Classic Auto Mall
6180 Morgantown Road
1971 was a pivotal year for muscle car production, the end of an era if you will. Between upcoming pollution control and insurance companies raising rates to be borderline unaffordable for most, 1971 was the last year for truly masculine muscle. Leave it to the White Hat boys to keep things going strong at the end, not only did they keep the big muscle car engine options available, but they also kept the wild colors flowing. For consignment, a first year body style and last year true muscle car in the form of a 1971 Plymouth Road Runner, add in large cubic inches, a 4-speed manual, a wild and crazy Inviolet paint scheme with white stripes and you have eye candy in steel form.
In 1971, the coupe bodywork was completely changed to a more rounded "fuselage" design in keeping with then-current Chrysler styling trends, including a steeply raked windshield, hidden cowl, and deeply inset grille and headlights. Laser straight steel panels with well minded gaps are found all over this fuselage body and are drenched in a deep smooth Inviolet, (purple for the common folk), paint. A shiny ovalesque chrome front bumper surrounds the quad headlights, grill assembly and iconic Warner Brothers Road Runner character. Signal markers are mounted down below on a valance which also has twin chin spoilers attached at the outboard sides. A large flat Inviolet hood wears not only hood pins but call outs denoting the cubic inches in black and white. Smooth rounded body sides have a white strobe stripe which runs from mid rear quarter panel and up over the roof along with the cartoon logo stirring up a cloud of dust. The flat rectangular trunk lid has the essential muscle car rear wing, or Go Wing in Moparese. On the back is a large chrome bumper with combination tail and reverse lights integrated within. Down below are a pair of machine gun exhaust tips. Mopar road wheels on all 4 corners are wrapped in Futura raised white letter rubber with a slight size stagger, 235/60R15 in the front and 295/50R15's for the rear.
A swing of the doors and we see very nice black tuck and roll upper door panels, then a trim strip, then a line of wood appliqu, then some molded vinyl below in black. A shiny door actuating paddle and window crank are also in this differing field of texture and surfaces. Upfront we note a split front bench in black vinyl and nearly perfect condition. In back is a pattern matching bench which is also presenting very nicely and perfectly clean. Some extra wood appliqu is on the dash and frames the rounded gauges, radio and black knobs and sliders while down below the AM radio a CB radio is mounted along with a small tachometer. In front of the passenger seat is a large glove box door that has been signed by Shirley Muldowney and The King, Richard Petty, (photo documentation of the autographs is included with the purchase). On the steering column is the original 3 spoked black plastic steering wheel with the Road Runner logo in the center. On the hump and offset toward the driver is a Hurst Pistol Grip shifter perfectly within the driver's reach. The is within a field of black carpeting and above is a tight black headliner and nice B pillar coverings with some embossing in back.
Under the long hood resides a non original orange 383ci V8 of 1970 vintage. Within this engine is a Comp Cams camshaft that specs out at .507i .494e lift and 243i 257e duration. It is topped with a factory 4bbl intake manifold and a Holley carburetor. On top of this carb is a twin inlet air cleaner assembly with the Road Runner likeness again, who's name by the way is actually Beep Beep. On the back is a non original, (circa 1973), A833 4 speed manual transmission that sends power back to a 8 3/4 rear axle assembly. Everything is looking good here with shiny paint, supple hoses and attention paid to every detail.
The underside of this car is just as nice as the top. With the unibody and floor pans done in the body color matching Inviolet no rust or corrosion is seen. All suspension parts are either painted black or left in a natural finish. Torsion bars are up front while leaf springs with chrome traction bars are on the rear. Dual exhaust runs the length of the car and has Flowmaster one chamber mufflers mounted before sending spent gasses out of the machine gun tip tailpipes. Drum brakes are noted on all four corners for stopping power.
I left my partner in crime and crack decoder to take the wheel for this test drive. The car started easily and idled with a sound letting the competition know that this purple muscle car means business. Blistering acceleration, tight steering and bias free braking was noted. He wouldn't, however, fall for my trick when I asked him to stop in the X I marked off in the parking lot....I think we watched the same cartoons growing up. All functions were wor
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