Last week, MC&T reported on a 1971 Hemi Cuda that has the potential to become the most expensive Mopar muscle car ever sold. The 426 hemi V8-powered convertible is one of only 12 examples to leave that factory that year, and it’s backed by quite an interesting history. For those reasons, the car is expected to fetch around $6.5 million at Mecum’s Indy 2021 event this week. Now though, we want to share another Plymouth Barracuda with you that isn’t as rare, but is arguably just as unique. Meet the Cummins Cuda, a 4×4 dually muscle car based on a first-gen 12v Cummins truck chassis.
The Cummins ‘Cuda: A Dually Muscle Car
The idea of a 4×4 muscle car isn’t entirely new by any means. Folks have been sticking these sleek bodies onto pickup truck chassis for a long time here in the states, combining two of the nation’s favorite automotive segments. And while it may not be that uncommon to see a jacked up Ford Mustang or Chevrolet Camaro, it isn’t all that often that you see a 1971 Plymouth Barracuda meet this fate. This particular Cummins Cuda build was dreamed up by the team behind the Demolition Ranch YouTube channel, who of course are located in the Lone Star State. Most of the work has been done by the team at Muscle Rod Shop, who have also documented a lot of the progress on their respective channel.
There is a lot more to sticking a Plymouth Barracuda body onto a truck chassis than simply attaching some new body mounts. The truck’s frame had to be shortened by four feet, and was boxed for extra strength. The Cuda’s body panels have also been massaged in places to allow for a more cohesive look, including some unique dually-inspired rear fenders. The engine and the trans cross-members were also shifted back 7 inches on the chassis, which necessitated new floor pans and a new firewall setup. A lot of custom fabrication has been taking place to get this Cummins Cuda looking right, and so far we’re intrigued with what we are seeing.
12V Cummins Diesel Gets Upgraded
Of course no build like this would be complete without a hot rod engine. The team took the stock 12v Cummins motor to Holden Bros Diesel, who fit the motor with an upgraded camshaft, valve springs, and high-flow injectors. Combine that with the new compound twin turbo set-up, and the old motor should have no problem spinning the dual 39-inch mud terrain tires out back.
This build is still very much underway, but things are moving along. Some will certainly call the project blasphemous, but in reality it’s all just about good fun. Besides, everyone loves the Plymouth Barracuda, and everyone loves the old 12v Cummins diesel. Combining the two icons may be a bit strange, but we’re sure the end result will be something to behold regardless. You can catch up with the whole build process by clicking the link provided here if you are so inclined. We certainly will be keeping our eyes peeled for the finished Cummins Cuda, and can’t wait to see what it can do off-road.