Three years ago, Ronnie Sannini, of Staten Island, New York, was on the prowl looking for a new ride to replace the '69 GTX convertible he'd recently sold. Ron wasn't going to settle for just anything-he has standards, you know. Brand was a no-brainer: A Mopar was all that would do. It did, however, need to be a numbers-matching car and rely on a Six Pack induction system. Also, Ron decided an automatic tranny would better suit his tastes.
While he was looking for the perfect ride, Ron remembered a distant cousin who lived in Hoosier country (that's Indiana, for those of you not into sports). It seems this cousin is the type of guy who's always bringing home something new (pertaining to cars, anyway). With a call to cousin Brad, Ron was pleased to hear about the GTX that recently took up residence at Brad's place. Knowing it might be what he wanted, Ron jumped aboard an airplane and went to see the car . . . er . . . we mean visit family.
What he found when he got to his cousin's house was a semi-unrestored gem with 54,000 miles showing. Those miles were initiated by Jerry Bauers when he purchased the car new on June 6, 1970, at the ripe old age of 18. Seems that Jerry had dear old dad sign on the dotted line under his name and the deal was done. In 1992, for reasons unknown, Jerry sold the car to its second owner (unknown), who repainted it the original shade of FC7 in Violet. Eight months later, again for reasons unknown, the second owner sold the X back to Jerry. Over the next eight years, the car spent most of its time with the shifter in the "P" position, racking up a mere 1,300 miles. Enter cousin Brad and, finally, Ron.
With the car back at Ron's place in New York, It was time to assess what the X needed in order to be as good as new. The engine was given to The Engine Shop in Brooklyn, New York, where it was treated to a complete balancing and cylinder-wall cleanup. It was then given back to Ron for reassembly. Ron filled it with TRW 10:1 pistons, the stock crank and rods, as well as a stock camshaft. The freshened 906 heads pull fuel through the Six-Pack intake, and the Prestolite distributor then lights the fire. The tranny, which had been replaced years before Ron's acquisition, was given to FAST Performance in Staten Island for the required rebuild and was filled with an MP torque converter.
The shine factor is the same paint that the second owner had applied sometime during his eight-month ownership in 1992-'93. Nothing but a good cleaning and waxing was required. With 54,000 miles showing, Ron knew the suspension would need some attention. To that end, the front end was completely rebuilt, and the K-frame, bumper brackets, pulleys, and other incidentals were powder-coated. Ron wanted the old chrome pieces to look just as nice as the paint, so he had them rechromed.
His first appearance on the show field was the '01 Atlantic Nationals held in Englishtown, New Jersey. With the 9-year-old paint, original interior, and the detail work Ron had performed, he garnered his first First Place trophy.
One would think that since Ron had won a First Place trophy his first time out, he would be content to leave things alone. Well, one would be wrong. Over the following winter months, the interior was given the once-over just to give it that better-than-new appearance. Ron replaced the headliner and carpeting and had the gauges refurbished. Upon returning to the Atlantic Nationals in 2002, Ron again received the trophy for First Place.
What's next on the agenda for Ron? "I feel I am actually done [restoring the car], so I am going to throw my extra set of rims with radials on it and drive it whenever I can." Sounds like a plan to us, Ron-sounds like a good plan.