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  #1  
Old 09-04-2002, 11:12 AM
E Strong E Strong is offline
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Question First Muscle Car

Last year I read an article on the first muscle car. As usual the guy didn't have a clue what he was talking about. I get really annoyed at car magazine writers that think muscle cars started in 1964 with the GTO.

I believe the 55 Chrysler 300, 9 years before the first goat, was the first production muscle car.

What do you say?

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  #2  
Old 09-04-2002, 11:25 AM
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While Ma Mopar was puttin out muscle before it was cool, the 64 goat was the first so-called "muscle car". Hell, look at the "Boss" mustangs from 69-70ish era out there. That was stolen from Ma too! Phord pepole heard of the "Boss" name for a up and coming mopar, (I believe for a trim option for a BB Bird model, maybe the 383 cars, although my memory is skectchy) so they tagged it for an existing model and stole the name. Ma then scratched it so as not to "copy" Phord, even though it was really the other way around.

Elvis is called the "King of Rock", even though all he was doing was singing R&B tunes from old blues masters of the 20s and 30s like Robert Johnson and others.

All it is is name recognition, as much as it may suck. We still KNOW the TRUTH!
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  #3  
Old 09-04-2002, 11:51 AM
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Some consider the Dodge D-500, 1953/54(?) model to be the first badged musclecar. It was a specific engine (early 331 hemi) for that specific car and had other options specific to that car. In any event the first musclecar was definitely from the MoPar ranks, much to the contrary of the conventional wisdom spouted out by most "experts" in this GM-oriented automotive society we live in. Beginning with the D500 and 300 letter cars in the 50's thru the early 60's superstocks and max-wedges, the musclecar road definitely started from the MoPar end of the block!
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Old 09-04-2002, 12:26 PM
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I define a muscle car as a production car capable of carrying at least 4 people, which was primarily designed for high performance. That makes the 1955 C-300 the first of the breed. Next came the D-500 package available for all Dodge models in 1956, though there is some debate on that.

Chrysler did it again in 1956 with the 300B while DeSoto offered the Adventurer performance models in 2-door hardtop and convertible. Plymouth did it right with a pure hot rod in design and engineering with the Fury 2-door hardtop.

Ford and GM offered bigger engines in their cars somewhat like the D-500, but only Plymouth, Chrysler and DeSoto made special HP models with unique styling and engineering packaged together.

If you define a muscle car as a production car with an intermediate body, available with the biggest engines offered by the manufacturer, then the 1963 Plymouths and Dodges with 413 and 426 wedge engines were the first true muscle cars.

If you are a member of the automotive press, you ignore all the facts and declare GTO to be the first.
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Old 09-04-2002, 06:19 PM
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Thumbs down

A lot of those people think the pony cars were the first muscle cars. How typical!! That's what makes us Mopar folks unique!!

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  #6  
Old 09-05-2002, 04:03 PM
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I think, Mopar means Muscle!

thats all!
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  #7  
Old 09-05-2002, 05:24 PM
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Sorry to get off topic, but I always liked something said in a MOPAR magazine "Since the Barracuda beat the Mustang to production, why aren't they called Fishy cars?"

As for the main topic, even Chevy had cars that could be considered "Muscle cars" well before 64

Who can watch Christine and say the 57Fury was not a Muscle car. I have a Cargasm every time that movie starts and you hear the engine rev and Bad to the bone starts playing.
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Old 09-05-2002, 09:01 PM
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GUAM_SS/T: Christine was one of my favorite movies. I have it on DVD. The Fury in the movie was a 1958, 350 CI with dual quads. The 1957 Fury was only available in an off-white paint with gold accents. The '57 also didn't have four headlamps, the inside lamps were parking lights. 1958 started the true four headlamp system in Mopars. When the movie was made, the production company advertised all over the country for '58 Furys to buy. They ended up with a whole bunch and painted them all red. Most of these were destroyed in making the movie. The downside of this great Fury Flick is that the majority of the US inventory for '58s was depleted in the name of entertainment.
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  #9  
Old 09-05-2002, 10:20 PM
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I read an article a long time ago that said they used a 57. I knew something didn't seem right. I never would have figured it out though.
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Old 09-06-2002, 09:27 AM
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Confused Chrystine

I read in a magazine, the Chrystine was a 1957 2 door Plymouth Fury with 1958 grille and trims, why?, they say there is not a Fury 58 hard top availabe, and the car must be hardtop so the producer of the film take a 1957 and convert into 1958 Fury.... and every one fall in love!
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  #11  
Old 09-06-2002, 02:43 PM
John Kunkel John Kunkel is offline
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The reason some folks get in a twist over the subject of muscle cars is a misunderstanding of the definition of a muscle car.
By definition a muscle car must be:

-An intermediate body with a large displacement engine.

-The body/engine must be part of a package.

-The car must be badged.

I, too, believe that many cars with lots of muscle preceded the '64 GTO but they don't fit the qualifications stated above.
If you choose to ignore the contemporary definition, any car with excess power can be called a muscle car.
To my knowledge, the first use of the word "muscle" to describe a car was in an article written by the automotive writer Tom McCahill. Writing in Popular Mechanics after a road test of the '55 Chrysler B300 he stated "at last Detroit has produced a car with true muscle."
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Old 09-06-2002, 06:12 PM
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by John Kunkel
[B]The reason some folks get in a twist over the subject of muscle cars is a misunderstanding of the definition of a muscle car.
By definition a muscle car must be:

-An intermediate body with a large displacement engine.

-The body/engine must be part of a package.

-The car must be badged.

As far as I ever knew there was never an official definition of what a muscle car is or was. It is one of those interperative things left up to each individual. My definition of a muscle car will probably not match someone elses. There is no official set of rules to define a muscle car.
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  #13  
Old 09-06-2002, 11:16 PM
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Thumbs up Intermediate body???

If the definition of a muscle car is a car with an intermediate body that would mean that a Hemi Cuda is not a muscle car. I think that a lot of Mopar folk would take exception to this formula. A Dart GTS also wouldn't qualify. I have always gone with the 10 H.P. for every 100 lb. of the car. That way you could have a 4000 lb. car with 400 or more horse power Qualify just like a 3200 lb. car with 320 or more horses. I believe power to weight ratio defines a muscle car, not the body style or size. A big motor doesn't mean big power either ( unless it's a Mopar of course ). Does this sound more reasonable to you guys?

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  #14  
Old 09-09-2002, 09:23 AM
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Default Muscle Definition

The definition of 10 H.P. for each 100 Lb. of weigth for a "muscle" car, is more acurated.

But which one be the definition for Street Machine?
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  #15  
Old 09-09-2002, 09:22 PM
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Here's my definition-

American car with
V8, 4V,Fuel Injection or multiple carbs
Rear wheel drive
Dual exhaust if built before catalytic converters
Must be designed with acceleration as a major factor

with the 10hp for every 100lbs formula a lot of cars would need over 350hp to qualify. Think about a Charger with a 318. It's still a musclecar but it wouldn't come close to the 10 per 100 rule.

As for the engine being part of a package, a lot of musclecars didn't have actual Packaged engines. This applies mostly to cars that can only be considered musclecars though.

There are tons of loopholes in almost every formula. That's because it is the idea that is important, not the details.

Look at most of these formulas would a station wagon with a Magnum440 fit?? alot of these formulas would allow it. alot of them wouldn't

Look at a Superbee with a 383, Definately an unarguable musclecar, right?? It doesn't have the largest available V8 by a long shot, Alot of MOPAR Musclecars weren't badged either.

Just some more stuff to consider
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Old 09-10-2002, 01:25 AM
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1955 Rambler Rebel Fuel Injection - yeah, I said 1955.
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  #17  
Old 09-10-2002, 09:48 AM
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Default To Guamm_SS/T

You Right

Even I saw some gorgeous cahrgers with 225 slant six, and the car still be a pure muscle.

So "muscle car" is a Proudly Made in America, for outstanding performance and style, from an era, where the power of the engine rules over fuel economy.

Late in the 70's the "muscle car" dies for a drop of fuel, then the engines were restricted and the HP limited, for example a 440 1969 engine have 380 hp the last 440 engine comes with 270 hp a very poor performance for a huge displacement.

Now Ma Mopar bring us a new line of create engines for our cars, the amazing 520 with 610 hp with the promise of the MOPAR Muscle Car Live FOREVER!
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Old 09-10-2002, 12:00 PM
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Doug, I am pretty sure the Rebel came out as a 1957 model. They were pretty quick. How about the Studebaker Golden Hawk with a supercharger?
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  #19  
Old 09-10-2002, 12:44 PM
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Not the first, but one of the Baddest, were the 340 Mopars through 1971 in the Duster, Demon, Dart Bodies, and the earlier Barracudas. Factory rated at only 275 HP for young males getting decent insurance, NHRA re-rated them at 320 HP. Stock they'd take anything except for the biggest blocks of their day. 13.9 second ETs at 100 MPH were the published 1/4 mile specs.
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Old 09-10-2002, 01:27 PM
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My Dad had a '57 Golden Hawk with a Paxton supercharger. It wasn't all that quick, but it would peg the speedometer at - I think it was - 140.
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Old 09-10-2002, 03:10 PM
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In 1957, nothing was Quick. Something to do with most cars using more steel than a Sherman tank. The musclecar spirit was definately waking up around 55-57 though.
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Old 09-12-2002, 09:23 PM
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Lightbulb 57 300-C

Quote:
Originally posted by GUAM_SS/T
In 1957, nothing was Quick. Something to do with most cars using more steel than a Sherman tank. The musclecar spirit was definately waking up around 55-57 though.
Sorry but the 1957 Chrysler 300 C was plenty quick and fast. The fastest production car in the world, as a matter of fact. I saw an antique book in the library that listed the 300 C at $80,000 in mint condition. A little known option on the 63 300 K was a 425 H.P. 413. The 300 has a proud history of flexing its muscle, and I am proud to have one in my driveway. Drive fast!!!

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Old 09-12-2002, 10:09 PM
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GO FAST MY FIRST CAR WAS A 69 DODGE 440 4 SPEED
DANA 411 R/T AND I STILL HAVE IT
MANMOPAR
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Old 09-13-2002, 02:48 AM
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I didn't mean that the cars of the fifties were slow for their time. I meant that when you compare them to a musclecar the acceleration is not exactly stellar. Look at the really fast cars of the 30's and 40's and compare them to the 50's. Yes, they could go fast but it took them a while to get there. Compared to a mid to late 60's musclecar none of these cars were quick. My truck is Quick and fast for a 4400lb truck, but it will get eaten alive by about 95% of what could be called musclecars.
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Old 09-13-2002, 10:02 AM
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Idea

I was sitting here reading all the posts and a thought came to mind (yeah, the old brain cells do fire once in a while)....in the early days of NASCAR (hats off please), probably even before it was NASCAR, the Hudson Hornet was the car to beat. From what I have read, they were faster than hell. Sooo....wouldn't that be considered one of the earliest muscle cars?
Just a thought.
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Old 09-13-2002, 10:19 AM
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Default Early Muscle

Oviously the technology didn't stop and now we can buy cars faster than the stock muscle cars, viper for example, the muscle car is a blend of power, speed, and STYLE, lets see the AMC Gremlin X this car have a outstanding performance, but it can't be a muscle car.

And of course we can make a Road Runner 69 with 800 hp
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Old 09-13-2002, 01:02 PM
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I think the term "muscle car" should die a merciful death. It means nothing without definition, and everyone has a different definition.
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Old 09-28-2002, 12:47 PM
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Unhappy

Quote:
Originally posted by GaryS
I think the term "muscle car" should die a merciful death. It means nothing without definition, and everyone has a different definition.
Muscle Car is more than just a term to some of us. I know you are not trying to bad mouth any of us, but the term "muscle car" to me means Mopar. I bought my car because it had the 375 H.P. 440, which to me makes it a muscle car. If I wasn't into muscle cars I wouldn't be on this forum. Anyway, we all have our own hangups. I just want to drive the fastest 2 ton car around, which I think I do. Mopar to ya!!!

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Old 09-28-2002, 06:50 PM
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I agree with Eric on this. When I hear "muscle car" I think of Mopar too. I love Ford's but Mopar to me means just pure horsepower.
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Old 09-28-2002, 10:21 PM
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The mag's drive me nutz. Have of the stuff in them is inaccurate. Most of the people writing the articles don't have a clue wtf they are talking about. We have a 58 D500 convrt, and a 61 300G convrt. I don't consider them muscle cars. I would say the first muscle car produced would have to be the 62 413 Maxwedge Dodge's and Plymouths. The Muscle Car era was the 60's and early 70's. The fifties kinda started it, but by 62 the bomb was dropped by ma. On the "Boss" note, Chrysler had a Falcon Concept car before Ford ever thought about building a Falcon.
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