Which is less appreciated by their fan base, the Mustang II or the second-gen Dodge Challenger? It’s kind of a wash, really…neither car truly lived up to the billing of the nameplate and in the eyes of most, they’d rather forget they existed at all than deal with one in person. But when done up as a drag car, suddenly the hatred tends to go out of the window and instead you hear approving noises and the usual, “I haven’t seen one of those in so long…” kind of statements. The Challenger wasn’t a welcomed visitor…one of Chrysler and Mitsubishi’s collaborations, the Challenger was a sporty, smaller two-door coupe with a big four-banger. For the Malaise era, it should’ve done well. But time hasn’t been kind to the imported Challengers.
This one, however, has lived one hell of a charmed life. Instead of a 2.6L four, a 340ci V8 is underhood, sporting 11:1 compression, W2 heads and a tunnel ram with dual Holley 660 CFM four-barrels on top that is good for around six hundred horsepower. A very worked over A904 automatic takes the torture, with a 5,000 RPM stall converter hanging on for dear life in between the crank and the gearsets. Out back a Chrysler 8.75 rear axle with 5.38 gears and a Strange spool put that power down to the track.
It doesn’t have the presence of a new Challenger and doesn’t quite have the menace of the originals, but this gem should hold it’s own nicely!