Chrysler VH Valiant Charger

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Chrysler Valiant VH Charger

Chrysler Valiant Charger

Chrysler VH Valiant Charger

1971 - 1973
6 cyl. & V8
2670/2965 cc
302 bhp
4 spd. man 3 spd. auto
Top Speed:
Number Built:
5 star
Valiant Charger
Chrysler VH Valiant Charger
Reviewed by Unique Cars and Parts
Our Rating: 5


A new star rose on the Australian motoring scene in 1971, with the arrival in the VH Valiant range of the short wheelbase, fastback Charger. Chrysler's TV campaign featured the young adults at whom it was targeted, waving at one as it swept by them and shouting "Hey, Charger!" - one of the more memorable TV ads of the time, it created a cliche that haunts today's owners.

Charger won Wheels magazine's Car of the Year award for 1971 and was widely acclaimed by others of the motoring press, as well as the public. Australian Motoring News described it as "...the most handsome car Chrysler has ever produced, and probably the best looking car ever produced by an Australian manufacturer". This style-setting 70s icon came in four model guises - standard, XL, 770, or the all muscle R/T. The first of the serious track pack R/T Chargers was the E38.

Despite being hampered by a three speed gearbox, it still drew comments from "Wheels" magazine like, "we achieved a time of 14.8 seconds for the quarter mile - on smoother surfaces the Charger galloped away so easily that a best of 14.5 seconds is with in reach". E38 versions had 280 HP while the E37 and E48 were the street "six-packs". E38 was a race ready Charger with the A84 "TrackPack", which included a 35 gallon fuel tank.

The A87 "TrackPack" included all the race track goodies with the exception of the big tank for endurance racing. Then in 1972 the E38 was superseded by the more powerful and greatly refined 4-speed E-49 Charger. This drew comments from Wheels such as " The raw quivering power is instantaneously on tap and with a ratio for every conceivable situation the Charger just storms through.

It would take a Ferrari Daytona with racing driver Jackie Ickx at the wheel to stay with one". All E-49's came with the "TrackPack", and 21 also had the huge fuel tank in the option list which took up nearly all available boot space. The Mercury Silver example (pictured below) is one of 149 "TrackPack" E49 Chargers made. R/T chargers are arguably the most Australian-built examples of all Aussie muscle cars, the only foreign sourced component being the exotic Weber carburettors from Italy.

A car was actually shipped from Oz to Italy, for development and testing of the triple Webers, where they covered thousands of miles around Italy before deciding on the final specs. The "Sure Grip" diff' was made here but based on a US design. The six cylinder HEMI engines were first designed in the US as a truck engine, but this design was greatly improved upon here in Australia.

The engines were completely Australian, unlike the V8 Cleveland and Windsor engines used by Ford in its Falcon GT, or the Chevrolet engines used by Holden in the Monaro GTS. The VJ Charger was released in 1973, but the range was reduced to three models; Std, XL or 770 (even though a few six-packs still managed to hit the market). The VJ brought higher equipment levels, round headlights, a new grille and new tail lights. However, the R/T was gone forever. E49 was the ultimate Charger, with only 149 built. Here is a breakdown of how many were made in each colour.

The E49 "six-pack" engine came with a baffled sump, tuned length headers, special shot-peened crankshaft, conrods, pistons, rings, cam, valve springs, a twin plate clutch and triple 45mm dual throat Weber carburettors. Chrysler quoted this engine as producing 302 HP which, in a 1372 KG (3000 pound) car, made for rapid acceleration. Road tests of the era recorded quarter mile times of between 14.1 and 14.5 seconds. 0-100 mph (160 km/h) in 14.1 seconds was the norm. This compares to times of between 15.2 and 15.6 for the next quickest accelerating Australian muscle car, the mighty XY GTHO Falcon.

The 770 Charger became a bit more luxurious in the VJ range and was the choice pick, especially the E55 option which gave you the famous 340 V8 (though even this had been watered down when compared to the VH model). Charger followed the normal course of slight exterior and interior changes that came as the model series progressed through to CM, but with the demise of the R/T the car had lost most of its appeal and sales suffered as a result. As is often the case when a manufacturer builds a car that breaks the mould, Valiant Chargers today are highly prized by collectors - none more so than the awesome E49.
Chrysler VH Valiant Charger

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Also see:

Valiant Colour Codes
Valiant Option Codes
Valiant VH/CH Specifications
Valiant VH Charger Colour and Trim Selector Brochure
Chrysler Valiant History
Reader Reviews page 1 of 1
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Dodgy Dave
Posted Recently
The Charger was in my books the best 2 door car ever made it looked great then and looks even better today when lucky enough to see one
Posted Recently
just a few corrections, the lifters were also foreign ie the usa. the hemi motor was never designed to be a truck motor for the states that is bull *** even though its in a few books
Posted Recently
simes and tumes are both wrong. cl was last charger but cm had wagon as well as sedan
Ari Raptis
Posted Recently
STOP GUESSING PEOPLE Charger did end with CL along with the Drifter pvan and ute,all CM sedans were either Valiant sedan Regal sedan Regal SE sedan and Valiant GLX and 2 wagons only Valiant and Regal all had (elb )electronic lean burn whichif you accelerated m ore than needed the o/s indicator light on top of the guard facing you would come on, onlythe CLRegal SE had this option as standard which was a bit of a gimmick like the vacuum manifold guage on a VB Commy , I was working at Chrysler at the time just b4 the switch to Mitsi`s( all my Vals were immaculate) my fave was my1975 VJ 265 Regal which was as fast as my bros manual 265VH charger who I converted from Fordwhich he bought off his cuzcoz i beat his xa superbird,and how I turned that stock charger into a 6pak killer with bolt on mods if u must know a holley 500 golden lodge spark plugs a mallory ignition coil 8 mmleads extractors chopped running into2in dual exhausts we are talking early 80`s here it would kill his cousins mustard e48VJ1973 6pak which I was to swap one day for the Regal but on that day on the way there a HQ Belmont ran a red and killed it for me,no wonder my next car was a big block Dodge everyone got out of her way!
Posted Recently
Sexiest coupe Australia has ever produced !!!
Posted Recently
ahh, mate, cl was thte last charger, cm's only came out in sedan form as chrysler tried to sell off what they could. dont correct someone else who is right with wrong information.
Posted Recently
cm was last charger
Posted Recently
on the gtho page on here it says that the gtho ran a 14.2 but on this page u are saying they ran a 15.3?
Posted Recently
im 17 years old and currently own a vh 265 charger but it needs to be put back together and refurbished but it was dream car and now i own one:) sexyest looking car ever
Posted Recently
Don't mean to be fussy, but the charger ended with the CL series, not CM.
Posted Recently
First car I ever owned CL 770 245 loved it wish I never sold it still looking to replace it one day.
Great site with heeps of info good work guy's
Posted Recently
My boss has a VJ and just had engine work done. Its very slow on take-off, but pulls hard in top-end. We were told that the diff ratio needs to be changed for quicker acceleration. Does anyone know a ballpark figure of how much it would cost to do?
old school steve
Posted Recently
why are the media/classic car commercials not working anymore.
Posted Recently
I wish I had bought one new in 1972. I bought a 2nd hand one in 1998 and I just love it.
Posted Recently
Chrysler's Charger - still unbelievable!
old school steve
Posted Recently
i love a little mopar madness, this is great.
265 owner
Posted Recently
man the hemi 6 is an amazing engine, looking at 1/4 mile times of 350 monaro, 327 monaro and gt falcons and the hemi 6 was smaller and quicker! ha! way to go man! V valiants forever!
Posted Recently
Val Lover mate, When did I ever criticise anything? I can't find it in media and there's normaly a link to commercials in the review page on this site.
I did find it, it's in "Ask the Team" section.
Posted Recently
Best looking Australian coupe ever, far more handsome than the Falcon, or Monaro, mechanically bulletproof, but one point of criticism would have to be that they rust like bloody crazy!!!
Val Lover
Posted Recently
you didn't look too hard. Before you criticise you should check this site properly - I found them.
Posted Recently
There is so many car commercials on this site, but no "Hey Charger" commercials. What a shame. :(
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