If you're the daring type of car enthusiast who looks for that thrilling ride complete with a dangerously powerful engine, you will love these super-rare classic American muscle cars from the 1960s and 70s (ordered below according to rarity). These cars were produced in such small quantities that it's unlikely you've ever even heard of them.
Muscle cars typically have two doors and a hard top, although they can also have fours doors and perhaps even a convertible roof. What's a must is that these cars are American-made, and that their engines never have less than eight cylinders. Furthermore, if they're classic cars, they should be at least 30 years old.
Who cares about having top-notch, flashy luxury cars from the top brands of today when you can have the huge power of an old-school V8 at the mercy of your right foot?
|1. 1970 Plymouth Hemi Superbird — Only 135 Produced|
|After Plymouth's successful Roadrunner line, this stylish car was produced as a highly-modified version of the model in 1970. With its enormous rear wing, a 426-cubic-inch Hemi engine and many MOPAR high performance parts, this car was purpose-built for racing and is essentially a road-legal race car. What's probably most characteristic about it is its unique horn, whose sound mimics the sound of Looney Tunes' Roadrunner.|
|2. 1969 Chevrolet Camaro ZL-1 — Only 69 Produced|
|The Camaro ZL-1 was modeled after the L88 version, borrowing some of that car's features, but taking them to the next level. For instance, the engine was entirely made of aluminum instead of sheet metal, which means it only weighs 500 pounds. It's capable of producing up to 560 horsepower (although it was mistakenly known as being 430). The first 20 examples of this model that were produced were used for racing, and the rest were made available for sale to the public at a price of $7,200. Although this price drove consumers away at the time, some of the cars actually found (very lucky) owners.|
|3. 1967 Ford Fairlane 500 R-Code — Only 57 Produced|
|The Ford Fairlane was a full-sized Ford model until, in 1962, it was remodeled into the 500 to fit the changing muscle car standards of the time. It became the basis for Ford's Torino and Cobra lines. In 1967, the 500 R-Code was produced (the R signifying the dual quad carburetors it had) with a 425 horsepower engine.|
|4. 1967 Plymouth GTX R023 — Only 55 Produced|
The possibility of ordering a GTX in R023 specification was initially only known about by professional racers, however a select few of Plymouth's customers ended up ordering them as street cars. Although it was fitted with a standard 426-cubic-inch Hemi engine, it was around 500 pounds lighter than the regular model, as parts that weren't absolutely necessary, such as hubcaps, radio, heater, body insulation and carpets, were done away with. It was quite a fascinating car for 1967, especially since it could go from 0 to 60 in just 4.8 seconds!
|5. 1970-71 Plymouth Hemi Cuda Convertible — Only 21 Produced|
|The Hemi Cuda was a car like no other. With a choice of five different engines ranging from 340 to 440 cubic inches, this car is classified as one of the rarest and finest muscle cars - especially the superb convertible model. It's a pity that only 21 Cuda Convertibles were produced, but this small number may be explained by the additional $870 a new owner would have had to pay over the base model's price to buy one. In fact, many opted for the 440+6 cubic inch model because it was only $250 more than the base model.|
|6. 1967 Chevrolet Corvette L88 — Only 20 Produced|
This romantic Chevrolet Corvette L88 was produced as part of the L88 racing package in 1967 and 1968. It was manufactured in their factory in St. Louis, Missouri, and designed for professional racing purposes. It had a 427-cubic-inch Chevy big block engine, which was able to produce 435 horsepower (although many believe it's actually between 540 and 560).
This was only slightly higher than the regular Corvette, because its makers didn't want consumers to think that it was much better than the more common base 'Vette. Unfortunately, the L88 didn't sell in very large numbers - its had a high list price and Chevrolet did not advertise the model in order to discourage it being used on the street. Out of the 216 models made, only 20 were the 1967 models, making them the most unusual.
|7. 1970 Chevrolet Chevelle SS 454 LS6 — Circa 20 Produced|
|The elegant 454 LS6s are the rarest Chevelles ever made. In 1970, the Chevelle SS was offered in LS6 guise, meaning that it had an upgraded 440-cubic-inch V8 under the hood producing approximately 100 horsepower more than the base SS model.|
|8. 1971 Pontiac GTO Judge Convertible — Only 17 Produced|
|With the Ferrari 250 GTO being its main inspiration, the convertible GTO Judge was designed by John DeLorean as an upgraded package available for the company's Tempest line. In 1966, it was separated from the Tempest and three years later, it was available as an upgraded racing package for the GTO. Pontiac got rid of as much of the car's weight as possible in order to make it lighter, and fitted it with a 455-cubic-inch engine. After having produced 207 GTO Judge Convertible models, the company had to stop producing them due to stricter emission standards introduced in the US. Only 17 of these fine GTO Convertibles were made in 1971.|
|9. 1969 Chevrolet Corvette ZL-1 - Only 3 Produced|
The Chevrolet Corvette ZL-1 was a very original model, whose 427-cubic-inch engine, made from aluminum, could produce 500 horsepower. There are only three known instances of a ZL-1 engine being installed in a road-going Corvette, with the first one ordered by the factory workers themselves at Chevrolet's Missouri plant. The only one left that has the documentation to prove its authenticity is the car pictured above, which is now worth approximately $1.5 million.
No wonder the price of this car model was $10,771 in 1969 - over $3,000 more than a normal Corvette. And by the way, this was the price given only to Chevrolet employees. Imagine how much it would have cost the general public!
|10. 1970 Dodge Coronet R/T 426 Hemi Convertible -
Only 2 Produced
The very special Dodge Coronet R/T Convertible, fitted with a 426 R/T (Road and Track) engine, is possibly the rarest American muscle car in existence. Just one of these was made in 1967, and another two in 1970. This model marked the first time that a Dodge model received an R/T makeover, with its upgraded engine able to produce 425 horsepower.