Monday, January 3, 2011

Musclecar Monday By Request - 1969 Dodge Charger Daytona

By request - maybe the most outrageous, over the top examples of the American muscle car. The high water mark.

The 1969 Dodge Charger Daytona was a high performance, limited edition version of the Dodge Charger produced in the summer of 1969 for the sole purpose of winning NASCAR races. And win it did: it won its first race out, the inaugural Talladega 500 with thegreat Bobby Isaac at the wheel. Buddy Baker in a Dodge Charger Daytona was the first driver in NASCAR history to break the 200 mph mark on March 24. 1970 at Talladega.
1969 Dodge Charger Daytona

One of the famous aero-cars, its special body modifications included a 23 in tall stabilizer wing on the rear deck, a special sheetmetal "nose cone" that replaced the traditional upright front grille (both designed specially for Chrysler by NASA), a flush rear backlight (rear window area), a 'window cap' to cover the original Charger's recessed rear window, specific front fenders and hood that were modeled after the upcoming 1970 Charger, stainless steel A-pillar covers and fender mounted tire clearance/brake cooling scoops. The Daytona was built on the 1969 Charger's 500 trim specifications, meaning that it carried a heavy-duty suspension and brake setup and was equipped with a 440 CID Magnum engine as standard. Of special note to collectors is the optional 426 CID Hemi V8 engine, which only 70 of the 503 Daytonas carried. It had a corporate cousin in the "one year only" 1970 Plymouth Superbird.
1969 Dodge Daytona Charger
aren't the colors amazing?
1969 Dodge Daytona Charger *
Both are now rare and valuable collectibles, with 440-powered Daytonas reaching into six-figure territory and 426-engined cars passing the $300,000 mark.

Bobby Isaac also ran one of these beasts at the Bonneville Salt Flats - they were 19' long.

Dodge wasn't the only one, Chrysler cousin Plymouth had the Superbird, and NASCAR Rival Ford fielded the Torino Talladega and the extremely groovy Mercury Cyclone Spoiler (See the Nov. 16 2009 entry)
Keep the requests coming!