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Morning Symphony: The Scream Of The LA 318 (Yes, They Can Scream!)

Morning Symphony: The Scream Of The LA 318 (Yes, They Can Scream!)

Enough with my usual prose…it’s 3/18 and it’s time for me to dive right back to my roots, to the LA 318 and the cars I usually found them in. If you are unfamiliar with my backstory, I’ve spent about half of my life enjoying Ma Mopar’s most unloved V8-powered children, the FMJ body series of cars. Translated out, that’s Aspen/Volare, Diplomat/Fury/5th Avenue, and Mirada/2nd generation Cordoba/Imperial. Why those cars? Easy: THEY ARE CHEAP! Unless you aim high and go for a Super Coupe, Aspen R/T or a Volar√© Road Runner, decent examples will set you back maybe a couple of thousand bucks…maybe…and you get a pretty decent amount of car for the cash. Though, now that I’ve said that, I’m waiting to hear rust jokes and questions as to where my own FJM is at…

But we are celebrating an engine today, not a car line. So why point out the car line? Because with two small exceptions (the fuel-injected 318 in the Imperial and the 360 that was available until 1981 in certain models) the LA 318 was THE V8 in the whole line, and after 1983, was the ONLY engine offered in the line. This was Chrysler’s one last V8, RWD platform (the M-body Diplomat/Fury/Fifth lasting until 1989) and it soldiered on pretty much unchanged. While normally the red-headed stepchild of the automotive world, a bit of hop-up parts can make a beat-up old cop car a whole lot of fun…and I know that for a fact, first-hand.

Ryan Urbanski is another slightly demented individual who was able to look at one of these cars and see more than a reason to run for the nearest dirt-cheap Fox body. His 1985 Plymouth Gran Fury might raise an eyebrow with some of the modifications (looking right at that spoiler, man…) but there is no denying that the 318 powering this beast is doing it’s damnedest to live up to the model name. Of course, a set of 4.10s will help in the burnout contest, but really, there is something about the intake noise these machines make when properly booted. Check out both videos below and see what we mean!

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2 thoughts on “Morning Symphony: The Scream Of The LA 318 (Yes, They Can Scream!)

  1. Ryan Urbanski

    Thank you for the feature in this write up! Great article too. This was my first car I bought in highschool, coming up on 7 years ago. When I restore the car, the spoiler will no longer be present, don\’t worry. Haha.

  2. roy scroggins

    I have raced 318’s in a dodge Dart since 1990. Started out shifting at 5000 rpm and running mid 14 seconds. Slowly progressed in engine technology, with the aid of a stock engine builder, to a 318 that I shift at 6700 rpm and run 11.80’s at 113+ mph. All engine stock stroke. This 318 SCREAMS.

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