Junkyard Treasure: 1969 Dodge A100 Sportsman Van

1969 Dodge A100 Sportsman Van RH rear view

As an A100 owner, I’m always on the lookout for treasures like this one

We haven’t had a van Junkyard Treasure since this prehistoric non-minivan Plymouth Voyager last spring, and as a Dodge A100 owner I know how hard examples of Chrysler’s forward-control van of the 1960s are to find in junkyards nowadays. These vans tended to get used up, finally getting scrapped only when the last possible mile got squeezed out, and that means they’re exceedingly rare. Here’s one that I found in the San Francisco Bay Area a few months back.

1969 Dodge A100 in California wrecking yard

With all the time I spend prowling around self-service wrecking yards, I’ve seen only two A100s in such yards since I bought mine in 2010. There was this ’69 Tradesman A108 cargo van in Denver, and now today’s Junkyard Treasure in San Jose, California. Even though I didn’t have many tools and any parts I grabbed would have to go in my checked baggage for the flight back to Colorado, I grabbed some much-needed A100-only throttle-linkage pieces, some A100-only door-lock hardware, the instrument cluster, and a few more small unobtainium components.

1969 Dodge A100 V8 engine

This van appears to have started life as one of several factory-authorized camper conversions, and at some point the fiberglass cab was removed. The interior still has some wood paneling and a few remnants of furniture, but it looks like this van spent a decade or two as a much-thrashed cargo hauler after its camping days were through.

Taco truck meal with Dodge A100 instrument cluster

After grabbing my A100 parts, I celebrated with a tasty meal from the taco truck that parks outside the yard’s front gate.

Dodge marketed the A100 and longer-wheelbase A108 as maneuverable city vans.

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