Our featured car comes right out of the muscle car era of the late 1960’s…The 1969 Plymouth Road Runner Coupe. When you think about those popular Mopar automobiles of the late 1960’s, the 1969 Plymouth Road Runner is right there at the top. There are stories out there which claim that moonshiners preferred the Plymouth Road Runners since they could easily outrun the police and drive hard  without components failing.

The Muscle Car Era

69 road runner specifications
1969 Plymouth Road Runner Coupe

There are a few different opinions as to what years encompassed the muscle car era.

The Antique Automobile Club of America defines the Muscle Car Era as between 1961 and 1974. Some contend that the first real muscle car was the Pontiac GTO when it was brought out in 1964. Some may even point to the 1949 Oldsmobile Rocket 88 as being the first muscle car.

The Plymouth Road Runner

The Plymouth Road Runner is a mid-size car with a focus on performance built by Plymouth in the United States between 1968 and 1980. The 1969 Plymouth Road Runner, while considered stripped down, offered high performance with an affordable price. This was the Road Runner’s calling card.

1969 plymouth road runner photos

There were three Road Runner models available in 1969. These were the  hardtop, pillared coupe, and convertible. It was the Plymouth Road Runner Convertible that was largely responsible for Motor Trends to make it their car of the year for 1969.

1969 Plymouth Road Runner Specifications

There were three performance engine options available. These options included the standard 383 cubic inch V-8 and optional 426 cubic inch V-8 Hemi. During mid-year the new 440 cubic inch A12 Six Pack performance option became available.

Two transmission options backed up to each of three engine offerings including an A-727 Torqueflite 3-speed automatic and A-833 4-speed manual.

Dimensions included a 116.0 inch wheelbase, overall outside length 202.7 inches, width 76.4 inches, height 54.7 inches. 

Total Plymouth 1969 production was 751,100 vehicles. Out of that figure 84,400 were Road Runners. Of that figure 33,700 were two door coupes. Curb weight was 3,450 lbs.

The Plymouth Road Runner Coupe began at about $2,945, the Hardtop model about $3,075  and the Convertible model about $3,310. These new car prices reflected the light weight Road Runner’s no frills performance for buyers who didn’t want to pay for the extras found on other late 60’s muscle machines.

Related Auto Museum Online articles are found on the links below…

1970 Chevy Camaro RS/SS

1969 Ford Gran Torino

Reference material for this article includes…The Complete Book of Classic Dodge and Plymouth Muscle: Every Model from 1960 to 1974 by Mike Mueller…Muscle & Chrome : Classic American Cars by Publications International…1969 Plymouth Road Runner: Muscle Cars In Detail No. 5 by Wes Eisenschenk. 

1969 Plymouth Road Runner Collector Car

69 road runner specs

There is no doubt that as the 1960’s were nearing an end one of the more popular and reasonably priced muscle cars was the 426 cubic inch Hemi-powered Plymouth Road Runner.

The Road Runner held a special niche for Plymouth. The car was essentially a stripped down, lower priced street racer. When the Road Runner was officially introduced in 1968, many of the original pony cars had frills added to them which also boosted their price. The Plymouth Road Runner was a fine and powerful muscle car without these frills that the common man could own.

Current auction and sale prices for the 1969 Plymouth Road Runner fall in a wide range of $25,000 to over $100,000 depending on originality, degree and age of restoration, engine, matching numbers, mileage and general condition.

(Article and photos copyright Auto Museum Online)