With the launch of the 1970 Plymouth Barracuda, the Plymouth brand launched their third generation of the Barracuda in 6 years. Something that seems unprecedented in today’s automotive industry. The introduction of the E-Body Barracuda was special. Based on the popular mid-sized B-Body platform the E-Body was wider and shorter, giving the Plymouth Barracuda and its corporate sibling the Dodge Challenger some of the most identifiable muscle cars of the era.
Despite being related the Barracuda never shared any exterior sheet metal with the Challenger. The third-generation Barracuda aimed to get rid of its economy car stigma that the first two generations brought with it being based on budget-oriented Plymouth Valant.
The Barracuda introduced a more performance-oriented “Cuda” model, which could be equipped with a number of powerful engines like the standard 335 horsepower big-block 6.3-liter 383 cubic-inch V8, a 290 horsepower small-block 5.6-liter 340 cubic-inch V8 with three 2-barrel carburetors (also known as a 6-barrel) exclusively for the track-oriented AAR (All-American Racers) Cuda, a 7.2-liter 440 cubic-inch V8 with either a 375 horsepower 4-barrel setup or a 390 horsepower 6-barrel setup, or the legendary 7.0-liter 426 cubic-inch HEMI V8 making an underrated 425 horsepower.
The HEMI used 10.25:1 compression forged pistons, a race-bred reciprocating assembly, dual 4-barrel carburetors, massive-port cylinder heads, and a free-flowing dual exhaust that ends in chrome tips. It was underrated at 425 horsepower and 490 lb.-ft. of torque.
This unrestored 1970 Plymouth HEMI Cuda is a multiple-award winner and was even invited to the prestigious Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance at Carmel by the Sea. It has been featured in several Mopar magazines and television segments, the New York Times, and the feature car of an automotive calendar.
With only 652 HEMI Cuda coupes built during the 1970 model year, only 284 of them were equipped with the unique Hurst Pistol Grip-shifted New Process A833 4-speed transmission like this one. HEMI Cudas also came from the factory with a heavy-duty suspension and a heavy-duty Dana 60 differential. This particular one s finished in the rare combination of Alpine White with a black interior, Rallye road wheels, and Black “hockey stick” stripes.
Certified by highly regarded Mopar expert Frank Badalson as a factory-original HEMI 4-speed car, this exceptional 1970 Plymouth HEMI Cuda coupe shows a mere 9,942 original miles on its odometer and retains the overwhelming majority of its original paint and interior.
The car will cross the Mecum auction block this Friday, January 14th as Lot # F141 in Kissimmee, Florida. Mecum expects the Alpine White HEMI Cuda coupe to bring in around $275,000 to $325,000 when the bidding goes live. To learn more about the car, bid on, or watch the Mecum event, you can visit Mecum.com.
1970 Plymouth HEMI Cuda Image Gallery: