Our Vote For Detroit’s Gnarliest Car: The A12 Dodge Super Bee; Gardner Exhaust Made This One A Family Project
Most owners liked to modified their street cars; the speed equipment industry truly blossomed in the 1960s, even as hot rod ‘purists’ bemoaned that musclecars were just store-bought candy cars (some things have not changed, have they). As the decade reached its climactic end, with Woodstock and Apollo 13 laying down the soundtrack, Dodge took it to the limit with a midyear entry they entitled the Six Pack Super Bee.
The ‘Bee had begum life in early 1968 as a late answer to the popularity of Plymouth’s Road Runner, featuring an economy body designed with power in mind. Only two engines, the standard new-for-‘68 335-horse 383 and the optional 426 Hemi, could be had in this beast. Seeing the need for something in between, Chrysler’s engineers brewed up a package based around the 440 engine that was standard in the Coronet R/T and Charger R/T line-up.
Unlike all previous renditions of that engine, however, this one featured a newly-designed tri-power Holley layout. And that was where the legend would begin, but not end. Designated A12 on the ordering literature, this would be a complete package built around this new engine, and would be available only on select Super Bee and Road Runner models. Telling them from the crowd was no problem.