First of all as a young teenager my first Chrysler was a VH Valiant Ranger 265 XL that I modified somewhat to resemble a VH Pacer/RT Charger. This car showed my true passion for a street machine where I could experiment with Modifications.
But as a young Chrysler enthusiast I always dreamed of owning a Chrysler RT E38 6 pack track pack Bathurst special. When I was in my early 30ís this dream came true and I became a proud owner of a beautifully self restored concourse winning example.
But the truth be known when you own such a collectable Australian Muscle Car the temptation to modify is quickly extinguished by your terms and conditions of your insurance policy if you want to keep the authenticity of the vehicles historical value. Thatís why your insurance company doesnít cover your vehicle on the race track which is what the car was built for initially.
Because of the limitations of the car, once restored, I lost interest and yearned for a street machine that I could enjoy without limitations.
In 1997 I purchased, in my opinion, the ultimate nostalgic engine. This being the legendary American Chrysler 392 Hemi Big Block.
Enter a new need for speed.
This engine, from the start, I planned to have it supercharged. For this I needed to go to main roads to find out whether I could put this on the street with street rego, because my whole aim was not just to do up a show car/trailer queen. I wanted to drive my blown hemi on the street and have something that you did not see every day on the street, with full street rego capability and full street and strip drivability.
This project started 4 years before I purchased a car purely because of the legal ramifications, engine builder, costs, importing parts, sourcing history and Information. I at first wanted to put the blown hemi in a 1971 Chrysler Valiant 2 door coupe. But main roads would not allow this modification due to power to weight ratios and suggested the bigger the car and the bigger the engine that came in the car the better the chances of putting the blown big block on the street.
Enter the 1962 Dodge Phoenix.
In America this car was Dodges first attempt at a Muscle Car optioned with a Cross Ram induction 413 cubic inch big block.
Armed with this information I approached main roads and was given the initial ok accompanied with their modifications hand book. In Australia they came fitted with a polly 318 motor as standard.
The car I purchased was owned by Fred Martin of Yeppoon and was purchased in 2001. The Dodge still had a stock polley 318 with twin exhaust system. Wheels were 15 x 10ís at the rear and 15 x 8ís on the front. The car was in reasonably good order for her age, bearing in mind I was always going to make her go and handle better.
Warren & Rachel