Tony DeFeo has no issue with adding power to anything. Trust us on that…the man has been involved with some of the most wicked machines to hit the strip. But his current kink isn’t about adding power, it’s about losing weight. What he did with a slant-six Dodge Dart should be a case-study for every up and coming gearhead…not only did he make a basic six-cylinder A-body scream without a V8 swap, he got the car to pay for itself by hawking all of the unneeded parts at swap meets. He got the car to turn a profit, a few hundred dollars worth, and I can personally attest that the Dart is a howler.
But for all of the positives we can say about the Dart, there is one downside: you aren’t hiding that car’s true ambition. It’s Swiss Cheese’d to the max, has no trunk floor, and sounds like a badger that has gotten kicked in the johnson and is a bit upset with you. So, a new project has emerged. He’s calling it “Bottle Rocket”…not sure about the name, but the project car itself, a 1972 Dodge Coronet sedan, is shaping up to be really interesting. The plan is to make the most out of the 318-powered beast without going straight to a big-block swap. That runs in the face of conventional thinking, which says that a Mopar B-body automatically requires a big-block swap. I can’t lie, a four-door moonshine runner build out of one of these sedans is a dream plan of mine. But I’ve driven a 1973 Satellite with a 318 and I can say that just a little more power would’ve kept me happy, too. The Coronet will still look like a Dodge Coronet when he’s done, but between stock and finished, DeFeo is hell-bent on scrimping every last un-needed ounce of weight from the Coronet. Think he can carve 300 pounds out of the Dodge?