It's an old story. A car is purchased for one reason, and usually sooner than later the mission is changed in dramatic fashion. Tony Quail of Mount Forest, Ontario, picked up this '73 Satellite Road Runner at a boneyard in 1983 to use as a "winter-beater." Tony paid a scant $400 for the car, but as you can plainly see, this is no beater, and there's definitely more than $400 supported by those tires today.
Tony explained that the B-Body originally came with an Alpine White topcoat and a half-red "reptile skin" vinyl top. A red-and-white-checked cockpit attempted to complement the exterior, and for added zing the dealer had installed a red Road Runner stripe and power bulge hood. For the powerplant, the car sported a 318 V8.
Since Tony is a Mopar head from the deep end (he currently owns a '70 Challenger convertible, a '72 340 Demon, a '73 Challenger, and a '79 Chrysler 300), it's little wonder that the "winter-beater" notion didn't last too long. Tony decided he wanted a street car, and the Road Runner presented the perfect canvas from which to express his cruising desires.
After stripping the car down to the shell, Tony sent the body to Arther Auto Body, where Frank and Vick Hajer gave the sheetmetal the necessary treatment before applying a Candyapple Red topcoat, sans the lizard vinyl. To give the Road Runner that little extra something, Tony added a Pontiac GTO wing in back.
Tony kept the underpinnings relatively stock, although he did swap the original 8¼, 2.73:1 rear for a stouter 8¾ Sure Grip unit with a 3.55:1 ring-and-pinion set. A race-style pinion snubber, Monroe air shocks, and an extra leaf in the rear spring packs rounded out the handling upgrades. For the rolling stock, Tony kept the Magnum 500s, wrapping the fronts in E70x14 Goodyear Polyglas and the rears with Protrac Polyglas P245/D60/14s.
Inside, Tony took the Road Runner to the proverbial edge. Out went the checker motif-in went a red and white velvet scheme, complete with a red velvet headliner and visors. Instrumentation comes courtesy of the factory, Autolite, and B&M.
Tony spent even more of his time and attention creating a powertrain that would be suitable for spirited street driving and pure around-town fun. The original 318 and tranny were ditched for a '72 340. Fitted with TRW forged-aluminum pistons and stock rods down deep, the block now boasts T/A heads, adjustable rocker arms, valves, and Crane double springs and lifters-all set to motion with a Crane Commando cam. A Holley Six-Pack carb system manages fuel delivery, while Hedman aluminum-coated headers lead the exhaust system, followed by custom stainless steel pipes and mufflers. The spark factor is enhanced with a Mopar Performance electronic chrome box ignition and billet electronic centrifugal advance distributor.
With a stout 340 heading to the fore, it was only natural that Tony's gear selector of choice would be a 727 TorqueFlite. It features a Turbo Action shift kit, a 2,800-stall converter, and is actuated via a B&M Starshifter modified with a Pistol Grip handle.
The last resto wrench was turned on the Road Runner in 1988, and Tony has enjoyed serious Great White North cruising ever since. Today, shows and cruise-night activities are the Road Runner's primary duties.
Quite a full and stylish life for a former $400 winter-beater, don't you think?