After 39 years, Mr. Norm revives the GSS series—
a 9-second Challenger your grandmother could love.
By Al Dente Photos by TheBruntBros
Back in ’66, all the U.S. carmakers were heavy into high performance. Dodge was reassuring their dealers that for 1967, they would receive a totally new Dart with power to wail on the competition. Something that would put a hurting on the popular Chevy II Nova SS with its 327/350 drivetrain. Everybody waited, and the new handsome Dart came down the pipeline. But with only a 273 V8? C’mon! You guys kidding? One of those Dodge dealers was Norm Kraus, better known as “Mr. Norm.” honcho over at Grand Spaulding dodge in beautiful Chicago. Norm knew the 273 just wouldn’t cut it so he cooked up the now infamous “couldn’t be
done” 383 swap into the new A-body. Very fortuitous, as Mr. Norm had been trying to come up with ways to make Grand Spaulding stand out from the dealership clutter. Norm called his creation the GSS which stood for Grand Spaulding Sport or Grand Spaulding Special depending on the day of the week. Unique to his dealership, the GSS put Grand Spaulding on the map. ‘Course, you could get away with stuff like that back then. In ’68, the 383 Dart was old news. What to do for an encore? Why, drop in a Which he did as the next GSS model—a car that became the forerunner of the factory M-Code 440 Darts. By 1971, dark clouds were evident on the performance