The 1968 Hemi Dart is among the most notorious muscle cars ever to cruise America’s roads and drive-ins. Its thunderous and feared Hemi™ engine made it the car to beat, on the street or strip. Only a few were built in 1968; and now Mr. Norm is creating a few more, to replace those which have disappeared over the years. Each vehicle has its own production number and comes complete with build book, production sheet, build order and is delivered by Mr. Norm himself, just as he did back in 1968. The total will remain under the original production run.
Mr. Norm revolutionized how performance cars were sold, creating the prototype 383 Dart GTS and the famed M-Code 440 Dart, both of which were later put into production by Chrysler. Mr. Norm also sold the majority of the legendary Hurst/Campbell-built 1968 Hemi Darts.
Enthusiasts can now repeat history with Mr. Norm’s GSS Hemi Dart. Built using 21st century parts and accessories, the GSS Hemi Dart exceeds the performance of the original in every category.
When an original 1968 Dart is brought into the shop, it is immediately dismantled, with each part closely examined to determine whether it can be restored or needs replacement. If replacement is the best alternative, hours of research go into finding a like part. When no parts are available, parts are hand made to original specifications with metals of the same alloy and weight.
A true frame-off restoration involves dismantling a vehicle…every nut and every bolt…so it can be rebuilt to better than factory standards. The process requires special tools and fixtures, an inordinate amount of time, a significant amount of research, and skill and craftsmanship. Blue Moon Motorsports, the builder for the Mr. Norm’s 1968 GSS Hemi Dart Program, is known for its restoration skills, with among the most modern and best equipped facilities in the country.
With the vehicle dismantled, the body shell is placed on a rotisserie so it can be cleaned to bare metal with a special water blasting process. This technology uses varying pressure and water treated with a rust inhibitor. Paint, primer, undercoating, years of dirt, and even old factory fillers are gently removed, layer by layer. The remaining bare, shiny metal is smooth and free from pits that more aggressive media, such as plastic and sand, leave behind. Having clean, bare metal allows the restorer to examine every inch of the vehicle.
Metal fabricators correct original imperfections in the sheet metal by using hand dollies to work the metal to its intended shape. Replacement parts, if any, are spot welded into place at the factory seams with a finished result so precise that it is undetectable. No fillers are used; instead the metal is hand contoured to the original shape. Once repairs are complete, an epoxy primer is applied to the entire vehicle to ensure that it will be rust-free for many years to come. This begins the prep and paint process.
The body is hand sanded and primed three times to guarantee a perfectly smooth surface for paint. No ripples, no scratch marks, no imperfections. The preparation process can take up to 400 hours. After receiving the final wet sanding by hand with special paper that is almost as smooth as a sheet of paper, the body is taken into a specialty paint booth with exact airflow to ensure even coats of sealer, base paint, intermediate tinted clear and the final clear coats. The body is baked at 150 degrees for thirty minutes; just enough to cure the surface, and then allowed to air dry for 48 hours.
Two days later, the body, now dry, is removed from the paint booth and wet sanded by hand with 2000 grit paper to guarantee an even clear coat that has great depth and proper hue. Forty hours later, the wet sanding is complete and buffing the vehicle begins. From the sanded dull surface comes a miraculous sheen that will look great for years.
Up to this point, nothing has been reassembled. This is where the hundreds of hours pay off. At this time, the new stroked 426 Hemi™ dual quad engine, the driveline, upgraded suspension, brakes and cooling systems, and related systems are installed. New wiring, plumbing and restored gauges are installed. The interior is completely sound and heat insulated. Carpeting is put into place, door and kick panels installed and seats bolted down for safety. With a new headliner and dash pad in place, auxiliary gauges are put into position, five point seat restraints are bolted down and the interior is complete.
On the outside, fenders, doors hood and trunk are positioned squarely, making certain all gaps are even and within factory specifications. Trim and bright work is installed, certified emblems are applied and glass is put into its final position; then the engine is fired up and final quality checks are done. All suspension components are preloaded and adjusted before road testing.
Every Mr. Norm’s GSS Hemi engine is prepared using new parts, selected for performance, durability, and efficiency. Each engine begins with a new Chrysler 426 Hemi block — iron or, now, 356-T6 aluminum — with a standard bore, hot tanked and magnufluxed. All rotating assembly components are billet steel, forged aluminum, or tool steel. Even better, these engines run on pump gas. For both iron and aluminum blocks, two configurations are offered: 472 cubic inches and 528 cubic inches.
Mr. Norm’s GSS Hemi Dart program is teamed with Mr. Gasket™ / Hurst™ to remain true to the original vehicles Mr. Norm sold back in 1968. Bowler Performance Transmissions has been preparing bulletproof units for three decades and has gained a reputation of setting the standard for high horsepower and high torque applications. Just as in the original vehicle, the 727 Torqueflite automatic and the A833 4-speed are the transmissions of choice.
The Dana 60 differential was the mainstay of all Mopar muscle cars sporting the Max Wedge and Hemi powertrains. It was rugged, easy to build and could accommodate just about any gear and posi combination. Rather than find old casings that have been beaten up over the years, Mr. Norm’s has had new nodular units built that are tougher than the originals. Sporting 4.10 gears and bulletproof components for that “seat-of-the-pants” Hemi launch, Mr. Norm’s GSS Hemi Darts are unparalleled performers.
The Mr. Norm’s GSS Hemi Dart has incorporated the most advanced suspension systems available to ensure better handling, superb high performance ride comfort, exceptional driver feel, ensured safety and power that is put where it’s meant to go…the asphalt.
All unitized body vehicles experience stress and twisting under load. To minimize this, Mr. Norm's GSS Hemi Darts are all built with custom sub-frame connectors from Control Freak Suspensions. To accommodate the massive 285/40-17 Pirelli P-Zero ultra performance tires, the rear wheel houses have been enlarged by three inches, and the stock spring mounts have been relocated to new and stronger torque boxes custom made by Blue Moon Motorsports, the exclusive builder for the Mr. Norm's GSS Hemi Dart.
Mr. Norm demanded that the front suspension system incorporates upper and lower control arms with coil over performance shocks. And the whole K-member had to be crafted from exceptionally strong Drawn Over Mandrel (DOM) seamless tube. Teaming up with Control Freak Suspensions™, Mr. Norm developed a front suspension system that eliminates old technology torsion bars, moderates under- and oversteer with a state-of-the-art rack and pinion, and offers light weight coupled with exceptional strength and handling.
In the rear, Mr. Norm’s GSS utilizes a nodular Dana 60-style differential that is held securely in place by the latest in leaf spring technology. Mr. Norm selected a split monoleaf spring supported by unique traction bars designed to improve overall traction and handling. The fully adjustable traction bars change the pushing point on the car and help weight shift towards the rear while maintaining the correct pinion angle, eliminating any bind whatsoever.
Finding a GSS 1968 Hemi Dart in driveable condition is a quest unto itself, and prices range to nearly a half-million dollars. At a base price of $149,000, the 2007 is priced lower than typical cloned vehicles on the market, and offers the bonus of being an authentic and certified Mr. Norm’s GSS Hemi Dart.
While it may be tempting to sell your conventional investments and start your own "Car-01(k)," a word of caution: Unlike stock certificates, collector cars require maintenance, insurance and a garage. Conversely, reviewing your portfolio performance is nowhere near as much fun as experiencing the vivid performance of a Hemi powered Mr. Norm’s GSS 1968 Hemi Dart.
Stroked to 472
Stroked to 528
91 Octane Pump Gas
All engines come complete with Mr. Norm’s GSS in-tank Aeromotive fuel pumps, pre- and post-filters, regulators, stainless braided and hard lines. All fuel tanks are tig welded stainless steel (they are not fuel cells).
Oil coolers are standard. The S/S engine includes a competition oil cooler and competition oiling system. Dyno sheets are included.
The transmission includes:
Wheels, Tires & Brakes
D5 – Mr. Norm’s GSS New Nodular
Dana 60 w/4.10 Gears and Detroit Locker
D5 – Mr. Norm’s GSS New Nodular
Dana 60 w/4.10 Gears and Power-Lock Posi
Custom Performance Driveshaft with Driveshaft Safety Hoop & Competition
Chassis & Suspension
Mr. Norm’s GSS Registry
A4 - Interior Package - $ 3,900
A5 – Comfort Package - $6,900
A6 – Sound Package - $4,900
A7 – Power Accessory Package - $2,900
P1 – Show Paint Package - $ 13,200
FG1 - Fiberglass Package - $ 1,800
E75 – Engine Protection Package - $3,300 (Included With E74SS)
EX3 – Exhaust Package - $3,300 (Included With E74SS)
E74SS – GSS S/S Engine Package - $9,500
E74A – GSS Aluminum 426/472 Engine Package –
Add $8,900 to Base Iron Block Hemi
E74A-SS – GSS Aluminum S/S 426/528 Engine Package -
Add $8,900 to E74SS - GSS S/S Iron Block Hemi
GV1 – Gear Vendors Package - $3,500
Contact Mr. Norm’s.
Page current as of
More Mopar Car and Truck News
The Viper's successor... • Dodge Demon hints... • More RWD Coming: Pomigliano freed up for...