Rare 1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird auctioned for $110,000

Article by Christian A., on December 5, 2016

When we talk about muscle cars, Chrysler has always been part of the top list. The American automaker created two of the best muscle cars in history – the Dodge Charger Daytona and the Plymouth Road Runner Superbird. These two, dubbed the “Aero Cars”, were products of NASCAR’s homologation requirement wherein manufacturers are required to build “one street legal version of their race car for every two manufacturer’s dealers in the United States”. The 1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird, was no exception to the rule.

The Superbird is a highly-modified version of the Plymouth Road Runner, which was produced as a follow-on project on the 1969 Dodge Charger Daytona. One particular model was up for grabs at the auction block scheduled on the 1st of December. Alongside RM Auctions, this model will be part of the John Staluppi Collection. The vehicle was sold for an impressive $110,000.

This particular kind is a genuine 440 Super Commando Superbird, and is clad in its original bright Hemi Orange paint work with black vinyl interior and carpet. The car underwent restoration for its mechanical element, including the steering box, and everything has been verified to match the numbers on its engine, transmission, core support, trunk rail, title, and original fender tag.

It still has its original drivetrain which includes the alternator, starter and distributor. Every sheet metal on this Superbird is original except for the rear quarters and trunk floor which had to be replaced during the restoration process. Its nose cone and wings are the original pieces as well as its interior which has been well-preserved and in good condition (with the exception of the front seats that had to be repaired).

The car can produce as much as 375 horsepower and comes in a three-speed Torqueflite automatic transmission. Its torsion bar is independent from its front suspension, and is fitted with a live rear axle with semi-elliptic leaf springs, and drum rear power hydraulic brakes. It is also equipped with power steering, windshield washers and an AM radio with an 8-track player.

Overall, this 440 Super Commando Superbird is in mint condition. A comprehensive dossier of information and photos of the restoration process also come with the car’s sale.

The Superbird is famous for its front end, with aerodynamic modifications bolted directly into its original grill and a more refined nose cone and wing (which were from the Charger Daytona); all these made the Superbird more efficient in terms of performance. The whole body is made of fiberglass which makes it pretty lightweight (which is why it’s one of the best choice for racing – not that we’re promoting drag racing in public road but you get the point). Out back, the rear spoiler completes the whole look, adding around 19 inches to the car’s original length and standing proud above its roofline to be hit by “clean” air.

There are actually three engine options available for the Superbird; that is, a 426 Hemi, a 440 Super Commando with a single four-barrel, and the 440 Super Commando Six Barrel with three carburetors. As per factory records, only 135 Hemi units were built and an estimated 1,935 units in total were built in 1970 to comply with the NASCAR homologation requirement. This auctioned Superbird, just like the rest of its family, is truly a sight to behold especially for Mopar enthusiasts and those who appreciate cars as rare as this.

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