This week’s Meguiar’s Ride of the Week features Matt and Amy Clark’s awesome 1965 Plymouth Barracuda out of Friendswood, TX.
Like last week’s feature, this car was self built with outside assistance on final paint and body as well as interior.
How this Barracuda came back to life: Matt built the car as a tribute to his father. In 1965 his dad bought a gold Plymouth Barracuda 4-speed Formula S. He had it for a year and sold it when entering the Navy in 1966. His father always talked about that car, and how much he loved and missed it. In 2014 Matt’s dad was diagnosed with lung cancer to which a 1965 Barracuda was located and purchased on EBAY as a surprise. The Cuda was in rough shape, but memories were made taking it to car shows before his passed in November of 2014. In his memory Matt, along with his wife Amy, have enjoyed traveling the country showing the car and sharing it’s story. Matt’s favorite part of showing the car at events is the interaction with people who love their cars just as much as he loves his. “It is a fantastic hobby that has brought me close to people all over the country and world. It has been my honor and privilege to be a part of such an amazing community.”
In Matt’s own words: I wanted to build something that looks different and unique. Most people are familiar with SS versions of Camaro’s Chevelle and Shelby GT versions of Mustangs, and most people know and love those cars. In the late 60’s early 70’s MOPAR offered a “CUDA” version of the Barracuda. However, that version was not available in first generation Barracudas. The only performance version of the 1st generation Barracuda was the Formula S, which featured a 250HP 273 Commando V8 (either with an Automatic or 4 speed, less than 6000 of those were offered out of 65,000 cars). My vision was to take a stock 1965 V8 Barracuda and use options offered in 1968-1974 to build a 65 CUDA package car. This would have to include a 450+hp, motor, and either a 727 Tourqueflite or 4 Speed Trans, and the very rare Dana 60 3:55 Track Pack rear end typically only offered in 4 Speed 426 Hemi cars (Challenger’s, Cuda’s, and Road Runners). So the 475HP motor coupled with the 727 Trans, Chromed 3″ aluminum Driveline, and narrowed Dana 60 rear end offer a true CUDA performance package in a 65 Barracuda, which was never offered.
Most of the body modifications are very subtle in the engine compartment. You’ll notice the absence of wiring and the battery has been relocated to the trunk. The fuel delivery and electrical systems are hidden behind a custom fabricated firewall cover. A new inner fender piece was created and installed to replace the battery tray in the drivers side fender.
Jump to the undercarriage. The car has been stripped and slicked to include all of the factory emergency brake brackets and cables, the fuel, brake lines, and battery cables have all been re-routed, and hidden. And the underbelly and inner fenders have all been sanded slicked and painted. Of course, you’ll find a lot of custom chrome accent pieces from the pros at Speed & Sport Chrome in Houston, TX and a fabricated NASCAR exhaust by Dr Gas Exhaust Systems (Pattened by Boyd Butler/first debuted on 1996 Sterling Marlin’s #4).
This 2020 Summit Racing Equipment/ISCA Championship qualifier has leather interior, complete with Barracuda logos embroidered in the seat backs as a result of ideas shared between Matt and Joe Kennedy at Advanced Auto Trim & Upholstery in Houston. The car produces 478HP at the flywheel by a fuel injected 408 Stroker with a new 360 magnum block and aluminum heads, completed by Indy Cylinder Head. Power is transferred to the rear with a 727 Tourqueflite 3 speed transmission with 3000 RPM stall converter from Summit Racing Equipment.
The Cuda rides on Mickey Thompson ET Street Tires in rear mounted on custom painted 15″ Mopar Rally Sport wheels and with Nitto NT101 on the front with the same style rims. Tires have been sanded and shaved smooth. A custom mix of PPG Gold metallic paint and a black pearl mixed with gold metal flake stripes coats the car which is cared for with Meguiar’s Mirror Glaze.
Thank you Matt and Amy for sharing your passion and Matt’s father’s dream car at the World of Wheels and Autorama events. Interested in showing your vehicle? Please visit www.autorama.com! For more information about the great line of Meguiar’s Car Care Products, please visit www.meguiars.com