Solid Project: 1967 Dodge Coronet 440

While it may have been sitting for a while, this 1967 Dodge Coronet 440 runs and drives. It will need a bit of work to return it to a roadworthy state, but with a 318ci V8 filling the engine bay, it could wind up being a good thing. It is a solid classic that the owner says would make an easy restoration project, so we might just have to take a look and see how right he is. The Coronet is located in Petaluma, California, and has been listed for sale here on Craigslist. You can park this great project car in your garage simply by handing the owner a mere $5,900, although he will entertain reasonable offers. A big thank you has to go out to our eagle-eyed Barn Finder local_sheriff. His radar has been working well lately, and he spotted the Dodge for us.

The Coronet is a car that is set to spring a surprise or two as we take a look around it. While there are no photos, the owner claims that the floors and frame are solid, and the impression that he gives is that the only rust that is present is what we can see on the outside. And what we can see seems to be precious little in the way of trouble. There are some spots in the lower sections of both rear quarter panels, but it really is minor. Beyond that, the lower front fenders, rockers, and the bottom corners of the doors appear to be free of tin worm. To me, that is a pleasant surprise, because rust issues could be quite a problem in the Coronet (actually, almost any car from the era was a worry). That isn’t to say that the car is perfect. The paint is tired, and the panels sport a number of dings and dents. None of these are severe and should be easy to fix. Some of the exterior trim has also borne the brunt of this damage, and some of it will require replacement. The majority of the glass is in good condition, but the windshield is badly cracked, and a replacement will need to be found.

When you first look at the Cornet’s interior it doesn’t look pretty, but on closer inspection, things really aren’t that bad. The dash looks good, although the pad does have a number of significant cracks. The door trims and rear trims are both wrinkled, but a good clean and some careful stretching could potentially bring them back. The headliner is good, but the seats will need new covers and possibly foam, while a new carpet set will also find its way onto the shopping list. When you think about it, that isn’t really a lot of expense, and I suspect that those few pieces plus some judicious cleaning should have things looking pretty slick once again. A real bonus is the fact that the Coronet looks like it has been fitted with air conditioning.

There are no engine photos, but we do know that the engine bay contains a 318ci V8, which is hooked to a 3-speed TorqueFlite transmission. With 230hp on tap, the Coronet was a pretty reasonable performer for a 6-seater. It will require some work to return it to its best, but if what the seller tells us is accurate, then it does look like it will be pretty straightforward. The vehicle runs and drives, but due to the fact that it has been sitting for an extended period, the brakes have become quite “mushy” (in the owner’s own words). The seal on the water pump is also leaking and will need to be attended to. He doesn’t indicate any other issues, so if that really is it, there is real potential to return the car to a roadworthy state in a single weekend.

The 1967 Coronet 440 Hardtop is an attractive looking car, with some quite aggressive styling. This one has a heap of promise, and could potentially make a great first restoration project for someone who just wants to dip their toe in the classic car scene for the first time. Of course, the next owner might not feel inclined to maintain the car’s originality, and shoehorning something more potent under the hood is a real possibility. If you bought it, what would you do?

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Comments

  1. Moparman Member

    Interior refresh, paint, dual exhaust, and a set of Magnum 500 wheels! :-)

    11
  2. Howard A Member

    As is, it has little appeal. Maybe made into a R/T clone, be a hotter seller.

    5
    • RNR

      If you are going to clone a HiPo ’67 Coronet, it would be far easier to do a WO 23 Super Stock car – all you need to come close to the originals is a hood scoop…and a HEMI! (and since Dodge made only 55 WO 23 cars, chances are you’d never park next to an original car for comparison). Furthermore, all WO 23’s were white – no pesky change of color paint job necessary! Better yet, put a faux patina’ed hood scoop on it and leave it as a forgotten SS car!

      Me, I’d try to recreate my first car: keep the 318, paint it light yellow, get a fresh black Legendary interior and Magnums with white walls – God I loved that car!!

      7
  3. FordGuy1972

    This Coronet looks like a decent car for a decent price. It will still cost you a bit to get it looking it’s best but the asking price is pretty reasonable. It’s a good project for the Do-It-Yourselfer as a lot of the issues can be attended to at home. I’d be inclined to paint it a different color, though; something with a bit more pop. Shouldn’t last too long at that price, it’s a good-looking car with potential..

    5
  4. Steve R

    It’s a bit overpriced, but looks to be a solid foundation for a driver/project. The location, 1/2 hour north of San Francisco puts it within a 2 hour drive of close to 7 million people, that means it should sell for more than if it were in the middle of nowhere. The seller knows he will need to negotiate price wise, hopefully he can come to a deal with a prospective buyer. Since the car has been sitting it would be wise to check with the DMV to make sure the registration is current it has a non-op, back fees add up quickly in California.

    Steve R

    3
    • Nevadahalfrack Nevadahalfrack Member

      Steve R., educate me on the CA DMV-insofar as selling it to someone from out-of-state, does someone have to pay the registration back fees before the title is allowed to be transferred? Just curious, as I know the fees, taxes and assorted revenue raising devices are causing a lot of folks to move across state lines (unfortunately to some end, here to Nevada in particular) and if I were to buy something from there I’d like to have a heads up beforehand..
      Thanks in advance for any info you may have, sir.
      Nevadahalfrack

      2
      • Steve R

        I don’t know if the California DMV has the ability to get money from a car sold to someone out of state. I guarantee they would if they could. I’d call or check the website of your states DMV for the answer to that question.

        Steve R

        4
      • Nevadahalfrack Nevadahalfrack Member

        Thank you, Steve R.you answered my question – my NV DMV connection said once our DMV has title in hand it’s a done deal here.

        2
  5. Chuckster

    If only the “440 ” was the engine

    4
    • Dave

      That’s easy to fix with a credit card…or you can scout around and maybe find one for $50?

      • Chris M.

        Good luck with that. A good core is $400-$600

        1
  6. George Mattar

    Magum 500s. New interior. Drive.

    4
  7. Bob C.

    First year for the LA 318. Should be red in color during this time. I would say keep that baby, or upgrade to a four barrel.

    1
  8. Superdessucke

    What would I do with it? Refresh the interior a bit, clean it, completely go through the suspension and brakes, and bolt this in…

    https://www.moparproshop.com/inc/sdetail/16460/9527

    https://www.moparproshop.com/inc/sdetail/18512/11801

    2
  9. clem

    How about a new hemi for this one too?

  10. Steve Brown

    383 or a 440, dual exhaust, put a sure grip in the rear, return the interior to stock and enjoy the rumble and the ride.

    1
  11. Burger

    Following the drone-and-clone mantra, I built my 66 into a monster, with all the goodies salvaged from a badly wrecked 67 R/T. With the 440 Magnum and 4-speed, it is too much for the car. Maybe fine as a racer, but for driving, it suck stupid amounts of gas, and has a strong desire to go sideways and seek out stationery objects to smash in to.

    Is it fun to drive ? Yes ! But a milder 383 would be more than enough to scoot it along, allow the passing of gas stations, and not ball itself up with the mildest goose of the pedal.

    318’s can be built to give very strong lift off and good fuel economy.

    1
    • Chris M.

      Absolutely agree. I just put together, well I financed the assembly of a very healthy 383. For the street it’s more than enough power at nearly 400 and it’s tame enough to just cruise.

  12. Tom S.

    The profile view of this model has turned me on since I was an elementary school student in 1967. It still excites me.

    1
    • Burger

      I was 5 years old in 1966. My best friend and I begged our mothers to drop us off at the various dealerships around town while they went shopping, so we could harass the sales staff and make off with promotional car stuff. My friend’s favorite hang out was Metke Ford. He was all about Shelbys and Cobras. I can still remember looking down on their lot from the high rock wall along 108th. My favorite place to be a pest was B.C. Hawk Dodge, over by Main, on 106th. The very first new cars I have a super clear memory of watching being unloaded from the delivery trucks were 1966 Coronets, … and I was in love ! I consider the crisp and chiseled styling of the 66-67 Coronets the best Mopar ever dreamed up during the muscle era. The interiors are just as clean and open and the exteriors are crisp and cleanly integrated. That’s why one lives at my house. 👍

  13. Jost

    I agree with all those who say clone ! What a great canvas

  14. Del

    New interior. New Viper yellow paint.

    Hopped up 360.

    Rally wheels.

    New radials, raused letter.

    1

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