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1968 Dodge Coronet R/T - B Body at Last

Oh what the heck, just spend the money like Mark did on his '68 Dodge Coronet R/T. You can always make more.

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Was he done yet? "I had to go a little bit further, so I redid the dashboard and the Ramcharger hood's fresh-air parts with carbon-fiber laminate, and added seats from a Mercedes for some modern comfort. If you are going to go fast, you are going to need to stop fast and handle. It's still not done, but it's close!"

Tech Notes

Who: Mark Kittel

What: '69 Dodge Coronet R/T

Where: Mark has spent his entire life in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Engine: Starting with a stock 440-block, Frank Widingstat at Advanced Performance in St. Paul added a 4.15-inch stroker Eagle crank and punched the bore to 4.375 for a total of 499 ci. Frank also added Eagle H-beam rods and Diamond dished pistons for a pump-happy 10.5:1 compression ratio. The cam is a Comp Xtreme Energy hydraulic flat tappet with 251 degrees of duration and 0.564 lift. The carb is a Quick Fuel 870 on top of Edelbrock RPM heads and a Torker II intake.

Exhaust: The headers are off-the-shelf ceramic-coated 171/48-inch Hedmans feeding a 3-inch system with Flowmaster 50-series mufflers.

Transmission: The Keisler five-speed kit required Mark to cut a 6-inch hole in the floor, but the rest of it went together with no drama. The kit comes with a 10.5-inch clutch, a hydraulic throwout bearing, and a pedal that looks like it came with the car.

Rearend: During the first thrash, the Dana 60 came out for a rebuild. When no one could get a set of axles to match the Sure Grip differential, Mark called Moser and ordered a complete bolt-in Dana 60. Problem solved. He put the 4.10:1 gear back and says that with the overdrive he can go down the highway at about 2,200 rpm in Fifth.

Suspension: Mark used a Magnum Force tubular K-member suspension conversion to eliminate clearance issues and to improve the handling characteristics of the car. The kit eliminates the torsion bars, replaces them with coilover shocks, and adds rack-and-pinion steering. "Now I can take that big car around an onramp at 70 mph."

Brakes: Both the front and rear disc brake setups are from Wilwood. The fronts have six-piston calipers with 13-inch discs and the rears have four-piston calipers and 11.75-inch discs.

Paint: When the bodywork was started, the painter found nine different paint jobs under the topcoat. The car had to be sanded down to bare metal and built up with primer and lots of House of Kolor Kandy Wild Cherry.

Radiator: The aluminum radiator is a direct fit for a B-Body, from Ron Davis Racing in Arizona, that did not require any modifications to the car. When Mark bought his radiator, Ron was doing circle track and NASCAR work; now he has some part numbers for old Mopars.

Fuel cell: Rick's Hot Rods in El Paso, Texas, built a stainless steel gas tank that looks like a stock unit and bolts in the stock location. It has an Aeromotive A1000 tank built into it, a -10 line from the pump to the regulator, and an electronic fuel sender.

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