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1969 Belvedere Super-Bird Is an Awesomely-Ridiculous Zero-of-None Winged Warrior Barn Find

1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike 30 photos
Photo: YouTube/EmeliaHartford
1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike
Sometimes, car addiction goes beyond a certain point, where it is no longer passion but downright fanaticism. Some gearheads are so loyal to one specific model that they’ll stop at nothing to get one – unless money or availability gets in the way of that piston-centered lucid dream. With a genuine Plymouth Superbird vastly out of reach for most regular, everyday, normal motor-minded fans, building a replica is the next best thing. And it's also way, way cheaper.
The Superbird was built in limited numbers for NASCAR homologation of the aero-Plymouth racer car that brought Richard Petty on better terms with Chrysler after the 1969 incident. That year, the King, upset that Mother Mopar didn’t build a Charger Daytona-lookalike Plymouth model for him to drive in the championship, simply signed up with Ford.

Chrysler admitted their foot-in-mouth rigidity and released the Superbird in 1970, with 1,920 showing up on the NASCAR validating list (the minimum production number a car had to be assembled to be allowed to run the oval banks).

All nice and dandy, but nowadays, an example of the allegedly 1,935 total hot ‘Birds is fetching high dollars in sales. With Federal Reserve legal-tendered portraits of former presidents building an impenetrable wall around the one-year-only Plymouth racecar, car ultra-fundamentalists found various workarounds to satisfy their Wile E. Coyote gluttony for the Road Runner.

1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike
Photo: YouTube/EmeliaHartford
One of the most polarizing ones is this derelict barn find that Emelia Hartford, the popular social media star, dug up from a property ‘in the middle of nowhere,’ according to the video below. Obviously, it’s not an authentic Plymouth Superbird from 1970. This would typically be redundant – since the Go-Fast ‘Bird was only built between late October and mid-December 1969 for the 1970 model year.

In this instance, however, it’s worth noting that the atrociously decrepit tentative winged warrior is based on a 1969 Plymouth Belvedere. The signature 'aero tail' and nose cone are there, but that’s pretty much where the resemblances end. The carcass Mopar is very biodegraded – weeds grow freely through the holes in the floor, with nothing to stop them.

Also, the hood, not bound to the body in any way, tilts frontward, a la Corvette, revealing a massive void above the ground. The rolling shell of a Superbird-wannabe has no motor and almost no interior. Still, the trunk holds several pieces of trim and an alternator.

1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird Lookalike
Photo: YouTube/EmeliaHartford
We have no clue what the car started life as other than the generic make and model – a 1969 Plymouth Belvedere. Then again, the Road Runner on which the Superbird was built was also a Belvedere, like the Satellite and the GTX. Sure, there were differences in the details, but their overall layout was roughly the same.

The vlogger who brought this car to the attention of YouTube plans to mod it – details unspecified – but the viewers have an extensive range of preferences, from keeping it as close to a period-correct (1969-1970) Mopar as possible to hot-rodding the Hell(cat) out of it. And being the impossible copycat it is, why not throw a Ford engine in it?

In the end, a short note about the Super-Bird nomenclature in the title: the 1970 Plymouth Road Runner NASCAR special was (correctly) named Superbird. Out of respect for that monument of American motoring heritage, I chose to call this desert find 1969 Plymouth Belvedere with a trunk wing and a nose job a Super-Bird, solely for its vague resemblance to the historic original.

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About the author: Razvan Calin
Razvan Calin profile photo

After nearly two decades in news television, Răzvan turned to a different medium. He’s been a field journalist, a TV producer, and a seafarer but found that he feels right at home among petrolheads.
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