Spirit of 76 Dart Lite

dart_liteFrom the Mopar Lightwieght Vehicles Division comes this 1976 Spirit of ’76 Dodge Dart Lite. Less than a thousand of these special edition Dodge Darts were ever made, with the lightweight Plymouth Division version known as the Feather Duster. As 1976 coincided nicely with the Bicentennial of the USA, the Spirit of ’76 Dart Lite was built with 200 years of awesome into the red, white, and blue piped bucket seats alone. While the patriotic appearance package is itself genius, more amazing is that thanks to less wieght and creative engineering, the Spirit of 76 Dart achieved an impressive 36 mpg highway!  Use of aluminum internal bracing, bumper structures, and an aluminum intake manifold lightened up the entire coupe. A specially prepared carburetor and distributor were mated to the leaning tower of power slant six engine under the hood. With a four-speed manual transmission linked up to some tall highway rear gears, the Dart made for 36 mpg. The Dart Lite came in just over the 4000 dollar mark with a few sweet options from your Dodge Dealer in 1976. Make mine a Dart Lite.


  1. JayP says

    36mpg? Really?
    Consider that the Honda Fit gets 33mpg, 36 in this lump is impressive.

  2. Alan R. says

    Wow, these things were like 30 years ahead of their time. It’s a well known fact that the uglier the car, the better the drag car they make!