

    Love the Hi-Impact colors ! I currently have a 70 Moulin Rouge on white Cuda,and have had Petty Blue Superbird,Limelight 70 GTX , and Top Banana yellow Challenger.When I bring several of my cars to a show ,friends call it my “Easter Egg” collection.I am one who buys cars specifically because of the colors of the era ,and there is no greater example than pink.No German cars in grey on black for me.
    This Challenger however is just too far gone

    Like 3
  6. 433jeff

    I saw a pink 440 4speed challenger rowing thru the gears a couple years ago it was the first pink one ive ever seen. And with the black trim i think its the sharpest color that they had, i like the plum crazy, black is a never go wrong color. But the pink is perfect. Better than orange yellow green red and the blue. Just my opinion.

    Like 2
  7. 370zpp 370zpp Member

    Rip out the pistol grip shifter, and just run.

  8. Mooopar

    The last to enter the pony car wars? Didn’t the Barracuda come out at the same time, or even a shade before the Mustang?

    Like 1
  9. Matt H. Member

    Sold-
    Winning bid: US $26,800

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