COUSINS FROM KENOSHA

Mopar Muscle - - Preserved -

There are two schools of thought as to what con­sti­tutes a le­git­i­mate Mopar. One school says that un­less it was built when the mar­que was part of the tra­di­tional Mopar fam­ily — Chrysler, Dodge, Im­pe­rial, and Ply­mouth — it’s not a real Mopar.

The other school says that if the com­pany was ac­quired by Chrysler Cor­po­ra­tion, as was Amer­i­can Mo­tors in 1987, then cars built by the pre­de­ces­sor com­pany are in­deed Mopars. They can be called Mopars by adop­tion. Each school has its fans and de­trac­tors, but over the last two decades, the Amer­i­can Mo­tors cars have been in­creas­ingly wel­comed by al­most all ma­jor Mopar events, with classes ded­i­cated to the cars of AMC.

This widens the ap­peal of our hobby, es­pe­cially for the next gen­er­a­tion who’s priced out of buy­ing their first col­lec­tor car. Take this Javelin as an ex­am­ple. It’s re­al­is­ti­cally ap­praised at some­where north of $35,000. This is far more than the very rea­son­able price Mark paid for this lowmileage, orig­i­nal-con­di­tion Javelin. It proves that bar­gains are out there, just look out­side the box, mean­ing your lo­cal and re­gional Craigslists, and as in Fletcher’s case, cars when they come up on Face­book mar­que­and model-spe­cific groups.

What is its cousin in the tra­di­tional Chrysler-dodge-ply­mouth Mopar fam­ily — say a com­pa­ra­ble 1970 Bar­racuda or Chal­lenger un­der 50,000 miles, with a four-bar­rel 383 and a four-speed trans­mis­sion — go­ing to cost to ac­quire? We dare say that it’ll be more than $50,000. (At Mecum’s 2017 Kis­sim­mee auc­tion, Lot 128, a very sim­i­larly equipped, re­stored 1970 Ply­mouth Bar­racuda Gran Coupe, a non-a/c, 383, four-speed car, sold for $51,000.) That makes this Javelin, or even the bit more ex­pen­sive (and rare) two-seat 1968-1970 AMX, a very rea­son­ably priced al­ter­na­tive and a great way to en­ter the ranks of clas­sic car own­er­ship.

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