Whats a muscle car?

Discussion in 'OT Driven' started by Fareo, Dec 6, 2006.

  1. Fareo

    Fareo New Member

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    This is a topic that can be debated untill the cows come home. while it is mostly based on opinion there is still some fact to it and ill will brake it down using facts, the best that i can, from what ive gathered over the years.


    Muscle Car - a 2 door performance sedan from the late 1960s early 1970s based off of, normal, family, 4 door, sedans and givin cool and popular names like "road runner" and "chevelle", even though they were just a 2 door version of a satalite or a malibu with a High Output engine. these cars were no less then genius marketing... take an existing car, strap a huge motor in it, give it a different more "muscle" sounding name, and call it a new car. in order for it to be a muscle car it has to be based off a simalar platform.

    Pony car - the name of this class is based of the first affordable performance or "sports" car, the mustang... this class includes any american car pitted against the mustang.. inlculding, but not limited to, the Camaro, Firebird, Challenger, and 'Cuda. these cars had no other platform, there was never a 4 door version of any of these cars, thus making the major differances between them and muscle cars. giving them more of a affordable sports car feel. these cars were also rarey if not never in the same racing class as the "muscle cars" do to size and weight differances.

    Exotic Sports Car - high end performance cars built for only 1 purpose.. go fast. these are not practical cars in anyway shape or form and should cost no less then $70,000, as the corvette would be the cheepest in this class. which includes cars like the Viper, lambo's, ferriars and such. these are not muscle cars, while they are "muscley", they are considered sports cars.

    Technicalitys... this is where it gets sketchy... where do cars like the Grand Natioal fit into this? some say muscle car? the GN is kinda of a 1980's take on what a muscle car was so technicaly, yes the GN is a muscle car even tho its a V6. there is no such thing as a FWD muscle car, it defeats the purpose. cars like the cobalt (even tho its a chevy 2 door based off a 4 door) are consider "Tuner". cars like the 95 Impala, the new 300c are consider more of a luxury sedan then "muscle", even tho they have plenty of "umph".

    this catagory can go on and on, what about the new charger, no becasue its a 4 door and its offered in a cheep striped down V6 model. the new charger should be called the cornet, the new challenger is based of the chargers platform and is a 2 door version with a different name so technialy the "new" challenger fits in the "muscle car" catagory but the old one does not. becasue it was a Pony car.. but then the new challager is gonna go agiasnt the mustang so that would make it more of a pony car?? yes, im confused too... the new GTO is a muscle car becasue its based off a 4 door holden and is just a 2 door version with a catchy new name, and lots of power. which is the formula for a muscle car

    like i said, this "technicality" catagory can go on and on but thats just what ive gathered, im sure most of you are gonna flame me for not calling the camaro a muscle car, but its not... and that doesnt make it any less of a car, im just refering to what it really is, an affordable corvette. this forum is called "american muscle" not "american muscle cars", american muscle can mean alot of things.. a camaro can be "muscly" and so can a viper, but the true defintion of a "muscle car" is not "any american car with a V8".

    thats my story and im sticking to it ... :o
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2006
  2. SierraSport

    SierraSport New Member

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    Ill Allow it !!! :big grin:
     
  3. LA02MAX

    LA02MAX New Member

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    I concur with everything you just said
     
  4. 86turbobuick

    86turbobuick New Member

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    that pretty much sums it up...way to go man :bigthumb:

    im actually gonna save this one cause that's probably the best description of each class that i've ever seen.
     
  5. twistid

    twistid Banged By Super Models Moderator

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    http://www.musclecarclub.com/musclecars/general/musclecars-definition.shtml <---there's a chart

    Strict Definition of a Muscle Car:

    A muscle car, by the strictest definition, is an intermediate sized, performance oriented model, powered by a large V8 engine, at an affordable price. Most of these models were based on "regular" production vehicles. These vehicles are generally not considered muscle cars, even when equipped with large V8s. If there was a high performance version available, it gets the credit, and not the vehicle that it was based on.

    Examples: Buick GS, Chevrolete Chevelle SS, Dodge Charger R/T, Ford Torino/Cobra, Plymouth GTX, Plymouth Road Runner, Oldsmobile 442, Pontiac GTO

    Fullsize Muscle Car:

    The strict definition only includes intermediate size vehicles. In reality, performance oriented intermediate size vehicles didn't appear until 1964. Before then, manufacturers took existing fullsize vehicles and added extra performance to them. Because of this, the early fullsize performance vehicles are generally considered muscle cars.

    Examples: Chevrolet Impala (SS only), Ford Galaxie (with 390 + cid engines only), Dodge Coronet (R/Ts only), etc.

    Pony Cars and Compact Cars:

    In addition to fullsize and intermediate muscle cars, a number of smaller vehicles started appearing on the automotive performance scene. These new "pony cars" and compact cars are generally considered muscle cars only if they have the top of the line performance engines and options.

    Examples: Chevrolet Camaro (SS and Z28 models only), Ford Mustang (GTs and Boss only), Plymouth 'Cudas (no Barracudas), AMC Javelin, etc.

    Personal Luxury Cars and Luxury Cars:

    Although there were several personal luxury vehicles with performance engines and options, their heavy weight and high sticker prices went against the low cost performance definition of muscle cars. Therefore, they are not considered muscle cars.

    Examples: Buick Riviera, Chrysler 300 Letter Cars, Pontiac Grand Prix, etc.

    Two Seat Sports Cars:

    Two seat sports cars such as the Chevrolet Corvette and the Ford Thunderbird are not considered muscle cars due to their high price and specialty nature. The only exception is the AMC AMX as it was relatively cheap, and was based on the AMC Javalin pony car.

    Examples: AMC AMX, etc.
     
  6. krs1

    krs1 Do you know how fast you were going?...How fast yo

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  7. Fareo

    Fareo New Member

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    not the reaction i thought id get.. :cool:
     
  8. JRock10

    JRock10 Active Member

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    corvette and t-birds were the original pony cars
     
  9. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Super Moderator

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  10. Corz

    Corz ha ha! snikt

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    not really.. corvette was always a sports car.

    the formula for the original sports car was a 2 seater with enough luggage for a weekend trip. The corvette was to 'fight' the british roadsters like the MG. when Ford upped the antee with the T-bird, Chevy went balls out with performance otherwise would have been dropped in 55
     
  11. JRock10

    JRock10 Active Member

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    now i remember why i can't stand you. :fawk:


    anyways, in past reading, I have heard an author describe the vette/tbird as the original pony cars. as would figure, i of course can't find the text that i read this in, so i'm sitting here looking silly. oh well, it's just the internet.
     
  12. P07r0457

    P07r0457 New Member

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    :werd:

    The mustang was marketing genious! They took an off-the-shelf platform and threw a new body on it. And it sold like hotcakes because it was missing 2 doors!
     
  13. twistid

    twistid Banged By Super Models Moderator

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    you could get a falcon with 2 doors.:confused:
    1961
    [​IMG]
    1962
    [​IMG]
    1963
    [​IMG]
    1965
    [​IMG]
    1968
    [​IMG]
    1970
    [​IMG]
     
  14. twistid

    twistid Banged By Super Models Moderator

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    um that's a 4 door, i was just proving my point that they had 2door versions... and you didn't have to buy a mustang, to get a 2 door version.
     
  15. JRock10

    JRock10 Active Member

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    You didn't read that did you? :hsugh: Yeah, as i looked for the text that I was referring, I found many points of the cars answering Europe's offerings
     
  16. Corz

    Corz ha ha! snikt

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    i think what he's getting at was, an attractive and new 2 door body on a gutted 4 door platform
     
  17. Serialpimp

    Serialpimp New Member

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    64-72

    The first muscle car was the 64 GTO,
    it was an option on the Pontiac Tempest,
    Paul Delorean, Pete Estes and Jim Wangers, Head Execs at Pontiac wanted to put a big motor in a small-midsized car. To create a new car they needed GM Corporate's approval, which they did not get, so they made it an option on the Tempest, which did not require GM Corp approval. They were all about to get fired, when the news that about 30K GTO cars had been ordered / purchased, and that all the dealers were dying to get them in. They put a 389 in the A body which was at that time considered a small to midsized car, although it is large by today's standards.

    By the end of the year Cheverolet, Buick and Olds all had similar options available in their A-Bodies, Chevelle SS, Olds 442, etc.

    The Muscle Car era lasted until the end of 1972, when hp levels gave way to high insurance rates, high gas prices and emmissions controls on vehicles.
    1973 and 1974 were the end of many performance models, 442, Z28, SS, and so on.

    Most Muscle Car era cars ran between a 13.6 and a 14.8 from the factory. Racers, Hot Rodders and the like found it fairly easy to get their cars in the 12's with just a little time and effort. There were those factory sponsored cars, and specialty dealer cars that we all hear about like the Royal Bobcats, Baldwin Motion, Yenko cars that had incredible performance, but just like today you had to have the wallet for such vehicles, and they were not as common back then as many people think. Just like today you don't see a Saleen everyday, and you did not see a Ram Air IV or V GTO JUDGE everyday back then either.

    The 1970 LS7 Chevelle and the Buick Grand National were considered the two fastest mass production cars until the Viper reached mass production numbers in 92 or 93. The Chevelle was good for a 13.10 and the GN a 13.3-13.7 from the factory.


    The 5.0 Mustangs of the 80's and early 90's showed an inclination of the rebirth of performance. Most 5.0's ran 15.1-15.3 from the factory. 3rd Gen Camaros, while attractive got their asses handed to them by fox bodies, unless you had a not so common 350 TPI Z28 in 91 or 92, which most people did not. Even then the above mentioned Z28, was only able to keep up with a 5.0


    Today's late model cars are generally referred to as "Modern Muscle Cars" and not part of the Muscle Car Era 1964-1972.

    The first year for the Ford Mustang was 1964 1/2 and when the car debuted it was called a Pony car. It was a "Secretary's" Car and was a small, inexpensive, cute, easy to drive car for the ladies. It became extremely popular and in later years, with High Performance Engines and Horsepower in the automotive air it too, got a dose of big engine with such models as the 429 CobraJet, Mach 1, and Boss Mustang.

    The Camaro was Chevrolet's answer to the Mustang and while it was considered a small sports car at the time in retrospect it is usually lumped in and referred to as a Muscle Car by most enthusiasts today. The highest production year for the Camaro was 1979, when almost 300,000 were sold, compared to 2001 when only 29,000 were sold. Production was stopped the next year.
     
  18. Serialpimp

    Serialpimp New Member

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    I am a plethora of old car information,


    Try Me,
     

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