RARE FORMULA S, STRONG 273 V8, NICE PAINT & BODY, CLEAN INTERIOR, RUNS GREAT!
For 1965, the top performing Barracuda was the Formula S with the 273 cubic inch Commando V8, just like this lovely Cordovan Metallic example. Restored a few years ago and complete with a broadcast sheet, it's a great alternative to an early Mustang with unique looks and performance to match.
There's nothing else on the road that looks like an early Barracuda, with that massive wrap-around rear window and crisp creases along the tops of the fenders. Clearly derived from the popular Valiant, the Barracuda got its own sheetmetal and was an awesome first entry in the burgeoning muscle car wars. This one was restored several years ago, and the foundation appears to be a very solid, original car with no rust issues in its past. Of course, there are no reproduction sheetmetal panels available, so you know it's all factory steel, and the shape of the body leaves few places for second-rate workmanship to hide. Panel gaps are surprisingly good, and the sound of a vintage Chrysler door closing is unique in the entire automobile kingdom, a very precise sound indeed. The paint is two-stage urethane that does a decent job replicating the original Cordovan Metallic, and the gloss is just about right. All the original stainless trim remains in excellent condition, along with the blacked-out grille up front.
A black bucket seat interior with console is part of the package, and it's obvious that Chrysler stylists in the mid-1960s were hitting on all eight cylinders, because it's beautifully detailed. The seats all have fresh covers in the original pattern, the gauges are in their own silver pod ahead of the driver, with the optional tach off by itself to the left of the steering column. A trim band of bright aluminum stretches across the dash, camouflaging the heater controls and providing some contrast. The thin [simulated] wood-rimmed steering wheel is pure 1960s fashion, while the console is simple and functional.
Many period testers remarked that the 273 Commando V8 under the hood felt a tad underrated at 235 horsepower, with most speculating that it was perhaps 40 horsepower stronger than that. Chrysler wasn't doing the matching numbers thing in 1965, but this one appears to have all its correct factory-issued components, including the engine and TorqueFlite automatic transmission. The engine bay is very nicely detailed, from the tall, chrome air cleaner to the trick finned valve covers. Underneath, the Formula S package offered upgraded springs and shocks, delivering a much more European feel and one of the most agile cars of the period. 14-inch wheels wear the original full wheel covers and modern BFGoodrich radials.
The unusual muscle cars seem to be gaining some traction in the market these days, and this early Fish is definitely a great drive. If you're tired of the same-old, same-old, give us a call today!
- AM Radio
- Vinyl Interior
- Build Receipts
- Factory Buildsheet
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