SENSORY OVERLOAD–MOPAR E-BODY HEAVEN

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The E-body Mopars (1970-74 Barracudas and Challengers) are some of the hottest items in the car hobby today.

I was lucky enough to see a fleet of these classics lined up in a row.

Jerry Sutherland

They were part of the upcoming EG Auctions Sylvan Lake Collector Car Auction on May 27th. I saw them on a sunny day, so these neon-colored Mopes stood out like Vegas at night stands out in the Nevada desert.

The E-body was Chrysler’s updated answer to the bloodbath known as the pony car wars. Camaros had established a very strong presence in sales; AMC had the Javelin and the AMX–plus Pontiac had the Firebird and Mercury had the Cougar.

Chrysler returned fire with the updated 3rd gen Cuda, plus they added the Challenger to the ’70 lineup. They were a formidable duo because Mother Mopar was willing to plunk anything from a Slant Six to an elephant 426 Hemi under the hood. Big blocks—and 340 small blocks turned these light little E-bodies into road rockets.

This lineup featured all the Mopar E-body big guns.       

The first one I saw was a Panther Pink ’71 Challenger R/T. This was a great example of how deep into the crayon colors Chrysler went back in the early 70s.

It was a great tribute to a great color combination.

Sublime Green was another color in the Mopar rainbow—there was a 1970 Challenger painted in that look-at-me paint.

There’s a great story behind the restoration of this car—up to and including a blueprinted 426 hemi under the hood.

There was a 1971 Cuda in the lineup. I don’t have to explain how hard it is to find a ’71 Cuda because they didn’t produce many, so they are a one-year-only, quad-headlight, version of the 3rd Gen Cuda.

This was a nice example because it has a low-mileage history, and they put a 440-6 barrel under the hood, so it’s a beast for sure.

I saw a 1970 Challenger RT convertible in the lineup—it wasn’t one of the Day-Glo rock star colors, but it was a star on its own because it was a rare combination.

They only made 632 of them with the listed options and this one looked pretty mint, even if it didn’t have the hardcore paint.

There was a 1970 Challenger RT at the preview.

This beauty wasn’t white, but it had the Vanishing Point 426 Hemi under the hood, so it’s the kind of car that could definitely get you into a nasty police chase.    

The 1970 Challenger T/A was—in my humble opinion—the coolest 1st Gen Challenger ever built.

Fortunately, they had a version of the T/A in this dream team of classic Mopar E-bodies. I like everything about these cars—from the prominent hood scoops to the front chin spoilers, to the side dump exhausts. These cars were all business—that made them ultra-cool.

I saw these cars on an incredible spring day, so it was a highlight reel for me. Some guys would call it Mopar Heaven—I couldn’t disagree.                     

Jerry Sutherland

By: Jerry Sutherland

Jerry Sutherland is a veteran automotive writer with a primary focus on the collector car hobby. His work has been published in many outlets and publications, including the National Post, Calgary Herald, Edmonton Journal, Ottawa Citizen, Montreal Gazette, Saskatoon StarPhoenix, Regina Leader-Post,  Vancouver Sun and The Truth About Cars. He is also a regular contributor to Auto Roundup Publications.

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