Under normal circumstances, a car like this 1968 Plymouth Road Runner would be kept in factory form, at least as far as appearance goes—not only is this an all-original example, but it also comes from the first year of production. Well, this piece of Mopar history has been given a thorough makeover instead, as if somebody built a classic muscle car for Darth Vader.
Jamey, the current owner of the vehicle, has been spending time inside the Looney Tunes-themed coupe since his early childhood. And now that he inherited the vehicle from his father (the YouTube clip below mentions that the enthusiast’s dad had a strong personality, emphasis on the past tense), the man decided to take the numbers-matching vehicle down the restomod route, albeit while being inspired from another side of pop culture, namely the Star Wars universe.
Put together by Tennessee-based Charlie’s Custom Creations & Machine, the Road Runner, which was dubbed Nevermore features tons of fabricated goodies inside and out, with the Darth Vader front apron, which is an extension of the original apron, being an example as good as any.
The all-original nature of the car meant that elements such as the ’68-only side markers were kept, albeit being matched with custom goodies such as a side exhaust and Ferradas wheels that come in a 22×11-inch size at the back and measure 20×9 inches up front.
Given the rolling hardware of the Plymouth, the custom fenders were mandatory, even though the widebody approach was integrated rather than standing out as with, say, Dodge’s modern Challenger and Charger.
One can always start breaking down this extreme build from the belly up: if the metal diffuser doesn’t grab your attention, the sheet metal underneath the engine will, with the latter having the role of helping the hot air leave the engine bay.
Back in the day, the 383 ci (6.3L) V8 was the base engine on the Road Runner, but, with the help of a four-barrel carb, this delivered a meaty 334 hp (340 PS) and 425 lb-ft (576 Nm) of torque.
Those figures almost spell “entry-level” in the contemporary muscle segment, so, while the motor was kept in place to honor the numbers-matching nature of the car, this was bored and stroked. As such, the engine compartment, which features tons of custom work itself, now accommodates 496 ci (8.1L) of muscle.
As you can imagine, the suspension, steering, and brakes were upgraded to cope with the tower of power that is the reworked V8 (the new go-fast numbers have yet to be released).
Darth Vader would probably feel at home inside this Plymouth
The Death Star-like nature of the project becomes more obvious once you get inside. The cabin, which was handled by Concord Customs, is basically a collection of billet pieces and leather.
There’s an angular, minimalist design that spells starship, while the Lightsaber window switches add extra flavor.
Well, given the level of customization deployed here, you can certainly add muscle purists to the list of Darth Vader’s enemies.