Muscle Car Spotlight – 1969 Plymouth Roadrunner

By Auto News Log • November 22nd, 2009

Mopar struck paydirt when it came up with the idea of capitalizing on the muscle car wave of popularity by offering the low-priced Roadrunner to the masses in 1968, with 1969 being a particularly stellar sales year. They were definitely marketing the younger audience with better affordbility, as well as licencing the Warner Brothers cartoon character as its namesake and mascot, including the well-known “beep-beep” sound for its horn.

To keep the price down, Roadrunners were minimally appointed, but these cars weren’t toys, as performance and suspension features were not compromised. Base stickered at under $3,000, the price quickly went up when you started beefing it up with power options. Who wants the standard 383 cid mill when you could get a 390 hp 440 with a three-two “Six-pack”? Well forget even that; what you really wanted under the hood was the 426 Street Hemi. Featuring hi-po goodies such as Hemi heads, 10.25:1 compression and two fours, its rated output boosted to 425 hp at 5,000 rpm.

It could run the quarter in 13.5 seconds and had a top speed of 140+ mph! Over 80,000 units of the various configurations were sold in 1969, with the “no-post” hardtops being the most desirable among collectors. But the real find today is the rag-top, of which only about 2,200 were produced.


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