SNEHIT / Shutterstock.com
The classic American Muscle cars were 2 door mid size vehicles that were manufactured in the 1960’s and in the early 1970’s. Most of these cars were fitted with V8 engines and were mainly used in street races. These muscle cars were first produced in the United States, and are still popular for their high performance and feel of absolute power.
As hot rods started gaining popularity in drag races, it slowly paved the path for the concept of muscle cars. The 1949 Oldsmobile Rocket 88, a hot rod, was what many consider to be the first muscle car. Fitted with a V8 engine - these cars conquered the stock car racing of that period.
Some of the best early muscle cars were the 1961 Chevrolet Impala SS 409, 1962 Dodge Dart 413 and the 1963 Pontiac Super Duty 421. But the car that really provided a facelift to the muscle car market was the 1964 Pontiac Tempest GTO. This car barely managed to fit the rules of having large engines in midsize cars with a pricetag between $2800-$3200 - a fair price for that period. The popular Ford Mustang also shook the muscle car market because of its low price and its V8 engine. As the muscle car industry grew, almost all big car manufacturers rolled out at least one model of a muscle car from their assembly line. Detroit produced the magic that highlighted the muscle car trend, which was mostly seen as a preference shift from big cars to strong mid-sized ones, including the high powered pony cars.
The hot trend of owning muscle cars is currently elevated with the US Postal Service releasing the “Muscle Cars Forever” series of stamps on Feb 22nd, 2013. The Forever series features 5 popular muscle cars - the 1966 Pontiac GTO, the 1967 Shelby GT-500, the 1969 Dodge Charger Daytona, the 1970 Plymouth Hemi ‘Cuda and the 1970 Chevelle SS. Collectors can buy these stamps via the USPS website. The muscle car series is a sequel to the earlier postal releases of the “50’s Sporty Cars” (released in 2005) and the “50’s Fins and Chrome” (released in 2008).
Owning a muscle car not only feeds your passion for the fast, powerful, and trendy, but also provides for a valuable investment. The value of a classic muscle car largely depends on the model you own, the restoration work done on it and how well it has been maintained. While restoring a muscle car, it is always best to use original parts, as they increase the value of the car.
You can look for used muscle car parts in scrap yards or junk yards. However, finding original parts in such places is a gamble as you can never be sure of the quality. Popular muscle car magazines and muscle car clubs like http://www.musclecarclub.com often advertise about parts for all types of muscle cars. As many of these dealers are avid muscle car enthusiasts, the products they sell are usually of high quality. A host of various online dealer websites can also help you find what you need.
If you are looking for the best insurance options for your classic muscle car, your search is already over. Classic Auto Insurance provides the best tailored collector car insurance policies to protect your investments.
About the Author
Drew Yagodnik is Vice President of Classic Automobile Insurance Agency, Inc. Classic Automobile Insurance Agency has been protecting collector, classic and exotics since 1992.