440 V-8 4-Speed: 1969 Plymouth Road Runner

The muscle car war was in full swing by 1969, which was the second year of Plymouth’s successful (and slightly gimmicky) Road Runner. It debuted in 1968 with its Warner Brothers licensing and its distinctive “beep-beep” horn. For those wanting speed with a minimum of creature comforts, the Road Runner was the way to go. This ’69 edition has had its engine and transmission out for a refresh and the interior seems to have had a similar treatment. Wearing its original paint and located in Las Vegas, Nevada, this nemesis of the Coyote is available here on Facebook Marketplace for $35,000.

Road Runner sales were brisk going into its largely unchanged encore year, with more than 81,000 of the birds speeding out of Plymouth factories. The engines choices were the 383 (4-barrel), 440 (6-Pack) and the 426 Hemi. The 383 comprised 97 percent of all production for 1969, which brings us to the question of the seller’s car. We’re told it comes with a 440 and a 4-speed.  We’re not told if its numbers-matching, although this pairing is said to have come out of the car for new gaskets and detailing. If this is a 4-barrel set-up, then it’s either been changed or this is a different engine than the car started with. There were only 422 440 6-Pack 4-speed hardtops built in 1969 and supposedly zero 4-barrels.

The seller doesn’t give us a lot of details about his car (does Facebook limit the number of words?). Besides what’s been mentioned, the bird also has a new clutch and the 8 ¾ rear end is a “real RM” code with Sure Grip. The paint is what came with the car 51 years ago and needs a refresh, but we’re seeing no real issues with rust or other sheet metal damage. The seller confirms he’s looking for cash money and no trades. The aftermarket wheels look good.

The 1969 Plymouth Road Runner was named Motor Trend’s Car of the Year for 1969. The award is given to recognize the best new or significantly refreshed car in a model year. Muscle cars have won on other occasions, including the Pontiac GTO in 1968. But they’ve missed the mark a few times, too, like the Chevy Vega in 1971 and Chrysler’s Volare/Aspen compacts in 1976. Little did they know the headaches that these cars would experience.

According to Hagerty, the asking price of the seller’s car would put it on the high side of the “Good” range. That might be ambitious, but if it runs stout, maybe this is the right ballpark after all. We’ve come a long way from the days of when a ’69 Road Runner hardtop started out at $3,083 on the window sticker, which is equal to $21,860 today.

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Comments

  1. Mopar Baby Manual Trans

    This is a decent deal if one considered the crusher ready cars offered recently for sale. If it passes potential owners inspection then snag it … avoid junkyard dogs 🐕 and be happy

    Yes 35 is high but for a mopar it runs and a four speed…

    Like 2
  2. Steve R

    This looks like it has great potential, but the price will be an impediment to most, if not all potential buyers.

    The seller is smart enough to include in the ad that the VIN shows it as a real Road Runner. He surely would have included the engine code if it was a factory 440 Six Pack since that would have added significantly to the cars value. Many sellers are pretty lazy, some are dumb as rocks, however, they are generally predictable. They either give you no information or all the information. Since there was no additional financial benefit in stating the default engine, he left it out of the ad.

    Steve R

    Like 7
  3. 86_Vette_Convertible

    Not a big Mopar guy, having been burnt a couple of times, but this one looks pretty good. Whether $35K worth of good, that’s up to someone else to determine.
    One thing I just thought about: seems like 99% of the Road Runners are either this color of blue or red. They were attractive cars IMO.

    Like 2
  4. jimjim

    I would have thought you could get one of these with the regular 440, not the six-pack, no?

    Like 1
    • Angrymike

      No, the 440 was in the GTX, the Road Runner had the 383 with Hemi as the only option till the mid year six pack came out.

      Like 8
  5. gaspumpchas

    You would need to check it out and see if its worth the coin, or an offer. I have to admit this is the first car on BF thats Photographed at night, wtf? Possibly hiding some negative details? say it aint so. Looks good in the pics, but Caveat Emptor. Good luck and happy new year!
    Cheers
    GPC

    Like 1
  6. Goatsnvairs

    $35k a bit steep. A quality paint job would put you well above market value….

    Like 3
  7. stillrunners stillrunners Member

    Nice but I’m with the over price guys.

    Like 2
  8. John

    Shouldn’t have painted that horn blue.

  9. william

    I’m pretty sure the 440 4-speed cars had dana 60’s in them.

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