Survivor Superbirds and Daytonas at Chryslers at Carlisle


Here in 2015, what once seemed like a trend has become the gold standard in collectible muscle cars. Yes, the survivor has trumped the restored jewelry on the show field. If you don’t agree, have a look at this pic from Chryslers at Carlisle this past summer. That crusty blue Superbird had ’em coming running. The beautiful green resto? She was the lonely wallflower at the dance. (We’d take her home though.) We can’t explain it. But we love it.

These old scratch and dent street heroes are the belles of the ball now. Owners are no longer asked, “When you gonna paint your car?” Instead they are advised to “Please do not restore that car, it’s perfect as is!” Who saw that coming? Well maybe the owners of these winged warriors did. Since they have kept these heirlooms in exactly the condition they found them.


The important thing to understand when considering maintenance of your survivor is to keep it to mechanicals only. Don’t buff it. Don’t paint it. Don’t fix any dents. Don’t touch-up any areas at all. These imperfections are badges of honor after all, earned over 40-50 years of street (barn?) battle.

Given the very thin and slight sheetmetal on the noses of these cars, it’s a wonder any survived in any condition at all. It was pretty easy to damage a nose cone during a bad parking job or a winter skid into a curb. The Aero Warriors meet allowed us to catch these awesome views of the faded paint, bumps and bruises on some Superbirds and Daytonas. Each one gives the car a character and patina all its own. You just know that behind every scratch and distorted bump there is a story. And that only adds to the intrigue of these old Mopars.

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Des Ryan

Des Ryan has been involved in all levels of Mopar musclecar ownership, from barn finds to drivers to a high-level restored Hemicar. He's also spent over 20 years in the advertising industry as a copywriter and creative director. With pen in one hand and pistol-grip shifter in the other, Des is bringing his two passions together to keep you Direct-Connected.

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