Here we have a 1969 Coronet sedan, a car that provided miles of service for police, taxi companies and families driving to church on Sundays. The life of a sedan is an honorable one, serving the needs of it’s owners with practicality and in this case Chrysler reliability. These cars were a favorite of Police departments with powerful v8’s, low price and they could take a pounding. Taxi companies used Plymouth cars with slant six cylinder engines that would run and run and offer good economy for their time.
Does this make them cool? One thing that makes them cool is these cars can be had for a small fraction of what highly sought after Dodge Super Bee’s, 2 door Coronet R/T’s and their stable mate, Plymouth Road Runner change hands for these days. With 2 extra doors they’re not as sleek in profile but sharing the same chassis, wheelbase, and front and rear styling, the appeal is undeniable! In fact when Plymouth created the Road Runner muscle car in 1968 they built it using all their police car parts- the performance suspension and Super Commando 383 cubic inch engine.
The car featured here is a 1969 Coronet sedan with the 383 ‘big block’, 727 automatic transmission and air conditioning. Having a repaint in white with the original blue vinyl interior. A R/T or Super Bee power dome hood has been added. Being a 383 car is a big plus here as opposed to the smaller 318 V8 or slant 6 cylinder. This gives you uprated suspension, transmission and rear end with the big engine. It also makes it basically a 4 door Road Runner as the 383 was the standard engine in the Road Runner. Being originally a 2 barrel the owner has brought it up to “hp” specs (high performance) with a 4 barrel carburetor and intake manifold and painted the block ‘Hemi’ orange like the hp cars. (Road Runner) The 2 barrel motors were Chrysler corporate blue in ’69. As seen here, 4 doors have a lot of potential and give all the same thrills as their 2 door counterparts.
As you approach you realize this is a big car. Push in the door handle button and yank to open. The bench seat is flat and quishy lacking in any lateral support- the dashboard is simple yet attractive and visibility is good. You can easily see the corners of the car from the drivers seat. Behind the giant steering wheel is a nice view of the big muscular power dome R/T (Road and Track) hood. Be patient putting the tiny ignition key into the slot, turn over the big 383 V8 and hear that shrill Chrysler gear reduction starter. The engine lights quickly and instantly. Move the column shifter into drive and the 727 jolts into gear.
The stiff gas pedal lifts the front end and brings the car into motion without trying. The big, thin steering wheel controls over boosted power steering that feels nice but doesn’t make you want to take your eyes off the road for too long. Everything has a direct mechanical feel that even though this is no sports car keeps you in touch with the road. The ride is smooth and firm without perceived float and limited body roll. The handling is good but the slow speed of the steering and the sheer size of the car give the impression that if you really push it you’d be in for a handful keeping it straight in the turns. There is plenty of power under the hood with a melody of Flowmaster dual exhaust and a mean V8 soundtrack when you’re in high revs. You get a hungry 4 barrel carburetor sound and a strong push into the seat when you hit the gas pedal. Great sound!
These old muscle cars (you can call it one today, 4 door or not) are a lot of fun to drive and simple to work on. Buy the best one you can find and start working on it! Let me know what old muscle car you like driving…