It doesn''t take long for car guys to put two and two together. Chrysler may have intended their compact fleet to be inexpensive grocery getters but, thanks to their smaller proportions and relatively light weight, the hot rodding possibilities just couldn’t be ignored. This 1972 Demon 340 is one of the A-bodies that Dodge sent out with some factory heat between the fenders. It’s a true H-code car that retains its original 340ci V8 and Torqueflite automatic transmission. Dressed in one of the most sinister color schemes Dodge could dream up, the car has a bold look that presents as new thanks to a frame up restoration. Rarer than the the Dusters and hotter than any garden variety Dart, this Demon is the perfect A-body to cap your existing collection or start a whole new one with!
We’ll get started by decoding fender tag highlights so you know this Dodge is the real deal:
E55: 340ci 4-barrel V8
D34: Torqueflite automatic transmission
LM29: Dart/Demon 2-door sports hardtop
H2B: 340ci/240hp V8, 1972 model year, assembled at Dodge Main
TX9: Black exterior paint
F6X9: Black vinyl bucket seat interior
221: Scheduled for production on 2/21/1972
A88: Interior décor group
C16: Console with buckets
G37: Chrome rear view mirrors
N23: Electronic ignition
R11: Music Master AM radio
When you name a car “Demon” you set some pretty serious expectations. While there''s nothing Dante may have imagined here, the car certainly has an ominous presence. It starts with the paint – TX9 black, just like the fender tag specifies. Black doesn’t lie, so trust it when it says how great this car looks in person. The body is straight all around, shut lines are even, and the rich paint can double as a mirror in a pinch. Of course, the stripes are what really make the car pop. Mopar had some of the best dress options of the era and this Demon sports two of them. Across the hood, a flat black center section is outlined in curved pinstripes, giving the car a subtle, but aggressive, look. At the sides, a pair of white stripes run the length of the car, breaking up the sea of black paint. There’s no two ways about it - the car looks like a weapon.
Moving beyond initial impressions, the car offers plenty of high-quality details. At the front of the car, a plainspoken grille wrapped in bright molding sits above a body hugging chrome bumper – the last of its kind before safety bumpers took over in ’73. While most of these cars sport some kind of hood scoop, this Demon keeps a low profile with a flat hood, held in place by chrome hood pins. Clean factory glass work fills the greenhouse, framed by stainless trim while chrome sport mirrors provide hindsight. Aside from the white stripes, the side profile is a simple one, topped with only corner markers and chrome door handles with the Demon logo on both fenders, just above a small Chrysler Pentastar. Follow that sloped C-pillar back to admire the white taillight panel with vertically slatted taillights. A crisp Dart badge sits on the right side of the deck lid while a final Demon 340 logo rounds out the taillight panel. A second chrome bumper finishes off the look, with two chrome exhaust tips jutting out below.
The HEMI and 440 Six Pack were both off the option list by 1972 but that didn’t mean the fun was over. The high-winding 340 was finally getting its time to shine, producing a solid 240 net horsepower in an era when even top option Corvettes were falling short of the 300hp mark. This Demon sports its original mill authenticated by a 2780930-340 casting number, 9.24.71 casting date, and a matching partial VIN. The block is dressed in blue and topped with a pair of stock cast heads that frame a 3614025 single-level intake topped by a single Carter ThermoQuad carburetor. The front of the engine turns a power steering pump and alternator while the water pump teams up with a proper 3574636 radiator and a single fan to keep the bay cool. The car shipped with one of the now ubiquitous Chrysler electronic ignitions which works with a reproduction yellow cap battery to get the show started while factory exhaust manifolds show spent gases the door. From the bright orange single snorkel air cleaner with its 340 decals, to the reproduction hoses and hardware, the engine compartment does a great job communicating its originality.
Despite its show-ready look, the car was built to be enjoyed. Shine a light underneath and you’ll find that idea supported by an undercoated underside with plenty of correct Mopar hardware ready and waiting for action. Behind that 340, a 727 Torqueflite automatic takes care of shifting. According to the stamp on the pan rail, this one was finished on January 27, 1972 – not long before the car was assembled. A partial VIN stamp on the passenger side confirms this 3-speed as original equipment. Out back, an A-body specific 8.75-inch rear end puts the power to ground, supported by a pair of leaf springs and shocks. The front end is equally true to factory form its beloved torsion bar setup still in place. In the corners, factory power steering is backed by hydraulic drum brakes all around. At the corners, industrial looking 14-inch steel wheels wear black paint, dog dish hubcaps, and a set of Goodyear Polyglas F70-14s to finish off that vintage look.
By the 1970s, Mopar interior were pretty basic affairs but that definitely doesn''t mean they lacked style. Pop open the doors on this Demon and you''ll be greeted by a restored black vinyl interior complete with a small forest worth of wood grain accents. At the ground level, a set of bright door sill plates anchor the black carpeting, protected by new black carpet floor mats. The transmission tunnel is crowned by a center console with plenty of storage, an ashtray, and a chrome shifter surrounded by bright trim and more wood grain applique. A Mopar Tuff Wheel offers control over the Demon while, behind the column, factory instrumentation lives within a squared bezel, complete with a large rectangular speedometer and a series of smaller round gauges that keep tabs of vitals like fuel and temperature. To the right, controls for the heater live above the solid state AM radio. At either side, stylish door panels with showroom fresh hardware are topped by the Demon logo while a taut black headliner stretches across the top. Lift the deck lid to find roadside tools and a filler tube sandwiched between a fresh trunk mat and correct decals.
The sale includes a few supporting items. For starters, there are pictures of the VIN derivatives on both the engine block and transmission, as well as a picture of the engine date code. A separate sheet breaks down the trim tag in detail while what''s left of the original broadcast sheet is preserved in a plastic cover. Finally, there''s a registration from 1996 thrown in for good measure.
Regardless if you’re a diehard Mopar A-body fan or just a muscle car novice looking for an affordable way to get into the hobby, this Demon is a great choice. Of the nearly 40,000 Demons produced for ‘72, only 8.700 of them carried the 340 and, with its original drivetrain still in place, this one a perfect example to show off. Best of all, it’s still a Demon 340, so the car is an absolute blast to drive. A great car at a great price? You know this one won’t last long so, if you’re ready to put a Demon in your lair, act fast!