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Restored 1969 Plymouth Belvedere Looks Better Than New, Nasty Surprise Under the Hood

First used in 1951 as a trim level for the Plymouth Cranbrook, the Belvedere became a nameplate of its own in 1954. A full-size model at first, the Belvedere was downsized into an intermediate in the mid-1960s. And that's also when it became part of the muscle car market.
1969 Plymouth Belvedere 15 photos
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While gearheads tend to remember the Road Runner and the GTX as Plymouth's main midsize offerings during the golden era, the Belvedere was just potent in the drivetrain department. And by the way, did you know that the race-spec 426-cubic-inch (7.0-liter) HEMI made its debut in the Belvedere in 1964? Now you do!

Just like the GTX and the Road Runner, the Belvedere soldiered on through the golden muscle car era with all the cool Mopar V8 engines. Yup, it was offered with both the 383-cubic-inch (6.3-liter) B and the 440-cubic-inch (7.2-liter) RB. And it also got the streetable 426 HEMI V8 in 1967.

But the 1969 Belvedere you're looking at features none of those mills. This fabulously restored example packs a rather nasty surprise under the hood. Originally born with an inline-six, this Mopar got a proper V8 while undergoing restoration.

But it's not a 440 or a 426. This Belvedere rocks a 383 with a 451-cubic-inch (7.4-liter) stroker kit. If you're a "there's no replacement for displacement" kind of guy, it's definitely better than a 440.

The package also includes an Edelbrock carburetor, aluminum intake, aluminum cylinder heads, and lots of other Mopar performance parts. Output? Well, there are no figures to run by, but it's safe to say this mill sends more than 400 horsepower to the rear wheels. Which is almost as much as a 426 HEMI.

And as you might have already noticed, this Plymouth isn't exactly stock on the outside either. Yes, I'm talking about the fiberglass hood with the big scoop in the center, which was offered on the Road Runner A12 in 1969. The limited-edition Mopar with the 440 "Six Pack" V8 also featured steel wheels wrapped in redline tires, just like this Belvedere.

So while it's not actually a Road Runner, this Plymouth is a tribute to the meanest Mopar introduced in 1969. Or maybe I should call it the Belvedere A12 that Plymouth never built?

Either way and upgrades aside, it's an impressive classic. It's rust-free, it's wrapped in a fresh coat of Sunfire Yellow, while the black interior is all-new. But that's something you'd expect from a classic described as a "no expense spared, ground-up restoration." And it's for sale as we speak, with High Octane Classics looking to get $67,000 for it.

That's a lot of cash even for a restored Belvedere, but you won't find another one like it out there. It's up to you whether it's worth it or not.

Editor's note: This article was not sponsored or supported by a third-party.

 
 
 
 
 

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