Restore or Restomod?: 1974 Plymouth Valiant

I have all sorts of ideas on how to modify this car. But, then again, I like it as it looks now. It’s a 1974 Plymouth Valiant Brougham and it’s located in Hillsdale, New York and has what seems like a reasonable, unmet opening bid of $2,000 and a buy-it-now price of $2,600 on eBay. Black with black wall tires on black rims is a hard to beat combo. Says the guy who usually likes actual colors on cars.

This car looks well worth $2,000 from what the photos show; even $2,600 doesn’t seem unreasonable for a car in this condition. The seller “took the vinyl off the top to replace it this spring but never got around to it.”

Yeah, that top needs some work. It really looks like a solid car, though. I don’t really see much rust or too many dents unless they’ve been covered up and/or repaired at some point. But, there definitely will be bodywork to do. The seller says that a little bodywork will go a long way, which I take to mean that there is hardly any bodywork to do on this car. They have it listed as a Brougham but they would have had fancier wheel covers than these dog dish covers. I prefer these myself.

The interior appears to be in fairly good condition other than the front seats which I’m guessing will need to be reupholstered. The dash looks like it’s crack-free and the back seat looks great, too, although it looks like it may have been recovered at some point.

Along with a good-looking and good-running 225 slant-six engine, this car has “decent tires, new gas tank, water pump, motor mounts.” This looks like it would make a nice winter restoration project or a good starter car for someone getting into the hobby. It’s not a 340-powered monster, but it could be and it’s hard to argue with this price.

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Comments

  1. Danno

    Tough to rationalize pulling that slant six, it’ll just run forever – albeit, not very quickly. I’d leave it as-is, drive it often.

    • Jeffro

      I agree! At what point does reliability override performance? That slant six could be hopped up a little bit with some parts and still be rock solid reliable! I’d paint the roof white in the absence of a vinyl top. Help keep a little cooler in summer months.

  2. robb

    I’m with Danno re slant six.. but Scotty has a good point on a installing a 340..it’d be a nice sleeper..

  3. Daleone3

    This is a great car for all the people that have been priced out of starting a project and want to learn some body work on a vehicle that won’t cost them alot of money. Seeing basketcase camaro’s go for five figures is getting outrageous but I would rather pull up to a cruise night in this blacked out mopar with a build small block.

  4. Joe Haska

    RESTOMOD! I had a 69 slant 6 lowered, tires wheels, drove it all the time, then my son took it and did the same. It was a cool little cruiser, got lots of looks and didn’t break the bank. And, its probably still running some-where!

  5. Little_Cars Alexander Member

    Did they produce these cars with bucket seats and a column automatic? I’d be curious to know the condition of those seats. I like the sleeper aspect, and definitely go with a painted roof instead of the ubiquitous and moisture-trapping vinyl top!

  6. Nrg8

    Love it, just gimme a peak at those rear spring mounts. Total deal breaker when you pull back the mat in the trunk and see thru the floor.

  7. Pa Tina

    Option #3- Buy it for $1800 and drive it.

    • glen

      That’s so crazy, it just might work!

  8. Mark-A

    Personally I’d leave it looking exactly the way it is but put some seriously updated/uprated Brakes & Suspension & if money isn’t a factor how about a Hellcat engine but I can’t decide on whether to use an Automatic or Manual transmission!? Help me raise the 150K minimum required please guys!

  9. Devin Williams

    My favorite Uncle had a green Dodge Dart like this with a 318 and 3 on the tree. I’d love to have that car today.

    • Chebby Staff

      Seems like they were all green, gold, brown, or beige. You rarely ever see Darts/ Valiants/Dusters in factory black, even though it’s such a common color.

  10. Ken Carney

    I could see my family driving this car every day! There’s just something
    simple and honest about it that checks all my boxes. I nearly bought a 4-door version of this car in 1985. It was an old GTE phone company car
    but with a twist: this one had the slant 6 engine alright, but that engine
    was hooked to a 4-speed manual transmission! My wife told me that
    while driving the car, the clutch had too much play in it to suit her. Suffice it
    to say that we backed away from that deal and bought a Pinto wagon instead. Since seeing the first of that engine/tranny, I’ve seen several mid
    ’70’s Valiants, Darts, Volares, and Aspens with this same setup. Did Chrysler
    Corp. use this combo for fuel economy, or was a stick shift still being offered at that time. The last one I saw was 10 years ago in a ’77 Volare
    wagon that definately was a stripper. Wonder if this car is a stick.

  11. Mike

    Already looks good on the outside to make it into a sleeper. The interior needs a re-do, but please, no white face Autometer gauges and billet do-dads.

  12. David Miraglia

    Always liked the 1970’s Valiants and Darts. Plus this baby is in New York. I just wish I had sometime to check her out.

  13. Loco Mikado

    I have five Valiants and Darts over the years ranging from ’67 to ’74. All had 225 \6 auto. The one I really liked the best was my ’69 2dr sedan Valiant.

  14. Dan D

    What a great steering wheel! That has to be about the end of the horn ring, right?

  15. stillrunners LAWRENCE Member

    What most have said….leave it as is and beat it…just beat it….yea….beat it !

  16. Troy s

    It is the motor head in me that see’s all kinds of potential in this black mopar, anything from a mild 360 to a…….even just a warm 318 really, but it’s got to rumble like only a V8 can. With the exception of the top and seats I would leave it alone appearance wise.

  17. Rustytech Member

    If I could take on another project at this time I might be tempted to take a trip to NY to look at this one. Even though I love the slant 6, I got a good 99 Dodge Magnum 360 sitting in the garage with the wiring harness. Transplant time!

  18. Steve

    If money was no object I’d swap in a 6.4 Hemi, Tremec, and the Brembo’s from a late model car. I would get some 18×8 wheels (I had a winter set up on my SRT-8 and this size clears the caliper) made that look factory and keep the poverty caps. Do some work to the bumpers(clean up and bring them closer to the body) and restore the interior replace the missing vinyl top and call it a day.

  19. DweezilAZ

    That rear seat is in the factory velour and color offered in the Valiant Brougham.

    The car is in such good shape, it seems unlikely that the rear seat has been recovered and not the front buckets left alone.

    Leave as is. Drive and repair what needs to be repaired.

    It does look good in black, and I am no fan of black cars.

  20. DespicableWee

    Whoa that’s WAY too much for an old rusty slant 6 Scamp…Valiant…whatever. I paid $900 for mine, with a 318…33 yrs ago. Getting old is fun…you could buy a car like this for $600 or less back then…suddenly they’re worth gold/bitcoin money. SMH

    I’ll lay blame on Richard Rawlings et al and the BS car shows on Discovery where they pay $6000 for total bags of trash, and sell them for a profit…yeah right.

    Good luck to the seller though…if you can get $2600…high fives all around. I’m just jealous.

  21. Daleone3

    Check this one out if you like these, just stumbled on it on CL
    https://boston.craigslist.org/gbs/cto/d/1974-plymouth-scamp/6415598498.html

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