Unlike most vehicles featured in CC, this thing is pretty much stock. However, adding the word “super” in front of “stock” makes a huge impact on Mopar guys, so we couldn’t resist. It’s a stripped down ’64 Dodge 330 sedan, fit with a 426 Max Wedge engine, so there’s a lot to love about this bright-red Mopar. Rick Lewis bought the car partially complete a few years ago and went to great lengths to finish it and give it the right amount of period-correct flair.
Rick has been a hard-core Mopar guy since his senior year in high school, and he’s a stickler for details, so this combination of traits resulted in a perfectly restored Max Wedge car with lots of personality. After buying the car in 2005, Rick and his son G.R. spent five years finishing it, replacing many parts with rare N.O.S. equipment while refurbishing other components in an effort to keep aftermarket parts out of the mix. Detail work inside and out gave the car its flawless appearance, and the mismatched tire and wheel combination is exactly what a racer would’ve done in 1964. Skinny mag-type wheels on the front with painted steel wheels out back—it’s an acquired taste, meaning most people wouldn’t get it, but the people who do truly appreciate the vintage look. Apart from the new wheels and tires, the only other modifications are the subframe connectors and the deep-sump oil pan. Rick kept it simple and let the car’s original qualities take over from there.
Max Wedge cars were extremely popular with Super Stock racers in the mid-’60s because Mopar had an amazing racing program and undeniable results on the track with the Ramchargers. People who bought a Max Wedge car wanted to go racing, and even though manual transmissions were the hot ticket back then, it is reported that approximately 60 four-speed Max Wedge cars were built, among the different models offered by Dodge. Rick’s car is one of the elite few, and if you break it down to four-speed cars built on the Dodge 330 platform, the production numbers get even smaller.
According to Rick, his 330 sedan is an original four-speed car, but whether it’s a factory lightweight is still up in the air. The car has aluminum door hinges, which are super rare, but it does not have any of the aluminum front end components. Regardless of the car’s unclear history as a factory lightweight, it is a true Max Wedge car, rated at 425 hp, thanks to a 12.5:1 compression ratio and lots of factory go-fast goodies. Dual Carter carburetors sit atop the original cross-ram intake manifold, and the rare cast-iron exhaust manifolds are also Max Wedge specific.
Even though it’s a fully restored car down to the correct overspray in the trunk, engine bay, and undercarriage, Rick likes it because it never fails to draw a crowd. He also likes to drive it because of the dual-carbed 426, backed by a four-speed manual transmission and 4.10 gears. The 3,340-pound Mopar has plenty of engine, and Rick doesn’t mind giving it a quick romp now and then. Rick’s ’64 Dodge has the right attitude, the right parts, and it’s definitely a rare beast, so it’s an excellent example of what a factory-prepped drag car should look like. Stock or modified, these Max Wedge cars are wicked!
Who: Rick Lewis
What: ’64 Dodge 330 Max Wedge
Where: Knoxville, Tennessee
Engine: The 426ci Max Wedge engine was built to stock specs and came with the car when Rick bought it. The stock bottom end consists of 12.5:1 pistons, while the camshaft is a Max Wedge reproduction unit. Two Carter carburetors send fuel into the cross-ram intake manifold and cylinder heads. According to factory ratings, this Max Wedge engine produced 425 hp. Rick’s only modification to the engine is the deep-sump oil pan. The exhaust manifolds and aluminum velocity stacks are rare pieces, specific to the Max Wedge.
Transmission: Chrysler didn’t build a manual transmission strong enough to withstand the forces of a Max Wedge or a Hemi car until 1964, when it introduced the A833 four-speed. With 1964 being the only production year of four-speed Max Wedge cars, it makes them extremely rare and obviously very desirable for collectors.
Chassis: It’s all stock, aside from the subframe connectors, but Mopar definitely put thought into its racing program with a special suspension setup. The Super Stock springs are a staple in the Mopar community, and this car has a pair attached to the original 83⁄4 rearend. A 4.10:1 ratio makes for awesome acceleration, and the car is still manageable on the street. The front torsion bars are stock, but Rick adjusted them to get the nose-high stance. Braking consists of a single-pot master cylinder and drums all around, while steering is the stock manual equipment.
Wheels/Tires: Rick’s Max Wedge rolls on polished Radir five-spoke wheels wrapped in BFGoodrich Silvertown bias-ply tires from Coker Tire. Out back is a pair of 15x7-inch steel wheels, which are painted body color and mounted to a pair of new Hurst cheater slicks. The capped slicks were originally 235/75R15 radials and currently measure a little more than 28 inches tall and approximately 7 inches wide—perfect for the Super Stock look.