Muscle Cars World knows big block Mopars have been fetching big money prices for years now. But what most collectors fail to realize is that equally exclusive small block cars, like this authentic 1970 Plymouth Cuda 340 Six Pack Sassy Grass, are just as hot and sometimes a better investment. With their excellent combination of power and handling, broad aftermarket support system and increasingly rare status, these cars enjoy one of the fastest sell-through rates of anything in our showroom. 1 of only 12 Sassy Grass AARs are known to exist!
We’re not real sure where this vivid ‘Cuda headed after it rolled off Chrysler’s Dodge Main assembly line in April of 1970. But we do know the car benefitted from a world class, frame-off restoration that was executed by the pros at RKM Performance Center and detailed by Mopar guru David Wise. As you can tell by the quality of its authenticity and first rate appearance, this Plymouth was a solid piece that needed nothing more than prep work for paint. That correct high impact paint presents exceptionally well and, when combined with matte horizontals and correct strobe stripes, creates iconic muscle car looks. And, since that paint is backed by professional panel fitment, the car makes a fantastic impression! Read more!
Not surprisingly, this AAR’s track-bred look is backed by a long list of authentic details. At the front of its glowing profile, an original, stainless-trimmed grille hangs a small “PLYMOUTH” emblem between clear headlights, original parking lamps, an original, re-chromed bumper and original GE driving lights. Behind that grille, an original, AAR-exclusive hood, which is secured by familiar stainless lanyards, rolls a correct suede topcoat toward clean glass that’s framed in straight stainless trim. At the sides of that hood, bright door handles and a body-matched racing mirror combine with spotless exhaust tips and a new Pentastar emblem to provide an authentic, restoration-fresh appearance. And at the back of the car, an original, satin black valence hangs original tail lights and a small “’cuda” emblem between a second, re-chromed bumper and an original ‘duck tail’ spoiler.
Pull the pins on this car’s lightweight fiberglass hood and you’ll find an original, 340 cubic inch LA V8 that’s authenticated by a 3577130TA casting number, a November (11) 25th (25) of 1969 (9) casting date and a matching partial VIN. Although SCCA Trans Am race cars were limited to 302 cubic inches, Plymouth stuck to the tried and true “no replacement for displacement” rule for street applications. That means this car received a powerplant that was specifically designed for high performance turnpike warriors. And, thanks to its 2-barrel Holley carburetors, original Edelbrock intake, original dual-points distributor, high-flow cylinder heads and unique internals, it turned hefty 10.5 to 1 compression into 315 fire-breathing horses. That said; SCCA regulations and increasing insurance costs forced Chrysler to actually underrate the mill’s output to just 290 horses.
But, in reality, the car easily disposed of most ‘equally powered’ stoplight challengers. Whatever the number, this engine’s spotless bay is in brilliant, show-ready condition, with immaculate detailing and exact finishes throughout. Awesome green fenders provide an electrifying contrast to its glossy layer of Hemi Orange skin. An original air cleaner looks great peeking through the aforementioned hood. And, as with most of today’s best restored Mopars, ever y detail has been correctly duplicated or returned to a convincing level of authenticity.
Park this rave-inducing ‘Cuda on a lift and you’ll find exceptionally clean floors that have been oversprayed and undercoated much as the factory would have left them. The high-winding small block churns power through an original, heavy duty 4-speed, an original 8.75 inch Sure Grip rear end and steep 3.91 gears. The car’s suspension has been fully rebuilt to include factory power steering, Cosmoline-replicating torsion bars and fresh power front disc and rear drum brakes. As expected, those 11-inch, AAR-exclusive drums are accompanied by specially tuned shocks and re-cambered springs that tilt the car to accommodate its unique exhaust pipes.
Speaking of that exhaust, the usual cobbled ‘muffler shop special’ look has been exchanged for a clean, OEM-style appearance. And hooking all that mechanical prowess to the pavement is a set of original Rallye wheels which spin E60-15 Goodyear Polyglas GTs in front of G60-15 Goodyear Polyglas GTs to employ one of the first applications of staggered tire sizing. In looking at this pristine AAR’s super clean undercarriage you realize this is a car that sees minimal road time. And judging by the sheen on its weather-free stainless, I’m willing to bet it’s suffered hardly any exposure to the elements since its 2009 restoration.
Swivel this Plymouth’s solid-closing doors and you’ll find a correct black interior that’s functional, straightforward and very livable. The front bucket and rear bench seats are covered in crack-free vinyl that displays hardly any signs of wear. Below those seats, stain-free carpet anchors color-keyed and “’cuda” branded floor mats next to a Hurst pistol grip shifter. At the sides of that carpet, original door panels proudly hang the Cuda name above traditional cranks, integrated handles and cool chrome locks.
In front of those panels, a clean dash props new Rallye gauges above an original Chrysler Solid State radio. Above that dash, a fresh headliner frames a fully functional courtesy lamp. In front of the driver, an attractive Rim Blow steering wheel mixes subtle form with major function. And behind the passengers, a fully restored trunk props a correct decklid decal above a new mat, an old school jack and a fresh Space-Saver spare.
All American Racers ‘Cudas are a cool experiment from a time when automakers were willing to try anything to improve their performance credentials. When that purpose-built personality is combined with this coupe’s numbers-matching drivetrain, correct restoration and double-digit exclusivity, it creates the perfect recipe for an unbeatable muscle car.