Top Five 1960s Muscle Cars
Muscle cars. Every little kid’s dream and every collector’s holy grail. The headlights that never lose a stare-down. The streamlined bodies that were made to outperform any and all opponents. The voice from under the hood that never stops screaming of its relentless power. They are the perfect vehicles. Many will say that the era of the muscle car was the 1970s and 1980s, but that title should definitely belong to the 1960s.
#5 1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1
The athletic body of the 1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1 made this car a lion amongst men in the late 1960s and even in the present. The roar of the 428 cubic inch V8 engine was the wet dream of many car enthusiasts. It delivered 335 hp at 5,200 rpm and 385 ft-lbs of torque at 3,400 rpms which was almost enough to keep up with the most supreme of muscle cars of that time. With the option of a 4-speed manual or a 3-speed FMX transmission (automatic), the Mach 1 was capable of moving rather quick for a non-racecar. The 0–60 times hovered around the low 6s and the quarter mile was no more than 15.3 seconds.
#4 1967 Ford Shelby GT500
When this celebrity made it’s first appearance in the 2000 remake “Gone in 60 Seconds” the public got their thirst for muscle cars. With a 4-speed manual transmission and a 428 cubic inch V8 engine that bumps out 355 hp at 4,600 rpm and pushes 440 ft-lbs of torque at 2,600 rpm, this old timer is capable of pushing 14 second quarter miles at 106 mph. Although most of the Shelby vehicles were not official race cars, they were sometimes equipped with parts made from fiberglass. This caused a slight reduction in weight making it one of the lightest muscle cars of its time.
#3 1969 Plymouth Roadrunner
Remember the old Looney Toons episodes that featured Wile E. Coyote and The Roadrunner? Remember the speed of The Roadrunner? Well, the 1969 Plymouth Roadrunner has the speed to prove its name. The highest output engine available was the 426 Hemi engine delivering an outstanding 425 hp at 5,000 rpm and 490 ft-lbs of torque at 4,000 rpm. This was enough to push the 1.5 ton beast to 5.3 seconds from 0–60 mph and 13.55 seconds in the quarter mile. The hood scoops on the Roadrunner allowed for maximum and direct air flow to the engine. This allowed for a cooler engine bay as well as the perfect intake.
#2 1968 Dodge Charger
With an utmost pissed-off look, the 1969 Charger has made history in infamous movies like “The Dukes of Hazzard” and “The Fast and the Furious”. With plenty of power to go around due to the 426 Hemi V8 that some of the Chargers were equipped with, this car was capable of making the quarter mile in 13.3 seconds with 0–60 mph in just 4.7 seconds. The high output engine produced an impressive 425 hp at 5,000 rpms along with 490 ft-lbs of torque at 4,000. Yes, this car is as much of a beast as it looks.
#1 1969 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1
Coming in at #1 of the 1960s muscle cars is the glorious 1969 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1. The first ZL1 Chevrolet ever made became their fastest production car that they ever built. They equipped this demon with a L-72 aluminum engine weighing in at just a little over 500 lbs. This engine was, at the time, unarguably the lightest in its class and one of the most powerful. It spat out a brutal 425 hp at 5,200 rpm and 450 ft-lbs of torque at 4,200 rpms, but with a little bit of tuning could make well over 500 hp and over 500 ft-lbs of torque. This car was never really about the top speed as much as it was about acceleration. Weighing about 100 more lbs than the ’67 GT500, this grandpa could still sprint a 0–60 time in less than 5.2 seconds with the quarter mile in good standing at 11.6 seconds. The ZL1 definitely had the power and the glamour to shove you in the back seat.