A ’49 Dodge with a Corvette Heart Makes for One Tough Truck
When this Dodge Power Wagon rolled off the production line in 1949, its life would have been fairly predictable. A slice of towing, a bit of hauling…work, work,work…and a side order of more work. But life is unpredictable, and today this 66-year-old truck lives a much more leisurely existence. It ditched the ancient straight-six for a modern Corvette V8, fitted some wild and crazy suspension bits, underwent a nip tuck, and today it’s verifiably one tough, rock-crawling machine. It’s also currently up for grabs on eBay, though it won’t come cheap. RELATED: This '64 Power Wagon is Now a Supermodel Show Truck
The hardy rig was built in 2012 by Wyoming’s Legacy Classic Trucks, purveyors of many classic, heavy duty Power Wagons, though somehow this looks a bit more “heavy duty” than most. Underneath its two-foot chopped chassis lies a custom 12-inch King coilover suspension, which supports military-spec Dana 60 axles, ARB air-locking differentials, and massive 39.5 inch Super Swamper tires. With a three-link setup articulating in the front, and a four-link setup in the rear, it’s safe to say this Power Wagon can crawl some rocks. And it sure has the power to do so.
Underneath that Dodge bonnet is a 6.2-liter Chevrolet LS3—the same you might find in a C6 Corvette. That may be sacrilege to Mopar and Bowtie fans alike, but the punchy mill churns out a feisty 480 horsepower and 460 lb.-ft. of torque. Despite rather tall 4.56 gears, it’s allegedly enough to shuttle this Power Wagon brute across a dirt trail at over 100 miles per hour. Uh, yikes.
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Inside, it’s what you might expect from a lightly updated and restored Power Wagon, apart from the addition of the go-fast Corbeau Racing seats and harnesses–a good indication you’re not sitting in some old-timey parade vehicle. Shift work is taken care of thanks to a TH400 automatic transmission and transfer case, which is controlled by a B&M competition shifter and twin transfer-case levers.
The cost? Drumroll please. $79,000…though when you factor in the parts and hours of dedication to build this rig, perhaps that’s not such a big number at all.
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