Pair of Projects: 1969 Plymouth Barracuda

Most folks think of the Ford Mustang as the first “pony car,” but the Plymouth Barracuda beat it to market by 17 days in 1964. The second generation of the small Mopar was winding down in 1969, while its roots were still deeply tied to the Valiant compact. The seller has two ’69 Barracudas to sell as a package deal, a pair that he’s owned for more than 30 years. They come with an assortment of parts that may or may not be enough to get the job done. From a dark garage in San Jose, California, this duo is available here on craigslist for $8,000. Thanks again, Pat L., for bringing more old cars our way!

The Barracuda would shed its Valiant heritage in 1970. But in 1969, it was in its third and final year of a second run of cars. Production would total nearly 32,000 units in 1969, two-thirds of what the all-new car would account for the following year. The Barracuda 340 (aka ‘Cuda 340) had been around since 1968 when Chrysler began producing those powerful small-block engines. About 6,000 were built in 1969 and the seller’s blue fastback is one of them. Let’s take a peek at what the seller has to offer.

Barracuda 340 (Blue)

This is a Formula S fastback with a 340 motor and a 727 automatic transmission. Both need to be rebuilt and the 8 ¾ differential may need it as well. The body is rough in several places, but the black side stripes with the 340 callouts remain. The seller indicates that it’s mostly a complete car except for one fender and quarter panel. The photos are not good and some are even burry, so it’s hard to really assess what 30 years of captivity has done.

Barracuda (Primer Red)

Less interesting perhaps is this other fastback with a Slant Six motor (225 cubic inches?). But unlike the blue car, it runs and rolls (the 340 rolls, too). This Plymouth also has an automatic tranny and drum brakes all around. It’s also shy a front fender. The seller suggests this could be a great 383 conversion candidate and has a date-correct version of the motor for $1,000 (it, too, will need a rebuild).

We’re told these machines have long been out of the California DMV computers, indicating that maybe titles aren’t included. But if you like parts, the deal will include everything else he’s collected related to these two Plymouths, such as extra interior pieces and various mechanical odds and ends. It’s up to you to decide whether to restore one or both of these cars or consider them as donors for another project.

Comments

  1. Calipag

    The post is already deleted

    Like 2
  2. Tony Primo

    Someone scored themselves a killer deal!

    Like 6
  3. Yblocker

    Indeed, the Barracuda was the first one out of the gate, but the Mustang was a totally new model, while the Barracuda simply a fastback Valiant. But I do like the original Barracuda, the 66 being my favorite.

    Like 7
    • Allan S Member

      They were both totally new models by nomenclature. Mustang was a Falcon with all new sheet metal, Barracuda was a Valiant with a fastback.
      Plymouth just didn’t cough the cash for a front clip, or even different taillights, not to mention the buku bucks Ford spent on promotion.
      I’m guessing by your handle you know more about Fords than I, so go ahead and correct me.
      And also, we wouldn’t be calling them “pony cars” if the Barracuda won the sales race.
      And what exactly would we call them? Hmm.

      Like 6
      • stillrunners stillrunners Member

        Your wrong Allan. The 1964 1/2 Barracuda did indeed have a NEW front clip. The fenders, hood and grille were all NEW – you would be correct on the bumper though. The Barracuda fender emblem is a 1964 only but that NEW clip would find it’s way to the new 1965 models.

  4. Biff Grouter

    Dang it…this close…

    Like 1
  5. Mitch

    First of all the Barracuda dropped the Valiant name plate in 1967 and became its own model, second of all the ” Cuda” name plate was introduced in 1969 the two years prior to 1969 they were all considered barracudas and from 64 to 66 they were Valiant Barracudas, and the only way that we wouldn’t know if this particular barracuda was truly a formula as car is to see the thunder tag, the stripe on the side means nothing!!!!

    Like 3
  6. Mitch

    Wow talk to text really screwed up,,, so what I meant to say was that the only way that we would know if this particular barracuda was a Formula S car is to see the Fender tag

    Like 4
  7. Allan Styve Member

    They were both totally new models by nomenclature. Mustang was a Falcon with all new sheet metal, Barracuda was a Valiant with a fastback.
    Plymouth just didn’t cough the cash for a front clip, or even different taillights, not to mention the buku bucks Ford spent on promotion.
    I’m guessing by your handle you know more about Fords than I, so go ahead and correct me.
    And also, we wouldn’t be calling them “pony cars” if the Barracuda won the sales race.
    And what exactly would we call them? Hmm.

    • Yblocker

      That’s true, the Mustang’s underpinnings did come from Falcon. I guess put it this way, the Barracuda was much more Valiant, than the Mustang was Falcon. And if Barracuda had won the race, maybe instead of pony cars, they would be called “fish cars” lol

      Like 3
      • Burt

        Even Iacocca misspoke when he said the mustang was based on the falcon platform . The concept version of the mustang was on a falcon frame, but the production model only shares engines and transmissions. No other interchangeable parts.

        Like 1
      • stillrunners stillrunners Member

        The 1964 Barracuda did carry the Valiant name plate under the trunk lid for those first months so they weren’t trying to hide anything…..

    • Grumpy

      Fish

  8. Mike Schwartz

    From a distance yes but the formula s had performance suspension and brakes as well as the high output motor

  9. Terry Stoops

    The reason the mustang was based so much on the falcon was to save money on the cost of bringing a new car to market. Poor Henry 2 was still reeling from the Edsel mistake. Didn’t want to take a huge loss if the mustang didn’t sell. Build it cheap, he told Iacocca. I guess Plymouth did the same. I love them both.

    Like 5
  10. Blue

    Brief sidetrack, I believe Mr. Iacocca to be one of the greatest American performance car minds of the 20th Century. He needs to be included in the conversation when mentioning Henry Ford, Delorean, Arkus-Duntov, Shelby, and he rarely is.

    Like 2
  11. Mopar fan

    When in reality, Pontiac stuffed a 389 into a 2 door tempest, slapped a GTO badge on it for the beginning of the 1964 model year. Beating everybody.

    • MoparMike

      I believe the tempest was a mid size car while the falcon and valiant were compact cars.

  12. stillrunners stillrunners Member

    Your wrong Allan. The 1964 1/2 Barracuda did indeed have a NEW front clip. The fenders, hood and grille were all NEW – you would be correct on the bumper though. The Barracuda fender emblem is a 1964 only but that NEW clip would find it’s way to the new 1965 models.

  13. stillrunners stillrunners Member

    Burt…..wrong again – check that steering wheel and horn button…..straight off the Falcon Sprint with a Mustang button over it….other stuff but let’s not split hairs…..

    • Burt

      Ya got me on the steering wheel. Probably lug nuts, wheel, radio, door lock knobs etc. but I was referring to the platform. The falcon had a 1.5 inch longer wheel base. You can’t take a mustang body and stick on a falcon frame. They don’t share windshields, gas tanks etc.

      • Newton condict

        They also don’t have separate frames they are unibodies they share many parts including suspension

        Like 1
      • bone

        They actually do . The basic platform is the same, even the 66 up Fairlanes share the basic platform, and even the windshields are the same . The Maverick also shares the platform. I used to keep my 67 Falcon sport coupe together by stripping old Mustangs, as the junkyards wouldn’t save the Falcons

  14. Robert West

    This is the best deal I’ve seen on ANY car in the past 10 years. 2 complete Cudas for $8000 will never happen again. The buyer could sell the 225 car for $8000 then he would effectively got a free Cuda!

  15. Maggy

    8k sounds like a deal.He needs to get them out in the daylight and take more pics though.More info about titles and why the 340 car needs everthing Rebuilt would be nice too.He might think they need to be rebuilt from sitting so long possibly when they really might not.

  16. RNR

    Anybody else watch “Poker Face” last night?

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