- Completed in 2008
- Metallic orange paint
- 509ci stroker V8 (563hp)
- A833 4-speed manual
- 8.75" / Richmond 3.55 gears
- Lowered 1.5 inches
- SSBC four-wheel disc brakes
- Foose 17/18-inch wheels
- Hurst Pistol Grip shifter
“Resto-mod” is one of those terms that gets thrown around so much, it's hard to remember what it really means. A lot of the time, it's used as a catch-all for cars that have too many modifications to be considered stock but not enough to fall into any real category. Thankfully we have cars like this 1970 Plymouth Road Runner to remind us all what a resto-mod is really about – taking what the factory provided and turning the dials up to 10. The beneficiary of a rotisserie restoration, the car has a traditional look with a modern twist wrapped around a brutal 563hp 509 cubic inch power plant, backed by a tried and true A833 four-speed. There is no roll cage, no aftermarket chassis, no 14-inch brakes, and no navigation system – just a bench seat, a pistol grip, and enough power to plant a smile on your face for the next week straight. If you like your Mopars mildly modernized but pure in spirit, step in and have a look at your new Road Runner.
Restoration work was completed in 2008 meaning any shoddy body work would have made itself known by now. Walking around the car today, there are absolutely no issues to report. The car was stripped to bare metal and received new quarter skins as well as a fresh filler panel between the back glass and decklid. The work is virtually undetectable and buried under an impressive coat of paint. While it may present as an average hue of orange in pictures, the paint is actually a metallic orange with a hint of pearl that comes into its own in natural sunlight. The black hood stripe is painted on and also has a bit of flake to keep things consistent. Buried under a protective clearcoat, the work is admirable and, if cared for properly, sure to look that way for years to come. The body fits together as perfectly as 1970 sheet metal is capable of and offers a great first impression for anyone checking out the car in person.
Mother Mopar did a great job finishing these cars with clean but memorable styling cues. This Road Runner keeps the basics in place but cuts the fat for a sleek modern look. At the front of the car, dual headlights and an understated black grille with a right-justified Plymouth badge are bound together by clean stainless trim. There's a small vent directly below the grille and, further down, a showroom new chrome bumper that makes room for clear round turn signals and rubber bumper strips. The striped hood offers a subtly raised center section, drawing the eye toward a greenhouse with factory fresh glass and well-preserved stainless trim. The side profile is lead by a Road Runner logo at the tip of both fenders while clean Plymouth styling leaves little more than chrome mirrors, chrome door handles, and a side scoop to break up the classic muscle car shape. The rear view is topped by a black stripe and Road Runner logo while Plymouth script centers between split factory taillights. A body-hugging rear bumper with integrate reverse lights caps the view while rectangular chrome exhaust tops extend outward below.
The '70 Road Runner was offered with a 426 HEMI and, if you were looking for something to terrorize the drag strip with, it would have been the engine to go with. On the street, the 440 was king for its mix of brutality and relative reliability. This car started with a 440 cubic inch foundation, building it into a monster that now produces a dyno-proven 563hp and 623lb-ft of torque with a pump gas friendly 9.5:1 compression ratio. The engine is stroked to 509 cubic inches and features all new internals to provide a rock solid foundation. Indy Cylinder Head provided the aluminum EZ-1 heads as well as the single-plane intake and finned cast aluminum valley cover. Up top, a Holley four-barrel carburetor handles fueling, concealed by a chrome-trimmed K&N air cleaner assembly. The front of the engine turns a painted power steering pump opposite an alternator while the water pump works with an aluminum radiator and a single fan in an aluminum housing to keep the 440 cool. Turn the key and a Mopar battery sends power to an MSD ignition system to get the 440 started while spent gases exit through coated headers into a dual exhaust system with Dynomax mufflers. The car has an intimidating idle that escalates into a roar with a quick push of the accelerator and, thanks to plenty of familiar Chrysler Corporation ancillary pieces, the bay still pays respect to its factory roots.
Peer underneath this B-body to find an impressive undercarriage with a great mix of performance pieces and show-oriented details. The metallic orange paintwork continues onto not only the floorpans but front frame rails and subframe connectors as well. In the center, an A833 four-speed manual transmission utilizes a dual Centerforce clutch in providing firm shifts. Out back, a factory 8.75-inch rear end with 3.55 Richmond gears and Strange axles translates that power into a language the pavement understands. The suspension isn't radically revised but features enough upgrades to get the car around the corners with ease. It's been lowered approximately 1.5 inches and utilizes a torsion bar front and leaf spring rear with all new polyurethane bushings throughout. Power steering makes the most of driver input while SSBC four-wheel disc brakes significantly improve upon stock stopping distances. At the corners, a combination of a 17 and 18-inch Foose wheels wrapped in 245/45ZR17 front and 285/45ZR18 Sumitomos plant the chassis to road with style.
Between the doors, you'll find a black vinyl interior that strikes a balance between classic and cool without the aid of any modern technology or wild custom pieces. Step over the polished door sill plates and onto fresh black carpet, topped by rubber Road Runner mats. The stainless-trimmed pedals look great and match the chrome-handled Hurst pistol grip shifter well. Seating is provided by a pair of bench seats with lap belts. They have a stock feel but the orange stitching adds a cool detail sure to stand out at local shows. That stitching extends onto the door panels which are completed by armrests, stainless trim, and black paint on the upper and lower sections. The headliner is finished in solid black though the package tray reintroduces the bright stitch work from behind the seats. From the driver position, a billet three spoke wheel does its best Mopar Tuff Wheel impression, bolted to a fixed steering column. The dash offers no-frills styling with an unrestored instrument bezel monitoring revs, speed, fuel, temperature, oil pressure, and alternator output. Simple heater controls and a solid state radio round out the interior offerings.
A lot of builders set out with the intention of making their muscle car do everything a modern car can do and more. Thankfully, this Road Runner stayed true to form with its 563hp 509 V8, four-speed, and updates aimed specifically at supporting those two pieces. Paired with a fresh take on traditional Mopar war paint, this is an impressive build and one sure to please any Chrysler Corporation fan who enjoys grabbing gears sideways. If that sounds like you, don't wait around – big power at a fair price never sticks around for long!
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What Customers Are Saying
After hearing good things about the people at RK Motors, I contacted them regarding consignment of my street rod. I found Tony Klein to be a pleasure to work with. He was very professional and forthcoming in our communications. He evaluated my vehicle and made suggestions of enhancements which would help ensure the desired result would be achieved in the marketing of the vehicle. We agreed on an acceptable sale price. Following the completion of the recommended items, I brought the vehicle to RK for consignment. After a thorough inspection and correction of some minor issues at what I considered a fair price, the vehicle was offered for sale. It sold quickly with me receiving the agreed value. I would have to repeat the recommendation that I received. RK Motors does what they say they will do, and obtains for the seller a fair and agreed value. What more could you ask for?Doug C.