Ask our Experts, we're here to help!
For Mopar traditionalists, there's just a handful of shows that really make the radar. One of the most well-known events is the Mopar Nationals held at National Trail Raceway near Columbus, Ohio. Historically, the Nats has been a monster of a Mopar meet, with a solid car show, NHRA-level drag racing, a swap meet that's legendary, a burnout contest on the property, and historically many rowdy after-hours activities along Brice Road in Columbus. Over the years, there were changes...a move to Indianapolis for two years in the 1990s threw some people off, and crackdowns on some of the rowdy behavior that took place on Brice Road and nearby Heath, Ohio tamed the Nats down a bit. But even after forty-one annual events, the Mopar faithful made the trek back to National Trail for another show.
With features that included tributes to 1952, 1962, 1972, 1982 and 1992 model-year vehicles, on-hand celebrities that included Butch "The California Flash" Leal and Joe Zolper from "Garage Squad", and a mix of Mopar vehicles that ranged from beautiful pre-muscle restorations to wild late-model Gen III Hemi-powered screamers, the Nationals offered a little something for everyone. If you wanted to see the burnout contest on Friday and Saturday, you just had to be near the dragstrip at 2 p.m. If you were wanting a deal, the swap meet had all sorts of hidden gems, And if you just wanted to get your Mopar fix in, all you had to do was to make sure your walking shoes were laced up tight and get moving.
This 1957 Dodge Custom Royal is a gorgeous example of the first year of Dodge's "Forward Look" models.
If a project Mopar was on your shopping list, chances were good that you could find one at the Nats. A buildable Plymouth 'Cuda will always attract a crowd.
Trucks were well-represented at the Nationals, with this 1968 Dodge W200 Power Wagon crew cab standing out in the crowd.
It would be easy to just say that this Chrysler Town and Country wagon was nice and move along. But keen-eyed show-goers would stop and do a double-take at the front sheetmetal, which included the front bumper, grille and hidden headlight assembly from a 1969 Chrysler Three Hundred.
The swap meet is a gold mine for Mopar builders anywhere. Need a complete 383ci big-block? Want to make sure you were getting a good deal? You could hear this unit fire up for yourself before putting down the money!
While there were plenty of built small-blocks, big-blocks, 426 Hemis and even a few Turbo 2.2 builds on the property, you had to look closely because a few older machines were rocking Gen III Hemi swaps. This Coronet was one of the cleanest swapped cars parked in the show!