When it comes to classic Detroit steel, Plymouth is a name with over 70 years of history. From family car to classic muscle to the first of the minivans, there are a lot of great cars that have been made by this bargain-priced Chrysler spin-off. Here is a look at three of Plymouth’s most historic models.
The Fury was Plymouth’s first foray out of the stolid family sedan and into the sexier world of fast cars. It was a sub-series of the Belvedere and sold from 1956 to 1958. The only style choice was a buckskin beige hardtop coupe with gold-colored aluminum trim. The V8 engine had twin four-barrel carbs, and engines ranged from 318 to 350 cu in and 290 to 315 hp, depending on the model.
The Road Runner developed at the end of the Muscle Car Era in the late 1960s. Following on the heels of their GTX muscle car, it was an attempt to revamp the things that made muscle cars so successful–fast, light and cheap. Their goal was to make a car that could do a quarter-mile in 14 seconds and still cost less than $3,000 new. The car was beefed up on the outside, based on a Belvedere platform. It was very basic, stripped down and spartan on the inside with one fun exception. Plymouth paid Warner Brothers for the right to use the name Road Runner and even spent $10,000 to develop a horn that sounded like the cartoon. The Road Runner lasted until 1970, when it began to morph into the Superbird and the Duster I. The second generation of Road Runner lasted until 1974.
This second and third generation of the Barracuda is well known for its lightness, which showed off its Hemi engine. Unlike the Barracuda from which it began, the Cuda high-performance models were able to throw off the stereotype of economy car and give the Mustang a run for market share. Most notable were the coupe and convertible options of the 1970s. Beyond the Hemi, some of the more popular big-block options ranged from 335 to 425 hp. Cudas make a big impact at car shows today, partially due to their high-impact neon color options.
Though not the stars at classic car shows, some of the 1930s Plymouths had innovations, like split windows, that put them ahead of the curve. The Voyager minivans were one of the pioneers of this vehicle style. Though Plymouth made their last car in 2001, their heart still beats through their classic unforgettable models.
The Plymouth Brand may no longer be in existence, but their classic cars will be remembered as some of the coolest rides in history.
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