We know where 90% of A12 cars ended up: The drag strip. Many started there too, and quite a few did quite well. So many have been repainted and restored with no thought of preserving history (which is why we're leaving Project Six Pack alone.) Running a ¼ mile at a time, this car never saw the street and was never even registered! Here it sits, restored but with full race history and photographs, and with 697 actual miles on the clock! In fact, unless we hear other-wise, this has to be THE lowest mileage A12 car on the planet!
From the 1969 through 1971 seasons, North Carolina racer Wyman Collie tore up the strips from Virginia to South Carolina and from the Atlantic Ocean through Bristol, Tennessee. Campaigned under the banner "Little Thirsty" in SS/FA with good success the car was well known around Wyman's home town of Charlotte. Wins came frequently with the highlight being an SS/FA class win at the 1969 NHRA Fall Nationals at Bristol, TN. There are even newspaper clippings about the car's successes in the Winston-Salem Journal and copies of his NHRA and AHRA licenses!
We have a binder full of photocopies of time slips from Sportsman's Park, Rockingham, Bristol, Suffolk, Blaney, Concord, Shuffletown, North Wilkesboro, Elk Creek, Person County, Piedmont, Mooresville and more! Eighth mile, quarter mile - the car hit them all. Starting out in the mid to low 12's Wyman eventually got the car into the high 9's at close to 120mph. As any good racer would he kept notebooks of tire pressures, track conditions and more. More pages and receipts are devoted to the parts he installed, people he solicited for advice, part numbers and more. There are also dozens of pictures of the car in full race regalia - it's a wild trip down memory lane!
Here's how the car was optioned out by Wyman, as confirmed in the Galen Govier report:
V2 Hemi Orange paint
H2X Deluxe black bench seat interior
A12 440 six pack package, $462.80
D32 HD Torqueflite Automatic $39.30
D69 4.10 Dana rear axle (A12 std.)
D91 Sure grip differential (A12 std.)
E63 383 engine (supplanted by the six pack mill, and standard on all A12 window stickers and fender tags)
G15 Tinted Windshield $25.90
J25 Three-speed wipers $5.40 (mandatory A12)
N51 Max cooling package less fan (A12 std.)
N65 Fan-torque drive (A12 std.)
R11 Music Master AM radio $61.55
S15 Police handling package $28.70 (mandatory A12) V1X Black vinyl top $89.20 V8X Black bumblebee stripe (std. Super Bee)
Y14 Sold car
Y39 Special order
U7S Special order G70x15 tires (redline; std. A12)
Unfortunately for car and driver, Wyman grew ill in 1971 and stopped racing altogether. Like many cars in these situations the Super Bee was set aside for a "someday" return to the strip which never happened. Sitting in a barn the car became a time capsule as the years turned into decades. A few years after his passing the car went to the family dentist who turned the car over to Hodges restoration. Months turned into years as the car again sat before Lee Hodge bought the car and restored it to the level you see it here as a shop project.
Start outside to find bright Hemi Orange paint covers the all original body panels and nicely applied Organisol on the original hood. Low mileage cars have a couple advantages over their more "well loved" brethren - they're always tighter driving cars and the trim is in much cleaner shape. The original grille is excellent, as are the original wheel lip moldings. Re-chromed bumpers glow front and rear with clean lenses at both ends. The original trunk floor is still in place and in excellent shape, as is the often destroyed deck lid. A new vinyl top surrounded by bright reveal and drip rail moldings sets the car off and ties in well with the black bumblebee stripe.
Moving to the interior you'll find a clean mix of original and reproduction parts. Those are new seat covers, a new BE/A dash pad and new ACC carpet keeping you comfortable with original door panels, headliner and sun visors. Performance Car Graphics-enhanced gauges are bright and clear behind a Mr. G's re-chromed bezel set. Chrome items such as window cranks and door handles are excellent.
Pop the trunk and you'll see a new trunk mat along with the original jack and a new Firestone G70x15 spare which matches the rest of the wheel set. The taillight housings are excellent, a new jack instruction decal is on the deck lid and you'll find a very clean trunk pan in line with the rest of the untouched sheet metal on the car.
Under hood, you'll find a well detailed motor (the original was pulled on day two- it's in the piles of notes we have with the car) and replaced with another from Chrysler - $100 racer net for the block! It was a brand new piece built up specifically for SS/FA racing, with 12.5:1 compression, a big cam, headers and all the good stuff inside. Detuned with stock compression pistons it's still quite a stormer! There's the original refinished wiper motor, reproduction ballast resistor and voltage regulator, the original washer fluid bottle, new battery cables and a new group 25 battery look are show ready. The built motor is topped by the original carbs, intake and air cleaner, while the coil, wireset and wiring harnesses are correct reproductions.
Underneath, all sheet metal was treated to a factory correct concours treatment with dark gray "dip" primer and orange overspray. The front suspension is properly detailed with new hardware, bare steering linkage (new tie rods, bushings and ball joints replace the originals - no sense in taking chances on drag strip hammered pieces) and the correct K frame in the correct sheen of black. The transmission is a race-ready replacement with Hemi internals and a deep TCI aluminum transmission pan while the original Dana axle was rebuilt with new bearings and seals. All of the fuel hoses have been replaced with the newer pieces, the metal brake and fuel hard lines have been replaced again in the name of safety. With a rowdier-than-stock motor you're going to need a heavy breathing exhaust system, and TTI's ceramic coated 3" pipes are just the ticket. Matching ceramic coated DynoMax mufflers and TTI's 3" stainless tips finish off the job and make the car's intentions very well known!
So here you have a piece of history, well kept, yet ready to run over and around anyone. Pretty interesting choice you have to make there, eh? You can show it, store it away in a bubble, or thrash on it, and it'll do any one of those things well. We've got a car that has frame able paperwork, a built drive train and a cool color combo! Seldom do you find a time capsule, and less seldom yet is it a car with this level of collectability! With its original hardware and high visibility this is a car you can't allow to pass you by!
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