Best Of Detroit Muscle: This Race Between A ’69 COPO Camaro And A ’71 HEMI CUDA Is A Closely Fought Battle - story fullscreen Fullscreen

Best Of Detroit Muscle: This Race Between A ’69 COPO Camaro And A ’71 HEMI CUDA Is A Closely Fought Battle

One of them has the faster ET while the other was quicker in the traps

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We are back with yet another epic pure stock battle between two great nameplates of the muscle car world. This time around, we’ve got a 1969 COPO Camaro that took on a 1971 Plymouth Baracuda, and these two are pretty evenly matched between the power they produce and how much weight. Let’s look at the numbers

1971 Plymouth Baracuda

Best Of Detroit Muscle: This Race Between A '69 COPO Camaro And A '71 HEMI CUDA Is A Closely Fought Battle
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Our first contender for today is this 1971 Plymouth Baracuda. This black beauty is rocking the legendary 426ci HEMI under that hood that on paper puts out 425 horsepower and 490 pound-feet of torque. This particular car features a three-speed auto. 3.23 rear axle gears were standard, while you also had optional 3.55 and 4.10s. This bad boy weighs 3,721 lbs. Just 48 examples of the auto were produced.

1969 Chevrolet Camaro COPO

Best Of Detroit Muscle: This Race Between A '69 COPO Camaro And A '71 HEMI CUDA Is A Closely Fought Battle
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At the other end, we have this very orange COPO Camaro. Under the hood lies a ZL1 427ci V-8 that pumps out 430 horses and 450 pound-feet of torque. The Chevy also has a three-speed auto, along with 4.10 factory rear axle gears. Curb weight? About 3,300 lbs. Just 69 examples of the ZL1 Camaro were put together in 1969.

The Race


Having looked at the numbers, it all came down to how things panned out on the drag strip. From a dig, it was the CUDA that got off the line better, and right up to the midway point it looked like the HEMI was going to take this one, but the COPO wasn’t going to hang in the towel that easily. The Camaro just managed to catch the Baracuda by the line, but not by much.

While this was technically supposed to be the factory stock class, let’s just say that most cars are factory stock appearing.

Judging by the sub 10 second 1/4 mile times, it is safe to assume that both cars produce way more power as compared to stock.
Results
'69 COPO Camaro '71 CUDA
9.66 ET @ 142.95 mph 9.79 ET @ 143.04 mph

FInal Thoughts

Best Of Detroit Muscle: This Race Between A '69 COPO Camaro And A '71 HEMI CUDA Is A Closely Fought Battle
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This was one helluva muscle car showdown. I knew it was going to be close, never anticipated, it was going to be this hair splittingly close though. While the Camaro does have the better ET here, the HEMI has the faster trap speed, and remember that it was on 3.23 gears as opposed to the Camaro’s 4.10s. These cars were, and are, wild and it’s incredible what these folks manage to do on those tires.

Khris Bharath
Khris Bharath
Khris is a classic car aficionado and adores his Jags and Alfas, although he keeps tabs on everything from super exotics like an old EB 110 to the latest from Lucid. Formula One is very close to his heart, and he diligently makes time to tune in for the Grand Prix on Sundays. Khris also loves his road trips and he prefers stick shift over an Auto any day.  Read full bio
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