"A Charger was the first car I ever went 100 mph in." Pat Flaherty, referencing his childhood ride in his dad's old '68 Hemi Charger.
The Hemi displaces a total...
The Hemi displaces a total of 472 inches thanks to a stroker crankshaft. The package has a dyno sheet that shows 711 horsepower, and a redline of 7,300 rpm.
Bill Brownlie's design crew that created the second-generation Charger made what some have called a few errors in its execution; indeed, the styling itself proved to be anathema in the function department when NASCAR's pilots took the beasts above 160 mph. Nonetheless, that clean, deeply-inset grille and the flying buttress rear window still look good standing still. It will always remain classic.
Let's take a look at Pat Flaherty's Charger from this esthetic point of view. Chargers have come in a lot of colors, but for this rendition, Pat chose to use a silver hue, originally mixed for Mercedes, with PPG supplying the pigment and John Lanza doing the actual hard work of handling a run-free spray gun. Coupled with the chrome accents, black grille and Scat stripe, and red taillights, the car looks beautifully clean and raw.
With the help of Fatman Fabrications...
With the help of Fatman Fabrications and Just Suspension, the Charger is lowered 2 inches and sits just right.
According to Pat, "My dad always had cars around, but by far the best was his '68 Hemi Charger; he bought it new in 1967. It was the first car I ever went 100 mph in. It was B5 blue, and he raced it at the now-closed 75-80 Dragway and won a lot of class trophies."
This Charger began life as a standard 383 example. The car's rework had been started by a police officer in Colorado, who decided it was going to take too much cash to bring it back to life. The sheetmetal replacement work had been finished, but the car was apart. In early 2006, Pat brought it home in pieces, and did just about all of the remaining work except the driveline and paint in his home garage.
Inside, the Charger got red vinyl skins from Legendary Auto Interiors, while the dash was sent out to Just Dashes for a full rebuild, including the factory tachometer. Pat installed a shift light as well, so he would know instantly when the engine is up in its 7,000-plus redline zone. A set of Autometer gauges mounted in a custom panel are positioned in the dash above the console to monitor the vital signs, and Pat gives a special thanks to Gary's Wheels in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, for the excellent appearance on the OE steering wheel.
Pat admits he enjoyed the handiwork more than anything; the car was a project that involved his sons Nick and Kurt, and he is already deciding what to do with his time now that this masterpiece is done.