Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Rare Plymouth Hemi 'Cuda Convertible To Cross Auction Block


One of the most desirable Mopar muscle cars ever built, a rare 1971 FC7-In Violet Plymouth Hemi 'Cuda Convertible — the only one of its color to roll off the line in 1971 — will cross the Barrett-Jackson auction block here in January.

While Barrett-Jackson's policy is to refrain from releasing its reserve, another 1971 Hemi 'Cuda Convertible sold at a different 2007 auction for $2.2 million, which was said to be $1 million less than what RM Auctions was expecting.

The 1971 FC7-In Violet Plymouth Hemi 'Cuda Convertible, best-known for its "Plum Crazy" color, was rediscovered on New Year's Eve in 2001 by long-time Hemi 'Cuda Convertible hunter Harold Sullivan, after the car was stolen nearly 30 years prior. It was buried in weeds and underbrush and only five days away from disappearing into a scrap-recycling yard.

After a two-year restoration by Cummins Restoration in Grand Haven, Michigan, the Hemi 'Cuda was completed by Ted Mazurek at Sullivan's shop in Madison Heights, Michigan. It was inspected, authenticated and appraised to museum standards by Mopar guru Galen Govier after its restoration. Its authenticity paid off when it took top honors at the 2005 Meadowbrook Concours d'Elegance in Rochester, Michigan.

Gearheads will get a kick out of knowing it contains the last factory-assembled 426cid Hemi V8 engine, with two four-barrel carburetors, 727 automatic transmission, Super Track Pak package with Dana 60 rear end, 4.11 ratio gears and a power convertible top. This also was the only model year the 'Cuda sported four headlights and fender "gills."

"It is a true automotive milestone and an extraordinary example of 'American Muscle' at its finest," said Craig Jackson, chairman and CEO of Barrett-Jackson, in a statement, who personally owns a 1970 version of the car.

Of the 11 Hemi 'Cuda Convertibles ever built, this is one of only two convertibles made for export to Canada. There it was featured in Canadian Hot Rods and on the October 2011 cover of Mopar Action. Seven of the remainders went to U.S. buyers and two were exported to England.

Edmunds says: History and rarity undoubtedly will come at a price.

Courtesy of Edmunds Inside Line

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