1969 Mod Top Barracuda

This car is still one of my favorite everyday drivers.  It’s a great driver, with a 340 4-barrel, automatic transmission and Air Conditioning.  I restored it back to it’s original condition.  Fortunately, there was enough NOS (New Old Stock) material to make me a matching tie.

I call it my “Holy S###” car, because that’s what everyone says when they see it.  Those in the know say it because it’s so rare.  Those that don’t know what it is say it because they think it’s the ugliest car they ever saw.  Either way, the reaction is the same.  Believe it or not, this was actually a factory ordered option on the car in 1969.

Back around 1966, Sixties counter-culture iconography was being injected into the everyday, infusing society with a collision of postmodern DayGlo colors, earth tones and psychedelically styled designs. And flowers–lots and lots of flowers. Most of these floral designs may have been a bit too loud on a Formica counter or trusty old Thermos, yet one particular print looked right at home on the top of a car. Counterculture became mainstream.

Like most cars of the day, the Barracuda was available with standard solid-colored vinyl top options, but the flower-power Mod Top was something more, at least in the “wow” department. Sure, it was little more than a marketing ploy, but at least the Chrysler folks had a sense of humor, and the guts to do something completely different.

The supplier chosen for this particular yellow Mod Top flower madness was the Stauffer Plastics Division, which was in the business of making shower curtains and tablecloths. The yellow floral pattern was certainly different, and thought to have been attractive enough to the counterculture advocates of the day that sales of the car would increase greatly. They didn’t, as not that many Mod Top Barracudas were ever ordered.

Bill Sefton
Bill Sefton
Bill Sefton, Chicago native, and passionate car collector. Currently retired, but still involved in the car collection community. Reach out, happy to connect!