1968 Dodge GSS 440 Dart, Mr. Norm's Grand Spaulding Sport
By 1967 Grand Spaulding Dodge looked at the competition and realized that Mopar was seriously behind the 'eight ball' in the newly formed Pony Car segment. Plymouth drew first blood with the Barracuda, but Ford won the public with superior styling and big budget promotion. So, Chrysler took their argument to the one place they always won, the race track. Mr. Norm Kraus showed the boys at Chrysler engineering that it was possible to stuff a 440 Super Commando motor into the economy minded Dart in 1968 with the help of Hurst/-Campbell. Each of 48 1968 Darts were ordered by Mr. Norm as a Special Order vehicle, build as if they were 383 cars, but delivered to Hurst-Campbell less drivetrain for 440 conversions. The broadcast sheet for these models read "BUILD LESS ENG TRANS CARB AIR CLNR". Once the 440 conversion was completed by Hurst-Campbell, each modified Dart GTS was inspected by Dodge service personnel at Hurst then shipped directly to: Grand Spaulding Auto Sales, Inc. 3300 W. Grand Avenue Chicago, Illinois 60651 Special Monroney Labels (Window Stickers) were hand prepared by Hamtramck Assembly. The GSS epitomizes the dynamic relationship between the voice of the customer, the dealership, and the car maker to deliver on short order the performance that the public demanded during the Muscle Car Era. GM had the COPO program available to the entire dealer network and Don Yenko branded a number of those for himself. Carroll Shelby appended the VIN of the cars he converted from Ford. Like most high performance Mopars, even absent original paperwork, the original fender tag and the dash VIN plate tell you what the car is. The authenticity is in the "M". The "M" Code Dart is the only example of a manufacturer designating a VIN code for one dealership. With good reason, Grand Spaulding Dodge sold fully half of the high performance Dodge vehicles for the entire country. Of the original 48 production GSS Darts, only 12 persist. This is the only maroon/white interior GSS known to exist. M Code: GSS Mr. Norm's Grand Spaulding Sport Package Includes: 440 4bbl 375hp V8 Engine 727 Torque flight Transmission E70x14" Firestone Red Streak Tires Body Belt Moldings 3.55:1 Ratio w/8.75" Axle Sure-Grip Differential Sport Stripe-Transverse Full Vinyl Rook AM Radio Console Special Order *Not Available with Undercoating This particular example hails from the Bill Sefton collection of Mr. Normâs Garage fame. She has been completely rotisserie restored and private museum kept since her completion. Brent Jarvis of Performance Restorations recently went through all the mechanicals to re-commission the car for street duty. This GSS is a double threat- both trophy grabbing âShowâ and spine-compressing âGoâ. She was recently inspected and verified by noted âAâ body expert, Jim Rhinehart and included in the Mr. Normâs GSS Registry. This GSS was also featured front and center in David Snyderâs painting âWhere Horsepower is Madeâ. If you are looking for a genuine piece of Muscle Car history that epitomizes the peak of âsmall car, big motorâ and ârace on Sunday, sell on Mondayâ, this Ruby and Pearl 1968 M-code Grand Spaulding Special is the clear choice.
SYA's 5 Keys to Investment Collectability
- Engine Type
- Engine Size
- Fuel Specification
- Body Color
- RR1- Burgundy Poly w/ White Transverse Stripe, White Vinyl Top
- Body Style
- Paint Type
- Interior Color
- White Interior
- Secondary Interior Color
- Seating Type
- Seat Material
- Shifter Type
- Center Console
- Engine Size
- Transmission Type
- Automatic Floor Shift
- Body Style
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