There are many lists of all time great for everything, and there are variations and opinions on what classic muscle cars should be on the list. I grew up in this era and also have many references from parents, friends and family that also enjoyed this era of muscle cars. This list is based on my memories of some of the most entertaining and frequent conversations by my peers and elders of my generation.
In today’s world, there are no conversations about muscle cars like the day gone by because there are so many car makers and brands that it’s almost impossible for the average person to keep up. Here’s our Top 10 Classic Muscle Cars of All Time.
The Shelby Mustang was created by Shelby American from 1965 to 1968. It was short lived and Ford took over the next year and ended it the following year in 1970.
It wasn’t until 2005 that Shelby came back on the scenes with the ever popular Mustang lineup.
This car was a beast, a monster, A Mr. Hyde of speed and pure power.
There were only 5 of these babies made. It’s one of the most rare, and most sought after classic muscle cars of all time. What makes it so valuable and sought after? The car never made it to the production line. This car makes the Edsel look like Royalty in comparison in numbers. AMX was plagued with issues from the creation of the company, and this is the only car that ever became popular.
The biggest issue is we know there were 5 made, but we haven’t a clue who owns most of them or their location.
The 1974 Chevy Corvette is an American Icon. One of the most popular models of the 70’s and into the 80’s. The body style was sleek, yet simple. It was fast, a gas hog that was born into a fuel shortage in the early 70s and still sold more than was expected. The L82 was a 350 cubic inch V8 giving off 250-hp with a 4-barrel carb powerhouse. It was brutally powerful and held to the road well.
It’s still loved today as it was then.
The 442, which stands for a 4-barrel carb, 4-speed gearbox and dual-exhaust, made for one of the most memorable cars of the late 60’s and early 70s. It’s clear that this was the next step in the evolution of muscle cars when you look at the years leading up to it’s design and engineering..
Made popular by the movie “Smokey and the Bandit”, staring Burt Reynolds and Jackie Gleason. Sales of this car skyrocketed and they were very popular cars in the blue collar middle class. It came with a 6.6 liter V-8 that made this car accelerate fast. Keeping rubber on the rear was a challenge for the more aggressive drives of the time. It will always live in the hearts and minds of Americans who lived through the Trans Am era.
A work of art, a tough and fearsome competitor and one of the most iconic and sought after muscle cars in the world. Speed, power, style and loads of adrenaline are what makes this car so popular, even decades after it’s heyday.
For the ones new to classic muscle cars. Who knew Buick made a muscle car…Right? This one is considered a rare and powerful breed from a company that had always focused on luxury and comfort.
“The Judge” after a popular skit called “Here Comes the Judge” made famous by Sammy Davis Jr. Now, I not quite sure how they took a skit from a comedy show and applied it to a car that fits the description of a 1940s Judge sentencing people to death. It was pure horse power and a total package, from its intake to it’s exhaust. It was completely power. The power plant, the transmission, rear end and more that made this car what it was and is today.
The 64 GTO Tri-power was a muscle car anomaly. It had excessive power through the full spectrum of performance. It came with bucket seats, exceptional handling and the comforts of a family car, but was also a mean machine when speed counted. It was actually a please to drive.
The body and interior acted more like a luxury car than a muscle car. It was the best of both worlds at a time when muscle cars lacked the user integrity most muscle cars lacked in that era.
The 1970 Ford Mustang Boss 302 was Fords new answer to the Shelby. Raw power, a sleek, yet tough visual profile and the statistics of speed to back it up. It’s an all time favorite to restore and own to this day.
We’ve now taken a stroll through the top 10 classic muscle cars of all time.
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