The subject of today’s Survivor feature is this slick red 1969 Dodge Charger Daytona, which is said to have been the first NASCAR Grand National vehicle to post a 200 + mph race lap. It has remained in incredibly original condition, all of the way down to it still wearing the same vintage slick tires that it had last worn while competing for it’s final time. Now coated with a silicon sealant on their insides, they are certainly period correct for show purposes, but obviously not a safe or sticky tire any longer for any manner of spirited driving, whatsoever. What really impressed me the most about this vintage racer is the fact that it was “not restored, but thoroughly cleaned, detailed and all mechanical components checked. It is just as it was last raced in 1970”, as per Bruce Canepa’s site where it is listed for an undisclosed sum. A true time capsule. Let’s take a closer look, shall we?…
Before actually going any further, I would like to point out that this highly touted 475 horsepower 426 C.I.D. Hemi had actually sustained some “light sheet metal damage” during it’s last race in 1970 at Charlotte, therefore retiring it from the race.
That accident damage was repaired by the team after the race before sending the vehicle to it’s later homes in museums ever since. Since the nature of NASCAR racing is their rough and tumble play, if I were actually in the position to purchase this vehicle I’d probably want to know a little bit more about that reportedly small damage. That information shouldn’t prove to be too difficult to find with a little bit of research, so moving on…
What’s important to us for our Survivor weekend features is a car’s overall originality and period correctness that tell the story of exactly how a vehicle looked when it was raced during it’s heyday, which this car speaks of in volumes.
You gotta love the Darlington Raceway and Cotton Owens Garage decals that still remain on it’s windows, as well as the dual Monroe shocks that still have their original stickers attached.
With the hood up, you can see the car’s true tube frame structure that it was built with while it still maintained the rather same stock outward appearance of it’s Dodge Daytona Superbird road going companion. The fact that race cars resembled something that could be bought right off of the showroom floor was normally a very important factor for the “Win on Sunday and Sell on Monday” sales strategy so prevalent in America at the time, although Dodge dealerships had a very hard time selling the big winged cars to the public when new. We all know how that has changed in more recent years.
For more reminiscing of that far bygone era, find more of this Charger Daytona’s history HERE, and be sure to never drive hard on tires that are even only a few years old!
Find it for sale here at Canepa