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Rough Start: A Big-Block Cordoba That Looks Daily-Driver Ready – And It’s Under Budget!

Rough Start: A Big-Block Cordoba That Looks Daily-Driver Ready – And It’s Under Budget!

One of the biggest problems with scraping the bottom of the budget barrel of Craigslist, as our Rough Start series does, is that every single vehicle we have shown tends to need something…it doesn’t matter what, something is always needed to make the car right. And that doesn’t quite sit well with the entire reasoning behind Rough Start features in the first place…the idea is to have five thousand dollars available for a car that in short order, can be put into daily driver use. It’s one thing to just need a tuneup and some fresh fluids – you should be doing that for any used car you acquire – but when we get to swapping engines or paint, that is stretching the concept a bit.

Cordoba2 Cordoba3

This 1977 Chrysler Cordoba would be a better option for someone who is legitimately starting out, needs something to drive everyday, but doesn’t want to start hunting for the nicest 1997 Lumina they can find. The positives are all there: the B-body platform shares everything with the 1971 Dodge Charger, the 400ci Mopar B-series motor has torque for days and can be built into something with minimal work, the 727 TorqueFlite is as stout as they get for street duty, and as an added bonus, this example is in near-perfect shape, with just a crack in the dash and wear on the seat noted. The Lean Burn has been trashed in favor of electronic ignition and a Holley four-barrel, an aluminum radiator is now handling cooling duty, and the only maintenance issue that requires attention is the inoperative fuel gauge. At the original $5,000 asking price, the Cordoba was just barely on the radar, but at the new low price of $3,500, how could you go wrong? Spend a couple hundred to fix the fuel gauge if you aren’t inclined or talented enough to do it yourself, and pocket the rest of the cash and start saving up for the big build. This is exactly what you should be hoping to find in a low-budget project car.

Craigslist Link: 1977 Chrysler Cordoba


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8 thoughts on “Rough Start: A Big-Block Cordoba That Looks Daily-Driver Ready – And It’s Under Budget!


    Lot’s of D2BD potential there…price aint terrible either….a little TLC and you’d have a cool cruiser.

  2. loren

    If four guys went in on it together, that’d be like $875 each, and 8mpg works out to 32 per person! Plus there’s still room for two (brave) girls! Go to concerts, or just park places! And you know ’cause it’s in nice shape some decent people owned it so there won’t be a bunch of old coke envelopes and stuff pushed under the seats. Totally out-classes any same-year Camaro.

  3. Darren Narine

    Diggin’ it. These cars get absolutely no love. Even in the North East where clean sheetmetal is mad overpriced, I’ve seen several *mint* Cordoba’s go for $3-5k. I will eventually grab one. I grew up taking road trips in my parents’ ’76 ‘Doba. The 360 Lean Burn was a total dog but it was mad comfy. The car was bought new and now belongs to my uncle, last I checked it had less than 30,000 kms (~19,000 miles) on it. The sunroof leaked like a sumbitch from new: my dad had to give the body a refresh in the early 80’s. I would love to build one with a 440+6 😀

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