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1970 Plymouth 4-Door Barracuda E-Body

Discussion in 'Other classic cars' started by Joe Dart, Feb 13, 2016.

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  1. Joe Dart

    Joe Dart Member

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    I first heard about this a while back, but I'm seeing it again on various forums. Obviously Chrysler never built a real 4-Door Barracuda.

    So far according to various websites I've seen, there's also never been any photographs or documentation from Chrysler to prove this prototype ever existed in the first place.

    There's a lot of good people here on Allpar, so I'll let y'all decide if Chrysler secretly built a real prototype 4-door 'Cuda in a back-room sometime in 1969 and never showed it to the public.

    I can't think of a possibility that something like this was even considered by Chrysler, and believe it's some kind of bad hoax.

    4 door cuda - General Discussion - Mopar Forum
     
  2. Joe Dart

    Joe Dart Member

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  3. Joe Dart

    Joe Dart Member

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  4. David Walden

    David Walden New Member

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    Thanks for posting! I believe that it is quite possible that they made a 4 door concept by the fact that EVERYONE ELSE WAS DOING IT!! (Ford and GM.) If you look at some of the really crazy "one of a kind" concepts that Chrysler built, something like a 4 door version of an existing model is not that difficult of a concept to create. It sure looks like the builders are performing all the "tuff" work that the Factory would have done if they built a production 4 door Barracuda.
     
  5. DC-93

    DC-93 Active Member

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    Hopefully, an original, un-doctored photo of a 4 dr., late 60s, Chrysler concept, based on a 2 door will surface.
    Otherwise, there will never be credible evidence it ever happened, on any car line!
    Certainly, Ford and GM took pics of theirs. Chrysler took pics of EVERYTHING they did! If a 4dr. was done, there are pics to be found! Maybe a REWARD is in order??

    BTW- impeccable workmanship Mr. Walden, on the "E" concept!! :cool:
     
  6. Bearhawke

    Bearhawke Things happen for a reason

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    In a way: a 4 door 'E' body was built; namely the 1971-78 B body Coronet/Monaco/Fury, it was closely related to the 1970-74 Barracuda/Challenger.
     
    AHBGuru likes this.
  7. DC-93

    DC-93 Active Member

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    Interesting observation!
     
  8. Joe Dart

    Joe Dart Member

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    So far there is nothing to prove a 4-door version of a Barracuda, Challenger, or Charger has ever existed in any form. Not even a sketch or a memo. To think a major corporation like Chrysler would build 4-door examples of its existing two door sport coupe model is not only a stretch , its a fallacy.
     
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  9. David Walden

    David Walden New Member

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    We shall soon see!
     
  10. ImperialCrown

    Level III Supporter

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    A current automotive styling trend is to hide the rear doors/latch handles and appear to be a coupe. I agree that a Barracuda sedan may have been someone's idea of an April Fools joke on corporate? :D
    I remember when the pickup trucks began offering Club cabs and 4 full-size doors and the 'stretch' Mega-cabs. Now those are some very good ideas.
    There may have been a good 2-door market back in the 1970's, but the utility of a 4-door makes more sense these days.
     
  11. Joe Dart

    Joe Dart Member

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    Hopefully this will end all speculation and rumors. I reached out to Mr. Dirran Yazejian, a frequent contributor/writer on Allpar for his historical perspective.

    He's an author and contributor of many articles regarding the styling, design, and development of Chrysler vehicles, and was involved as a studio manager for Dodge B-Bodies and E-Bodies. A couple of Mr. Yazejian's stories from Allpar are listed below.

    Styling the Classic Dodge Chargers

    The hot E-body Plymouth Barracuda and Cuda: creation, power, and more

    I asked him If there any truth that Chrysler ever built a 1970 4-door Barracuda Prototype?

    He replied as follows:


    "I have never seen nor heard of a 4 door 1970 E bodied Barracuda on paper, clay, sketch or on a loading dock at Highland Park headquarters (if so, word of it would have spread like wild-fire) or any other form.

    I was a designer in the Dodge Exterior studio (from '62 to '72) during the time when it [E-body] was designed in '67. There never even was any talk of it. Back then, it would be absurd to even propose or sketch one.

    Pony car coupes and convertibles were hot; sedans cold; and Chrysler was late getting into it. In order to have a launch in time for the '70 model year, all parties agreed to pull-ahead the 1971 B body dash (firewall) and related components, already designed in engineering, which set the body width, cowl height, windshield shape, and belt height for the Barracuda and Challenger.

    Point is, there was barely enough time for a pair of coupes and convertibles much less a sedan that nobody wanted anyway." Diran Yazejian 4 / '16

     
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  12. David Walden

    David Walden New Member

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    I reached out to Larry Suanders (4/22/2016) and had a 30 minute telephone conversation. He stated that Chrysler made 4 Door vehicles on just about every 2 Door production vehicle they ever manufactured. He worked at the Proving Grounds on many of the specialty vehicles like the Dodge Daytona. It appears even the past Chrysler Employees can't agree on what went on with Concept Cars back in the day.
     
  13. Joe Dart

    Joe Dart Member

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    Could you be referring to Larry Sanderson who was a driver/mechanic at the Proving Grounds? Sanderson retired in 2009 after almost 34 years. He started in 1976, so there's no way he could've seen a 4-door Barracuda.

    If not, who is Larry Saunders and what did he do at Chrysler?
     
  14. David Walden

    David Walden New Member

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    His name is Larry Saunders. He worked at the Proving Grounds but started as a Transporter moving many of the Concept vehicles from one location to another in the late sixties. He said without a doubt that 4 Door cars were based on the regular production 2 Door cars and he even moved a few of them. On another forum, there were a few people who couldn't understand the difference between "Brandt" and "Brett" who worked at the Museum.

    Brett Rosenburg is the main guy for the Museum and has access to the pictures that I have been looking for. I'll be going to Detroit sometime soon to do a taped interview (audio & visual) with Larry Saunders and will also be going through the documents pertaining to this topic.
     
  15. Joe Dart

    Joe Dart Member

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    I'm not sure you have the right person....or if you've been getting some bad information?

    I did a quick Google search of Larry Saunders at Chrysler, and documented what I found. All the posts are from you

    So will the real Larry Saunders, ..... please stand up?

    1970 4 door cuda?!?!


    On a different thread you wrote:

    Roger Gibson called this morning with some additional news. He spoke with Larry Saunders who also agreed that Chrysler built 4 Door versions of every production vehicle that was originally manufactured as a 2 Door Car. Larry was the Chassis Manger at the Proving Grounds but said he started as a Transport Driver, moving the Concepts around at the Highland Facility. There was an area that had a large "Bulldozer" that would flatten and destroy the Concepts that were then sold as scrap. Larry said he remembered delivering a Valiant (for destruction) that was a 2 Door on one side and a 4 Door on the other.

    There had also been talk about Chrysler not being able to afford Concepts the way other Manufacturers (Ford & GM) did. Larry told about a K-Car that was sent to one of the Coach Builders to be "stretched" and given to Lee Iaccoca to drive in a Detroit Parade. Ford was the major Sponsor of the Parade and would not allow the Concept to be driven by Iaccoca at the event. Chrysler spent all the time, money and effort to construct the Concept Car and had it crushed because it could not be used for its intended purpose. Larry also told Roger that he is going to contact one of his good Friends who was a Corporate Boss for Chrysler. His name is Milton Woods. He has access to the old Chrysler Concept archives and is going to help investigate the subject matter.


    I had a 45 minuet conversation with Roger Gibson earlier today and he provided me with an update on his Friend who was the Transmission Director at the Chelsea Chrysler Proving Grounds. His Friend is SONNY BENSON and worked for Chrysler from 1965 into the mid eighties. Roger said he has known Sonny for many years and he has provided him with all sorts of information as it relates to Chrysler vehicles manufactured from the late Sixties into the early Seventies. Without any doubt whatsoever, Roger said that Sonny told him that Chrysler made 4 Door versions of EVERY vehicle that they manufactured. He said they not only made a Concept 4 Door Barracuda but they also made 4 Door Challengers and 4 Door Chargers. I asked Roger if we was sure about the information he had received from Sonny. Roger said they recently talked about the subject matter and that Sonny was 100% POSITIVE about his recollection of the 4 Door Cars.

    Roger also knows a gentleman named LARRY SAUNDERS who worked at the same Proving Grounds with Sonny and is contacting him to see if he has any information on the topic. Larry was the Chassis Manager and in charge of setting up Cars like the 1969 Dodge Daytona. Roger has a Directory of the various Directors/Managers from that time period that he obtained from Sonny and he is going to start calling people to gather whatever information is out there on these Concept Cars. Sonny told Roger that the 4 Doors were done by the Coach Builders commissioned by Chrysler to make their "stretched" Concept vehicles.

    Roger will be stopping by my Office later this week or early next week. He will hopefully have more information and I will post it as soon as it becomes available. Anyone who knows Roger is more than welcome to call him and ask about this information. It appears that more than "one person" does in fact remember the 4 Door Concept Cars that some have denied ever existed. Stay tuned.............
     
    #15 Joe Dart, Apr 24, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2016
  16. David Walden

    David Walden New Member

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    You may not be sure but I am. When he called me back last week and left a message, he seemed to know his name.
     
  17. Bearhawke

    Bearhawke Things happen for a reason

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    [​IMG]

    Now; this is 'scary'...........a ca. 1977 Australian Ford Falcon four door that looks a tad like a more door Barracuda.
     
  18. DC-93

    DC-93 Active Member

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    So Diran, a guy that worked in the Design Studio, gets no respect, but a guy way over at the P.G. does? Diran worked where the car would have been made.

    In any event - Dave - I suggest a $1000. reward for a vintage photo showing a 4 dr. Barracuda. THAT would certainly motivate folks to comb their file cabinets for authentication! Maybe $500. for a 4 door Charger? :cool:
     
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  19. David Walden

    David Walden New Member

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    I'm going to Detroit to sift through the archives myself. During our telephone conversation, Larry told me that many of the Concepts were farmed out to specialty Coachwork Companies that built these "stretched" vehicles off site. It's a possibility that Employees who worked in the Chrysler Design Studios did not see this vehicle because it wasn't built at a Chrysler Facility.
     
  20. Joe Dart

    Joe Dart Member

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    Tell Larry to spill da beans!
     
    #20 Joe Dart, Apr 27, 2016
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2016
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