Home Oldies Five Iconic Muscle Cars That Changed Motoring Forever

Five Iconic Muscle Cars That Changed Motoring Forever

Vukasin Herbez February 25, 2017

Oldies and definitely goldies…

Mention the words ‘muscle cars’ around a group of auto fanatics, and everyone will have their opinions. Depending on personal experience and the knowledge base of each person, you’ll probably get a different answer on which is best.

Throughout the 1960’s and 70’s, auto nuts were treated to a wide variety of incredible motors. Undoubtedly led by the American market, but also influenced by Britain, muscle cars exploded onto the scene.

Powerful Influence

Suddenly these V8-powered monsters were on the big screen, in commercials, and soon became a collector’s item. What made them so attractive? Raw power, and an already vintage feel upon release.

Something about lighting up deep dish alloys regardless of how much fuel it was cost drew huge obsession. Almost an exact opposite of today’s consumption-obsessed penny-pinchers, muscle cars waved a chrome-finished middle finger in the face convention.

Check out our list of five iconic muscle cars that changed motoring forever:

1969 Dodge Charger 500 426 Hemi

Built with a few years of influence behind it, the 69 Charger was a thing of beauty. The original Charger 500 prototype was a 1968 Charger R/T with a 426 Hemi and automatic transmission. The prototype was painted in B5 Blue with a white stripe, as well as a white interior. The Charger 500 was one of three models introduced in September 1968. Standard engine was the 440 Magnum, but factory literature claims the 426 Hemi was standard. The Charger 500 had the Torqueflite standard and the same equipment standard as the R/T.

Although the car failed to beat the Ford and Mercury equivalents on the track in 68, the Charger was and still is an iconic motor. TV show ‘Dukes of Hazard’ had an orange 69 Charger called ‘The General Lee.’

If you were fortunate enough to get your hands on one of just 67 Charger 500’s made, with the 426 Hemi lump, you will be sitting on a goldmine by now.

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1970 Boss 429 Mustang

Nicknamed ‘Boss 9’ by muscle car enthusiasts, the high performance monster ford was produced from 1969-1970. Coming with the 429ci 385-derived V8 and a four-speed manual, this truly was the NASCAR motor for the general public.

Punching out a whopping 500HP, some even claimed 600 after strenuous testing, the Boss 9 was an animal like very few others. The hoods of these beasts literally had to be altered to fit the tank-sized engines under them. Boy, was this a sight to behold:

The car unrestricted is said to be able to exceed speeds of up to 175mph, though no actual claim has been proven due to the rarity, value and collectibility of the car, making anyone who owns one reluctant to try it.

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1970 Chevrolet Chevelle SS 454

The Chevy Chevelle enjoyed a 15 year production run between 1963 and 1978, but undoubtedly the 70 SS 454 was the crowning achievement. Looking at the 69 model compared to the 70 SS is like viewing two completely different brands.

Interesting fact: the Buick and 70 Chevelle SS are the only two muscle cars in existence to share the exact same roof line. Many other sheet metal parts were also interchangeable between the two GM motors.

The base 454 cid engine was rated at 360 hp (which was also available with cowl induction) and the optional LS6 version at 450 hp. There were 4,475 LS6 Chevelles produced, of which 137 are currently registered on the National Chevelle LS6 Registry.

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1968 Shelby Mustang GT500-KR

The Shelby Mustang is a high-performance variant of the Ford Mustang which was built by Shelby from 1965 to 1968, and from 1969 to 1970. Available with the 428 ci or 351 ci (GT350) V8 engines, the 3-auto or 4-speed-manual variants of the GT500 remain an immensely popular car.

Although the first paragraph states 69-70, this is a bit of a lie. In reality, the 69 models were given a 1970 tag, under FBI supervision, with absolutely no other mods. The 68 variant came with the option of a cobra jet V8.

The real life ‘Gone in 60 Seconds” Elanor. My God, what a thing of beauty!

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1970 Plymouth GTX 440 Six Pack

Although overall the Plymouth GTX averaged more than 10,000 units per year during the four-year production, the 440 six pack was unique. The GTX was available with the standard 440 four-barrel carburetor, as well as the 440+6 barrel (three two-barrel carburetors) and the 426 Hemi.

The more desirable 4-speed manual made this car a joy to drive, pushing over 375HP by some conservative testers, with the Hemi kicking out 425 horses. Unfortunately the 71 model was slammed with restrictions from eco-legislation.

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