19-20 January 2017

Offered from a Private Collection

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Lot 243

1966 Dodge Coronet 500 Hemi Convertible

  • Chassis no. WP27H67258164

Sold for $176,000

425 bhp, 426 cu. in. OHV V-8 engine, four-speed manual transmission, torsion bar independent front suspension, live rear axle with semi-elliptical leaf springs, and four-wheel hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 117 in.

  • Offered from a private collection
  • One of 12 Hemi/four-speed Coronet convertibles built in 1966
  • Documented by MoPar historian Galen Govier
  • Well-maintained complete restoration by marque specialists

In order to overcome the NASCAR ban on Race Hemi engines after 1964, Chrysler developed a somewhat milder Street Hemi, which could be sold to the public in the numbers required for homologation. An option for B-body Dodges and Plymouths, beginning in the 1965 model year, the Street Hemi had lower compression, less aggressive valve timing, and cast iron cylinder heads. The full-throated Race Hemi, meanwhile, remained quietly, slyly available, for the committed competitors and unmuzzled enthusiasts who wanted it.

Most of the latter engines went into barebones two-door sedans or hardtop coupes, in keeping with the engine’s racing nature. However, it was entirely possible, simply by checking the right boxes at the local Chrysler-Plymouth-Dodge dealer, to order a Race Hemi in a model with more panache and creature comforts. That is how 21 Dodge Coronet convertibles received a Race Hemi in 1966 – and a dozen of them also had a four-speed transmission, making for the hottest available driveline and a ragtop that really rocked.

The car shown here is documented by MoPar registrar and historian Galen Govier as being one of the 12 Hemi/four-speed Coronet convertibles produced, and as having been originally finished, as it is today, in Bright Red with a Premium Grade white vinyl interior, top, and top boot. Its additional options included the pushbutton AM radio with front speaker and a console-mounted tachometer. Govier notes that production of the car was scheduled for 15 April 1966, at the St. Louis plant. Later owners included the well-known custom show promoter, Larry Tarantolo of Illinois, and muscle car collector Jack Brundage, for whom the Coronet was restored by Muscle Car Restorations of Wisconsin, between 1997 and 2003, invoices for which are on file.

As with other cars from this collection, the workmanship throughout the Coronet is exceptional, with flawless paint and exterior brightwork, a stunning white vinyl interior, and American five-spoke sport wheels shod in BF Goodrich Radial T/A tires. The car shows fewer than 300 miles, and while it has not been run since its restoration, the engine has been internally treated with oil, keeping it virtually new. A new owner may make a clean start and enjoy the car, or keep it under preservation. Either is tempting, with one of the rarest MoPar muscle cars of its era.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

David Swig

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Jake Auerbach

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more