Dodge Super Bee 440 Six-Pack Hardtop 1970

Car producer : 

Dodge

Model:

Super Bee 440 Six-Pack Hardtop 1970

Year:

1968-1971

Type:

Coupe



The Dodge Super Bee was a limited-production muscle car from Dodge, produced from 1968 until 1971.

The original Dodge Super Bee was based on the design of the Dodge Coronet, designed as a two-door coupe, and was produced from 1968 until 1970. It was the company's low-priced powerful muscle car, derived from the design of the Plymouth Road Runner, and retailed at USD$3,027 on the consumer market. The origin of the name, "Super Bee", has its basis in the "B" Body designation pertinent to Chrysler's mid-sized cars, including the Road Runner and Charger.

Plymouth's Road Runner sold well enough to prompt Dodge Division General Manager, Robert McCurry, to request the creation of a competitor from the Dodge Styling office; at the time, both divisions were competing to be the Chrysler performance division R/T=Rapid Transit (later known as "Street and Racing Technology – SRT"). The designers were assigned the task of creating a name and identity for the Dodge version, with senior designer, Harvey J. Winn, winning the "contest" with the name "Super Bee" and a new logo design based on the Dodge "Scat Pack" Bee medallion. The design of the first Super Bee was influenced by the 1968 Coronet convertible and the show car's interior was built by the Alexander Brothers. The show car was eventually introduced at the 1968 Detroit Auto Show.

Although the two cars are very similar in external appearance, the Super Bee was slightly heavier (approx. 65lb (29 kg)) and rode on a 117-inch (3,000 mm) wheelbase compared to the Road Runner's 116 in (290 cm) wheelbase. In addition to the minor external aesthetic differences, such as larger rear wheel openings, the bumblebee tail stripe and fancier grille, and the taillight ornamentation, the Super Bee also used actual die cast chrome-plated "Bee" medallions. These three-dimensional medallions were prominently mounted in a raised position in the grille/hood area and the trunk lid/taillight area of the car throughout the first three years of production.

The interior of the Super Bee borrowed the race car–inspired and more sophisticated gauge and speedometer dash cluster from the Dodge Charger, while the four-speed manual cars received a Hurst Competition-Plus shifter with Hurst linkage; this shifter compared to the Road Runner's less expensive Inland shifter and linkage. Due to the higher-quality accessories attached to the Super Bee, the car was sold at a higher price in comparison to its Plymouth cousin; this ultimately affected the model's sales numbers during the years it was produced.

The Super Bee, like nearly all Chrysler muscle cars of that era, was available with the Hemi engine; although, this option raised the price by 33%, and only 125 were sold. The 1968 model was only sold as a two-door coupe, with two engine options, the base 335hp (250 kW) 383 Magnum, and the 426 Hemi, rated at 425hp (317 kW).

The Super Bee included a heavy-duty suspension, an optional Mopar A-833 four-speed manual transmission, and high-performance tires. Outside, a stripe (with the bee logo) was wrapped around the tail.

A hardtop version joined the existing pillared coupe body in 1969 and a new optional twin-scooped air induction hood, the "Ram charger", became available. This particular option was coded N-96 and was the counterpart to the Plymouth Road Runner's "Coyote Duster" air induction hood. The "Ram charger" hood featured forward-facing scoops that were more efficient than the Road Runner's "twin vents", as the latter merely lay flat on the hood and did not force air into the carburetor(s) as the Super Bee's did.

A "six-pack" (three two-barrel carburetors) version of Dodge's 440 cubic-inch engine was added to the offering list mid-year. This option fell half-way between the standard engine and the Hemi as a USD463 option. The 1969 model year gave Chrysler customers several engines from which to choose—the base 383 Magnum (high performance), 440 Six Pack, and the 426 Hemi. The 440 Magnum (4bbl) was not an available option, and was reserved for the Coronet R/T.

For the 1970 model, the Super Bee received a cosmetic redesign and a new front-end was designed that consisted of a twin-looped front bumper that Dodge Public Relations referred to as "bumble bee wings". However, sales plummeted for the year from 15,506 in 1970 to 5,054 in 1971—because of, or in spite of, this new look, with another sales pressure coming from higher insurance rates for performance cars; the similar Plymouth Road Runner and Plymouth Duster both experienced similar sales issues. In addition to the new looks, engine choices and "ram charger" hood carried over from 1969, the 1970 cars from Dodge featured several new or improved options. For example, a "C- stripe" variant of the bumble stripe was offered, in addition to new high-back bucket seats, a steering column-mounted ignition and a "pistol-grip" Hurst shifter on four-speed models.

Sold for: 106700 USD
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