Steve Magnante is a famous example of one of those hot rodders. When he was starting out as a staff editor for HOT ROD, his office was like a showroom for his collection of fantastic plastic model cars. So when we heard about his show on the MotorTrend App called Steve Magnante’s Super Models, we knew it wasn’t going to be about leggy, pouty fashion models—and we knew it was going to be good.
“My first model kit, at about age eight, was a 1971 Chevy Monte Carlo from AMT,” Magnante told me. “Pretty soon, I was getting serious about models, and by the time I was a teenager I was learning how to detail, how to airbrush, add chrome trim, and how to kit-bash, which is taking parts from different kits to make your particular project more realistic. Lately, I have been gathering a lot of followers on Instagram where I’ve been posting pictures of model cars. So when Mike Pantaleo at MotorTrend came to me with the idea for a show about model cars, I knew I would love to do it.”
The first season of Steve Magnante’s Super Models is four episodes long. In Episode 1, titled “Factory-Backed Street Racing in a ’67 GTX,” Magnante demonstrates the procedure for creating a scale-model replica of the Jimmy Addison Silver Bullet Plymouth GTX. The remaining episodes highlight an altered-wheelbase 1967 Chevelle SS, the Dodge Little Red Wagon wheelstander, and a 1968 Hemi Charger.
We wondered how those specific models were chosen. “We needed to choose models that actually exist and are currently available,” Magnante explained, “not only so that we could get a bunch of them to use for the show, but so that people watching would be able to find these models, as well. From there the question became, ‘What can we do with the kit to make it more interesting than just building it out of the box?’ In the case of the Jimmy Addison GTX, I knew that Revell has a wonderful model kit of the Sox & Martin 1967 GTX, and I knew that my parts box was full of parts.”
Addison’s Plymouth GTX, with a 426 Hemi engine and 727 Torqueflite transmission, was a successful Chrysler-sponsored street racer on Detroit’s Woodward Avenue. To build a 1:25 version, Magnante modified the Sox & Martin 1967 GTX model with parts from other kits to create an authentic-looking scale replica. As he builds in on camera, he combines informative model building tips with historical and technical info about the original Silver Bullet. Midway through the episode, the show moves outdoors to Magnante’s driveway to examine a 1967 GTX clone, built from a Plymouth Satellite.
Every once in a lifetime, a collection of vintage cars comes to auction that will never happen again. In the case of the Great Texas Mopar Hoard Auction Event, Spanky Assiter and the folks at Spanky’s Freedom Car Auctions will sell the estate of the late John Haynie on October 13 and 14, 2021. (Haynie, a 52-year-old Mopar enthusiast, recently passed away from cancer.)
More than 250 vehicles will be auctioned exclusively online, including the 23 Mopars previewed here. Then on October 14, a second online-only auction will disburse Haynie’s large collection of new old stock (NOS) and used parts, dealership sales materials, model cars, factory service manuals, specialized tools, factory service film strips, vintage license plates, and more.
Best of all, everything is being auctioned at no reserve. The beauty of any no-reserve auction is that each offering is guaranteed to sell to the highest bidder. There will be no unrealistic reserves to protect the estate in the event of a low top bid. Their loss is your gain. For specific details on how to register to bid, go to freedomcarauctions.com.
Living on the great Texas prairie, Haynie had plenty of space on his ranch to store his collection of (mostly) Mopar cars, light trucks, and vans from the 19381990 period. Given Texas’ arid climate, most of the 250-plus vehicles being sold are very solid and free of the usual structural rust that destroys many vintage cars. That said, most are project cars in need of basic mechanical refurbishment (dry brakes, cooling systems, dead batteries, etc.) before running again.
As the pictures here show, some of the vehicles ran before being parked while others were purchased in non-running condition as project cars. Either way, massive collections like this rarely come up for sale, and the Great Texas Mopar Hoard Auction Event is sure to be one of the car hobby’s major events of 2021. To watch a cool walk-around video, go to Steve Magnante’s YouTube Channel for all the latest. Save the dates: October 13 for the car hoard, and October 14 for the parts, tools, and memorabilia.
1964 Plymouth Barracuda
Despite the tacky slime-green paint and racing stripes, this first-year Barracuda is something of an oddball. Born with Plymouth’s inaugural 273 small-block with a single two-barrel carburetor (the four barrel hi-po 273 arrived in ’65), a three-on-the-tree manual transmission sticks a pin in the sporty car theme. And although the original buyer splurged with the extra $131 for the V-8, the $180 extra cost of the A833 floor-mounted four-speed manual transmission was a bridge too far.
Probably due to its heated Texas home, a dealer-add-on Chrysler AirTemp air-conditioning system hangs under the dash. The 13-inch simulated mag-style wheel covers (with real chrome acorn lug nuts) and wood-rim steering wheel tell us the $80 Sport Group was selected during the ordering process. This super-clean (one of 64,596) 1964 Barracuda has minimal rust and is ripe for new life. It’s Lot Item 43.
1957 Chrysler New Yorker
This massive 1957Chrysler New Yorker—sitting up to its hubs in silt—is typical of the majority of the cars in the Great Texas Mopar Hoard Auction Event. Probably purchased by Haynee as a used car, it has ripened on the vine. Although once a common sight on America’s highways and byways, today these beasts have vanished. The New Yorker was Chrysler’s top-line model for ’57, and this one has the exclusive hardtop body style, without full door frames or fixed B-pillars. With the glass down, it’s an open-air riding experience bettered only by a convertible.
Just 10,948 of these land yachts were built in 1957 (plus another 12,369 four-door sedans, 8,863 two-door hardtops, 1,049 convertibles, and 1,391 Town and Country station wagons), each with the newly upsized Fire Power 392 Hemi. With minimal rust and in virtually complete condition, this one is far too nice to use as a heart donor right? It’s Lot Item 129.
1966 Dodge A100 Sportsman Van
Most people think of Bill “Maverick” Golden’s Little Red Wagon when Dodge A100s turn up. But still wearing its factory-applied green paint, the full windows in this 1966 A100 mark it as a Sportsman. Unlike the traditional panel vans, the Sportsman is more about hauling people than cargo, and it has removable bench seats to prove it. Although we didn’t see the seats in this one, we did see the desirable 273 V-8 (replaced by the 318 V-8 in 1967) and 727 automatic transmission. As always, an 8-3/4 rear axle does duty out back. Virtually free of nasty rust, this Sportsman is one of 130,726 A-series forward-control vans built in 1966, of which 9,536 were factory V-8s. (The rest had the slant-six.) This fun machine waiting to happen is Lot Item 84. Incidentally, this auction also includes a 1967 Dodge A100 van with the rare no-window body option (Lot Item 55) and a 1964 Dodge A100 with the ultra-rare walk-through body option with doors on both sides that also happens to be the 604th A-100 ever built (Lot Item 11).
1959 Dodge Coronet California Highway Patrol
Do let the black and white paint attract you. This is a real-deal 1959 Dodge Coronet Police Pursuit. How do we prove it isn’t just a two-toned wannabe? We go to the VIN where the first four characters read “M394.” This breaks down to: M=1959 model year, 3=Dodge passenger car, 9=special model, 4=Los Angeles assembly plant. The “9” is the smoking gun. This code was only used on police models and certain fleet models. By the way, ho-hum taxis carry 6 (six-cylinder) or 8 (eight-cylinder) in this critical third position, and ho-hum V-8 family cars carry 1, 3, 5, or 7. Again, the 9 marks this as a cop car, and that’s cool, cool, cool! The “4” (Los Angeles assembly plant) suggests the California Highway Patrol was the initial buyer (explaining the black and white paint scheme). Three V-8 engines were offered in the 1959 Coronet Police Pursuit: the base 326ci polyspherical Red Ram, the midlevel D-500 V-8 383 four-barrel, and the top-dog Super D-500 Pursuit 383 with dual quads. This amazing survivor has the midlevel D-500 383 backed by a three-speed Torqueflite automatic with push buttons.
Other police-spec goodies include 12-inch drum brakes all around; heavy-duty axle, springs, and driveshaft; and a unique instrument cluster with a certified 120-mph speedometer and an ultra-rare mechanical oil pressure gauge. Best of all, it still has the red “pull-over” lamps on the front fender and rear package tray. Book ’em, Dano! This is Lot Item 66.
1967 Plymouth Fury Police Package
Let’s keep the police theme running for Lot Item 86, a 1967 Plymouth Fury I four-door Police Pursuit. Usually the Fury I (the lowest member of the Fury I, II, and III hierarchy) is a bland family machine with 318 two-barrel motivation and Disney World stickers on the rear bumper, but that’s not the case when the VIN has the letter “K” in the second spot. That’s the series code for the police package. (Codes E, L, H, M, and S appear on “family grade” Fury models, and “T” marks a taxi.) As a Police unit, this Fury I has the same 11-inch drum brakes as a Hemi GTX plus specific heavy-duty suspension, ball joints, and driveshaft. And you must love those fleet/police/taxi 15×5.5 steel wheels with their unique tab-type hub cap retainers, which wear the same generic chrome dome hub caps used on Mopar police and taxi models since 1948.
Popping the myth that all cop cars pack the hottest ammunition under hood, this one has the midlevel G-code 383 two-barrel backed by a heavy-duty 727 Torqueflite. It may be a four-door barge, but make no mistake, this K-code Plymouth squad car is much more than meets the eye. We especially dig the “Special Order” fender tag! You should, too.
1962 Dodge Police Car
Another early Mopar wearing those austere 15×5.5 wheels with hub cap clips, this 1962 Dodge Dart four-door has the all-important “9” in the second spot of the VIN. As with the 1959 Dodge Coronet Police Pursuit (Lot Item 66 in this auction), the “9” tells us this low-option four-door is a “special” series, i.e. built for police service. On lesser Dart models, this spot contains code 10 (fleet), 8 (taxi), 4 (Polara 500), 3 (Dart 440), or 2 (Dart 330). This 1962 Dart holds a special place in police car lore. Because these 1962 Darts (and their Plymouth Savoy cousins) were based on Chrysler’s all-new 1962 downsized B-Body platform, law enforcement agencies initially balked at the much smaller vehicles and longed for the larger 19601961 Dodge police models. In mid-1962, Dodge released the 1962-1/2 Custom 880 (a 1962 Chrysler Windsor with a 1961 Dodge front clip) to soothe the aches, but Dodge also continued with these midsize B-Body cop cars, and this one packs the base 318ci poly V-8 with a two-barrel carb and new-for-’62 all-aluminum 727 push-button Torqueflite automatic. This may not be the Dart’s top-dog 361ci four-barrel, but otherwise it’s cop city all the way with a heavy-duty Leece-Neville 100-amp alternator with dual belt drive to supply the juice needed to run the radio and lights.
Inside, there’s heavy-duty bench seating, a factory radio-delete plate, and a super-rare 120-mph certified speedometer. Although its sheetmetal is ultra-clean and Max Wedge restorers might be tempted to pull this one apart so a Maxie (or Maxie clone) might live, that’d be a shame. These cop cars simply don’t exist anymore, except here. It’s Lot Item 142.
1961 Dodge Lancer “Shorty” Station Wagon
Your eyes don’t deceive you. This 1961 Dodge Lancer wagon (Lot Number 102) is much shorter than usual. Long ago someone with fairly strong skills transformed this four-door wagon into a pert little two-door. A close look at the surgery zone reveals minimal scars. Inside, several inches of pure Texas prairie dust coat everything, but not so much that you can’t make out the odd mix of a clutch pedal and empty Torqueflite push-button panel to the left of the steering wheel. We’ll guess it was born a Torqueflite but the funsters swapped in a floor-shifted manual along the way. Under the hood, the slant-six and transmission are missing, but a dual-circuit manual brake master cylinder hints that someone did the upgrade years ago. It’s an oddball, and it deserves to live again! Best of all, the custom-length shorty driveshaft sits on the floor inside! This first-year Lancer is one of 74,773 built that year, of which only 9,700 were station wagons.
1959 Plymouth Sport Fury
The Fury arrived in 1956 as Plymouth’s first-ever high-performance image car—some would say it’s a muscle car. By 1959, after three years as a two-door-only fun machine, Plymouth demoted the Fury nameplate by adding four doors and wagons and allowing base V-8 engines into the mix (but no sixes yet). But when you add “Sport” to Fury (as Plymouth did for 1959), you get Lot Item 126, a 1959 Plymouth Sport Fury fastback. Also offered in convertible form (but no four-doors or wagons in ’59), the Sport Fury could be had with the base 230-horsepower 318 two-barrel poly mill, but also often had the extra-cost four-barrel 318 for 260 horses or big-block 361 Golden Commando with a single Carter AFB and 305 horsies.
The engine bay is empty on this one, but the three-speed push-button Torqueflite automatic remains, as does the factory-installed dual exhaust, indicators it was a four-barrel car of either the 318 or 361 variety. Beyond all that, the Exner-schemed Forward Look body is nearly mint and retains much of the impossible-to-find trim. We can see this one with an 8.4-liter Viper V-10, a tube frame, and a big, shiny Riddler Award trophy. All it needs is you. Of the 23,857 Sport Furys built in 1959, 17,867 were two-door fastbacks like this. The rest were convertibles (don’t you dare!).
1964 Plymouth Belvedere Sedan
This one is sad. At first it seems to be a nearly pristine 1964 Plymouth Belvedere post sedan, the stuff of Max Wedge and A864 Race Hemi clone dreams. That it is, until you realize it was rolled over on its side many moons ago. The folded front fender, lightly scuffed roof, and wrinkled quarter panel once bore the weight usually carried by the tires. But that was then. Today, these 196265 “post sedans” are in such demand folks are taking four-doors and transforming them into two-doors. Suddenly fixing this roll-over doesn’t seem so bad. It was born with a 318 poly and push-button Torqueflite with the usual bench seat interior associated with these midlevel B-Bodies. But that less-is-more vibe played (and still plays) perfectly into the factory Super Stock scheme. This thing is super solid underneath with none of the thick rust normally associated with these relics. Of the 93,529 Belvederes built in 1964, just 5,364 were two-door post sedans like this. It’s so original it still has its (final-year) two-piece axle 8-3/4 rear end and ball-and-trunion driveshaft. This thing so deserves to be reborn into a Race Hemi clone. It’s Lot Item 89.
1964 Dodge Polara 500
While we’re in a Super Stock mood, let’s examine Lot Item 111, a 1964 Dodge Polara 500. Although it lacks the less-is-more sedan roof configuration, these sleeker hardtops have their place in the 426 Max Wedge/Race Hemi firmament. And while this top-tier Polara 500’s factory-installed air conditioning, power brakes, and power steering run against the austere vibe of the hardcore aluminum-paneled factory lightweights, it’s still a cool machine worthy of revival. The big deal here is the “500” part of the Polara 500 nameplate. As in 1962 and 1963, the Polara 500 was Dodge’s sportiest offering and included then-exotic interior goodies like bucket seats and a center console with a floor-mounted shifter. It’s all still here, plus the rare option of power windows, a $102 upcharge back in the day.
There’s no engine in this one, so it’s ready for your 512ci stroker, Max Wedge cross-ram intake manifold, Max Wedge exhaust manifolds, and Max Wedge exhaust system, with those crazy bolt-on dump caps. Heck, it even has a set of skinny 15×4.5 Cragar SS wheels up front. Of the 64,900 Polaras built in 1964, just 18,400 were Polara 500s with the sexy “sports car” bucket seat gut. And remember, like everything in this auction, it sells at no reserve!
1956 Chrysler Industrial Generator
You’ve probably seen pictures of those bright red Chrysler air raid sirens used back in the Cold War to warn us to “duck and cover” if cold turned hot and the Ruskie missiles flew. Well this is yet another item in the Chrysler Industrial catalog, a portable synchronous electric generator. Although the ultra-duty EM (Electric Machinery Manufacturing Company of Minneapolis, Minnesota) generator is of interest to historians of commercial, construction, and welding equipment, it’s the Chrysler Hemi attached to it that’s got us amped up. Since 1931, Chrysler’s Marine and Industrial Division (the Marine part actually started in 1927) has offered a broad range of engines for use in tractors, fire pumps, cement mixers, street sweepers, forklift trucks, welders, irrigation pumps, air compressors, portable sawmills, motor homes, cranes, shovels, and many other devices not usually associated with road vehicles. And while most of these engines were built more for endurance than high horsepower, the mighty Fire Power Hemi was often tasked in the game.
This unit is Lot Item 300, an appropriate number because of its interest to owners and restorers of Chrysler’s Hemi-powered 300 letter car series of 19551958 (as well as first-gen Hemi hot rodders). For added rpm capability, these letter car 300s (1955 C300, 1956 300-B, 1957 300-C, and 1958 300-D) got solid lifters in place of the hydraulic lifters used on the other 90 percent of the 331, 354, and 392 Hemis. Well, it just so happens that these same solid lifters, and the all-important adjustable rocker arms that go with them, are used in most Chrysler Industrial Hemis. The small clearance bumps seen between the spark plug tube holes seen in the picture are the tip-off that rare and vital adjustable rocker arms lurk within. Today, these adjustable rocker arms are worth literally thousands of dollars to builders of hopped-up early Hemis because of their scarcity. It’s a bit sad to predict, but most likely this nifty 354 Hemi-powered generator will be purchased solely for its rocker arms by a well-grounded, positive individual. Zap!
1967 Dodge Coronet
Not so long ago, we wouldn’t have looked twice at a car like Lot Item 87, this 1967 Dodge Coronet four-door sedan. But again, the passage of time has revived interest in cars like this. To older viewers who recall them when they were either new or just used cars sitting in high-school parking lots, eyes immediately focused on the front fender emblems where three possible castings existed, “V8”, “383 Four Barrel” or “426 Hemi” (no emblem signified “lowly” Slant Six anti-status). Here we see the “V8,” which more often than not designated the boring 273 or 318 2-barrel LA series small-block. But that wasn’t always the case. Here, the fifth spot of the VIN shows the letter G; this is a 383 two-barrel car! Perched just below the 325-horsepower 383 four-barrel, the 270-horsepower 383 got a single Carter BBD two-barrel carb, 9.2:1 compression, single exhaust, and a milder cam. Note how the bottoms of the rear quarter panels are thin, crisp, and straight. There’s no Bondo in this one, and goodies include power steering, factory air conditioning, and manual drum brakes. Swap a Carter AFB in place of the twin throat, tidy up the bent grille, and this will be one heck of a daily driver for much less than any two-door!
1962 Plymouth Savoy
When new, the 1962 Plymouth and Dodge styling drew criticism from most observers. One critic called it the “plucked chicken look” wherein the shape of the underlying bones was covered by tightly stretched skin. And when compared to a same-year Chevy Impala “bubble top” or Ford Galaxie (with its formal T-Bird roof) the Mopars were certainly in a different league. But time has healed the wounds and now we recognize the 1962 B-Body Mopars as the beginning of a winning recipe of light unitized construction. Then there were the optional engines. As if the 361 four-barrel and very rare dual-quad 383/343 weren’t potent enough, the mighty 413 Max Wedge arrived with its outrageous cross-ram induction, streamlined cast-iron exhaust manifolds, and real-deal dump-cap dual exhaust system. Rated at 410 horsepower, these “orange monsters” fed power to either an antiquated Borg-Warner T-85 three-speed with floor shift or the ultra-modern all-aluminum 727 Torqueflite automatic with push-button shift controls. Instant low-13 second e.t.s resulted on street tires, and the legend was born.
Selling as Lot Item 98, this 1962 Plymouth Savoy was born with the 225 slant-six and a column-shifted three-speed manual transmission, the opposite of a Max Wedge Super Stocker. But that can be changed. A close inspection reveals minimal surface rust, let’s call it a “Texas sun tan.” The interior is gutted, but the vertical plastic parking brake lever delete cover (used on three-speed manual cars) is still present. This 1962 Plymouth Savoy two-door sedan (with the all-important less-is-more full door frames and fixed B-pillar) is one of 18,825 built. Although records are not perfect, educated sources say somewhere around 300 413 Max Wedges went into these Plymouths (plus a reported 210 Dodge Maxies in ’62). Why not build a clone? The raw material is right here.
1957 Plymouth Plaza Hemi Hot Rod
All new for 1957, this “Forward Look” Plymouth Plaza is one of the most interesting hot rods in the collection. Born a base-level Plaza with either the 277, 301, or 318ci polyspherical head V-8, it now packs something no Plymouth could have until 1964: a Hemi. Swapped in by a sneaky hot rodder at some point in the car’s history, a Chrysler Hemi of unknown displacement now lurks beneath Virgil Exner’s slick pancake-style hood. The best guess is that it’s a 354 or a 392 from a non-300 application because the rocker covers lack any Fire Power, Imperial, Industrial, or Marine markings and are also devoid of the clearance humps needed for adjustable rocker arms. We couldn’t see the machined pad at the front of the block, so exact displacement/origins are unknown. But what is known is that an aftermarket aluminum intake manifold packs a pair of Edelbrock four-barrels.
This lowly Plaza has the heart of a 300! Inside, the base bench seat interior packs another major surprise. Instead of the hefty, sluggish cast-iron automatic, a column-shifted three-speed manual transmission connects to the original style nut-and-cotter-pin rear axle. This thing is a super sleeper masquerading as a 230-cube flathead six on the outside but packing an easy-breathing hemispherical V-8. This thing could have rewritten the American Graffiti script. Like most of the offerings in the Great Texas Mopar Hoard Auction event, it’s super clean and solid. Park this baby in front of the sock hop then collect pink slips later. It’s Lot Item 67.
1959 Plymouth Custom Suburban Station Wagon
Chevrolet was first to use the Suburban nameplate, but we can’t forget that Plymouth shared it for use on certain station wagons, like Lot Item number 279, this 1959 Plymouth Custom Suburban two-door station wagon. One of only 1,852 made, it’s got the standard 230-horsepower polyspherical-headed 318 V-8 backed by the $189 Powerflite two-speed automatic. Otherwise, it’s basic with manual steering, brakes, and windows. One splurge item inside is the original AM push-button radio, a $59 extravagance. With its extremely uncommon two-door body configuration, this one is begging for a fun-oriented beach-cruiser restomod conversion with a third-gen 6.4 Hemi, four-wheel disc brakes, and air conditioning.
1966 Dodge Coronet 500
Although the late John Haynie’s tastes leaned more toward finned ’50s Mopars, he also appreciated his fair share of ’60s iron, like this 1966 Dodge Coronet 500 hardtop. Lot item 257, it’s super solid with excellent quarter panels, front fenders, and trunk floor. The first year for Dodge’s redesigned B-Body undercarriage and more angular body lines, the mighty Coronet R/T would sprout from its bones a year later.
This one has the G-code 383 two-barrel big-block backed by a console-shifted 727 Torqueflite and is loaded with power drum brakes, power steering, and factory air conditioning. Sweet mid-’70s road wheels with trim rings add some spice. Under the hood, amid decades worth of accumulated rodent apartments, is the 383 with its intake manifold and driver-side rocker arms missing. The orange paint on the engine suggests it’s been rebuilt and probably hopped up a bit along the way. Like the rest of the hoard, it’ll need a total revisit of mechanical systems and a major hose-out before driving resumes, but what a solid example it is in this world of rust buckets and rebuilt wrecks.
1960 Plymouth Fury Crash Car
This 1960 Plymouth Fury four-door is Lot Item 110. It may not seem like much, but without it, the rest of the Great Texas Mopar Hoard wouldn’t exist. That’s because John Haynie was a huge fan of Stephen King’s 1983 novel and movie “Christine. “You know, the one about the demonically possessed 1958 Plymouth Fury? Haynie was so impressed with the feature film he bought this very Plymouth. It isn’t a ’58, but the general Exner-era wonderful weirdness is still in full bloom. One day, Haynie was driving along in this one when blam, it crashed. Haynie wasn’t badly hurt, but he was briefly trapped by the crumpled steering column (note the deformed cowl). It’s a basic 318 two-barrel with a push-button automatic. And while the entire nose is gone, its radical twin-boom tail fins are nearly mint and rust free. Buy it as a memorial to John Haynie’s good taste in gathering these treasures, or slice off the fins and build that Man Cave couch you’ve been dreaming of.
1960 Plymouth Plaza
Here’s another 1960 Plymouth, but it’s from the opposite end of the price structure. It’s a low-line Plaza four-door sedan with the first-year 225ci slant-six and first-year aluminum-case 904 Torqueflite automatic transmission. It’s Lot Item 201 and as a 1960 represents the first year for Chrysler Corporation’s big switch from body-on-frame architecture to semi-unitized construction, where everything from the firewall back is an envelope of metal. The front clip is still of the bolt-on nature, kind of like a 1966-up Chevy Nova or any 19671981 Camaro. Another cool detail is how for 1960 only the 225ci slant-six got a sweet aluminum intake manifold. From 1961 through the mid-’70s, slant-six intake manifolds (except the rare Hyper-Pak four-barrel of 19601962) were bulky cast iron. Like most of the Great Texas Hoard, this finned flyer is very solid, and the surface rust on the body is exactly that, on the surface.
1964 Plymouth Fury Body Shell
Speaking of unitized body construction, this 1964 Plymouth Fury two-door hardtop has had its inner fender walls sliced away, leaving the lower frame rails exposed. The nose is missing, but just look at those sweet, clean rear quarter panels. Born a 225ci slant-six car with a column-shifted three-speed manual transmission and factory air conditioning, this puppy is begging to be reborn as an altered-wheelbase Match Basher. Not feeling that? OK, how about a clone of King Richard Petty’s Daytona-dominating No. 43 NASCAR racer? Either way, it’s packed with potential and is so original it still has the headache-inducing two-piece rear axles stuffed within the 8-3/4 rear end. It’s Lot Item 288, and it’s a good one!
1970 Dodge D-100 Pickup Truck
Texans love their pickup trucks, and this 1970 Dodge D-100 is something very special. It’s Lot Item 259, and what sets it apart is the factory-optional 383ci big-block and sporty bright yellow paint. Let’s remember, as far back as 1964 Dodge was building muscle trucks like the 426 wedge-powered Custom Sports Special, which came with special traction bars to tame axle hop, a full 14 years before the Little Red Express appeared in 1978.
The 199-horsepower (as listed on the metal trim tag) 383 two-barrel V-8 is missing, but its water pump, alternator brackets, center-dump exhaust manifolds, air cleaner, and other miscellaneous goodies sit on the cab floor. Built with a 3.23:1 axle ratio (Sure Grip status is unknown) and manual drum brakes and steering, factory options include air conditioning, an AM radio, and a column-shifted 727 automatic transmission. The plastic Jiffy Jet windshield washer reservoir still hangs from the underhood bracket, and the body has the usual minor dents and scrapes plus some early-stage rust-through along the roof rain trough. As interest in all early pickup trucks continues to blossom, unmolested “cores” like this are less easily found.
1981 Plymouth Gran Fury Police Package
In 1996, a survey was taken of 200 city, county, state police, and highway patrol departments seeking the most popular Mopar squad car of all time. The winner, surprisingly, was not the mighty 440 Magnumpowered 1969 Dodge Polara Pursuit, but rather the 19791980 Dodge St. Regis/Plymouth Gran Fury. Despite the smaller E58 small-block 360 V-8, cops loved these R-Body cruisers for their combo of good handling, excellent brakes, and massive interior volume. This 1981 Plymouth Gran Fury Police Package is Lot Item 60 and is one of the herd, but with an exception. While it’s got the same extra body welds, rubber floormats, heavy-duty front bucket seats, and supreme brakes and suspension, federal smog laws canceled the 360 for 1981. This left the E48 heavy-duty 318ci four-barrel as the top dog, and we do mean dog.
Much to the cops’ surprise, top speed was just 115 mph, and bad guys easily got away. The E58’s dual exhaust was gone, as well, replaced by a single tail pipe fed by a catalyst-equipped smog system replete with air injection, EGR, and all the other stuff associated with smog-era V-8s. Some 41 years later, these items make cars like Lot Item 60 more interesting. As the last year for full-size R-Body Mopar squad cars, this 1981 Gran Fury is special.
1988 Plymouth Gran Fury Ohio State Highway Patrol Car
We don’t know how the late John Haynie did it, but this 1988 Plymouth Gran Fury AHB (Police package) still has the lights, siren, and graphics it wore when it was an active Ohio State Highway Patrol unit three decades ago. Typically (by law, actually), this stuff has to be scrubbed clean before these cars are sold to the public at fleet auction. But here it is, complete with the certified 125-mph speedometer, full gauge package, and supplemental mechanical oil pressure gauge installed by the Ohio fleet garage. Other goodies include the M.P.H. Industries K55 radar unit, Federal Signal Corporation Interceptor radio and siren controller, General Electric tuning equipment, and Jet-Sonic roof-mounted emergency lights.
Under the hood is the expected ELE-code 318ci small-block V-8 equipped with a Rochester Quadra-Jet four-barrel making 175 net horsepower and 250 lb-ft of torque. Despite the meager rating, in the 1988 Michigan State Police performance test, the Gran Fury AHB did 060 in 11.6 seconds (the Ford 55H Crown Victoria did it in 11.9, Chevrolet Caprice 9C1 took 10.6) and topped out at 117 mph (the same as the Ford 55H and 1 mph faster than the Chevy 9C1). By contrast, Ford’s rule-bending Mustang SSP cranked 060 in 6.9 seconds and topped out at 134 mph. As the lone rear-drive offering from Chrysler Corporation’s all-front-wheel-drive era, this ’88 Gran Fury AHB police unit deserves respect, and a place in someone’s collection.
Plymouth Fury I Police Model
This 1970 Plymouth Fury I two-door sedan is Lot Item 273, and it’s a real oddball. First off, it’s a rarely seen Fury two-door sedan. Dig the fixed B-pillar; most two-door Furys were sleek hardtops of the Sport Fury and Sport Fury GT personal luxury variety, and this is a police unit. (The “K” in the second place of the PK21G0D268130 VIN is the police code.) A two-door police car—did they make them? Sure! It’s often forgotten that since the advent of high-speed interstates and freeways in the early 1950s, law enforcement agencies deployed light, inexpensive V-8-powered two-door models to “intercept” speeders. Because issuing speeding tickets was the main task (not arresting hardened criminals), there was no need for a back seat or a second set of doors. In today’s world of SUVs and crossovers, the popularity of two-door police cars is nonexistent. This one is fairly typical with its G-code (fifth spot of VIN) 318 two-barrel small-block. Its red-and-white paint scheme suggests it was a fire department unit and not a high-speed interceptor. According to the fender tag, options include B41 power front disc brakes, a D36 heavy-duty Torqueflite transmission, an F15 75-amp alternator (it’s massive!), an F36 Unity articulated A-pillar spotlight, F38 roof light reinforcement, and Y39 special order (with a second fender tag stamped “special order”). That’s the good news. The bad news is the 1973 Michigan license plate found inside the car. Having spent at least three years in the rust belt, the rear quarter panels have been repaired with plenty of plastic body filler, and rust-through has blossomed around the rear window. Inside, the cool 140-mph-certified speedometer and fleet-spec rubber floor complete the cop vibe, but the non-breathing floormat has probably trapped plenty of moisture and fostered rusty floors. With only 2,353 of these lowly Fury two-door pillar coupes built in 1970, we can assume that only a splinter of that total are PK21 law enforcement units. It’s rare, it’s rusty, but it deserves to live on.
This leaves me curious—do those laws apply to this auction, as well? Would someone bidding on this risk legal complications with the associated LEO hardware? Or is it old enough that no one would care?
It’s July, Mopar® fanatics, and that means The great Texas Mopar Hoard Auction Event is getting closer. Mark your calendars for October 13th when over 250 vintage, classic and special interest vehicles will be auctioned off at no reserve in this online-only sales event. Then on the next day, October 14th, another online-only, no reserve auction will be held for the thousands of items of parts, tools, dealership sales materials and automobilia that once made up the estate of John Haynie, a Texas-based Mopar lover and collector who passed away, leaving all of this behind.
Though we mourn the passing of Mr. Haynie, his estate is excited to see his prized possessions get back into circulation with the collector community, and we’re sure the late John Haynie would agree. Facilitating this sale is Spanky’s Freedom Car Auctions, a unit of Assiter Auctioneers. If the name Spanky Assiter is familiar, that’s because he was the lead auctioneer for the esteemed Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auction company for over a decade. In fact, you may even recall Spanky’s wife Amy shouting excitedly advancing bids between bidders and the auctioneer during hundreds of hours of live TV coverage.
Spanky, Amy and the rest of the Spanky’s Freedom Car Auctions team are preparing for a massive – perhaps record-breaking – online auction event this coming October 13thand 14th. Be there! Until then, let’s continue our preview with another five delectable vintage Chrysler products that “could be yours” if the bid is right! –Steve Magnante
After so much attention being given to Dodge’s muscle cars, it’s easy to forget the full-size Dodge vehicles for 1967. Sold as Polaras and Monacos, they accounted for just 8.0% and 5.6% of Dodge sales volume that year. By contrast, the major sellers were the mid-size Coronet (44.9% of sales volume) and compact Dart (37.6% of sales volume). Though these big Dodge vehicles handily outsold the sporty Charger (just 3.9% of all Dodge vehicles sold in 1967 were Chargers), today it’s nearly impossible to find a surviving Polara or Monaco.
That’s what makes Lot 146 so important. A very solid California car (with its original “black plate” still present), it’s got the upscale 4-door hardtop body type without the usual fixed door pillar and full window frames found on sedans, a detail that added $110 to the Polara Sedan’s $2,918 base list price. Packing the base 383 2-barrel big block V8, extra cost options found on this example include the $183 TorqueFlite®automatic transmission, $16 power-assisted drum brakes, $311 air conditioning and factory radio. Sporting a recent re-spray in the original WWI White color, the trunk floor is as solid as the body and the grille, bumpers and tail light areas are nearly perfect. Though not a big gun muscle car, what’s to stop you from installing a Mopar Performance 472 HEMI® crate engine and surprising the Charger and Super Bee set?https://www.youtube.com/embed/q-FPu3bfyx0
1962 DART 330 POLICE: LOT #142
Now here’s something very special! Beyond the fact Lot 142 is an example of Dodge’s first mid-size B-Body – which quickly morphed to support classics like the Charger R/T and Super Bee – this 1962 Dodge Dart 330 is a cop car! As proven by the “9” in the second spot of the VIN, for 1962, Dodge offered four levels of potency; the “Highway Patrol”, “General Purpose Patrol”, “Municipal Partol” and “Public Safety”. While the “Highway Patrol” was marketed by Dodge for “jobs that call for rubber-burning acceleration, rapid interception and continuous high speed operation…where man and machine seldom get a chance to cool off,” this one is a General Purpose Patrol unit with the 318 2-barrel polyspherical V8.
Though not the sexy 318 4-barrel or top-tier 361 4-barrel big block (the 383 was on vacation until 1963), the rest of this one is pure, no-nonsense police material. From the extra-duty 3-row radiator, manual 11-inch drum brakes, manual steering, front sway bar, extra-leaf rear springs, heavy-duty 15×5.5 fleet wheels with clip-on hub caps for better retention at high speed, double-pulley fan belt, massive Leece-Neville alternator, heavy-duty push-button TorqueFlite automatic transmission, radio delete plate on the dash and – the “POLICE de resistance” – a certified 120 MPH speedometer for “court admissibility”, this is a true life police car!
Knowing that these “fleet specials” were driven hard until reaching their mandatory retirement date (typically 80,000 miles), buyers from the private sector were few and far between when they were disbursed at auction. If a taxi company didn’t snap them up for a few final years of unsavory usage before scrapping, they often sold to hot rodders who scavenged the heavy-duty parts and junked the empty shell. We dare say this might be the sleeper of the auction. Smart bidders will lurk and pounce on this incredibly rare offering!
Unlike Dodge passenger cars from the same time period, which enjoyed fairly obvious year-to-year styling changes that make them easy to tell apart, Dodge trucks from the 1948-1956 era kinda look the same to the untrained eye. But we know better, right? This is Lot 141, a 1954 C-series half-ton step-side pickup. We know it’s a 1954 because it has a one-piece windshield that’s different from the two-piece 1953 windshield and the 1955 wrap-around windshield. The 1954 grille also went from a rectangular outline to a trapezoidal form.
Beyond all that, this ’54 is very significant thanks to the V8 emblem on the nose. Before 1954, Dodge’s ground-breaking Red Ram HEMI V8 – which was introduced in 1953 – was offered only in passenger cars. But then in 1954, the Dodge Truck Division was granted access to this exciting new development. But at first, the 145-horsepower 241-cube Red Ram HEMI – some fifty percent more powerful than the 100-horsepower flathead sixes offered before – was only offered in medium- and heavy-duty 1 to 5 ton trucks, buyers of ½ and ¾ ton pickups were stuck with the six.
Then, in August of 1954, the HEMI floodgates opened and the mighty Red Ram HEMI was offered in smaller half-ton step-side pickups – like this one. Before going into further detail, let’s remember that when Dodge’s all-new third-generation 5.7-liter “Hemi Magnum” V8 arrived in 2001 (for the 2002 model year), it too was initially restricted only to large and hefty Ram 2500 and Ram 3500 trucks. Buyers of more sporty Ram 1500s had to wait until the following model run to gain access to the sweet 345-horsepower 5.7 HEMI engine. So there’s a familiar ring to the initial Rad Ram HEMI story presented here!
Ok, getting back to business, as the walk-around video indicates, the cab, step-side bed and front fenders are all extremely well preserved without any perforation or structural rust. Though the original 241 Red Ram HEMI (a $120 upcharge over the base 217-cube, 100-horsepower inline six) and column-shifted three-speed manual transmission are missing, the rest of this amazing Texas time capsule is accounted for and ready for rescue. As an example of Dodge’s first-ever V8 pickup truck, there is a ton of historical value sitting on its half-ton chassis.
The 1960 model year was important for all of Chrysler Corporation and Lot 140, a 1960 Dodge Dart Pioneer, is a perfect example of the breed. While younger folks may assume the Dart name first appeared in 1963 aboard Dodge’s replacement for the A-body 1961-62 Lancer, the name actually debuted on a mass-produced offering right here.
To cover the marketplace, the Dart was offered in three series: the Dart Seneca, Dart Pioneer and Dart Phoenix. Above them were the Matador and Polara, which shared basic items but with specific differences – but were not part of the Dart line.
The body-on-frame construction technique used in 1959 gave way to semi-unitized construction for all 1960 Dodge cars wherein the body shell from the fire wall to the back bumper was a one-piece item with the frame rails and suspension attachment points welded to the floor pan. The front suspension and sheet metal was another bolt-on unit that attached under the floor and jutted forward. This semi-unitized design differed from the fully-unitized configuration employed on the compact 1960 Valiant / 1961 Lancer (A-body) and mid-size 1962 Dart 330 (B-body) which had their front inner fenders and frame rails welded to the cowl to make a one-piece body shell from the radiator wall to the tail light panel.
Both forms of unitized construction (“semi” and “fully”) were rugged, light – and susceptible to rust after exposure to salted winter roads. By the mid-1960s most of these cars were rusted beyond salvation and with their wild, space-age styling being out of step with the pony car craze, few people cared enough to rescue them.
But now, some six decades later, they’ve become red hot among collectors, restorers and customizers. This 1960 Dart Pioneer (Lot 140) has the graceful fastback greenhouse configuration with its smart “reverse angle” B-pillar base which would reappear on the 1963 compact-size A-body Dart through 1966. We mention this styling quirk so folks who think BMW’s styling chief Wilhelm Hofmeister was the first to use the theme (on the 1962 “Neue Klasse” BMW1500’s “Hofmeister kink”) can think again.
Best of all for Lot 140 is how complete it is, including the ultra-rare unsilenced air cleaner atop its so-called Ram Fire 383 4-barrel big block V8. As the pictures show, the three-piece Ram Fire 383 air cleaner has a round base plate, open-element filter unit and very unique circular lid with a non-concentric secondary circular region stamped in place at the leading end. This is where an adhesive-backed engine call-out logo would go. Today, this unique air cleaner stands as one of the rarest Mopar single 4-barrel air cleaner designs, and it’s still present! The only thing hotter than this 383 4-barrel would have been the Ram Induction D-500 383 with its twin Carter AFB’s criss-crossing the block. At an extra $418, very few were built.
And while the exterior body panels are very solid, the floors are in need of rust repair, as are a handful of localized areas on the quarter panels and elsewhere. Other options include power drum brakes and steering. Inside, the factory AM radio, push button TorqueFlite automatic transmission, “rib raker” dash top-mounted rearview mirror and front bench seat all remain in place. Purists will want to see this rarity restored to perfection. Customizers will see beyond the showroom floor, enhancing the graceful sloping fastback roofline by chopping away an inch or two and setting it atop a custom Viper frame with massive V10 power feeding all four wheels.
But before any of this can happen, some lucky bidder has to cast the highest bid…
The mighty Chrysler 300 ceased to be known as a “letter car” after 1962 when the 300 Sport series was added to capture the excitement of the full-sized 300 muscle machines without the mechanical distress of adjusting solid lifters, tuning dual carburetors and coping with a harsh ride. We love that stuff, but some folks didn’t. As proof, a mere 400 300-Js were sold versus 24,665 of the watered down 300 Sports.
This 1963 Chrysler 300 Sport (Lot 139) has the desirable 2-door hardtop body style (a less sporty 4-door was offered) but lacks the dual carburetor 413 of the 300J. But again, that’s ok and while we couldn’t get the hood to open (we never force stubborn latches or hinges on vehicles we don’t own), inside we discovered a big block rocker arm shaft with the stamped steel (non-adjustable) rocker arms and separate cast aluminum rocker arm stands used for the final time in 1963. Also discovered inside was an unsilenced single 4-barrel air cleaner lid and base indicating this one was ordered new with the optional 413 big block, a mid-point engine offering between the base 300 Sport’s 383 2-barrel and the 300-J’s ram inducted, solid lifter 413. Out back, a set of factory dual exhaust tailpipes support the 413 premise.
Inside, bucket seats and a center console add some sport to this 300 Sport while the factory push button AM radio remains in place. Speaking of buttons, to the left of the steering wheel are the exotic TorqueFlite automatic transmission’s controls set next to a 120 MPH speedometer (the 300-J speedometer read to 150 MPH). With minimal body rust, this 1963 Chrysler 300 Sport 2-door hardtop is ready for resurrection.
Ok, that’s it for this week’s preview of the Great Texas Mopar Hoard Auction Event, which will proceed on October 13th and 14th of this year. Go to Spanky’s Freedom Car Auctions and the Steve Magnante YouTube channel to learn more and see the rest of this amazing 250-plus vehicle hoard. Next week, we’ll be back with another preview that’ll include something with the rare two-door, big block taxi!
It’s official! The dates for the Great Texas Mopar® Hoard Auction Event have been set! The 250-plus project cars will all sell on October 13th and the parts, tools and automobilia will sell on October 14th. And remember, this is an online-only auction. All vehicles and parts are located in Texas and will need to be transported to their new owners’ homes after the auction. But that’s an easy matter and Spanky’s Freedom Car Auctions is all set to help arrange shipping and freight activities with major auto transport companies who are standing ready with dozens of big rigs.
Another major detail about the Great Texas Mopar Auction Event is that every single item will be sold at no reserve. If you’re new to the auction world, a “reserve” is when the seller (consignor) seeks to protect his or her items from unrealistically low bids by placing a “reserve”. This way, if a certain assumed value isn’t reached during bidding, the item is protected and doesn’t sell as it “fails to meet the reserve”.
Well, Spanky’s Freedom Car Auctions and the estate of the late John Haynie are willing to roll the dice and let the chips fall where they may by eliminating the reserve. The ultimate goal of the event is to get these fantastic vehicles back into circulation. The late John Haynie did the world a huge favor by hoarding these classics. But now that he’s moved on, they deserve to find caring homes and new lives on the open road – or car show circuit – as the case may be.
No doubt, many bidders will come away with exceptional values. That’s the nature – and thrill – of no-reserve auctions. And that’s why this event is sure to make collector car history. You can’t afford to miss it!
So until the October 13th vehicle auction (again, the massive parts, tools and automobilia collection will sell the next day, on October 14th), let’s preview more of the 250-plus vehicles that make up the Great Texas Mopar Auction Event.
1956 marked the second year of Virgil Exner’s influence on body styling as lower and wider bodies replaced the boxy, upright designs of 1954 and before. This 1956 Dodge Royal Lancer wears the regional Texan trim package. Its one of just 289 Texans built to help Texas Dodge dealers stimulate showroom traffic. A beautiful restoration on a solid rust-free platform, it packs the 315-cubic-inch Red Ram polyspherical V8, with a two-barrel carburetor and dual exhaust, the two-speed Powerflite automatic transmission – with first-year push button controls and manual drum brakes with manual steering. Other goodies include optional Motor Wheel 15×5.5 chromed wire wheels and modern air conditioning added on for comfortable summer cruising. Of the 48,780 Dodge Royals built in 1956, only 289 were built with the Texan package. This beauty has been shown and comes with a sign board describing its rarity. Click on the video link for a fun walk-around.
John Haynie liked police cars. After all, most of them are basically muscle cars with a second set of doors – and a badge. This 1988 Plymouth Gran Fury is something special. While most law enforcement agencies scrub away all traces of their former identity before selling used cruisers at public auction, somehow this former Ohio State Patrol AHB (Plymouth’s code for police equipment in 1988) unit escaped into Haynie’s hands in complete condition! That means it’s still got the M.P.H. Industries K55 radar unit, Federal Signal Corporation “Interceptor” radio and siren controller, General Electric tuning equipment and Jet-Sonic roof-mounted emergency lights. Usually, police car collectors pay a fortune to reunite this type of equipment with former cruisers. Not here, it’s still present! Though 1988 police models lacked the 360s and 440s of earlier Mopar squad cars, the ELE code 318 in this one made 175 horsepower and was the hottest rear-wheel-drive offering in Plymouth’s otherwise mostly front-wheel-drive lineup of the late 1980s. It’s also got the AHB-spec certified 125-mph speedometer, full gauge package – plus a supplemental mechanical oil pressure gauge installed by the Ohio fleet garage. As a last-gasp rear-drive police model (1989 marked the final year for Gran Fury police units), it deserves a special place in someone’s collection. And yes, it comes with the magnetic “out of service” body banners you’ll need for street driving. See more by clicking the video link.
Another 1956 Dodge vehicle, like the Texan (Lot Number 154), this one is a Royal, the middle trim level between the entry-level Coronet and top-tier Custom Royal. Like the Texan, this recently painted example packs the Red Ram polyspherical head V8 with a two-barrel carburetor (with either 270 or 315 cubes, exact size is unknown) backed by the two-speed Powerflite push button automatic transmission. But unlike the Texan, this one is a little less ready for the road because its rear window glass is removed and an in-process headliner installation hangs from the interior roof. We’re told the glass and trim are included. A magnet test reveals solid outer body skin and serviceable two-tone plum and black paint. This 1956 rides on Dodge’s final-edition coil spring front suspension (torsion bars replaced them in ’57) and has first-year 12-volt electricals to better run the headlamps and original equipment AM radio. It’s clean and needs only a few days’ effort to be back on the cruise circuit. Watch the walk-around video by clicking the link.
The 1959 Dodge vehicles wore some of Detroit’s most sinister grille styling. Sweeping “brows” over the quad headlamps gave every ’59 Dodge a sinister vibe, which some have called a “nightmare in steel”, especially when viewed in your rearview mirror as one accelerates to pass. And that’s cool … if you ask us. But while top-level power came from the new 383-cubic-inch wedge with optional Super D500 dual quad induction, this humble Coronet four-door sedan has the base 318 polyspherical head V8 with a single two-barrel. But inside, where the typical push-button pod would go to the left of the steering wheel, this one has the less-is-more column-shifted three-speed manual gearbox! That’s important because of the 151,851 Dodge passenger cars built in 1959, just six percent had manual transmissions (the other 94 percent were automatics). Sporting solid and rust-free front fenders – a rarity, especially where the headlamp “brows” tended to rust through within a few years – the rest of the body is equally sweet, though a few small patches are visible on the trunk floor. Though its been dormant for a few years and likely needs a brake and coolant system flush before use, this humble yet sinister family sedan awaits your commands. The video link has more info on this amazing survivor.
It’s often forgotten that Chrysler came close to offering the 426 Street HEMI® engine in full-size C-body Fury models in 1965 as a way to get NASCAR to accept the mighty HEMI engine for sanctioned competition. In fact, a handful of home-brewed, non-factory HEMI C-bodies campaigned in 1965. This 1965 Plymouth Fury II has the base level two-door pillar sedan body style and would make an ideal starting point for a “what-if” 1965 Street HEMI phantom build. Originally built with the 318 polyspherical head V8 and TorqueFlite® automatic with power steering and manual drum brakes and an AM radio, a later Chrysler small block with an Edelbrock four-barrel carburetor has been bolted down in its place. Still awaiting connections to the radiator, throttle linkage, exhaust and related support systems, the body is quite rust free though a few spots of bubble-through exist on the front fender and the trunk floor has been patched. See the walk-around video for more. A total of 66,757 Fury IIs were built in 1965, of them just 4,109 were two-door pillar coupes like this. Plop a 426 Street HEMI engine in it and make it one-of-none.
That’s it for this week’s preview of the Great Texas Mopar Hoard Auction Event, but we’ll be back next week with more, and more the week after that … and the week after that. Until the October 13th, 2021, date when these classic vehicles will find new homes.