Category Archives: Road Runner

“Tuff” Jack-O-Plymouth Road Runner rocks on Halloween

Though it’s late on Halloween we figured a demonic Plymouth Road Runner finished in pumpkin orange and semi-gloss black was worth posting to celebrate the waning minutes of America’s greatest Celtic animist holiday.

The scary side of "Beep! Beep!"

The scary side of “Beep! Beep!”

Feral Cars Field Scout Bonnie “Point & Shoot” Ruttan sent in these of shots of a kind of psychotic looking ’69 Plymouth Road Runner she encountered on the scary streets of Palm Springs.  We feel she really captured the spookiness of the moment.

Lovable "rake"

Lovable “rake”

We find the photography truly compelling as befits the MoPar muscle subject matter.  Dig those “dog dish” hubcaps!  It’s a coupe, not a swanky ‘hardtop’ or convertible. This is automotive menace on par with Bob Mitchum’s turn as Max Cady in Cape Fear.  This is as “bad-ass” as it gets.  This aesthetic would call for a bench seat in the front, not sporty buckets that conjure up European pretense of which this car has absolutely none to speak of.  When you hit the horn it makes a “beep! beep!” sound like the cartoon character.   They would never have thought of that in Stuttgart, Coventry, Crewe, Munich or even Dearborn.  This was built by the company that has a factory in a place called Poletown so some “out of the box” thinking is only to be expected.

Our hope is that it’s 4-speed manual but Chrysler’s three speed Torqueflite automatic is likely to shift quicker than you would yourself with a third pedal on the floorboard.  What about this Plymouth pumpkin’s innards?  More than likely a hot-rodded version of Chrysler’s 383 cubic inch (around 6.3 liters for you metric types) putting out 335hp and 425-lbs.ft. of torque.  That’s a lot of pumpkin juice because this grinning ghoul weighs only about 3400 lbs. Contrast this level of Día De Los Muertos-style skeletal sveltness to the girth of a 2015 Dodge Charger RT, Chrysler’s current working class-affordable (but barely) muscle car. The latter day Dodge has ‘porked up’ to almost 4400 pounds.

BOSS 'bird

Coyote p.o.v.

We love this candy corn-powered Plymouth and if you’d like to add one, in EXACTLY the same color scheme, to your fleet we suggest you part with a measly $38,900 and buy this one offered for sale in nearby Stratford, WI.

We’re on a high from all that candy and this commercial for the ’69 Road Runner featuring a lengthy passage of good ol’ Wyle E. Coyote vs. The Roadrunner animation, direct from the back lot in Burbank, only enhances the ongoing sugar rush.

If you’ve stalked a feral car and would like to submit a photo of it for posting consideration please send it to us:   info (at) feralcars (dot)com OR through our Facebook page.

Note: While we strive for factual accuracy in our posts, we readily acknowledge that we we sometimes make inadvertent mistakes.  If you happen to catch one please don’t sit there and fume; let us know where we went wrong and we’ll do our best to correct things.

Swelling with Plymouth pride!

Korean War veteran still serving proudly

Korean War veteran still serving proudly

Musings, ramblings and rants from FeralCars founder Bob Merlis

I’ve long had a soft spot for anything branded “Plymouth.”  My mom bought her first new car in 1951, a gunmetal grey Plymouth Cambridge.  It was a bottom-of-the-line two door sedan equipped with, well, it was equipped with just about nothing.  As best I can recall, she ordered a heater, which only made sense in those pre-global warming days, but declined to spring for the radio; in place of a radio was a metal plate which got terrible reception.  Yeah, she certainly shelled out a few extra dollars for the optional cigarette lighter because Camels, not music, were a priority.

I was especially excited when the Fury came on the scene in 1956.  It was a limited edition performance hardtop from Chrysler’s  entry division, a lower priced equivalent of the Chrysler 300 and DeSoto Adventurer, with special appointments and gobs of horsepower.  Later came the electric blue #43 NASCAR Plymouths of Richard Petty, winner of the 1964 Daytona 500 where Plymouth placed 1 – 2 – 3.  There’s now even a film, Snake & Mongoose, chronicling the 1970’s NHRA  rivalry between  Don “The Snake” Prudhomme, driving a Barracuda dragster, and  arch rival Tom McEwen’s whose drove a far-out Duster. Hot Plymouth on Plymouth action!

On location during Snake & Mongoose movie shoot: lovely Gilligan Gibbons, in the role of Brenda Greer and Butch Leal's California Flash, a '64 Plymouth A/FX drag car, share craft services.

On location during Snake & Mongoose movie shoot: lovely Gilligan Gibbons, wife of ZZ Top frontman Billy F Gibbons, in the role of Brenda Greer, and Butch Leal’s California Flash, typecast as a ’64 Plymouth A/FX drag car,  share craft services.

Years later, adulthood crept in and three kids meant it was time for a minivan.  Dodge Caravans and Plymouth Voyagers were exactly the same except for badging and subtle front grille differences.  I was adamant that ours be a Plymouth so an ’87 Voyager LE, complete with appliqué fake wood, reported for carpool duty.

My ongoing fixation with Plymouth took a poignant turn when, in 1999, Chrysler announced that production would cease.  This was, of course, during the time the corporation was ruled by its Daimler-Benz overlords who gutted the company for which they had paid so dearly.

It was heartening to receive a message and a photo of a Cambridge two door sedan, built a year after my mother’s, from Feral Cars fan J Frank Parnell from Elmore, OH.  It arrived on Veteran’s Day for added poignancy. Charlene, my 1953 Plymouth Cambridge, rolled off the Detroit assembly line on this day in 1952. The family from whom I acquired her five years ago purchased her brand new from Davis Motor Sales in Atwood, Illinois. She has always been a driver. She has ‘known rain and snow,’ and rust. But she has also always been well-cared for — never abused or left forgotten for years or decades in some garage or barn. At car shows, she sits proudly alongside the ubiqutous Mustangs, TriFives, and lead sleds, always sparking warm smiles and garnering nostalgic comments. Charlene is no trailer queen. She’s my baby — a true “veteran of the highways.”

November 11, 2013

Thanks to J Frank and his predecessors for keeping Plymouth’s flag flying so proudly for so long.

Rally around this banner, true 'Plymouth "rockers!'

Rally around this banner, true ‘Plymouth rockers!’

..and, of course there was the Road Runner, arguably, the the most compelling – if not the only – alliance between a high-performance automobile and and a flightless desert-dwelling bird. The two joined forces in this very animated 1969 TV commercial.

If you’ve stalked a feral car and would like to submit a photo of it for posting consideration please send it to us:   info (at) feralcars (dot)com  OR through our Facebook page.

Include your name, location of the car and some thoughts about the vehicle and we’ll look into getting it the attention it deserves.