When it was finished, Mike's '65 was true to the inspiration he found at that long-ago California Hot Rod Reunion. "It was important to me to recreate the period-correct appearance of an original A990 car, and not have to worry about driving it," he says. "I accomplished my goal--this car is an absolute beast. I can hammer the Hemi and not have to worry about ruining a piece of drag racing history." He adds, "Nobody in their right mind would drive an original A990 car, because they're too rare and valuable."

This year's NHRA California Hot Rod Reunion is set for October 19-21 at Auto Club Famoso Raceway. It's a weekend filled with racing, show cars, and inspiration--and a swap meet where you might find what you need for your own A990 clone project.

Fast Facts

'65 Dodge Coronet two-door sedan (A990 tribute)
Owned by: Mike Erickson, Littleton, Colorado

Mopar Power

  • Engine: Ray Barton used rare original 1965 parts that Mike located (such as aluminum "K" cylinder heads and chrome valve covers, a magnesium cross-ram intake manifold, an aluminum water pump housing, and aluminum water neck) to build a 528-inch Race Hemi that makes nearly 700 horsepower on pump gas.
  • Transmission: Brewer's Performance built the iron case 18-spline A833, with Hurst shifter.
  • Rearend: Dana 60 by Strange Engineering with 3.54 rear gears.

Sure Grip

  • Suspension: (Front) Parallel torsion bars with Competition Engineering adjustable drag shocks (Rear) TriCity Competition rear leaf springs with Rancho adjustable shocks.
  • Brakes: Just like in 1965: drum-and-shoe, front and rear.
  • Wheels and Tires: Magnesium American Racing Torq Thrusts in front and wide (15x8 inch) steel rear wheels wear BFGs.

High Impact

  • Body: Original '65 Coronet two-door sedan unibody, with an original 426 Race Hemi K-member, inverted right front shock tower, subframe connectors, and rear mini tubs.
  • Paint: Two-stage Sherwin-Williams Ultra 7000 White, sprayed on by Mike Johnson at Past Times, Estes Park, Colorado.
  • Interior: SMS supplied original '65 Coronet vinyl upholstery, which Autoweave in Lakewood, Colorado, turned into new front and rear bench seat covers.