1970 Plymouth ‘Cuda AAR: Introduction to an Iconic Muscle Car

The 1970 Plymouth ‘Cuda AAR is an iconic muscle car that holds a special place in automotive history. This article explores the significance of this vehicle and its connection to the Trans Am Road racing series. We delve into the specifications, features, and overall appeal of the ’70 ‘Cuda AAR, highlighting why it stands out among other muscle cars of its time.

The Trans Am Road Racing Series and its Influence

The Trans Am Road Racing Series emerged as a prominent motorsport competition in the late 1960s. It gained substantial popularity, leading automakers to develop special versions of their production cars to participate in the races. While drag racing saw factory-built lightweight cars for racers, Trans Am took it a step further by mandating the production of street-legal versions for the public.

Unlike NASCAR stock car rules, which initially required race cars to be made from stock parts, Trans Am regulations demanded a certain number of similar cars be made available to the public. This requirement paved the way for the creation of extraordinary vehicles like the 1970 Plymouth ‘Cuda AAR.

AAR Designation and its Racing Pedigree

The ‘Cuda AAR gets its name from the All American Racers (AAR) team, which was closely associated with Dan Gurney. The AAR team participated in the Trans Am racing series and used a ‘Cuda as their race car. Taking advantage of the team’s popularity, Plymouth decided to designate the street version of the car as the AAR. Although the race cars themselves were not street-legal, the production AAR ‘Cudas were equipped with numerous performance-enhancing features.

Plymouth capitalized on the success and recognition of the AAR team by offering a street-legal version of the ‘Cuda called the AAR. These production AAR ‘Cudas were designed to reflect the high-performance nature of their racing counterparts. They featured various enhancements to improve their on-road performance, such as a functional twin-scoop hood, side-exit exhausts, heavy-duty suspension components, and special graphics and badging. The AAR ‘Cudas became popular among car enthusiasts who wanted to own a piece of the racing heritage associated with the All American Racers team, while still being able to legally drive their cars on public roads.

The Power and Performance of the ’70 ‘Cuda AAR

The ’70 ‘Cuda AAR is powered by a formidable 340 cubic-inch V8 engine, equipped with a six-barrel induction system. In order to comply with the Trans Am racing rules, which restricted engine size to 305 cubic inches, Plymouth opted to use the 340 as a substitute. This powerful engine boasted an advertised output of 290 horsepower and 345 pound-feet of torque. With such impressive figures, the AAR ‘Cuda was capable of accelerating from 0 to 60 miles per hour in less than six seconds, showcasing its remarkable speed and performance.

The 340 V8 engine featured in the AAR ‘Cuda was a high-performance powerplant, specifically developed to deliver exhilarating driving experiences. Its six-barrel induction system, consisting of three two-barrel carburetors, allowed for improved air and fuel mixture, enhancing the engine’s power output. This setup contributed to the AAR ‘Cuda’s impressive acceleration and overall performance on the road. The combination of the potent 340 engine, sleek design, and performance-oriented features made the ‘Cuda AAR a highly desirable muscle car among enthusiasts, offering a thrilling driving experience that matched its aggressive appearance.

Styling and Design Elements

The ’70 ‘Cuda AAR is a visually striking car that emanates a distinct race car vibe. Its exterior is finished in a vibrant rally red color, which instantly grabs attention. Adding to its boldness, a striking black strobe stripe runs along the length of the vehicle, accentuating its sleek profile. The AAR ‘Cuda’s aggressive styling is further enhanced by key design elements, such as a blacked-out fiberglass hood, side pipes that protrude from the sides, and a prominent rear wing.

These features not only contribute to the car’s aesthetic appeal but also serve functional purposes by improving aerodynamics and providing enhanced performance on the road. The AAR designation adds an extra layer of exclusivity to the already captivating design, making it a standout choice for muscle car enthusiasts.

The attention to detail continues inside the ‘Cuda AAR’s cabin. The interior features a driver-focused design with a blend of comfort and performance. Bucket seats upholstered in premium materials offer excellent support during spirited driving. The dashboard layout is purposeful, with clear instrumentation and easy access to essential controls. The AAR badging and other unique touches remind occupants that they are sitting in a special edition ‘Cuda. The combination of a well-crafted interior and the car’s eye-catching exterior design make the ’70 ‘Cuda AAR a truly captivating vehicle, both inside and out.

Interior Features and Functionality

The interior of the ‘Cuda AAR may be described as simple yet functional. It is designed to prioritize the driving experience while providing necessary comfort. The high-back bucket seats are well-contoured, offering ample support to the occupants during spirited driving. Positioned in the low center console is a short slapstick automatic shifter, allowing for quick and precise gear changes. This placement enhances the sporty feel of the interior and enables the driver to easily engage with the transmission.

To add a touch of sportiness and elegance, the ‘Cuda AAR features a wood steering wheel, which provides a comfortable grip and enhances the overall aesthetic appeal of the cabin. The woodgrain dash houses rally gauges, providing the driver with crucial information about the car’s performance. These gauges contribute to the vintage feel of the interior and align with the racing heritage associated with the AAR designation.

For entertainment purposes, the ‘Cuda AAR offers an optional AM 8-track music master radio. This audio system allows occupants to enjoy their favorite music through the iconic 8-track cassette format, adding to the nostalgic experience of owning and driving a classic muscle car. The interior of the ‘Cuda AAR combines functionality, comfort, and a touch of vintage charm, making it a delightful place to be while experiencing the exhilarating performance of this legendary vehicle.

The Allure of the ‘Cuda AAR’s Appearance

The ‘Cuda AAR is undeniably one of the most visually striking muscle cars ever produced. Its combination of bold colors, aggressive body lines, and race-inspired elements make it an instant head-turner. The vinyl top, available on some models, adds an extra touch of sophistication to the already impressive aesthetics.

Due to its limited production numbers and historical significance, the ’70 ‘Cuda AAR has become a highly sought-after collector’s item. Finding one in excellent condition is no easy task, and these cars command a premium in the market. Their rarity and desirability make them a prized possession among muscle car enthusiasts.


The 1970 Plymouth ‘Cuda AAR represents the pinnacle of muscle car excellence. With its striking appearance, powerful V8 engine, and connection to racing heritage, it continues to captivate enthusiasts and collectors alike. Owning a ‘Cuda AAR is like owning a piece of automotive history—a testament to the golden age of American muscle cars.

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