My 1972 Charger Rallye

This car has had quite a history as the car that just would not give up. I found evidence that it had been wrecked and had its left rear quarter replaced while I had it disassembled during rebuilding after one of the wrecks it was involved in while I owned it. So far it has been in at least 3 major accidents.

When I bought this car in 1983 it was painted the original FE5 red that it originally came with. It was in very good shape and the air conditioning worked great. It had a 440-4 barrel engine and 727 automatic transmission with Slap Stick console shifter. It still had the original chrome exhaust tips out the rear which are quite rare these days. It had the magnum with the blackout in the center. The blackout on the rear of the trunk lid was missing but the black decals in the door louvers were present.


After a few years I was hit head-on by another car that lost control on a narrow road in the rain. The little Mustang was destroyed and mine was seriously damaged. It then started a tour of 10 months in Classic Auto under the direction of Terry Evans while I searched for parts and the car was healed back to good health.


The right frame rail had been bent and the left one had been buckled. Terry decided to cut the left one off and weld another one on. My dad had come across a prefect parts car.


It was another Charger Rallye that had been hit in the rear. It had the same heavy duty suspension that mine had. Ironically, a check on the ID plate showed that this parts car rolled off of the same factory that mine had and on the same day!


Here you can see the old frame rail before it was removed along with the side of the engine compartment


In this picture the frame rail and engine compartment from the parts car has been welded in place and the new suspension has been installed.


Next was the putting back together and painting part. I chose to keep the car red but I decided on red candy laquer. It was expensive but it was worth it.


When it was all over with it looked fabulous! I finally had the car I had dreamed of.


But not for long. After only 4 months out of the shop I t-boned a brand new Nissan pickup truck. It still had the 30 day tags on it. Fortunately I had 2 police officers behind me to verify that the other guy turned in front of me. So it was back to the frame rack again

At least this time Terry was able to straighten the rails without replacing either one. This also proved that his first job held up well. I was able to track down a Ramcharger hood in New York and have it trucked down to the shop.

Finding the louvered Rallye door was proving to be more difficult. Terry ended up cutting the louvered section out of the damaged door and welding it back into a regular Charger door. I was skeptical at first but today the only sign is the weld that can be seen if you look inside the door with a flashlight.


My luck has been much better for the past few years. I was beginning to think that the blackout on the hood was a bull's eye for other drivers.


Now I am in the process of doing a minor restoration of sorts. Since having to pull the heads to replace the freeze plugs and fix some oil leaks I am doing a general cleanup of the engine compartment. Other than that this car lives on and drive great.

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