1970 Dodge Challenger Trans Am

The following write up was what I used for my car show placard when I showed my Challenger T/A at car shows.

Article and Photos by Challen Yee

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1970 Dodge Challenger Trans Am

By Challen K. Yee with excerpts from “Dodge Challenger and Plymouth Barracuda” by David Newhardt (2000)

“Chrysler was a bit tardy in getting a factory entry into the SCCA Trans-Am racing series. Both Ford and General Motors had been slugging it out with Boss 302s and Camaro Z-28s. “The gang at Mopar wanted some racing glory to rub off onto their line of street cars, so they dove into the fray for the 1970 season. The rules required that the manufacturer build 2,500 street models of its racing car. To this end, Chrysler released All-American Racers (AAR) `Cuda and its cousin, the T/A Challenger…

“2,142 Challenger T/As were put on the road. All of these were built in a five-week period in March and April of 1970.

“Unlike the racers, which had to use a 340-ci engine destroked to 303.8 ci and topped with a single four-barrel carburator, the street versions were powered by a Six-Pak-equipped [three two-barrel Holley carbs combining for over 1300 cfm] 340-ci engine.

“The iron block was stressed relieved, and the main bearing area, while delivered with a two-bolt main, had plenty of material for the fitting of four-bolt main bearing caps. [Furthermore, the block had a higher nickel content and the heads were also a special T/A item designed to allow more radical porting by the use of an offset rocker arm system which relocated the valve pushrods].

“The engine was rated at 290 horsepower at 5,000 rpm, but redline came up at 6,500. “The Challenger T/A was modeled after the Trans-Am racer Sam Posey wheeled around the Trans-Am series. Its fiberglass hood was influenced by the belly air scoop on the P-51 Mustang fighter plane, and Dodge pulled it off beautifully.”

(The following excerpts are from David Newhardt’s “Dodge Challenger and Plymouth Barracuda”).

The standard rear axle set was 3.55:1 which according to Car & Driver magazine’s July 1970 issue helped deliver 0-60 in 5.8 seconds and a quarter-mile time of 14.3 seconds at 99 mph. Optional gear sets included 3.91 and 4.10 housed in the mighty Dana 60. The transmissions, both the A-833 manual and the A-727 automatic were “big-block” pieces designed to be mated to the hot performing “small-block” 340. Some of the distinctive standard equipment on the T/A models were: front disc brakes, E60x15 Goodyear tires in front and G60x15 on the back, higher rate front and rear sway bars, torsion bars and rear leaf springs, side exit exhaust, frame stiffening features, special stripe and decal treatments, fiberglass hood, and front and rear spoilers. Some of the many popular options included: fast ratio steering, rally gauges, dual painted mirrors, vinyl tops, and a myriad of awesome colors for both interior and exterior.

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The Annual Concours is no longer being held at Stanford University. Not sure for which political reason.

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Non-matching numbers TA engine out of a AAR Cuda that got totaled in the late 1970’s. The father of the owner saved it in a garage in central California until I bought it through an Ebay auction. The restoration was meticulously performed by Restorations By Julius in Chatsworth, CA.

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My friend Scott Douglas. “The Shelby Kid” and the Ford guy at school,  he’s owned several Ford products in his life including a Shelby like this one. Shelby’s are also one of my favorite non-Mopars, having been a Mustang owner in the past I had a lot of fun with the NorCal Shelby Club at open tracks.

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Simply one of my favorite non-Mopars, and with respect for my old departed friend Rick Elliott, who was the Chevy guy in school.

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Let’s end this article with my old garage queen MoPar. As life would have it, I no longer own this Challenger. Sure was nice.

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The Dodge Kid in his youth about 1976. I think I wore this hat everyday through my Freshman year in high school. Photo by Nick Yee

The Dodge Kid in his youth about 1976.

Copyright © 2015 ChallenYee.com TheDodgeKid.com BestBuckBuck.com All Rights Reserved.

MoPar Alley Rally 2014

Mopar Alley Rally 2014- De Anza College, Cupertino, California

As the largest one-day MoPar car show in California, with over 350 cars annually, this year Mopar Alley found a new venue for their car show at De Anza College. The newly renovated parking lot comes equipped with solar panels overhead which saved most of us from getting toasted by the sun.

Below I’m sharing some of my photos for your curiosity. I also have the text that was posted in front of my car for passerbys. One guy who was looking for a 1970 Challenger for a project car asked if he could sit in my car (as per my invitation below) and, being a minor ambassador for the MoPar world, I was happy to let him.

I’ve entered this car show at least 4 times. I haven’t won anything yet, but I’m okay with it. Being a popular vote, there’s more fun involved. The best part of being at these MoPar shows is talking with people interested in sharing stories and information, taking pictures, and, for me,  catching up with some reading.

This year I entered my R/T in the “Daily Driver 1968-1974” class with 7 other cars. I don’t consider my car “Stock” and I don’t consider it in a show quality “E-body” category, or a “Pro-Street” class. Maybe  a “Vanishing Point” category would work?

In the past I entered my restored  FE5 (Bright Red) T/A, and the competition in that category is really tight.  A very nice, crowd favorite EB5 blue on blue 4 speed T/A owned by Barry Bentley takes the category almost annually and if they didn’t force category 1st place winners to compete in the following year’s “Topgun” class, someone like Barry could possibly take the 1st place category every year in his car’s class. This year there was only one other T/A, a very nice Fe-5 with a black vinyl top, owned by David Gibbons,  in T/A class (see in photos)… ding! winner!

(I did manage to take 3rd place in the Concourse d’Elegance at Stanford University back in 2004 which is judged strictly by officials).

 

mycar

Hi there… I am a real 1970 Dodge Challenger R/T.

I am a 44 year old muscle car and a driver. It’s okay to touch me or ask my owner questions if you want to.

I am known as an “N-code” E-body which means I was originally built with a 383. Actually, I originally came with an automatic and was painted Sublime-Green with a black bumblebee stripe.

At some point at least 3 owners before my current owner, my engine was replaced with a 440, with, I think, a .480 cam, headers and a Richmond 5-speed with 4.56 or stiffer gears. I was driven pretty hard since the 5th gear is 1:1.

Two owners ago, the rear axle gears were changed to 2.94’s which go well with the Richmond 5-speed since 5th gear is 1:1. Highway driving is decent.

Recently I’ve had my suspension upgraded and my 44 year old frame stiffened a little to handle the 440 and had a Six Pack added to match the hood emblems.

If you noticed, the Six Pack Air cleaner decal says “340” not “440”, this is because this air cleaner assembly is from my owner’s Challenger T/A (which he has since had to sell). When he bought that Challenger, it came with the wrong air cleaner assembly but had the correct 340 decal. During the restoration of that car, my owner kept that air cleaner assembly for me, a big-block MoPar. He’s got a new decal but hasn’t gotten around to fixing it yet. So for now, it’s a memorial to the old car (which was sold to a guy in Kentucky).

I still need my carbs tuned to get all my power back and by next year, I hope to get rid of this dorky-looking upholstery and headliner for a new set of Legendary NOS style upholstery and seat buns.

Since my owner likes the 1971 film “Vanishing Point”, I am probably going to remain Alpine White.

Thanks for Looking!

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oldchargerfastbackold2old1old_trucknew_tahood new_orange mycar ltBlu_cuda lime_cuda hoodornament gtx grey69greenSbird facing DSC_0107 drag_fish daves_ta chp barry_ta 2challengers

xrr xracer xpurpleconv xpink xold xnewchallengers xhotrod xgreenbomb xemblem xbugjuice xbomb xbluebomb xblackcuda xamx xair

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The Dodge Kid in his youth about 1976. I think I wore this hat everyday through my Freshman year in high school. Photo by Nick Yee

The Dodge Kid in his youth about 1976.

 

Copyright © 2014 ChallenYee.com. TheDodgeKid.com  All Rights Reserved.