Volume II, Issue 6, Page 11

SPECIAL PRESENTATION

Tres Wilson Restored This Challenger That Once Belonged to the Late Bobby Isaac


Dodge’s entry into the ponycar wars of 1970 was a big deal. Dodge’s Challenger was a hardcore player in sea of new Mustangs, Firebirds, Camaros and Javelins, not to mention Plymouth’s redesigned ‘Cuda. The Challenger could be had with any engine in the line-up, including the Six Pack-topped 440 and the Hemi, and over 10% of the 1970 model run was the 383/four-speed combination.

This was available as part of the R/T package that Dodge offered on Chargers and Coronets as well. The R/T option mandated a heavy-duty driveline and suspension layout, graphics and trim details, and a performance engine. That this car was presented with a 383 to NASCAR Champion


The Challenger was a new model in 1970, built to compete against the Mustang and Camaro; it was offered in R/T trim with big-block power only in 1970 and 1971.

Bobby Isaac was not because of horsepower, but because the factory had wanted a vehicle with air-conditioning, which was not available on the larger engines.

Isaac won the car from Dodge Division as an award for taking the pole position at a race at Texas Motor Speedway back near the end of 1969. At that event, Bobby was racing the orange #71 Dodge Daytona out of Harry Hyde’s shop. The K&K Insurance-backed car was one of the best remembered machines of that era, and Isaac would also take home the overall Grand National crown at the finish of the 1970 season, the final year before Winston became the title rights sponsor.

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