1971 Plymouth Cuda.
Thought I would send you this pic of a friends Hemi ragtop from '74. The car is apparently in New York state at this time. Really cool optical trick done to hide a 2" roof chop, is the painted top!
Car was original 440-6 convertible, with a Hemi transplant. Ran 11.10's in that time period. Car was actually owned by a dealership. When last heard of car was in Buffalo somewhere.
Does anyone know what became of this one???
Well here is the feedback that I have gotten:
Ordered through Centennial Chrysler in Barrie, Ontario owned by the Coates family, driven by Donny Cloak. Drake in Rochester owned it for a while, then went to Quebec, now in the US.
It actually started life as a 1970 Cuda 440+6!
Same dealership had Blake's famed Hemicuda convertible.
My Canadian source's list of 71 Cuda convertibles included all VIN's produced for Canada and most of the selling dealer names, but there is no record of ANY 440+6 car FOR CANADA for 71 on it. The former race car that went through Drake, TO THE BEST OF MY KNOWLEDGE, is a 70. Years ago, while on an NOS buying trip, I visited the owner and took a photo of the car, but because of the storage location, only the back of the car is visible. The owner indicated that it came from Drake. Since I believe I have all of the VIN's for US cars, perhaps the car in the vintage photo was built for export. Your thoughts?
Yes despite the trim that car is really a 1970 440-6 Cuda convertible.
Y05 Y93 EN1
M25 M88 N41 N42 R11 V6X
V3W B51 C16 C55 J45 L31
EK2 H6XW 000 801 C00391
E87 D32 BS27 V0B 101641
Last time I spoke to the current owner it was in Iowa.
It was one of the 7 1970 440-6 Cuda convertibles used as a Chrysler of Canada show cars to introduce the 1970 model year cars.
Note the August 1 1969 scheduled production date which was the first day of production.
All 7 convertibles were configured the same. All the fender tags are identical except for the VIN and the SO number. All had 3.23 open rear ends so they were equipped with a 22 inch radiator. All autos and all power steering power disc brake cars.
I was offered this car in the mid 1980s from a young man in Quebec. He had a Cuda convertible race car shell that he wanted to sell. When he read me the VIN and the fender tag information I passed due to the conflict and obvious tampering. Bill Drake bought it from him shortly thereafter.
A few years latter I bought 101639 and that is when I dug into the whole deal.
I knew Don Cloake pretty well well as his shop was a few miles from where I grew up in Toronto. He was part of the racing fraternity that we idolized back then as he was a mechanic with John Pettrie and part of the Canadian Performanc Car Clinic.
We had already had several discussions concerning the EV2 71 Hemi Cuda convertible as that car had been ordered for the Cloake & Coates Racing team. A high school buddy of mine had put that car together for the fellow that had rescued the hemi Cuda from under stacks of lawn chairs from an Indian(far east) importer who had no idea what he had.(another story)
The skinny on the 70 440-6 Cuda is that the 71 Cuda was ordered for the race team in the fall of 1970. When it had not arrived by Feruary of 1971 the race team was worried about the preparation time needed to have the car ready for the season. The Jackson brothers had bought one of the 70 440-6 show cars and it was offered as the platform for the 71 race car.
Some new sheet metal, grille, taillights, some trim, and some other minor changes and the 70 440-6 convertible became a 71 convertible.
The real kicker was the VIN though.At the time the VIN had to indicate a hemi car and the right year to race in Super Stock. I asked Don about that years ago and he had come up with the solution. They got a blank VIN from the dealership and he had a jeweler make the VIN match their needs. Nobody at the time paid attention, or for that matter, knew how to read a fender tag so it stayed on the car.
It sure threw me off many years later and prevented me from buying the car!
I am pretty sure it had many people scratching their heads over the years as well.