1970 Dodge Dart Swinger Goes From Street to Junkyard

Since I revived the old Down On the Street series a couple of months back, I’ve been digging through my photo archives of interesting street-parked machinery that I’ve never shared with readers. When I took a close look at some 2011 shots of a brown 1970 Dodge Dart Swinger hardtop on an icy Denver street, something about the car seemed… familiar.

As it turns out, I photographed this Swinger five years later, when I found it in a car graveyard just a few miles to the north of the 2011 spotting. At the time, I’d forgotten about photographing the same car near downtown Denver.

I wasn’t 100% sure it was the same Dodge at first. However, a comparison of the 2011 and 2016 photos showed this faded Allstate insurance sticker on the rear bumper, and then I knew.

You can see how the rust isn’t so bad in the street photos, but had advanced into some bad rot a half-decade later. I’m pretty sure that’s why the car got forcibly retired.

The Swinger was the hardtop coupe version of the Dart compact, and it was priced very affordably for such a sporty machine.

When it got to the junkyard, someone broke the Swinger badges trying to pry them off. That’s always disappointing to see.

The factory build sheet was still under the rear seat cushion in 2016. The car came off the assembly line in Windsor, Ontario.

You could get the Swinger with a powerful 340-cubic-inch (5.6-liter) V8, but this one had the 225-cubic-inch Slant-6.

Jonny Lieberman was visiting when I found the Swinger, a decade ago, and it appears that he shot his own photographs at the time.

I’ve seen a Down On the Street car get saved from the junkyard at auction, but I’ve seen a car I once owned and loved wind up in The Crusher’s waiting room as well. Sometimes it’s worth fixing up an old machine and sometimes you just have to let it go. In the case of this increasingly rusty Dart, it was the latter situation.

If you’re looking for a real eye-opening value, you might be Dodge material!




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