3-owner truck that's logged on 27,460 miles
Correct 360 cubic inch LA V8
Correct A727 3-speed automatic transmission / Correct 2,500 RPM stall converter
Original body / Mostly-original paint
Original Red interior
Correct 5-slot disc wheels
Correct 9.25-inch rear axle / Correct 3.55 gears
Factory power steering
Factory power front disc and rear drum brakes
1 of only 2,188 Li'l Red Express trucks built for the 1978 model year
In America's vast and ever-expanding car culture you can find many different definitions of cool. There are rarities with long stories and big exclusivity, which are bought to be shown, talked about and referenced. There are purpose-built performance machines that are tailored to specific activities or events. There are chrome-laden cruisers, which honor former eras and bygone lifestyles. And then there are pieces, like this storied Li'l Red Express, that are fun to own and just a blast to drive! Well maintained and selectively driven, this 27,460 actual-mile Dodge is one of the coolest pickups ever built. And, thanks to fantastic preservation, it's just as versatile at the cruise-in as it is during the cruise. If you're looking for a vintage collectible that's clean, unique and ready to hit the road, this impressive classic is just your style!
Quite possibly the first pickup engineered specifically for speed, the Li'l Red Express was created when an E58 police-spec V8 was shoehorned between the fenders of Dodge's trusted D-150 half-ton. When Tom Hoover, considered by many to be the father of the Hemi, realized that an already government-certified engine could be slightly modified without recertification, he started playing around with 360-powered, emissions-exempt pickup mules. The idea was to use the positive PR generated by special edition pavement-scorchers to emphasize Dodge's versatile lineup of trucks. And the result was what would become the most effective member of Chrysler's Adult Toys Program.
This particular Li'l Red truck spent the first 22 years of its life in climate controlled storage at Sutton, West Virginia's Elkview Dodge. Circa 2000, the truck's first registered owner, a Pittsburgh native who continued the theme of climate controlled storage, enjoyed it sparingly for roughly 16 years. And today, on the heels of being traded for a 1967 Coronet R/T convertible, this impressive pickup brings welcome diversity our 240 car showroom. Aside from fresh paint on its left front fender, this Express has, as far as we can tell, never benefitted from any kind of major restoration. Presently, the truck's exceptionally maintained body wears a requisite coat of Bright Red pigment that's trimmed in a correct array of gold tape stripes. At the front of that body, a clean stainless grille hangs modern halogen headlights and amber parking lamps between a broad bumper and a tough "DODGE" script. At the sides of that grille, branded doors center small mirrors and square handles between standard side steps, flowing "Adventurer 150" emblems and correct 'big rig' exhaust pipes. At the top of those doors, stainless-trimmed glass reflects a color-keyed bed that's cladded in real Oak paneling. And at the back of the truck, small brake lights illuminate a second broad bumper and a retrofitted "Dodge" decal.
Lift the Bright Red hood and you'll find Chrysler's stalwart, 360 cubic inch LA V8 that, while generally underappreciated, was versatile enough to serve as the corporation's big motor backbone for over three decades! This particular LA, Chrysler's police-spec Interceptor, utilized a '68 340 cam, '68 red stripe valve springs, standard valve retainers, a standard windage tray and standard roller timing components to make the Li'l Red Express the fastest American vehicle produced at the time of its release. At the top of the light blue block, a police-spec Thermo Quad carburetor funnels wind from an original, dual-snorkel air cleaner in to a high performance, police-spec intake. At the sides of that intake, requisite chrome valve covers cap correct SuperFlow heads and free-breathing exhaust manifolds. Behind those manifolds, sparks are sequenced to neon MoPar Electronic Suppression cables via a traditional points distributor. Opposite that distributor, pliable V-belts spin a chrome MoPar alternator beside factory power steering. A heavy duty Chrysler radiator keeps everything cool and composed. And, as a clean and reliable throwback, the truck's color-keyed engine bay is an exercise in era-correct completion, from its original hood decals all the way to its blue oil pan.
Crawl under this D-150 and you'll find a mostly original chassis that appears to have never been fully disassembled. The big-bore engine funnels torque through a factory-spec, 2,500 RPM stall converter to a standard A727 3-speed. That gearbox spins a 9.25-inch Chrysler axle that's equipped with beefy, 3.55 gears. Fluid power steering and a standard rear stabilizer bar make quick work of turns while power-assisted brakes bring everything to a quick halt. The aforementioned manifolds growl through factory-spec exhaust pipes that employ glasspack-style mufflers. And everything rolls on correct 5-Slot Discs, which spin 235/60R15 Goodyear Eagle GTIIs in front of 275/60R15 Goodyear Eagle GTIIs.
Since every Li'l Red Express had to be optioned as an Adventurer, the interior of this rig is much nicer than typical classic truck cockpits. Top dead center, a silver-trimmed dash hangs detailed telemetry beside a correct AM/FM stereo and locking glovebox. In front of that dash, a standard bench seat, which features an original cover, provides ample room for weekend road trips. At the sides of that seat, wood-trimmed door panels anchor traditional chrome handles above old school speakers. Everything rides on fresh red carpet. And in front of the driver, a familiar Tuff Wheel laps a chrome gear selector.
OUR SALE INCLUDES THE FOLLOWING DOCUMENTATION
Vintage marketing literature
An original Owner's Manual
Original factory literature
Ready for show and ready to go, this unique Dodge is one very cool classic that, thanks to painstaking preservation, rolls as a lightly modified time capsule. A coveted 1978 model, it would be right at home prowling the backroads, pulling up to a hot dive, or perched in a parking lot enjoying the next Saturday social hour. Super nice D-150s are virtually impossible to find, especially when you're looking for a member of Chrysler's Adult Toy Program. Don't miss your chance to own this awesome Li'l Red Express!