8. Dodge Challenger R/T
Plymouth had the Barracuda, which was the first pony car model they introduced two weeks before the Ford Mustang. But its stable mate, Dodge, didn’t enter the segment until 1970. Some muscle car historians say Dodge almost missed the party, but the Challenger was so good, it truly left its mark, reserving a place in history. Mopar’s E-Body models, the Barracuda and Challenger were new for 1970. They featured new designs and better construction, as well as a wider, longer body.
There were no significant mechanical differences between the Barracuda and the Challenger. The difference was in the design, although these two cars had some interchangeable bodywork parts, as well. They immediately presented the Challenger with the full firepower of Mopar engines. Buyers could get a powerful 383 V8, as well as a big 440 and the famous 426 Hemi. The best performers were the 440 and the Hemi, depending on the specifications, differential ratio and gearboxes.
Challengers equipped with those engines could accelerate to 60 mph in the 5.5 to 5.7-second range, which was quick for 1970. However, the Challengers with 440 engines were more expensive than the regular models. That is why Dodge produced less than 4,000 examples for the 1970 model year. Today, Hemi Challengers cost a few hundred thousand dollars, but you can get the next best thing in the form of the Challenger with the 440 engine in R/T package for around $90,000.