Solid Foundation! 1970 Plymouth Road Runner

An old proverb tells us that the wise man builds his house upon a rock, and muscle car evangelists preach that the wise gear head builds not upon the sinking sand of rust, but on rock-solid metal. This 1970 Plymouth Road Runner in Palm Springs, California shows mostly smooth metal in every picture, and the body’s been stripped of nearly everything that might obscure hidden rot. What’s left looks like a solid foundation for whatever the new owner can imagine. Up for auction here on eBay, the rolling shell has convinced at least six bidders to raise this Plymouth’s market value above $4,000.

Hints of the original Lemon Twist Yellow peek through, and the StockMopar VIN decoder says the Road Runner base N-code four-barrel 383 once filled this empty space. The car comes with a dashboard, fender tag, and VIN tag, though none of these items grace the listing. The clean title may be the most important feature because, unless something changes, the world hardly needs another perfectly-restored 383 Road Runner. Prices of these “average” muscle cars have been on the decline, making this body an excellent candidate for something more radical.

Some racers favored this car’s RM21 “two-door sedan” configuration for its structural B-pillar or “post,” and I can picture a pro-tour reboot on this Road Runner drawing inspiration from NASCAR warrior’s like Richard Petty’s 1970 Road Runner. The crazy Superbird might have snatched most of the glory that year, but the basic Road Runner styling looks great without becoming a circus side-show like the Superbird.

The tidy floor pan already has the four-speed bump, another plus for going the NASCAR / pro-tour route. I can already picture the black D-hole wheels with fat racing-style meats, the monster engine of your choice, naturally aspirated, and a five or six-speed overdrive manual transmission. Why not make some calculated deviations so you can drive this sweet Road Runner anywhere and in any event? Something like carb-style FAST fuel injection hiding under a stock-appearing air cleaner housing perhaps, modern sound-proofing, air conditioning, and a killer stereo would make a good start.

A complete suspension makeover by Ridetech or others will give this popular B-Body more cornering prowess than most drivers will ever need without destroying ride comfort. What would you build upon this solid foundation?

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Comments

  1. Steve R

    This is not the foundation of a high end Pro Touring build. It’s a rusty former parts car that someone is trying to sell as a viable project. Every part with any value has been removed. Someone undertaking such a project usually doesn’t care what trim level the car started life as, they want the cleanest, most complete car that fits their budget. That saves them time and money in the long run. This car will nickel and dime the next owner to death in terms of both time and money.

    This is its second go round on eBay, it “sold” a few weeks ago, but the transaction was never completed. Someone will likely buy it, at some point because of the VIN and title, hopefully they know have a plan.

    Steve R

    Like 11
  2. bone

    “the world hardly needs another perfectly-restored 383 Road Runner. ” ? I beg to differ ! This one is barely a car anymore, but if someone had a real crusty Roadrunner , parts could be swapped out of that into this one. Obviously it would be a labor of love .

    Like 9
    • 370zpp

      bone is right.

      Like 3
    • Todd Fitch Staff

      Hi bone. I’m in favor of anything that puts this car back on the road again, but from a pragmatic point, let’s take an older car, the Model A Ford. Are there enough perfectly-restored stock Model A Fords? I would argue Yes, because someone who wanted one would have no problem finding one. Or how about the Tri-Five Chevy? Each generation has a desire to buy the cars of their youth. When those buyers are gone, maybe you get an “echo” of buyers whose parents or grandparents had one, etc. and you’ll always have young buyers who simply like the car for whatever reason, but not enough to sustain demand forever. With some exceptions, there are two kinds of muscle cars bringing big money these days: 1. Rare, low-production, best-of-the-best, numbers-matching models and 2. Restomods regardless of what they had for original equipment. I certain respect anyone who would take this car back to stock and drive it, but as you said, it would be a labor of love. Nothing wrong with that!

      Like 9
  3. Pnix

    This listing was ended by the seller because the item was lost or broken.

    Like 1
    • PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

      I had a good chuckle when I saw that.

      Like 2
  4. Richard Jernberg

    It’s hard to find a 1970 Roadrunner project with this clean of a body. Body work is the biggest part of a restoration. Parts are parts, they are everywhere. This car with a 6.4 and a 6 speed would be the way low and go. Some nice fat Herbies on some new deep magnum rims. Wala. Masterpiece

    Like 2
    • Gus Fring

      *Voila

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