I'd serously consider a stock EFI 318 from a newer Dodge truck or Jeep Grand Cherokee. Good hp, good mileage, and you can pump it up a little. Would be a very nice, and slightly different, cruiser.
Yes, xentrik, I know what you mean! We had a couple places outside of town where a little racing was done. The cops broke it up on occasion though, just enough to keep people careful! No arrests, they'd just drive up and turn the lights on well before getting there, and let "whoop" or two out of the sirens as they got closer. You had to be an idiot and peel out to get stopped! If everyone shut the cars down and stayed put, or just quietly left (which the ones with the obvious fast cars did), you were fine. And the land owners didn't complain because we didn't leave a big mess for them to clean up later. The cops hardly ever came by before 11 pm in the summer, so someone must have complained on occasion about the noise. I think the general thought was as long as we were keeping it down on the edge of town in a relatively safe to play area, we weren't risking killing some innocent bystander in town.