Wrecked Project: 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T SE

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Dodge got into the “pony car” market rather late – five years after the Ford Mustang set the industry on its ear. This 1970 edition checks a lot of boxes: R/T, SE, 383 V8, and Plum Crazy paint (though there was a color change). The car was wrecked in the ’70s and appears to have been sitting mostly outdoors ever since. Located on the back of a trailer in Irvington, Alabama, this significant project is available here on Facebook Marketplace for $17,500. Thanks for the tip, Barn Finder Patrick S!

The 1970 Challenger was an all-new car, with a platform that was developed for it to share with the Plymouth Barracuda. The cars rode on different wheelbases and shared no common sheet metal, so they were distinctive in their own right. Nearly 77,000 Challengers were built in the car’s first year, but demand for these types of cars quickly dwindled and the Challenger and Barracuda were both retired in 1974. But in 1970, just 2,500 or so Challengers were built as both an R/T and an SE model, with a standard 383 cubic inch V8. That’s the combination you see here.

We’re told this Dodge was in an accident in the front several decades ago and was never fixed. As only one exterior photo is provided, we can’t ascertain the true extent of the damage. But a new front clip is likely needed, and other panels will need to be replaced as Mother Nature has been nibbling away at the steel. Before you get too excited about this being a Plum Crazy car, it’s an older but thorough repaint. The cowl tag identifies the original color as EF8 or Dark Green Metallic.

There appears to be a well-worn black vinyl top on this Dodge and the interior has succumbed to the passage of time and the elements. But this former hot rod has a manual transmission (we assume 4-speed) with the Pistol-Grip shifter. The seller says the collection of options here makes it one of 400 built, but we don’t know the source for that information. If you like a good “challenge” this Mopar might just be worth the time and money.

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  1. I_cant_drive_65

    Given the rust that is shown, did this car make its way from a flood zone?

    Like 6
  2. Al camino

    Mark workman were are you?

    Like 5
    • Shuttle Guy Shuttle GuyMember

      My first thoughts. What a sad situation to see now.

      Like 1
      • Charles Jenkins

        Mark Worman, thank you very much.

        Like 1
    • MoparMike


      Like 1
    • Lance

      tooting his Mopar horns.

      Like 0
    • Charles Jenkins

      Mark Worman, thank you very much.

      Like 0
  3. J

    Rust rust rust, cars don’t know how to swim.

    Like 5
  4. TinIndy

    People drove these hard and put them away wet alrighty. People don’t understand that concept at all now but back then that’s how it was. What shocks me is how this one somehow survived through several muscle car booms in the same wrecked condition. That doesn’t make sense to me but then again a lot of things in the world don’t!

    Like 15
    • Bob_in_TN Bob_in_TNMember

      My thoughts were similar. Don’t we wish we knew the back story? How did this car just languish for decades, while the muscle car restoration boom was in full swing? Did the owner not know, or not care? Was the car to them ‘just a car’, a distraction? Were there bad memories associated with it? What precipitated the change in its status?

      Like 5
      • TinIndy

        Could be a romantic story like that I reckon, or could have been wrecked a lot more recently. I find it hard to believe that unless you were living under a rock, you wouldn’t know the value of this long before now.

        Like 0
  5. Roland

    Can’t one purchase a Challenger body shell new? If this were a few $k it would be worth stripping for parts to build on another body. However, it looks like the roof is also caved in, so with no power steering, drum brakes, and all the rest I have to pass.

    Like 2
  6. HoA HoAMember

    Front end damage is almost always the drivers fault, and somebody found out, these sure go a lot better than they stop. The hype is overwhelming, dragging these types of projects out of the fields is clearly the bottom of the barrel. Everybody wants a piece of the action.

    Like 9
  7. Herbert

    I don’t remember seeing so many of these in purple back 50 years ago. I think many were repaints. I also would bet that when this wreck happenned, there was blood on the inside. Maybe the car is haunted, that is why no one has restored it Yes, many a lad left this mortal coil behind the wheel of cars like this. They attract a certain type of personality hell bend on living life near the edge, plus they handled pretty damn bad. Not the best combo. I saw many in my generation go this way. Most of us drove poorly when we were young, but at least some of us got a harsh lesson n the fragility, and the gift that is life, and we changed our ways.

    Like 7
  8. Herbert

    Was it the purple thing, or that these kind of cars can be life changing/ending? Maybe being a Debbie Downer interupts free speech?

    Like 3
    • 370zpp 370zppMember

      It didn’t seem to interrupt you, herbert.

      Like 0
      • Harry

        AKA “King Creole” Likes to hide behind different names over the years.

        Like 1
  9. Ray McFroggy

    Too far gone
    Maybe 16 cents.

    Like 1
  10. Ronald E Saracino

    You would lose $12-$15k fixing it with that asking price.

    Like 0
  11. Threepedal

    If you order a new front clip, get the shortened fenders to center the wheel back in the wheel opening

    Like 0

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