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Honest 1965 Plymouth Barracuda Fastback


The other day we had a discussion about sellers misrepresenting cars as “survivors”, so it was refreshing to read the classified copy for this 1965 Barracuda. They state that it is “all original, except repaint”. That is more like it. We would prefer the factory sprayed hue, but we can overlook it if the seller mentions that fact right up front. Anyway, the owner of this Plymouth can no longer pass the vision test so it is time to let it go. Find it on Hemmings.


We assume the engine designation is a typo. They list it as a 273 horsepower V8, but we think they mean a 273 cubic inch V8 which was good for about 180hp. There was a Commando option though that pushed that figure up to 235hp. Unfortunately, the air cleaner and valve covers are not correct for one of those. Too bad…


As the prices of higher horsepower cars make them unattainable for most of us, something like this Barracuda makes more sense for someone who actually drives their classics. This one still runs fine and is claimed to have been well maintained. Rust would be our biggest concern though considering the cars location (Massachusetts). If it is solid underneath, we dont think their $7,500 asking price is too unrealistic and they are willing to negotiate.


You could always drop a Commando spec engine and four-speed in there. Hmm…


  1. Dirty Dingus McGee

    Want badly.

    *checks wallet*

    Drats, foiled again.

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    • Ramblin' man

      That happens to me every moment of every day. I gotta unsubscribe from this website! :D

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  2. paul

    Agreed this car has a much more even patina & devoid of the spray can dress up.

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  3. dan Farrell

    Saw a formula S a couple of years ago, the guy was asking $17,000. didn’t sell.

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  4. scot c

    ~ i know a number of people who don’t care for the first Barracuda. i always ask if they’ve had their vision checked. and price? $7500 steals this Plymouth.

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  5. SETH

    drove one of these about 35 years ago, was fun but had to pump the brakes.

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  6. Craig Ogren

    Nice car… they always seemed to have shackles on the rear (at least that is how I remember) Shackles tried to raise the rear…sometimes they just wrecked the leaf springs : )

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  7. Craig Ogren

    Correct me if I’m wrong…I am pretty sure these started the whole fastback trend. Take a regular sedan, change the roofline presto, sporty vehicle. Thinking these, Rambler Marlin, Later Torino, 66 and 67 Chargers… Impalas had the long slope too, 67 I think was the most pronounced. I am sure others too

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    • paul

      Well they had fast back roofs in the 40’s but in that era of the Barrcuda I believe the 65 Mustang was the beginning .

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      • paul

        The Mustang was actually a 64 & a half.

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      • Webby

        That honour belongs to the stunning ’63 Corvette coupe.
        That said, the HUGE rear window on the Barracuda must have pushed glass making technology to its limits.

        Mazda couldn’t match it 15 years later with the first gen rx-7.
        ( a chookcooker in Aussie slang). They used a 3 piece.

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      • Dave

        Actually, the 64 Barracuda actually was released 2 or 3 weeks before the 64-1/2 Mustang.

        The ‘Cuda actually beat the Mustang to the public.

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      • Coldgin

        Yes, the Mustang came out in 64 1/2, but it was only available as a coupe or convertible. The fastback was not offered until the official 1965 production run, so I would have to say that Barracuda beat Mustang to the punch on the fastback roofline.

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      • 50coronet

        …64 barracuda. Actually beat the mustang to showroom a couple months

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  8. Viggen2

    Had one of these in the early 70s. White w/gold interior & a 225 slant 6 cylinder. Another, a couple of years later, was definitely more exciting. Silver w/white stripe package, 66 Formula S, 273 V8. Carter AFB carb, dual point distributor and the factory sport exhaust.

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  9. Will

    If I lived closer I would go buy this car tonight. I spent many hours sweltering under that rear glass in los angeles in the sixties. I was the youngest and usually got stuck behind the back seat. I hated that car then. It was better than my Dads VW bug though. Or his ford truck . Hmm Come to think of it going anywhere with my dad was unfair to the littlest kid. :)

    Love it now.

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  10. Robert J

    My brother’s first car in high school (circa early 80’s) was a very similar Barracuda fastback. He always had the rear seat folded down in to a bed…complete with pillows and a blanket. Hmmm.

    Also of note, the starters on these and other Plymouths are inordinately loud and unpleasant sounding. Other than that, I really dig these and the notchbacks.

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    • Webby

      I share your pain. The Aussie Valiants – both slant 6 and the alleged hemi 6 cyl
      ( google it if you don’t believe me) always had a ‘distinctive’ starter motor sound.

      Can’t recall the Chrysler V8s doing it here in Aus, we had the 273, 318, 340 & 360 versions.

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  11. sunbeamdon

    Bought a 4bbl 4speed version of this in ’66 with 10,000mi on it. Complained to the dealer that the rear-end was howling – “don’t worry about it” was their answer. Well two days later after a full-tilt burn out getting onto the freeway in downtown Seattle the rear dropped a tooth (or two??), I limped about 4 miles to the dealer – “ca-chunk, ca-chunk, ca-chunk”. It stopped moving in front of their store. They fixed it, I drove the wheels off it for two years, traded for a good-ol’ family wagon. Two weeks after trading it, I got a call from the new owner -“did you know the cam lobes were almost gone???” Of course not!!

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  12. James

    I have one of these and enjoy it immensely. I live in Massachusetts too. I had one thirty years ago also (not the same one) and courted my wife in it. On our honeymoon we slept in the back with the back seat folded down looking up at the stars through the big glass window. Oh by the way I beat all the 1981 Mustangs with it all the time.

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  13. erikj

    im not a big fan of that style, ive owned three since the early 80s. First one was a 66 fomula s with the 273 cammando,4speed and the ass end was a 8 3/4 possi that was jacked up id swear 10 feet. not a preety car, but i paid $75 and drove it home.It found a new home soon after but i remember liking the cammando emblems and since i collected emblems i kept them. Still got them

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  14. GeeBee

    Repaint in Massachusetts sounds like they are possibly hiding a bunch of patchwork and Bond-O. I’d look really, really close at this one.

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  15. Utesman

    @ sunbeamdon…..

    AGAIN, probable cause to muse BF & its splendid comments! Truly, a true trip ‘back when’.

    Had a friend w/a Ruby Red ’65 Formula S w/the Hi-Po 235/273 & that sweet’n nasty, rappy, one-year-only-because-of-noise-ordinance-violations single outlet exhaust. He used it to tow his honest-to-God “Mr. Norm’s Flying Ram” ’65 Dodge Coronet 2dr post. I NEVER saw him race it though! He just towed it around, to work & back home, cuz’ he enjoyed blowin’ everybody’s mind with what was on that trailer. With that beast on the hitch the azz end was always draggin’ on the ground cuz’ he’d never bothered beefin’ up the springs. Even had the S W E E T factory MoPar-only Goodyear bluelines on it! Unhook that BOMB he always hauled & that little S would just stand there wheel hoppin’, smokin’ those bluelines ’till the cows came home!

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  16. FRED


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  17. Richard A Farley

    True story I had three of them and didn’t pay but $300 for all three one was a 64 that Plymouth valiant barracuda then I picked up the 65 4-speed 273 heights output and then I picked up another one that was used for road rallying 65 the love of my life was them cars we’re hoping for a happy

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