Red
Black
426 HEMI V8
4 Speed Manual
  • Lee Hodge restoration
  • Original sheet metal
  • Signed by Cotton Owens
  • Mopar Performance 426 HEMI
  • A833 18-spine 4-speed
  • Dana 60 / 4.10 Posi

Looking at a 1969 Coronet Super Bee, it's hard not to acknowledge the inner Steve McQueen. Even sitting still, these cars look like weapons. Thankfully, the Chrysler Corporation knew better than to give a car big scoops, bright colors, and cartoon graphics without adding some serious firepower under the hood. Most Bees got a 383, a few less received a 440, and a handful left the plant with the ultimate – a 426 HEMI. Of course, if you bought an original HEMI Super Bee, chances are you wouldn't go gallivanting around with the rear tires smoking – they're WAY too valuable to take that kind of risk with. No, you'd want something like this '69 Super Bee. Born a 383 car, it now sports a built 426 HEMI, added during a professional restoration that left no stone unturned. Even compared to the real thing, this car is a monster. Ready to turn heads and punish the pavement simultaneously? Then your B-body has arrived.

Spend some time on Mopar forums and it doesn't take long to see that, when shopping for a big-deal Mopar restoration, Hodge Restoration in Inman, SC is usually towards the top of the prospect list. From vintage racers to 100-point show cars, their work can be found all over the Mopar world. When it came time to revitalize this Super Bee, Lee Hodge was chosen and the results are every bit as good as you would expect. The color is R5 red, sprayed over one of the more aggressive designs of the muscle car era. The paintwork presents well with no noteworthy flaws to be found while, beneath the top coat, the body appears straight from every angle imaginable. These bodies go from nearly Kansas flat to intricately carved in the span of about two feet, so getting lines this crisp is no easy feat. No two ways about it – the car makes a solid first impression.

Now step in for a closer look. Despite the stripped-down racer vibe, there is plenty more to admire. The front end houses a sharp front end with dual headlights, chrome bumpers, and the awesome die-cast chrome-plated Super Bee medallion. Above, a fiberglass fresh air hood provides the A12 look without the hassle. Note the two pins instead of four – this one is on hinges. The scoop features prominent HEMI decals on both sides but that's about the only external warning the car offers. Follow the hood back to a greenhouse filled with clean glass and stainless trim all around. The driver side offers a round chrome mirror counterbalanced by the antenna on the passenger fender. Save for corner markers, bright wheel moldings, and chrome door handles, the profile is largely dedicated to displaying that Coke bottle styling these cars are famous for. The C-pillars slope down into quarters and a decklid wrapped with a bumble bee stripe, capped off by rectangular taillights, a chrome bumper, and dual exhaust tips. The combination of Dodge script and a second die-cast Bee medallion lets everyone know what just passed them.

Under that fiberglass hood lies the three letters that make every Mopar fan smile: 4-2-6. The core is a modern Mopar Performance HEMI block built to accommodate all OE components while featuring improved oiling. With .600” decks and cross-bolted first four nodular main caps, this is one sturdy foundation. Fuel is provided by a Quick Fuel Technologies carburetor mounted to a Ray Burton-designed aluminum intake. At either side, aluminum heads tuck neatly beneath tough-looking Mopar HEMI valve covers with tall Pentastar-branded breathers. This car was only built to do one thing, so you won't find a power steering pump or air conditioning compressor stealing power – just the water pump and alternator spinning courtesy of new belts. At the front of the bay, a large aluminum radiator keeps the Elephant cool with some help from a clutch fan. A full MSD ignition system gets the 426 fired while spent exhaust gases travel through long-tube headers that flow into a true dual exhaust system with Dynomax mufflers. Despite all the speed parts, the car starts easily and feels relatively mannered on the street.

Take a look under this B-body to find more solid work. The floors feature a tidy layer of undercoating so you don't have to worry about spending hours cleaning after every Dairy Queen run. Behind the HEMI, a tried-and-true A833 4-speed manual transmission offers quick and confident shifts, spinning power back to Dana 60 differential equipped with Posi and 4.10 gears. It pulls every bit as hard as you would expect and, with the straightforward suspension beneath, the sensation of speed is off the charts. That suspension is comprised of a torsion bar setup up front, leaf springs out back, and Competition Engineering three-way adjustable shocks at all four corners. If it didn't help the car go faster, it didn't go on the car, so niceties like power steering and power brakes are absent from this Super Bee. That said, the steering is easily manageable and the drum brakes are surprisingly effective at their job. The wheel wells are filled with 15-inch painted steel wheels topped with dog dish hubcaps. Mickey Thompson Sportsman tires in sizes 26x8.00x15 and 26x12.00x15 complete the package.

During the mid-to-late 1960s, Chrysler turned out some luxurious interiors filled with intricate details and unique styling cues throughout. Though nicely restored, a quick look around proves this is little more than a control room for the weaponry between the fenders. Front row seating is provided by a bench seat, with the middle seat reserved for the throw of the shifter. The factory dash remains in place, filled with familiar Mopar instrumentation including the beloved Tic-Toc-Tach. To the right, a radio delete pairs with a signature from stock car legend Cotton Owens to remind you what this car is all about. A Mopar Tuff Wheel offers control of the front wheels, though a factory-style wheel is also included in the sale. The topside of the floors are covered in clean black carpet and Super Bee-logo mats while a taut black headliner covers the opposite end of the car. All the soft surfaces show well and most of the bright pieces could moonlight as mirrors. Behind the back seat, the trunk is finished properly with a factory mat, spare tire, and jack.

So let's do a quick recap: HEMI power, Super Bee looks, a professional restoration by one of the best in the business, and a price well under what it would cost to recreate. Get in touch today, clear your garage later, and get ready to have a blast with your new 1969 Super Bee!

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