Cleverness may stop discontinuing its most famous nameplates – Charger and Challenger – but that won’t erase nearly 60 years of rich history. We’ll certainly continue to talk about these two impressive rides and look for them for sale in the coming years, though the rollout may actually increase the price of the two cars.
Particularly in the case of the Charger, prices are already high for its most influential years of production, such as the 1968 one, which starred in several highly popular films. Therefore, anyone looking for an affordable classic from the Charger lineup would do better with models without an acting career.
However, if you want a truly distinctive Dodge classic on a budget, you may want to look further back. Before the Charger got its own lineup, Dodge added the tag to another line of cars produced between 1959 and 1976. such a long life. One such ride was the 1965 Dodge Dart Charger 273, which we’ll take a closer look at today.
As you’ll see, the 1965 Dodge Dart Charger 273 is a classy ride that lacks fame and glory, but proves to be attractive and affordable, making it a good choice for collectors on a budget.
The history of the long-running lineup and the predecessors of the 1965 Dodge Dart Charger 273
The Dodge Dart came on the market in 1960 as an alternative to Plymouth with a smaller body and a lower price. It came in sedan and coupe variants built on top of the Plymouth platform, with the station wagon variant developed from Polara wagons. The car had a straight-six (popularly known as slant-six) engine or optional V8 engines.
This first-generation Dodge Dart achieved excellent sales, well beyond the marque’s expectations, as the Matador and Polara were also available as more advanced variants. Even Plymouth’s sales were down with the 1960 Dodge Dart around.
So Dodge kept the Dart small and well-equipped for the 1961 production year and offered the car in the same three trims: the Phoenix, the Pioneer, and the Seneca. A range of V8s and the straight-six also remained, but styling changed, much to the dismay of customers. With small taillights above the bumpers, the Dart was difficult to see for the following cars, and not everyone liked the slightly odd rear design.
For the second generation (1962), the Dodge Dart got sleeker and a little better equipped (although not enough for many people). The brand dropped the previous versions and introduced the Dart, the Dart 330 and the Dart 440. With a unibody B platform and powerful V8 engines, this generation of the Dart recovered some of its earlier fame and sales.
What you need to know about the 1965 Dodge Dart Charger 273
Finally, we came to our 1965 Dodge Dart Charger 273, that is, the third generation of the lineup, which was in production from 1963 to 1966. This generation received a longer wheelbase, providing more room and comfort for passengers, and came in sedan, coupe, station wagon and convertible body styles in 170, 270 and GT trim levels. It was an instant success.
After the 1963 production year reaped the rewards of the excellent styling, the 1964 model entered the market with a new, compact and lightweight 273 cubic inch V8 engine producing 180 horsepower. Compared to the previous year, with 170-cubic-inch and 225-cubic-inch V8 variants, the 1964 Dodge Dart offered a significant power increase (from 35 to 79 ponies).
However, it was the 1965 Dodge Dart Charger 273 that offered the most power in this generation, featuring a high-performance version of the 273 engine that produced an outstanding 235 horsepower thanks to its four-cylinder carburetor, 10.5:1 compression, and other upgrades. The 1965 Dodge Dart Charger 273 models were also very attractive due to the unique yellow paint, hardtops and black interior, so the brand continued to offer it the following year as well, before the fourth generation made further changes to the lineup.
Availability and Price: What’s a 1965 Dodge Dart Worth?
The 1965 Dodge Dart Charger 273 is often overlooked today due to such a brief appearance in the lineup. Still, the car offers such power, performance and looks that it makes perfect sense to buy it for a personal collection. Its somewhat low popularity even helps car collectors.
Since the 1965 Dodge Dart Charger 273 has been overshadowed by generations that last longer, it won’t break the bank in 2022 buyers. At around $20,000-$50,000, this 1960s ride is reasonably priced. The only downside is that the 1965 Dodge Dart Charger 273 doesn’t go on sale very often, so potential buyers will have to keep an eye on what’s on offer and wait for the car to become available.
sources: Dodge, Stellantis, Hemmings, Mecum Auctions