As proven by the recent introduction of the Dodge Charger Daytona SRT electric vehicle concept, names mean a lot to muscle car enthusiasts. And while the carmaker can only “save” a tiny fraction of the vast Mopar nomenclature that make aficionados happy back in the day, it’s up to rescuers to revive as many of those classics as possible. Cue to this 1969 Dodge Super Bee, a numbers-matching gem that was recently pulled out of storage.
Back in the day, the Charger was the Dodge poster car (remember, the Challenger didn’t land until the 1970 model year). However, not everybody who wanted big muscle had the cash for the Mopar bad boy. As such, Dodge came up with the more affordable Super Bee. Introduced as a stripped-out derivative of the Coronet R/T, the Super Bee was offered as two-door sedan for 1968.
And the most important addition for the 1969 model year was the Super Bee pillarless coupe, which happens to be the vehicle that brought us here.
This machine has been in storage for many years and we can now enjoy the first part of its revival process. As such, classic car rescuer Jeremy (aka Shade Tree Vintage Auto) and his crew pulled the Super Bee from the shed that had kept it hidden from view.
Sure, one may watch the video below and think that such a machine would’ve deserved a more complete structure to protect it from the elements. However, the body seems to be in good shape, while the 383 ci (6.3L) V8 engine and 727 three-speed automatic transmission had been removed from the vehicle, most likely to be kept in better conditions.
The ’69 Super Bee packs the optional Ramcharger hood
And while that 383 was the base engine—the 440 Big Block and 426 HEMI were optional—this example comes with the optional Ramcharger hood featuring a functional twin-scoop air intake and original hood pins. For the record, this hood was dubbed Air Grabber on Plymouth models.
Plus, with the Dodge being kept away from prying eyes, the vehicle still features goodies such as the diecast chrome-plated Bee emblems on the front grille and posterior. For the record, these were part of a larger group of high-polish details that Dodge couldn’t help but place on the Super Bee.
Interestingly, the said pieces boosted the price of the Dodge past that of the Plymouth Road Runner (here’s what the Road Runner’s “Beep Beep” horn is all about) that had inspired it. As a result the Dodge’s goodies ended up having a negative impact on the sales. Then again, nowadays lower numbers are regarded as a bonus in the collector-savvy market of these vehicles.
What matching numbers mean on a classic car
Now, Jeremy is naturally pleased to have come across such a highly original example of an icon like the Super Bee. Thus, he uses the occasion to demonstrate what a numbers-matching machine means—the enthusiast shows us the matching stampings on the windshield area (VIN), fender tag, core support, and trunk rail, as well as on the motor and gearbox.
We get to feast our eyes on a configuration that remains spectacular even after decades of vicissitudes. As such, B7 Blue is used for both the exterior and the interior—would you rather enjoy B5 Blue?
This Mopar has its flaws, naturally, but it seems these are limited, for instance involving the non-original wheels/tires and seats. And while the white tail stripe is also an add-on, James talks about the “lace” technique that employed using pantyhose or table cloths to gift the lower part of the quarter panels with a special pattern while painting the area in a standout shade.
Nobody can blame you for checking out this adventure and thinking about adding the Mopar to your collection. And while the treasure has apparently found an owner before the rescuer/YouTuber even got to post this clip, there’s a silver lining for all of us here: the vehicle is in for the kind of TLC it deserves, as it is on its way to a “great” collection.