Classic Car

1971 Dodge Demon 340 Hides Stroker V8 Under The Hood, Sounds Evil

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The current Challenger SRT Demon, a street-legal dragster based on the Hellcat, comes to mind when we talk about the Dodge Demon. But Dodge used the moniker on a particular Dart model for the first time in 1971. If you’re interested in history, the business also unveiled the Demon concept in 2007, a roadster that was meant to replace the Viper.

The Dart Demon debuted in 1971, four years after Dodge launched the fourth-generation Dart. That year, Dodge revised the entire Dart lineup by adding new badges. The Custom two-door hard-top became the Swinger, while the standard Swinger became the Swinger Special.

Dodge also introduced a fastback variant based on the Plymouth Duster. It was initially scheduled to be sold as the Dart Beaver. But when Dodge learned that “beaver” was CB slang for vagina, it opted to rename it the Dart Demon.

Advertised as a performance car, the Demon was essentially a Duster with a Dart front end and just a handful of unique but minor features. The Demon’s hood, available with scoops and black trim, masked a 340-cubic-inch (5.6-liter) V8 engine rated at 275 horsepower.

Although it wasn’t a high seller, the Demon remained in showrooms in 1972 with various revisions, including new badges and decals. However, the trim was replaced by the Dart Sport in 1973, mostly in response to Christian groups protesting the name and the devil-with-pitchfork logo.

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With more than 120,000 units built in two years, the Dart Demon isn’t extremely rare, but it’s definitely harder to spot than a standard Dart. Especially if it’s a nicely restored example like the one you’re about to see below.

A flawless example with shiny yellow paint and a sparkling clean engine, this Demon isn’t exactly stock. But you need to take a really close look under the hood to find out why. While it may look like a standard 340, the V8 now displaces 408 cubic inches (6.7 liters) thanks to an increased piston stroke.There’s no information on how powerful it is now, but it definitely sounds meaner than the regular Demon-spec 340.

The aggressive burble is almost evil and I bet this V8 roars like mad when the gas pedal hits the floor. Sadly, there’s no driving footage of the car, but you’ll hear a bit of mild revving in the video below, around the 2:20-minute mark.Yes, the original Demon isn’t as powerful and aggressive as the modern Challenger Demon, but I’d still favor it for a spin around the block. How about you?

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