Chrysler Nationals Logo
    
50 YEARS OF THE PLYMOUTH ROAD RUNNER
Special Display Supports 2018 Weekend

The Plymouth Road Runner is considered to be the ultimate muscle car by many. Although many options were available over the years, the original intent of the car was to be no-frills performance. The 383 four-barrel was the base engine and the 426 Hemi was the only option. During the 1969 model year the 440 Six Barrel was developed for the “street racer” and was part of the A12 package which consisted of black steel wheels with chrome lug nuts and the fiberglass lift-off hood with the monstrous scoop.

For 1970, the 440 Six Barrel became an engine option rather than a package as it was the previous year. The biggest news for 1970 was perhaps the development of the Superbird for NASCAR competition which was based on the Road Runner. As with its cousin, the Super Bee, the Road Runner saw a major change for ‘71 as it was now very similar to an E-Body even though it was still categorized as a B-Body. This was also the first year you could get a small block in a Road Runner as the 340 was now available.

From 1972-’74 if you wanted a 440 you had to add the GTX “package” to your Road Runner. The 1975 Road Runner is often overlooked in the car’s history since it’s a one year only design and it was based on the then new Fury. When the new F-Body Volare arrived for 1976 the Road Runner found its home there until 1980. Big blocks were gone and the Road Runner was relegated to 318 and 360 small blocks and could even be had with the 225 slant six.

As this is being written (September 2017), we learned of the recent passing of Jack Smith. Jack is credited as the “Father of the Road Runner” for his involvement with the car. While Jack readily gave credit to others who were involved, he and his team ultimately wanted a car that cost less than $3,000, did 0-60 in less than seven seconds and the quarter mile in 15 seconds. Jack also wanted to improve Plymouth’s image and help the brand appeal to a younger buyer. The Road Runner was born with its cartoon character and Beep! Beep! horn. Rest in peace, Jack and thank you!

From 1968 to 1980, we’ll be looking for all years of Road Runner for the Showfield and for the Invitational Display to celebrate this icon at the 2018 Chrysler Nationals. We’ll also have our own merchandise such as banners, license plates and decals available to commemorate this milestone. You can register your Road Runner now for the Showfield or submit an application for the Invitational Display by using the links below.


Return to the Carlisle Chrysler Nationals Event Page

 

Preferred Hotels

  • Select Your Check-In Date
  • Select Your Check-Out Date
  • Book Online or Call
    (800) 216-1876

  • Cumberland Valley


Official Carlisle Events Directory Guide
Click to Rent Mobility Scooters at Our Events!
SEMA ARMO Committee