The 'Cuda 440 RTS show car...
The 'Cuda 440 RTS show car was not shy about revealing the size of the engine under the hood. Along the roof, from C-pillar to C-pillar,"440" was painted several times. The 'Cuda 440 was updated for 1971 with a revised paint scheme. A similar creation that was not part of the RTC line-up was the Sonic 'Cuda, which had a blown 440, and was also designed by Harry Bradley.
Options included the A21 and A22 Elastomeric bumper groups, A62 Rallye instrument cluster, A67 Backlite louver package with painted racing mirrors, C16 console (overhead consolette was standard), D34 TorqueFlite (note: D34 was a generic code, while D32 was used to designate heavy-duty), D57 3.91 gears, F25 70 amp battery, J78 front spoilers, S77 power steering (15.7:1 ratio), S74 fast ratio power steering (12:1), and S83 Rim Blow steering wheel. You could get any vinyl roof you wanted as long as it was V1X Black. With over 2,700 units built, the AAR 'Cuda proved more successful in the showroom than on the racetracks (see November, 1992 Mopar Muscle), but the potential was certainly there for victory in 1971 had Chrysler not followed Ford's lead in pulling out of the SCCA Trans Am series.
"Anybody can offer a car. Only Plymouth offers a System" was the slogan used on banners displayed with the Rapid Transit Caravan. The RTC was a marketing tool of the highest order, with two-day stops made at racing venues and dealerships across the country. The RTC consisted of three concept vehicles: Duster 340, Road Runner, 'Cuda 440, a replica of Don Prudhomme's funny car done by Ron Scrima's Exhibition Engineering in Los Angeles (the lettering was performed by Jack Kampney), 426 Hemi and 440-6 cutaway display engines, a 27 minute film on the history of drag racing, banners, display board featuring Hustle Stuff parts and the tractor trailer that hauled all the goodies, which had special yellow paint and graphics. The RTC debuted at an indoor show in New York City (press release materials were dated 1/13/70), and ran through '71. The three 1970 concept cars (and later a 1971 Road Runner) were designed by Harry Bradley and rendered by different customizers. As chronicled in the July 1999 issue of Mopar Muscle, most of the RTC has been reunited by Steven Juliano.
Harry Bradley, Steven Juliano, April 1999 issue of Collectible Automobile, Supercars by Frank Moriarty, Howell Press, Inc., 1995, 1970 Plymouth Car and Equipment Prices guide, Archives of Classic Auto Research Service. 1970 Chrysler-Plymouth "Fast Facts" Data Book-Canadian edition.
|The 1970 Plymouth Rapid Transit System|
|Duster 340||Road Runner||’Cuda 440|
|Paint||Red, flat back ||Gold, white and||Lime Light and 2 |
|and hues of ||flat black||shades of gray |
|pearl||covered in Merano |
|Interior||White buckets||Black buckets,||Black leather buckets,|
|S-W gauges,||S-W gauges|
|Customizer||Byron Grenfel||Roman's Chariot ||Styline Customs|
|City/State||Marquette, MI||Cleveland, OH||Detroit, MI|
|Painter||Butch Brinza||Jerry Roman||Chuck Miller|
|Engine||275hp, 340||425hp, Hemi||390hp, 440|
|Wheel size||14x7||15x8-Ft; ||15x8-Ft;|
|Tires||Goodyear Blue Streak Sports Car Special tires used on all three vehicles|