FAST FACTS: '69 Dodge Dart GTS
George Cayea . West Palm Beach, FL

MOPAR POWER

Engine: The original 340 was over-bored .060-inch, with a stock 3.31 Chrysler stroke and 6.123 rods. TRW forged pistons press 10.75:1 compression as the factory iron heads were ported and polished and built with Ferrea valves, Crane valves, and Harland Sharp roller tip rockers. An MP M1 single-plane intake is topped with an Edelbrock 750-cfm carburetor. The fire is thrown via a MSD Blaster II coil. TTI headers plumb through a pair of Dynomax mufflers and down 211/42-inch tubes dumping out twin chromed tips. The whole powerplant was built by friend and West Palm Beach local, Rick Wheelihan.

Transmission: A TorqueFlite 727, built by Doug's Transmissions in the same aforementioned Florida town, brags an 11-inch, 2,800-stall converter and shift kit by Turbo Action. New internals and clutches make for a tight and true gear box, while a Gear Vendors overdrive splits the gear revolutions in half, allowing the Dart great highway speeds at a mellow rpm.

Rearend: The original 831/44 was enough for drag racing over 30 years ago, and it's still good enough today. Filled with a Sure Grip spinning 3.91 gears and its original axles, the rear has little trouble making the rubber evaporate into a sticky fog.

Horsepower & Performance: George didn't give us any dyno numbers or any timeslips from the local track, so we only have the performance goodies to go by. Since the factory LA 340s were making slightly less than 300 ponies in their day, we think it can safely be said that George's GTS surpasses the 300hp number.

SURE GRIP

Suspension: Polyurethane bushings replaced the worn out rubber, while Addco sway bars front and back keep the wheels planted. Heavy-duty leaf springs from Mopar make the launches tight, while a Flaming River manual box steers the front wheels with ease.

Brakes: Stock 11-inch disc brakes up front thanks to a conversion and small 9-inch drums in the rear provide enough stopping power to suit the sub-3,000-pound A-Body.

Wheels: George went with Magnum 500s: 15x6 up front and 15x7 out back.

Tires: BFGoodrich 215/70/15s fore and 245/60/15 aft.

HIGH IMPACT

Body: Restored by Richard Romanelli, the body was stripped down to bare metal and laboriously manicured. George demanded that any modifications made to the car be reversible, meaning no aftermarket fabrication such as torque boxes or subframe connectors.

Paint: Originally R6 Red, George Cayea decided to go with black PPG single stage. A GTS black stripe wrapping around the tail makes for a trick look.

Interior: Richard restored the interior with Year One carpet, vinyl seat covers, headliner, and package tray-all in black. The result is a beautiful cabin that matches the double-black exterior. The factory center console, shifter, AM radio, and steering wheel all returned to keep the interior original.