FCA US Trademarks Barracuda Name, Don’t Expect the Comeback of the Plymouth Brand

1970 Hemi Cuda 1 photo
Photo: HOT ROD network
HEMI and Cuda. Bring these two words together in the same sentence and senior petrolheads will go weak at the knees. During the late 1960s and early 1970s, the Chrysler Group was at the top of the muscle car wars with its Mopar machines. Along the way, the Plymouth brand was lost together with the Barracuda name. But the latter seems to be preparing to make a surprise return. Or so everyone hopes.
As discovered by David Zatz of Allpar, FCA US LLC re-trademarked the Barracuda name with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Filed on June 23rd, 2015, the mark leaves space for speculation. Is Plymouth set to make a return? Definitely not. Is Barracuda going to be used for Dodge nameplates as the name of an appearance package or trim level? That’s more likely in our book.

Fiat-Chrysler Automobiles is set to launch an all-new rear-wheel drive platform in the US in the future, but don’t get your hopes up for a standalone model with Barracuda badges on it. If anything, re-applying for a historical name such as Barracuda is, most likely, a routine renewal of a trademark to prevent other auto manufactures from using this well-known nameplate.

It would’ve been neat for FCA to come up with an all-new Barracuda, a successor to the E-Body notchback coupe from 1970, but don't get your hopes up. With so many recalls and focus on Alfa Romeo, it’s a certainty that there’s no way FCA will pour money into developing an all-new Barracuda for the 21st century. The situation gets more depressing for us enthusiasts when you consider that the trademark relates to usage on “motor vehicles, namely, passenger automobiles, their structural parts, trim and badges.”

FCA US officials tell that the Dodge Challenger will be replaced during calendar year 2018, but there’s no information whether the successor will be called Challenger as well. Some voices claim that the big muscle car will be replaced by the Barracuda, while others suggest that the name will be used by the range-topping version of the next-gen Challenger. What's your opinion on what the future holds for the Barracuda?
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About the author: Mircea Panait
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After a 1:43 scale model of a Ferrari 250 GTO sparked Mircea's interest for cars when he was a kid, an early internship at Top Gear sealed his career path. He's most interested in muscle cars and American trucks, but he takes a passing interest in quirky kei cars as well.
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