There’s really no need for a lot of words on this one, because this is all you need: matching-numbers big block 1970 Barracuda in Plum Crazy Purple. More? OK, well, how about a recent restoration of a relatively rare Gran Coupe? All told, this is a really rare Mopar that’s got the credentials to back up its claims.
This is one of those unusual cars that was obviously custom-ordered by someone who knew exactly what he wanted. That certainly explains the lack of a padded vinyl roof and the performance hardware in a luxury-oriented Gran Coupe. A study in contrasts, Plum Crazy Purple is also this car’s original color, now nicely replicated in modern urethane paint that looks fantastic. A big pile of time and money went into the restoration and they wisely resisted the urge to make it into just another clone and instead let it stand on its own merits. Only 8183 Gran Coupes were made in 1970, and nobody’s faking them like they do Hemi ‘Cudas, so what you see here is a real-deal piece of Mopar history. The Gran Coupe also included an argent silver tail panel and a bunch of additional stainless trim, so it stands out from the rest, even if the badges on the front fenders are a little small to read at a glance. And there’s no denying that the 1970 Barracuda was one great-looking pony car.
Where the Gran Coupes really shined was inside, where a long list of luxury-oriented features made them the top-of-the-line Plymouth that year. Bucket seats with luxurious materials and sporty stitching, a standard center console, and more badging remind you that this isn’t a garden-variety Barracuda. Factory A/C is always a nice find, and it was probably ordered on more Gran Coupes than base models, and the big 383 doesn’t seem to notice the added load. The original AM/FM radio is still in the dash, surrounded by a bright wood applique that attempts to add an upscale look to the interior. No modifications, no aftermarket gauges, no goofy speakers cut into the doors, just a healthy respect for the original design and the relative rarity of this Plymouth. Even the trunk is neatly finished with a reproduction mat that fits better than most.
The engine is the original, numbers-matching 383 cubic inch V8, which was one of several engines on the menu for the potential Barracuda buyer. The perfect combination of torquey smoothness and performance, it’s ideally suited to the Barracuda Gran Coupe. Rebuilt just a few months ago, it looks fantastic in the purple engine bay with correct Chrysler Turquoise paint on the block and a wrinkle-finish air cleaner up top. The A/C compressor dominates the engine bay, but it’s nice to see that it has been upgraded to R134a refrigerant but otherwise the mechanicals are remarkably stock. A 3-speed TorqueFlite automatic lives behind the 383 and powers the original 3.23 gears out back, so it’s a wonderful highway car that’s happy at high speed. The underside of the car is almost as clean as the top, with body-colored floors, a fresh dual exhaust system, and correct markings wherever possible. Classic Rallye wheels with staggered Firestone radials give it a muscle car stance.
A neat, unusual, and extremely potent Plymouth, this Gran Coupe makes a compelling argument for zigging when the other guy zags. At the very least, you’ll probably have the only one at the show. Call today!