NASCAR is something that’s always bound to split opinions. Some people love it, some absolutely despise it. No matter what your thoughts on the sport are, I think we can all agree that the stock cars of yesteryear were much more exciting machines than today’s cars.
With that in mind, here’s a look at a ’69 Dodge Charger Daytona I spotted last month during my visit to Canepa Design.
The Daytona, and its winged cousin the Plymouth Superbird are perhaps the most recognizable stock cars of all time. With their aerodynamic noses and giant rear spoilers, the Daytona and Superbird were extremely successful in stock car racing during the ’69 and ’70 seasons.
Homologation rules required that a certain number of these cars be sold for the street, and thus the legend of the winged cars was born. Of course the story of the production Daytona and Superbird is worthy of a separate post altogether…
This particular Daytona was campaigned by Cotton Owens with NASCAR legend Buddy Baker piloting the car.
Among its racing accomplishments is a win at the 1970 Southern 500, and perhaps more importantly it made NASCAR history at the 1970 Alabama 500. There, on the high banks of Talladega, Buddy Baker drove the car to the first NASCAR race lap at over 200mph.
Powering the Daytona to its record-breaking lap was the legendary 426 Hemi, which is proudly advertised on the hood.
The interior is very bare and surprisingly stock – nothing at all like the Sprint Cup cars of today. Can you imagine going 200mph in this?
As clean as this car is, it’s completely unrestored – it sits just as it did after its final race in 1970. A rule change for the 1971 season made the aero cars useless, and thus their short era of domination came to an end.
And yes, like all the other cars in the Canepa Showroom, this one is up for sale.
Now, who wants to partner up and buy this bad boy? If everyone puts in a couple bucks, we might just have a chance.
The same owner has a "Petty" Torino that was NEVER a Petty Torino, too. It is not really his fault...other than perhaps being a bit too credulous. The stock car fabulists back in North Carolina have found that rich California vintage racers are just as good a cash crop as cotton, and twice as easy to pick. As a result, there are more than a few fake stock cars that have been sold to Left Coast buyers as the real deal. The purported "Petty" car and this Charger are in that number. Though both were originally race cars (as stated, according to Mopar experts, the Daytona appears to have been a Charger 500 that Ownes raced and wrecked and then reconfigured to wing car configuration for show duty), they are NOT what they are presently dressed up to be. Merely nice homages. And that's worth something. Since lord knows Brain X. France has little interest in preserving NASCAR history. (It's all about Danica, donchaknow....) That said, it disserves racing history for web sites such as this one to misrepresent the real history of cars that they feature. Just sayin'
Bob is correect, it was a short track Charger 500 that was wreck by Buddy Baker and restored as a show car back in the day. It has been restored recently too and it use to have carpeting in it too. Still a nice car but not what it's suppose to be. A little homework goes a long way when your planning on spending a pile O' cash!
The correct description of this car would be "restored to the appearance of the car as raced"... there is a great deal of online evidence that this car was not only restored, but may be a rebuilt short track Charger 500 cosmetically changed for Chryco show car duty. Still gives me chills to look at it but before you whip out the checkbook, better check sources with no financial dog in the fight.
The wing is up high to get into clean air where it will be most effective. The vents on the fenders are to bleed air from under the car. The long nose helps with streamlining, but it adds lift, letting the air escape through the fenders helps to minimize this.
Hey - the truth is that THIS car was a show car and never hit the track. Unrestored??? gimme a break.
I have seen a photo which i downloaded a few years ago of this same car and always wondered about it thanks for the backround guys, and please for the haters of nascar in which other form of motorsport do you find 20+ drivers driving at 200mph so close to one another that one slip up at the front end of the field could well finish the race for everyone?
if anyone is wondering, the reason the wing is so tall is so that you could open the trunk on the production model, and the vents on the top of the fenders were for extra clearance so the tire wouldn't bottom out on high speed corning
The key here is the link to readily available road cars - much like the best D1 and Formula Drift cars today. Once they put slot car bodies on tubular steel spaceframes NASCAR lost something - in my humble opinion anyway.
Was, and still is my favourite American muscle car, and oval racer. That cockpit is on point too, gives me a whole new sense of respect for the drivers. Turning left in this is somehow cool, can't explain it.
Ahhhhh DAYTONA!!!!! XD This spotlight seriously made my day!! Everybody has their dream cars... this ^^^ is mine!! Ive always loved this car because of what it did! One of the ORIGIONAL SUPER cars!!! If im ever lucky enough to find 1 its gettin a built 440 SIXPAK... Hemis are nice but my uncles 69 Road Runner & a back road cemented my love for the 440
Wow, a pristine Charger Daytona...and it's for sale...and yeah, i preferred the Nascar in it's hay-day...xP
I don't really enjoy current NASCAR, mostly because of the cars. But back when the cars were actual "stock" cars it seems there were more heated battles, more pride on the line about which of the Big 3 really made the fastest cars. Now there is nothing to connect the fans with the cars that are on the track. Long gone are the days of watching a Charger win a race and know that you could go to the dealership and buy the same car.
Nascar of the 50's and 60's rivaled any championship from the day. Today, it feels like a packaged lunch.
The sad truth is that Mopar fans were vastly outnumbered by Ford and GM guys... so when these "winged warriors" started dominating Nascar, the powers that be changed the rules to screw over Dodge/Plymouth. In my eyes, that was then end of Nascar's relevance.