Mark is a lifelong gearhead and Mopar fan, especially about his “Asphalt Elephant”. “Elephant” is of course the nickname of the 426 Hemi engine due to its size. This is one of those Holy Grail, barn-find of a lifetime cars, only this one somehow made it onto Craigslist instead of an auction. It is a numbers-matching 1967 Plymouth GTX 426 Hemi with 2x4bbl carbs and a 4-speed. It is one of 45 made, and the console with bucket seats option is even more rare.
Mark and his cousin Chris fell in love with Mopars as kids, collecting all the Dodge and Plymouth Matchbox cars they could find. His first collector was a 1969 Dodge Dart 340 he bought at age 14, and he has been buying and selling cars ever since. Mark’s love of the Hemi started when his cousin Chris bought a Dodge Coronet Hemi R/T. Sadly Chris has passed away, but Mark has not lost his passion for Mopars and Hemis, and has great memories of Chris and the Hemi cars they owned and loved.
I asked Mark how he found this car and he said Craigslist. I said “What?” and he replied, “I know, I can’t believe it either!” He said he is always browsing cars online, but this particular time he searched 1967 (he normally never searches by year) and saw the ad. He immediately thought it was a clone or even worse, a scam. Mark called the seller and started to think the car might be the real deal. Still skeptical, he asked a friend who is a cop to go with him to see the car, in case it was a scam of some kind.
Arriving to see the car, Mark discovered it is THE “Asphalt Elephant”, featured in the May 1980 issue of Popular Hot Rodding. He could not believe his luck and bought the car immediately. The original owner in California repainted the car Mayan Red but Mark plans to restore it back to the original Dodge 881 Bright Blue, making it even more rare then it is already. The car does not have its original trunk lid, it’s from a 1966, but he plans to install a correct 1967 trunk lid during the repaint. The red 66 trunk with the Asphalt Elephant emblem will be put on display with the car when he takes it to shows.