What vintage american muscle car had good handling?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by homesick345, Feb 9, 2016.

  1. twintwelve

    twintwelve Tele-Afflicted

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    My 68 Plymouth Barracuda 340 Formula S , with modern radials, once i rebuilt the front & rear suspension, put stiffer bushing on the rear sway bar, & installed the factory "offroad only" underhood brace, handled shockingly well for a vehicle with 400+ hp & weighed 3275 without my fat ass--best handling muscle car I ever owned & I've had 440 Roadrunner, big & small block Darts, 65 & 66 Mustang, 90 Grand Prix Turbo, 62 Buick LeSabre w/400 etc.
    My Cuda-early 2000's:
     

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  2. 6stringcowboy

    6stringcowboy Tele-Afflicted

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    Mmmmmmmm, love a 340!
     
  3. Coach56

    Coach56 One of the Boys

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    That is lovely, I do miss the old body styles!
     
  4. dsutton24

    dsutton24 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I had a 442 W30, it cornered fairly flat, but when the back end broke loose there was little hope of straightening it up, it was definitely a straight line car. My '68 Thunderbird with the 429 Thunderjet engine cornered much better, and had a better ride than the 442, but the braking wasn't as good. Trans Ams from the same era were just pigs.
     
  5. Nick JD

    Nick JD Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I've always thought that the latter C1 'vette (60s) was the last good-looking one until the C6.
     
  6. k.l.k

    k.l.k Tele-Holic

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    almost died in a roadrunner.

    on at least three separate occasions.
     
  7. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Ad Free Member

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    This is a pretty funny thread. I'm surprised at how many muscle, pony, whatever vintage american car owners thought their cars handled well. They probably handled well in Kansas, but c'mon, I drove these cars too. I'm hoping they have a better reality check when they discuss their guitar gear.
     
  8. BartS

    BartS Friend of Leo's

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    Honestly when purchasing a classic car I would just get what ever you like make sure it has a decent set of brakes on it and slam it. There isn't one classic car I wouldn't slam. I just read about a 1957 Ferrari 335 sold for thirty six million dollars. Probably all stock numbers matching pretty low to the ground already. Just by looking at I can already tell it at least needs to be 2 inches lower if not 4 inches. Heck If I had the money for that kind of car I would throw the air bag suppension on it. Drill the hole for my buttons through that 36 million dollar stock dashboard myself video tape the whole thing and put it on youtube and count the number of the high dollar number matching car inthuesits die of a heart attach wathcing it.

    Then I would hop in my slammed ferrari and Just roll.

    If a car already came stock slammed to the ground I would put a desiel engine in it and bulldozer blade on the front that way I could roll two inches lower than the street. If it's not low enough with just working with supenntion drop the body.
     
  9. william tele

    william tele Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Since you mentioned Kansas I figured you were talking to me. I never meant to infer they handled well COMPARED to a Porsche, Beemer, or anything with those types of suspensions. I did also make the point that there was some cost difference between 60's, 70's "muscle" cars and European sports cars. While I have made no research my assertion is that a European sports car costing the equivalent of a "muscle" car at that time would probably have an edge in handling but would finish behind the US car in a race on most US highways and back roads...which is what muscle cars drove on.
     
  10. sojammer

    sojammer NEW MEMBER!

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    Had A 69 428 cobra jet when I came out of nam. Handle great. The trick was to wait till the front end
    came down and turn the wheels HARD. Instant turn and BAM YOU HIT SECOND GEAR.
     
  11. red57strat

    red57strat Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    A friend thought his beautifully restored '69 Camaro Z-28 handled pretty well- until he drove another friend's 1960s 911.

    My '66 Pontiac Tempest convertible and '71 Buick Skylark coupe were like driving plow trucks with the plow down- in the summer. Not to mentiuon that they both had 4 wheel drum brakes!
    Heck, even the brand new '98 Mustang GT that I test drove was sloppy in the corners. My '71 MG Midget was a blast in the twisties- on bias ply tires! So was my friend's late '50s MGA.

    There were some really nice handling cars in the '60s- not up to modern standards (they can't touch my '97 Miata- one of 47 built that year with the factory race package), but nice, though they weren't American made.
     
  12. twintwelve

    twintwelve Tele-Afflicted

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    I drove my 68 Cuda around the oval @ the Chrysler Proving Grounds, in Chelsea, MI, as well as the Evaluation and Handling Roads, and some of the Vehicle Dynamics Facility......I also drove it around 3/4s of the Indianapolis 500 Speedway--getting up to 120+ mph on the last bank of the oval (turn one, in this case)-----we were supposed to take a tour of the track following a pace truck @ 30 to 40mph, but due to a snafu, a group of 20 or so of us MoPar kids -this was @ the 84 Mopar Nationals--& did what comes naturally to a bunch of gear heads---PUNCHED IT.......the old guys who run the 500 Speedway were not amused........I have a few years experience autocrossing CSCC Miata's, and I've made a few laps around Summit Point in other peoples over-priced deathwishes, so I can drive a little.
     
  13. Nick JD

    Nick JD Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    My first car was a 1977 Leyland Mini with a whole 1000cc. A twisty road and it could shame some pretty big muscle.
     
  14. Mad Kiwi

    Mad Kiwi Friend of Leo's

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    I LOVE me some muscle car and not to derail but perhaps we should set a target/base line for good handling... :lol:

    start at 1.15.

     
  15. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Uhh, sorry william tele :oops:, I really didn't know anyone was from Kansas on this thread. I picked Kanas because I worked on my great Uncle's ranch one summer (without my GTO BTW) between college years and found the flat straight north-south road grid about as boring as watching the corn grow and could not imagine a better place for muscle car speed runs.
     
  16. william tele

    william tele Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    True. I remember chopping corn out of a soybean field by the highway and hearing and watching the local fast kid blow up his hemi GTX racing a hemi Cuda. Even though that road was straight and flat it was never made for 150 MPH. You feel every dip and high spot at 100....150 is on the verge of loss of control.:eek:
     
  17. Nick JD

    Nick JD Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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  18. omahaaudio

    omahaaudio Friend of Leo's

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    +1
     
  19. Tele-Caster

    Tele-Caster Tele-Holic

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    I don't know. I've never had a real "muscle car."

    I have, however, owned a '66 Mustang GT, a '70 AAR 'Cuda, and a '71 LT-1 Corvette.

    Of those three, the '66 Mustang was, by far, the easiest thing for me to do fast lap times in on a road racing course. It was, however, mildly modified. It had a shock tower brace up front, GT-350 style over-rider traction bars, unknown to me front and rear anti-sway bars (but whatever they were, they took out the typical American car understeer), Koni shocks, an interior roll cage, and that's about it. The engine was a stock-spec K-Code 289 excepting for tubular headers, carb re-jetting, ignition curve modification, and a windage tray in the oil pan and modded oil pickup to keep oil starvation at bay under hard cornering, and with a set of road-racing slicks on the thing, it would, in fact, corner surprisingly hard, and was a very predictable handling machine. It had a kind of "tossable" feel to it, too. It was big-time fun, and having had that car, it isn't too hard for me to imagine how Carrol Shelby's crew took SCCA Group B several years in a row with something a pedestrian as an essentially sexed-up Ford Falcon.

    With the right boxes ticked off the order sheet, the last iteration of the AMC Javelin could handle surprisingly well. I might argue that in showroom stock form, it had the potential to be the best of the lot, assuming the right options were chosen at purchase.

    I've also owned a fully race-prepped MG Midget and a Triumph TR-4A, as well as a Porsche 924S, a '92 LX 50 Mustang, an '84 Trans-Am with WS-6 suspension and a Chevy ZZ-3 crate engine under the hood, and my current "hotrod" 1999 Mustang.

    I still think the '66 Mustang was, if not the "funnest," surely one of the "funnest" of the lot for road-course track days.
     
  20. Tele-Caster

    Tele-Caster Tele-Holic

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    If you think that's funny, the notion that a Ford PINTO could be built in to a competent road-racing car might really give you a belly laugh.

    Having followed more than one such PINTO around Willow Spring Raceway whilst behind the wheel of my Huffaker-powered, full-on race-prepped MG Midget, I found little humor in doing so.
     
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