After the Miata's and with 2 Elises on order, I would not have figured you for a Hemi Superbird type. However, being a general car guy, and 44 I can see the attraction. I remember being 9 or 10 and seeing a long row of them at the Plymouth dealership in loud Colors. They were fabulous!
I also remember seeing one, some years later tha was made camper like thing. The trunk lid was removed and camper like structure was put in below the wing. Hard to describe.
I imagine you are helping someone else look for one. If not, and this is a replacement for the Elise.... Wow! have you made a switch to the opposite end of the spectrum
LOL, nope Im not a superbird type. Well, I guess I'd own one but its not really my thing. Im helping someone else search. A guy here in town wants one and cannot find one on the regular market. He was hoping to find one in a private collection that wasnt advertised so asked me to put some feelers out. He's willing to pay 6 figures.
The closest I've been to a muscle car was my V8 miata with nitrous.
I'm more of a british car/ small car enthusiast. :clap: Small cars with large engines are fun too, I wouldnt mind a sunbeam tiger but then again the monster miata was kinda like a sunbeam tiger that actually ran!
Not my thing either, but they are going for a ton these days. American musclecars have been appreciating madly in the past few years as rich Baby Boomers buy the cars that were cool when they were young.
By the way - the wing and nose actually are functional (relative term with 1970s tech). The Superbird was a "NASCAR-special" designed to legalize those parts for racing (in the days before all NASCARs had to be template identical.) Kind of like the wild trunk packages Alfa was putting on their BTCC cars a few years ago, or like the GT1 cars released by Porsche, Nissan and Mercedes more recently.
The one in Joe Dirt was great, especially since it had the proper primer-n-rust paint job. My wife wouldn't believe me when I told her those cars are worth 6 figures.
The Superbird may not be much of a looker, but it does have an interesting history from what I've read.
This car was built specifically to dominate NASCAR races. It was also the car that lured Richard Petty back from his brief, but successful 1-year affair with Ford. To compete with Ford, Plymouth and Dodge figured out that either they had to find 85 more HP out of the Hemi, or decrease drag by 15%. The HP increase wasn't feasible, so they cut the drag. Yes, the tacked on aerodynamics are functional, giving the similar Dodge Charger Daytona a drag coefficient of only 0.28, the Superbird slightly higher, better than most of today's cars.
For homologation, NASCAR dictated that at least one car per dealer had to be produced, so 1935 Superbirds were shipped to U.S. dealers according to Chrysler. Its first season's success varies from doing well to domination, depending on who you ask. Plymouth did win the manufacturing championship in 1970, the Superbird winning 8 of Plymouth's 21 victories. Mopar fans will credit the Superbird, but how much of the success can be credited to Petty’s driving or Ford's 75% reduction of its racing budget?
The Superbird's success was brief, as NASCAR effectively banned it after only one season, placing a 305 ci engine limit for all winged cars (not just Chrysler). There are several opinions/theories about why NASCAR did this, but of course Mopar fans will tell you it was because of the Superbird. The Hemi was a 426, and the 305 was tried, but drivers could not make up the difference and did not win with the 305.
So why would Jenn's friend be willing to pay >$100,000 for a Hemi Superbird? There’s the nostalgia for its glorified racing history, and also only 135 of the 1935 had the Hemi engine. Who knows how many of those 135 still exist 34 years later, and with matching numbers?
I’m beginning to understand why Dodge uses the word “Hemi” in what seems like every damn Dodge commercial I see.
That wing is probably fiberglass and poorly engineered. On the other hand, the wing of the Superbird was made of aluminum and very strong. I have seen pictures of them with 2 or 3 women sitting on the wing. Try that with the Honda (?). The car quite a marvel, at the time. Purpose built for NASCAR. Ford and Mercury did the same. Heck Ford dev eloped the Boss 429 engine for NASCAR and put it in the Mustang to homologate the engine.
The big companies pretty much stop doing these things shortly after 1970. The next time they did built some special street cars so they could use them for NASCAR was maybe mid 80's. They built a Monte Carlo with a bubble back window to get an advantage in NASCAR.
Unfortunately, very little racing technology is making its way to the street anymore. At least through the manufacturers. The possible exception is tires.
Tell your Buddy to post and ad in Hemmings Motor News and have a broker watch all the auction listings. These cars are scarce and higly collectible. 1920 were produced and few were Hemi powered. Most had the standard 440 Super Commando, fewer had the 440 + 6 Six Pack, and fewer still were the hemis that were raced and thrashed. Good luck. I love old Mopars and owned a few in my days:
1969 Dodge Super Bee 383
1969 440 Six Pack Super Bee
1970 Challenger T/A
1970 Six Pack Ckallenger R/T
1970 Challenger R/T 383