It was ready for the junkyard," he recalls. "There was, basically, a box of parts and a promise for the rest of it. It was rolling on the frame, parts were in primer, and there was no interior or anything like that. The engine was out, the tranny was out, and the rear was out." This wasn't an abandoned project ground to a halt by a lack of funds or desire to keep going. "The gentleman who sold it was more of a parts guy," Chris says. "I think he had it and said to himself, 'If I sell it, great. If not, maybe I'll part it out.' I came in and picked up the whole package."
But the big package that he hauled home from Carlisle wasn't whole enough to build a running E-Body—not yet. "Maybe 40 to 50 percent of what I needed was there," Chris says. "The guy had other parts for me, and he came through with another box of parts for me to restore it with."
Chris enlisted Russell Jacobs at RJ Cars in Arkport, New York, to turn the collection of parts into the 440 Magnum-powered, Lemon Twist-hued 'Cuda you see here. "He's good at everything," Chris says. "His
A U-Code 440 Magnum sits in the 'Cuda's engine bay. The Mopar battery is just one of the period-correct details. Note the original fender tag.
specialty is Mopars, his passion is Mopars, and his desire since he was a kid was to have a Mopar restoration shop." Looking into the stash of parts that Chris had accumulated, they found that they had a lot of OEM stuff from Ma Mopar that they needed. "We bought only original parts," Chris says. "It was to the point that anything that could be date-coded correct was done."
Just over a year later, the pile of parts was now this Lemon Twist 'Cuda, restored to showroom-new condition. What's it like to drive? "It's phenomenal!" Chris says. "The car is unbelievable." It's also a trophy-winner, including one from a recent event that Chris turned into a family adventure. "I hooked up my son's booster seat, and we went to a car show in Fishkill, New York," says Chris. "They gave out maybe 25 trophies to the top cars in the show, and we were one of them. The judges came over, looked at it for not even two minutes, and said, 'Great car,' and away they went. We drove 70 miles to the show in it, cleaned it up, put it in—the car's great." Needless to say, the 70-mile trip home went quickly!
Chris is looking for another distinctive Mopar to add to his collection—but not just
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