With the rumour flying around Detroit in 1964 that Ford was about to launch a low-cost, sporty fastback coupe based on its smallest, cheapest saloon, Chrysler’s Plymouth division was tasked with coming up with a car to compete with this as-yet-unseen rival. The Ford, of course, was the Mustang. What Plymouth created was the equally evocative Barracuda. Based on the Valiant saloon – a ‘compact’ car, by American standards – the basic Barracuda came with a 2.8-litre straight-six. Like the Mustang, however, the car’s great appeal lay in its vast list of affordable options. This allowed extensive personalisation and meant that many Barracudas were delivered with the 4.5 litre V8 instead – and that could be further enhanced by dealer-installed performance parts. There was a Barracuda suitable for everyone – ‘for people of all ages and interests’, the advertising pronounced. In terms of styling, the first-generation Barracuda was notable for its vast rear window, the largest fitted to any car at the time.
This Barracuda was imported from Seattle in 2002 in original, used condition, having covered over 127,000 miles. Coming with all parts required for the restoration, this commenced once the car was in the UK and completed in 2005. The car was repainted red and professionally retrimmed, the brakes were overhauled, and the engine and automatic gearbox serviced. It was also converted to run on LPG. The vendor then used the car until 2016, when it was decided to overhaul the 4.5 litre V8 and the radiator, fit a new starter and re-chrome both bumpers. It has only done around 1,000 miles since then. Only for sale now as the vendor is focusing on his extensive collection of 2CVs – quite a change of automotive scenery – the car is offered with a V5c.
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