Welcome to another installment of Mopar Quick Shift Thursday, where I bring as many of these glorious Mopars I found at a local car show this past weekend. The Plymouth Barracuda was a very close cousin to the Plymouth Valiant and Dodge Dart, yet coming off as something special in its own right. This 1969 model sports the last year that the Barracuda would have the look that resembles the Valiant as the 1970 model would be all new.
This is a Barracuda Formula S model, which used to be the top of the line for the Barracuda until this year. This particular car sported the 383 CID V-8, which produced 330 HP for 1969. Options on this car included the saddle bucket seat interior with center console, the “Mag” wheel covers, the 3-speed TorqueFlite Automatic, and more. There were only 272 Barracudas built like this car, and this one was restored to factory originality in 1997.
This is a beautiful example of the second generation Barracuda, and is very lustworthy in its own right. It is a car that get driven, though not all that frequent from what I can tell. The paint has a mirror finish that new cars would kill for. So, what do you think of this cousin to the humble Valiant?
Mopar Quick Shift Thursday – A 1969 Plymouth Barracuda Formula S
To me, the '67-'69 Barracuda fastbacks are the best-looking Mopar pony cars – period. You could even strike out "Mopar" from the last sentence without much argument from me. I do take a couple of points off the '69 model for messing with the split grille treatment (I've pictured a '68 for comparison). I'd pick one with the 340.
<img src="http://www.eastohiocoolcars.com/Plymouth/1968Barracuda/1968Cuda4.jpg" width=400>
The Duster was perfectly timed. In late 1969, the US economy was weakening a bit, intermediate muscle cars were peaking with increasing unwanted attention from insurance companies, the ponycars were slowly bloating up, and hot compacts were becoming more popular. It didn't hurt that the Duster wasn't much more expensive than the smaller and cruder Ford Maverick – it looked like a "real car" by comparison.
Great write-up on these in the latest issue of Collectible Automobile.
Trivia: You couldn't get power steering or a 4-speed with the 383, as there was not enough space for them with that engine crammed in there. (I think power brakes were even unavailable in '68, but they rectified that for '69.)
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