Fish Out Of Water: 1972 Plymouth ‘Cuda

Purchased by the seller’s brother in 1976, this Mopar spent many years off and on parked in a back yard under a tarp while the brother was away in the military. Purchased with 28,000 miles on it, the seller claims that this Mopar has only covered 30,000 miles in its lifetime, and received an engine rebuild in the short 2,000 miles of family ownership. You be the judge. With a little over a day remaining in the auction, bidding has reached $10,100. Check out this muscle fish here on ebay out of New Tripoli, Pennsylvania.

In between the short spurts of being driven, the two brothers at one point pulled the low mileage engine and had it rebuilt with some performance parts thrown in the mix. Now what exactly was done to the engine is not mentioned. If I had to guess it received a rebuild, a cam, and some carburation.  I would also guess that the engine bay was painted at that time. There are several areas where the black paint is chipping. Also the paint appears to be quite thick when looking at the vin plate. There is no word on the engines condition, or if it currently runs, but perhaps with a bit of luck it could be a runner. The seller also mentions some performance work done to the transmission, and also the addition of a Dana 60 rear end.

There are a few piece meal interior photos, but from those photos you can stitch together an idea of what this interior looks like. The dash and door panels are in very fair shape, as are the seats. Even the factory carpet is still in place, albeit faded. The odometer shows 30,313 miles, but I am curious as to the actuality of that claim. But who knows, it seems anything is possible and if this story is true, it is absolutely heartbreaking for the car itself.

Finding a 70-74 Cuda is challenging in itself as these cars are typically eaten up with rust, and it is usually extensive rust. Take a low mileage car and park it outside for nearly 40 years, and you can start to see rust that you would never want to imagine. Although for being parked outside for so long, it would almost seem this Cuda isn’t “that” rusty, but its no cream puff either. The vinyl top put a hurting on this fish as there is rot around then rear window, as well as on the passenger side “B” pillar. Both rear quarters are rough in the lower sections, and the wheel arches themselves have surface rust. Rust can be seen on both rockers, but it would seem to primarily be surface rust. There is various surface rust on the hood and front fenders, and there is rust and rot along the trunks lower edge above the taillights. There must be some rot in the trunk, and I would also imagine that the floors suffer with some rot as well. Rusty ‘Cudas and Challengers keep popping up for sale, but I find it amazing the prices that some of these cars fetch for the level of condition that they are in. I just wish this car could have made its way into a garage instead of living its life on a plywood parking pad. Would you take on the investment of reviving this low mileage fish?


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WANTED 1969-1970 Mercury Cougar XR7 Coupe Looking for a rolling chassis with good sheetmetal in the North East Bub. Any parts considered. thx Contact

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  1. slickb

    good car great for full restoration buuuuuuuuuut I bet its going to sell at some insane price so I wont even think about getting it…
    Great find though!!!!!!!!

    Like 1
  2. JW

    I always wanted a Cuda but at my age a rust bucket restoration is out of the question, I want a nice driver quality car with no rust, a 340 / 4 speed would suit me fine but the Mopar asking prices would not.

    • Chris

      Outside storage here is the problem moisture coming from the ground clean to the bottom of the vehicle vehicles must be kept in a dry environment preferably raised up on jack stands to allow air flow underneath the vehicle with cardboard or other moisture absorbing material underneath the vehicle. These were not smart people who stored this car and it was improperly stored rust took over has nothing to do with the brand try to find a Mustang or Camaro that was kept in the same environment and see what condition it’s in

  3. Madmatt

    At our shop years ago,early 90’s,I rebuilt the top end
    on a 340 4bbl auto 72 cuda.When I was done,
    The owner was very excited
    to find that it could once again get second gear chirp!
    It was a very clean original car,
    orange and black,no vinyl top.
    I wish I could have bought it from him,but he loved it too!
    It was one of my favorites to test drive… would really rev….LOL

  4. Doug Kenney

    I think the author meant C-pillars since it doesn’t have B-pillars! Lots of potential here…

    Like 1
  5. MrF

    Stored outside. What a waste!

  6. Radarone

    It’s a real shame the brothers couldn’t find a shed or garage to store this car in. Only having 30k miles probably isn’t going to be a huge selling point.

    Like 1
  7. sluggo

    Always wanted one of these, wish i could now.

  8. David Kerns

    Some people have all the fun!!!!

  9. Troy s

    The fish here’s gotta built 340, rebuilt automatic, and 4.56 gears, oh man, that thing would be fun at the strip for sure or horsin’ around doin burnouts. Geared way too low for any high way driving though, at today’s fuel costs it would get very expensive driving this ‘cuda! Needs some bigger tires in the back to give it that “look” plus it would help get some form of traction. This could be nice.

  10. Moparmann Member

    Looks more like 130k to me; very abused looking for such a claim.

  11. jay

    This cuda smells fishy. When I was in the service about the same time, every base has a fully outfitted and staffed mechanic garage to help soldiers work on their cars. Also, you can store your cars on base cheaply or just park them on garrison, no need to store under a tarp in the rear lawn. I don’t know anyone who, given the chance to be mobile on base and not ride base transportation wouldn’t take it, especially if it was a cuda. Just sayin?

  12. Mark H

    Here’s my 41k one owner miles fish that sat in the original owner’s back yard for 20 years……sad. It’s inside now and waiting for it’s rebirth.

    Like 2

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