Sold as part of the Ellis Collection at Dana Mecum’s 2009 Original Spring Classic Auction for $80,000 USD. Described as “In 1964 marked the beginning of Chrysler use of the 426 hemi in their race cars. In 1965 they made the lightweight versions that included the 426 in both Plymouth and Dodge with the Famous A990 Package. In 1966 Chrysler was upset with NHRA for allowing Ford to show up with its tube chassis cars and aftermarket fiberglass bodies, so Chrysler decided to take the year off. No super stock 426 Hem’s were produced in 1966. The only representation Chrysler would have in 1966 was the D-Dart of which only 50 were produced (See lot #S189) and a few left over 1965 A/990’s which continued to race. Sanity returned in ’67, and so did Chrysler to the drag strip. The starting line saw a pair of the mildest racing machines since pre-Max Wedge days they were the RO23 based on the Plymouth Belvedere II and the WO23 based on the Coronet 440.
Like many of Chrysler’s special performance packages, a lot of myths and misconceptions have attached themselves to the cars over the years. Spotty record keeping and general lack of time or interest in details by Chrysler back in the sixties make it difficult to nail down some of the true facts on the RO/WO and other cars. For instance, how many were actually built? Chrysler was supposed to have built 50 of each to satisfy the NHRA rules but some say as little as 32 cars were built, the others being just numbers (with no actual cars assembled).
The Dodge W0’S all left the factory as white cars but did not remain that way long as the racers painted their particular cars in a variety of colors. (There are traces of blue paint in the door jams of this particular car.) The Hemi motor used blocks designated as A-blocks, as they had the closest tolerances. Forged pistons were good for 7400 rpm. Induction relied on a Vanke intake manifold which looked stock on the outside. But pull off the carburetor and you will see a giant simple shutout instead of the four individual holes that corresponded with the carburetor bores. The carbs came through with a jetting kit to better feed the manifolds. Late in ’67 – early ’68, Chrysler came out with updated carbs for Street Hemi application.
Unlike the earlier Super Stock packages that were farmed out, Chrysler put together the WO’s on their own production line. Other ingredients in the package included radio/heater delete. Prestolite transistor ignition mounted under the dash against the firewall, special distributor and coil, racing plug wires, the first application of Super Stock rear springs, trunk mounded big Super Stock Battery, no undercoating or sound deadener and lighter weight carpet. Though not advertised, the metal body components were acid dipped to reduce weight. (Chrysler called this “chemical engineering”). The cars had 10” drums up front for reduced weight and better rolling resistance. Standard Street Hemi had 11 inchers up front and 11 inch rear drums. The race cars used a standard clutch fan, but with aluminum blades.
The WO’s came through with a functional ram air hood. Chrysler took a stock hood, lightened it, and cut out a large round opening underneath. They supplied a plate that bolted around the opening to center and sealed it to the bell shaped velocity stack. The plate and stack came in the trunk along with a set of Hooker Headers that were packed in a Hooker Header box. Automatic cars came through with a special TorqueFlite that had to be shifted manually through its reverse shift pattern. The 8-3/4 rear-end was packed with the Sure-Grip 4:88 gears.
This is a truly rare and extraordinary example of original Chrysler race history. These cars are far and few between.
– Correct lightweight components throughout
– Original interior
– Correct Ram Air induction with all original plating
– Correct 426 race prepared Hemi
– Original data plate
– Original Chrysler order number
– Lowest mileage original 1967 Dodge with 2034 miles
– Factory warranty disclaimer sticker in the rear window”