I have become very fond of classic muscle cars these days. And they seem to be popping up more than ever which makes me very happy. The designs are fantastic.
Here’s a mint condition Pontiac GTO to get things started.
What a cool car. Love that GTO in the grill area, and those red stripes on the tires are incredible!
Muscle cars are seemingly so popular right now that a TV show called The Car Chasers has emerged which documents some dudes on the chase to “find it, fix it, flip it”.
Even car manufacturers are recognizing the renewed popularity and showing appreciation by reproducing models with some of their original design flare such as: the Dodge Charger SRT8 Super Bee, the Chrysler 300, the Dodge Challenger R/T, Ford Mustang GT, the Chevrolet Camaro ZL1, Dodge Challenger SRT8 Core, Ford Mustang Shelby GT500, Chevrolet Camaro Z/28, and the Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Z51. Very cool indeed, but not entirely what Endangered Cars is about because we are in search for the older beauties.
Muscle cars are American made, high performance 2-door cars, containing a large power source such as a V8 engine. It’s all about being tough, the noise of that roaring engine, an e-brake stand, a drag race. That’s right straight-line speed. Pedal to the metal! And of course get those windows rolled down, and crank some dark heavy metal tunes. My choice of course would be Black Sabbath.
Many consider the 1949 Oldsmobile Rocket 88 to be the first muscle car produced which had a V8 and was built to address public interest in speed and power. Perhaps this is when the concept of 0-60 MPH emerged. Yes, super charged acceleration! In 1955 a competitor emerged, the Chrysler 300, and at the time was pegged “America’s most powerful car”.
Later, this category of car really took off in the 1960s with a horsepower war, and bloomed by the 1970s. The cars were built with the young male driver in mind. It was all about being cool, powerful, and tough. It must have been a scene on the streets back then. Can you picture all these special vehicles rumbling around town? So FUN!
So what are some examples of classic muscle cars? Here are some of the original cars that claimed this title early on:
- AMC Machine
- Buick Gran Sport
- Chevrolet Chevelle SS
- Dodge Charger RT
- Ford Torino GT
- Mercury Cyclone CJ
- Plymouth Road Runner
- Pontiac GTO
- Dodge Dart
- Ford Thunderbolt 427
- Plymouth Fury
- Buick Skylark Gran Sport
- Oldsmobile Cutlass 442
- Dodge Coronet
- Buick Riviera Gran Sport
- Buick Skylark Gran Sport
As years passed by you would see various full-size, mid-size, compact, and select pony cars move into this class as engine sizes increased.