This is a real 1968 BO29 Super Stock Barracuda. Along with the famed 1968 LO23 Super Stock Dart, these 2 cars re-shaped drag racing. I found this car in Canada and I was thrilled to get it. There were only 70 made and they were sold to drag racers. They were not street-legal. It was so radical, that I couldn’t even drive the car other than to move it around my garage (although I did take it to the local airport and played with it one day). As the magazine articles at the end show, this car was owned and raced by “Billy the Kid Stepp”.
For many years, dropping the Hemi engine into the Barracuda was a popular way to gain dominance at the dragstrip. Chrysler, with the help of Hurst, sought to duplicate the efforts from the factory. Chrysler would build the Barracudas and ship them to Hurst for the final conversion.
The hood and fenders were fiberglass. The front bumper and doors were light-gauge steel. There was a Bostrom driver seat installed in the gutted interior. Getting the 426 Hemi into the engine bay took some modifications. The battery was moved to the truck. Both the right shock tower and master cylinder had to be moved. Custom headers, shift linkages for the four-speeds, and special rear-axle assemblies from Hurst.
The cars came with street tires and a shallow oil pan off the trailer. Install slicks, a deeper oil pan, camshaft and valvetrain and you were into the 10s… easy. The S/S Hemi Barracudas were delivered in early May so they would be ready to qualify for the NHRA Spring Nationals.
R.D. McLaughlin, Chrysler-Plymouth general sales manager, outlined for dealers and racers what they could order. Here is the letter:
February 20, 1968
To: All Plymouth Dealers
Subject: 1968 Hemi Barracuda Super Stock
The Chrysler-Plymouth Division offers for the 1968 models a 426 Hemi-Powered Barracuda Fastback for use in supervised acceleration trials. These cars will weigh approximately 3,000 pounds and have been designed to meet the 1968 specifications of the major sanctioning drag strip organizations.
The Hemi-Powered Barracudas will be available through production in limited quantities in March. To order this vehicle, use the Barracuda Order Form and specify Body Code BO29 and Transmission Code, either 4 Speed Manual, Code 393, or Automatic, Code 395. No other specifications are necessary.
Description of Components
For Manual Transmission Only
For Automatic Transmission Only
The following items are deleted on this body type:
Heater, Body Sealer and Sound Deadeners, Silence Pads, Outside Mirrors, Right Side Seat Belt and Body Color Paint.
NO OPTIONAL EQUIPMENT OF ANY KIND CAN BE ORDERED
The policy of Chrysler Corporation is one of continual improvement in design and manufacture, wherever possible, to insure a still finer car. Hence, specifications, equipment and prices are subject to change without notice.
These vehicles are intended to use in supervised acceleration trials and other competitive events, therefore, they will be sold without warrant. Special stickers will be provided for plant installation (attached to left “A” post) which will read as follows: “This vehicle was not manufactured for use on public streets, roads or highways and does not conform to Motor Vehicle Safety Standards.
All customer orders must be accompanied by a signed disclaimer (sample attached) indicating that the purchaser understands that this vehicle is sold without warranty and does not conform to Federal Vehicle Safety Standards.
Any prospective customer who desires to purchase one of these maximum performance vehicles should be made aware of the following characteristics which make them unsuitable for general use.
A high idle speed is required to insure adequate lubrication, minimize roughness, and to keep the engine from stalling.
The modified intake manifold causes a rich surging condition, misfiring and unstable engine operation in cold weather, which makes ordinary street driving extremely difficult and it is not recommended for this use.
Higher than normal oil consumption will be encountered because of increased lubrication to the valve train and cylinder walls.
The carburetors are calibrated for maximum power and a high numerical axle ration is used for acceleration. As a result, the gas mileage is considerably less than for a conventional car.
Engine noise would be objectionable due to increased piston clearance and mechanical valve tappet clearance.
The ignition system is designed for optimum engine output and must be kept in top condition. This makes it necessary to inspect, adjust and replace the spark plugs and ignition points more frequently than would be necessary on a standard engine.