This ’69 Charger R/T Deserves a Second Chance, Be Ready To Cry When the Hood Pops Up

Chrysler’s brilliant restyling of the Dodge Charger during its second generation (1968-1970) marked a turning point for the brand. Breaking away from the mainstream fastback body profile, the aggressively-named Mopars introduced the Road/Track decoration, captivating car enthusiasts worldwide.

In the realm of high-performance automobiles, the R/T package acted as a distinguishing factor, setting apart road cars from super cars. Dodge’s marketing campaign for the high-performance Charger boldly declared, “The Man’s World of Supercars. Past and Present.” This package wasted no time in living up to its promises, showcasing its impressive power and performance.

The Dodge Charger R/T models came with two engine options, both renowned among automotive enthusiasts. The most popular choice was the 440 CID V8 (7.2 liters), a dominant force that offered uncompromising power and performance. However, the R/T models also offered an optional powerplant, the legendary 426 CID (7.0 liters) HEMI engine. Though the HEMI engine was available, it was a rare configuration due to its additional cost of $650, nearly one-fifth of the R/T starting price of $3,575.

Despite the relatively high production numbers, with almost one in four Dodge Chargers assembled in 1969 featuring the R/T package, the 1969 Dodge Charger R/T continues to hold significant value in today’s market. The demand for this iconic vehicle remains strong, and it is a testament to the enduring legacy of the Charger.

Priced at $44,000, the project car showcased in the video is a valuable gem in need of restoration. The rusty hue may be misleading, as it is merely an optical illusion caused by the Light Bronze Poly paint. However, the real disappointment lies beneath the hood, where missing engine components hint at a stroke of misfortune.

While the car is advertised as complete, some engine components are mysteriously absent. Additionally, the alleged original drivetrain (a 440 four-barrel with a three-speed automatic transmission) adds to the car’s allure. However, the current state of the vehicle is far from pristine. The valve covers, intake manifold, carburetor, and air cleaner have been lost to time.

The interior of the Charger fares no better. The front bucket seats bear the scars of past battles, and the sagging headliner serves as a stark reminder of neglect. Furthermore, the driver’s door is not the original factory-installed part, and the once-present white vinyl top has vanished. Despite California’s car-friendly weather, this Dodge Charger suffered years of abandonment.

The asking price of $44,000 aligns with current trends in the Charger market. However, potential buyers should be prepared to invest in restoration, which could potentially double the car’s value. Aside from the evident damage on the left rear fender, attention is also needed for the right rear quarter and left front fender.

While the battered Charger might seem discouraging, the undercarriage remains free of rust, except for normal surface oxidation. Originally a California car, it now seeks a new home in Allen, Texas, beckoning a passionate enthusiast to revive its former glory.

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