We have to think the executives at Chrysler were browsing through the pages of Webster's dictionary when they came up with the name for their infamous A-Body in 1964-Barracuda. it states, "They are voracious predators and hunt using a classic example of lie-in-wait or ambush. They rely on surprise and short bursts of speed to overrun their prey, sacrificing maneuverability."
The evolution of the Barracuda from the angular, boxy A-Body into the wide, sleek E-Body 'Cuda, one of the single-most-desired icons of musclecar history, is mind-blowing. Within the last two years, the prices of original Hemi-powered, unusually-optioned '70 and '71 'Cudas have climbed to seven figures, reaching up to five million dollars for a blue-on-blue convertible four-speed. This has incurred a migration of get-rich-quick entrepreneurs into the restoration community, dishing out grotesque sums to return these cars to factory specs, and then pawning them off to private collectors and big-dollar auction houses.
Certainly these cars are being preserved for generations to enjoy in the future, but the more dangerous aftereffect is a drastic acceleration in price of nearly every high-performance Mopar, shutting out the would-be enthusiast. This is what has caused many Mopar devotees to believe that all the good musclecars have been "snatched up." Thankfully, this is not entirely true. Yes, nearly all the original Hemi-powered 'Cudas and Challengers have been accounted for, but with crate engines and the aftermarket in full swing, clones and restomods are now more of a viable option than ever before.
The opportunity for the average enthusiast to own a GTX, for example, is now probable with time dedicated to hunting down a straight Satellite. The abundance of aftermarket interior accruements, exterior badging, and extensive drivetrain options can make any grocery-getter of yesteryear into today's classic Mopar musclecar clone. The negative connotation clone status is all but gone-Hemi clone cars are now fetching six figures at some of the larger auctions.
Dave Pinney and his wife Cindy are not millionaires. The Lakewood, Colorado, residents don't own a summer home in sunny California or a ski lodge in Aspen. So when they decided they wanted a Hemi-powered E-Body 'Cuda, they knew they were going to have to do it some other way than just writing a check.
The Pinneys aren't new to E-Bodies; they have owned two different R/T Challengers (a hard top and a convertible), a '71 'Cuda, and a '71 Challenger R/T, as well as a '68 Formula S Barracuda. It took the couple four years of searching to find this Plymouth. The two spent years looking at local ads and newspapers trying to find the right car, so when Dave called Cindy to tell her he found a car, she was already looking at the same ad. Both escaped from work early to see the 'Cuda for themselves. After looking over the E-Body, they agreed on the price and drove the coupe home.