The '79 300 package was already popular enough that the factory resources were exhausted; by now, even the striping package was being reproduced by the aftermarket. Due to emissions standards for the dual exhaust and catalytic converters, a power seat had been impossible to come by from the factory; Larry was able to retrofit parts to build his own. Also installed during the course of the restoration were power locks, the factory light package, and the rare AM/FM stereo CB outfit and antenna, none of which had been on this machine from the factory. The toughest part was a NOS grille, as the originals are often pitted badly due to the poor materials used at the time.
"I finally located one on the Internet from a guy in a 300 club, who had one NOS in the box. I called him and we were in the middle of making a deal, but with Christmas coming, I didn't have the money," says Larry with a grin. "Then, on Christmas day, I received it gift-wrapped, because my wife had bought it and told this guy to not tell me. It was a great present!"
Of all the items that would wear out, the tires were the most critical. Despite the fact that Chrysler models were trying to save weight at this time, the spares were almost all full size, and Larry spent years tracking down spare tires so he would have brand new vintage rubber on the 300. He now has two full sets. The plastic trim rings and small hubcaps have also proven difficult to find now.
Meanwhile, the driveline was gone through. The open-end 3.23:1 rear was rebuilt and the Torqueflite was freshened up. The motor was solid despite the mileage, so it was basically disassembled, cleaned up, and put back together with little more than new bearings and gaskets. The Thermoquad was super-tuned as well and is also like new.
Now revived to near perfection, this is a 300 that won't want for attention. When we shot these pictures at the Mopar Nationals last year, Larry was in the show field running against 300s that were older by decades, taking a 2nd Place in the process. As the last hurrah for the original Chrysler Corporation, the car is a tribute to what once was and will never be again.