Steve admits he plans to show the car for a while, but that did not preclude him from taking out for some quick parade laps on the road course and even trying his hand at the autocross. While it did not cost as much as a "real" Hemi car might, he did allude to the fact that he was way over budget. Nonetheless, cranking down the front stretch at 100-plus mph, taking home the first place trophy from Horsepower TV, earning the NAPA Sponsors Choice Award for Best Mopar, and knowing Brenda had caught the "vision" makes this Dodge a real gem.
'68 Dodge Coronet R/T Convertible Tribute
Car Owner: Steve and Brenda Ashby, Marietta, GA
Building torque and power came easy; just a check written for a Mopar Performance 472 Hemi. The mild-mannered mid-size lung in the lineup dynoed out at 525 ponies after being equipped with a Retrotek fuel injection outfit, which fits right on the factory-supplied single-four intake. Chuck Tinker and Dirk Carter, who did most of the work on this car, put the EFI together and had it running within an hour after some minor computer tweaks. It's "jetted" via internal injector to flow 850 cfm. Internally, the engine is right out of the crate.Add-ons included a new A/C compressor mounted with Bouchillon brackets, and a full tti exhaust outfitted with a hidden Cherry Bomb muffler inside custom-built Doug's electronic cutouts thanks to Ronnie Ross.
A Hurst shifter mounted in the console stirs through five forward gear clusters in the Tremec TKO 600 box.
SureGrip and Dana 60 pieces will handle whatever traction is available; a 3.55 final cog is for street/strip use.
Horsepower and Performance:
Up on the dyno, the package kicked out 525 ponies; on the racetrack, it sounds like it
It's all 21st Century-AlterKation K-frame, rack and pinion, adjustable shocks were added up front, while C&T fabbed up the rear four-link and custom panhard bar to clear the gas tank.
Front and rear discs, courtesy Wilwood.
15x8 Billet Specialty five-spokes.
255R60-15s up front, 275R60-15 out back, and all compounded to TA Radial formula by BF Goodrich.
Credit for the sheetmetal work again goes to C&T, who created some panels from scratch and made the most of available OEM replacements.
Final paint by Extreme Exteriors and Bill "Junior" Queen, owner.
Mostly OEM, C&T did fabricate new mounting brackets for the console and also did a stealth Kenwood CD/stereo install, with the handheld controller mounted inside the center console hatch.
Best Performance: n/a
Coronet R/T restorers and friends, YearOne, Summit, NOS Mopar, Dante's Mopar Parts, and others.