Mopar Nationals 2023 is in the books. For Mopar enthusiasts, the Nationals (Mopar Nationals) is a must-attend gathering that showcases the best of the best when it comes to classic and modern Mopars.
Imagine strolling through rows of restored muscle cars, witnessing heart-pounding drag races, and experiencing the rumble of powerful engines as they roar to life. Whether you’re a die-hard Mopar fan or not, you will find something you like at the Mopar Nationals.
To truly appreciate the excitement surrounding Mopar Nationals, it’s essential to understand its rich history. The event began in 1981 as a way for Mopar enthusiasts to come together and showcase their beloved vehicles. Over the years, it has grown into one of the largest Mopar-specific gatherings in the world.
Mopar Nationals has become a pilgrimage for car enthusiasts, drawing participants and spectators from all corners of the globe. It is not just a car show; it’s a celebration of Mopar culture and a chance for like-minded individuals to come together and share their passion.
One of the highlights of Mopar Nationals is the O.E. Judging. There has been a long history of Judging excellence at the Mopar Nationals. The only true O.E. level judging for Mopars anywhere in the country.
Along with the O.E. level judging there are also concourse level classes. It has always been a great place to bring your car and compete against some of the best cars in the country. You can also learn and compare your car to see exactly where you can improve your car and make it better in appearance and more original.
There was a leadership change several years ago in the judging personnel and after some growing pains, this year’s show was by far one of the best it has been in years. From moving the show field to the action side of the track, making trailer parking available inside the gates, to a clearly marked show field and a streamlined registration process, it all went like clockwork.
The level of quality cars has definitely risen in the past few years. This year’s field of cars was one of the best we have seen in recent years.
Although the O.E. Judged cars are a work of art and a history lesson all in one, walking around the rest of the show you can also find some incredibly restored cars. You can see everything from meticulously restored Chargers, Challengers, and Road Runners to Gen III Hemi swaped trucks and cars.
Walking through this classic Mopar showcase is like stepping back in time. You can almost feel the history come alive as you admire the sleek lines, chrome accents, and unmistakable presence of these vintage beauties.
Each car tells a story, and the owners are more than happy to share their journey of restoration and preservation. It’s a chance to learn about the craftsmanship and dedication that goes into keeping these classics in pristine condition.
One thing that we have learned a long time ago, is when you see these cars, interact with the owners and builders. You might run into a few jerks, but most of the time they are ready to give you an earful about their car.
While the classic Mopar showcase pays homage to the past, Mopar Nationals also shines a spotlight on the modern Mopar cars. They are scattered throughout the show. We even saw a Hellcat Redeye for sale in the car corral.
We know their styling is nothing compared to the classics, but you have to respect the power that these new Gen III Hemi cars are producing. We were caught off guard at the drag strip as two fairly quiet Challengers pulled up to race and put down 11 and 12 second 1/4 miles.
Throughout the sea of modern Chargers and Challengers, we spotted a couple Jeep Wranglers, SRT-4 Neons, and a few other odd Mopars. Then there is always a tent full of Vipers to drool over.
Mopar Nationals is not just about showcasing cars; it’s a multi-faceted event that offers a wide range of activities and entertainment for attendees of all ages. Drag racing enthusiasts can witness heart-pounding races right on the premises.
For those looking for a more interactive experience, Mopar Nationals offers workshops and seminars where experts share their knowledge and insights. You never know what special guests might appear for autograph signing.
Maybe your car is not finished or you are looking for a project car, the Mopar Nationals was the place to be. The swap meet area was packed with parts for just about any Mopar out there. We saw everything from a $15,000 original Super Bird hood, to new old stock Mopar Performance parts.
The car corral was a diverse field. As we mentioned before, you could pick up a Hellcat Redeye to a 1970 Hemi ‘Cuda. There were drag race ready cars and projects that were just pulled from the cow barn on trailers.
There were a few vendors in the swap meet area, which is probably a smart idea, since people looking for parts are going to be in that area. The actual vendor area was pretty bare and had more off the wall vendors than actual Mopar vendors.
Of course we had to catch the burnout competition. If you do not like burnouts, are you really a Mopar enthusiast? The burnouts are always impressive. There is always once in a while where the person does not quite know how to do a burnout, but at least they tried.
Whether you’re a lifelong Mopar fan or simply appreciate the culture, the (Mopar) Nationals is always an experience you do not want to miss. We are excited to see what lies ahead of us for (Mopar) Nationals 2024.