Håkan Hintze's 1974 Duster 360
My Duster 360 is a '74. I bought it from a used car dealer in Long Beach, California, in August 1977. For five weeks me and my buddy drove it across the USA and finally shipped it from the east coast to Sweden. I then drove it all year around for 8 years and only summer time for another 3 years. The Swedish winters aren't kind to cars, with all the salt being spread on the streets so after 11 years the rust and mechanical wear had won. I just couldn't scrap it so it has been sitting in a barn since 1988, waiting. Only a couple of weeks ago I brought it home since I now have bought a house with a full size garage and hopefully I will be able to do a full restoration.
Despite the poor fuel economy it's probably the best car I've ever owned. It came with a huge four barrel ThermoQuad carburetor which I soon replaced with a smaller Carter and an Edelbrock intake plus headers. That, Cragar SS wheels, HiJackers in the rear, and a Grant steering wheel were the only major modifications I made. It was a nice looking car when in its prime, in the early 80s. Frosty Green metallic with white 2/3 vinyl top. I'm a little puzzled about the interior though. According to the above catalog the 360 was a sportier version but this one has a bench front seat and gear selector on the steering column. It also have a fold-down rear seat with a hatch to the trunk and no exterior decals. It is indeed a true 360, you can tell from the chassis number, it even says it?s a HiPerformance engine, whatever really means.
I can't remember any major problems and the only reoccurring fault I can recall was dragging front brakes resulting in overhauling the calipers every other year. After I started putting a little grease inside the dustboot even that stopped happening.
This was my fourth Chrysler. I bought my first US car in 73, a 64 Valiant 200 Signet 2 door hard top. Then followed a 66 Dodge Dart GT and a 71 Dodge Challenger. After the Duster I wanted a full size convertible. Chrysler's last big rag top left the line in 1970 in small numbers so unfortunately I had to look elsewhere. It had to be GM (I wouldn't touch a Ford with a ten foot pole) and I found a 76 Eldorado which I kept for three years. Next I wanted a late model full size station wagon which, again, more or less limited the choice to GM. Chevy had always been a swearword in my vocabulary so when I came across an 89 Buick Electra Estate Wagon, three years ago, I couldn?t resist. I still have it and it's also a nice car, but that's a different story.
Håkan Hintze, Stockholm, Sweden
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