If you’re like us, you appreciate all Mopars. But you likely have a favorite Mopar body style or specific car model, or maybe even two. For Fred Menditto of Lakeland, Florida, ’71 Plymouth B-Bodies are among his favorites. He’s owned several over the years, including both Hemi and 440+6 powered ’71 Road Runners. Fred also accumulated a bunch of parts for ’71 Plymouths over the years, in hopes of one day finding a car he could build into a highly optioned daily driver.
After having kept his eyes open for the right car, Fred ran across a ’71 Satellite Sebring that was a perfect candidate for his planned project. Instead of actively looking for a good candidate for his project, Fred just told key people that he was in the market, and eventually the car found him. After discussing his idea with some fellow Mopar enthusiasts and collectors, word got back to a gentleman in nearby Eustis, Florida, who had picked up a Satellite from California. What he found was a 318-powered Sebring model, with a clean body and only 55,000 miles on the odometer. Fred decided the car would be perfect for his project and quickly made the purchase for what he calls a reasonable price given the condition of the Plymouth.
As a California car, this Satellite is nearly 100 percent original, with nearly all of the factory paint markings, and it still wears much of its original Tawny Brown Metallic paint. As a low-mileage car, the interior of this Plymouth is also in great shape, and optioned with a floor shifter and console, and vinyl bucket seats with cloth inserts. With a 318 engine, drum brakes, and an 8¾ differential, this Satellite is a good example of how most ’71 Plymouths were equipped, making it a great car to build a Road Runner or GTX clone.
Over the years, Fred has accumulated nearly every option available for a B-Body, including all of the wiring and hardware to infuse his Plymouth with power windows. Additionally, he has an entire roof section that he cut from a vehicle in a salvage yard that features a rare factory sunroof option. Factory cruise control is also on the list of planned upgrades, and the car already has air conditioning. Exterior modifications will include a Go-Wing (already installed) and either a bulge hood or Air-Grabber setup.
As far as the body and interior, Fred says he likes the oddball factory colors and plans to keep the car in its current paint scheme. Inside, the Satellite only needs a new dashpad to be perfect, although after installing the sunroof, a new headliner and carpet will be installed. So far as the engine goes, the 318 runs fine, so it will stay for now. Fred and his family are drag racers, however, so we wouldn’t be surprised to see a big-block or even late-model Hemi eventually find its way between the framerails. Once complete, Fred plans to drive the car and enjoy it.
Trunk: This Satellite is all original, including the trunk mat and spare tire. It still w
Shifter: The Slap-Stik shifter was a great innovation introduced by Chrysler in 1970. The