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Category Archives: Human Interest

Human interest stories of people telling their stories and experiences with cars

American Made Pride – We Can Get It Back

By Sam Locklin

Our Youth – A lost generation of muscle car enthusiasts?

American made muscle cars is something that cannot be taken away but it can be forgotten if we loose the interest of our youth. American made is something you don’t hear much about anymore. A true American success story involves the mystique of the muscle car era, which has achieved worldwide recognition.

The strong desire to own a car and get a drivers license as soon as you turn 16 no longer is the typical way of life. With our youth’s interest in cars diminishing we are at risk of loosing an entire generation of people to the love of cars.

There are a number of reasons why cars are not a high priority to many young people. To better understand why our youth seem to be out of touch with the past you can read more at SEMA News.

One thing that stood out in this article was a comment from Jim Liaw, president and co-founder of the Formula Drift championship series who shares his perspective. “I grew up as a car enthusiast,” he said. “I had friends around me working on cars. Are there fewer young people with driver’s licenses today? Yes. . . . which means every one of us needs to work a little bit harder to get to each one of them.”

What the Young Generation is Saying

Many young people have no idea what a true muscle car is. A young lady watched a video titled, Afternoon Drive – ‘Cuda Brothers Style. Thinking she would be impressed quickly changed when she asked, “Why are they so loud?” as she grimaced.

On another day, a 29 year old saw ‘Cuda Brothers business card. Many people are impressed but   all he could say is, “They are really big cars”. That may have been the first time he had ever seen a Plymouth Barracuda. You have to feel sorry for people who have never seen or experienced the raw power of a true muscle car.

All Is Not Lost

‘Cuda Brothers has attended several auto related events over the last year and have run across some pretty impressive young people that are into muscle cars. Through our Facebook page,  ‘Cuda Brothers has come across a few young people who have auto related Facebook pages. They are passionate about cars and are very active when it comes to adding content to their page. One girl started her Facebook page called KidsAndCars at 9 years old. She attends all kinds of events and works with her dad on cars. We were recently contacted by a 16 year old girl who owns a 2009 Challenger and a 1966 Chrysler Windsor. She grew up working with her dad in his garage and bought her first car at 12 years old. She is actively updating her Facebook page called Mopar Maezzi with many Mopar pictures.

 Drag Racing Expert – And He is Only 7

We ran across a 7 year old named Gabriel who knew more about muscle cars, alcohol dragsters, and auto restoration than most adults. It did not take long to realize that Gabriel would be a good interview. He is 100% committed to someday holding the world record on the drag strip as he discusses building his own race car. This interview was unrehearsed and you will be amazed at Gabriel’s knowledge.

Gabriel attends car shows and loves going to the Woodburn Drags. He has looked us up at almost every event we attend. During our last trip to the Mopar Nationals in Woodburn, Gabriel was excited to show us the Dodge Charger he has been restoring with his dad.


Mother and Son Mopar Enthusiasts

During a car show we came across a mother and son who each own their own Mopars. The son owns this 2010 Barracuda. It is a Challenger converted to a Barracuda using many of the Barracuda features he liked best from different years.

What ‘Cuda Brothers Is Doing

It is the Mission of the ‘Cuda Brothers to remind and educate the muscle car enthusiasts around the world that American muscle cars are like no other cars ever produced. Through our life experiences and continued involvement with the ultimate Muscle Car, the Plymouth ‘Cuda, we will motivate and entertain our youth and young at heart through video, restoration projects, and personal appearances at auto related events.

We look forward to keeping people informed and entertained along the way. If we motivate someone to take that classic muscle car out of the garage where it has been sitting for years, all that much better.

Shooting Video at Woodburn Drag Strip

Neck Breaking, Burning Rubber, Wheelie Popping  Drag Racing Video

Video work gets produced and published on our website and Facebook for what we expect many auto enthusiasts will enjoy.

 ‘Cuda Brothers Attends Several Northwest Car Shows

Seeing a Barracuda at a car show is a rare find. We try to get these two ‘Cudas to as many car shows as we can. It is a thrill when we hear a kid shout out, “Dad, it’s a ‘Cuda”.

 Rachel Loves the ‘Cudas

Daughter Rachel drove the two ‘Cudas on the same day and loved it. She will remember this day forever.

What Can You Do

We have come across many classic car owners who garage their cars that rarely if ever  see the light of day. There are many reasons this happens and I am equally as guilty. My blue 1972 ‘Cuda sat untouched in a garage for over 10 years. That will never happen again. Get out and drive that classic car, take your kid to a car show, and/or start working on that old car that has been sitting in the garage for 20 years. You will get so much satisfaction from all the compliments you get as people appreciate the efforts you put into your old car and it does not matter if it is a rust bucket or a show car quality car.

Enjoy the Ride,

‘Cuda Brothers

Preserving the Barracuda Legend

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2015 Barracuda – Learn From the Past

By Sam Locklin

It is now time to stand up and speak out about what it will take for Chrysler to build a new successful Barracuda that will not loose the mystique of the older ‘Cudas. If success to Chrysler means putting out a mass-produced car that meets the needs of everyone, name it something else and do not ruin the namesake and legend of the Barracuda.

Rumors about the release of the new Plymouth Barracuda are starting to surface again and it is important that Chrysler learns from the past and gets it right. Talk is that the new Barracuda is going to be released in 2015, look like half the new cars on the road today, and even have a 4-cylinder engine option. The good news is that a 6.2 liter supercharged Hemi, rated somewhere from 520-650 hp — remains (and has all but been confirmed), according to  Allpar.com . Anyone that has ever built a 650hp car knows that it will not be cheap. The pictures below show the proposed Barracuda and other cars that don’t look all that too far off from the Barracuda. The 2007 Hyundai Genesis Concept car looks the closest with the bulging rear fenders. Are these the cars you think of when you say American Muscle?

SRT Barracuda-artists-rendering

2013 Honda Civic EX-L Coupe

Kia Optima

Hyundai Genesis Concept 2007

Taking my ‘Cudas to car shows and seeing the look on the faces and reactions of the young and the old is a great feeling. Many people have told me over the years the ‘Cuda is the car they always dreamed of owning. I hear this all the time. The thing that made the Barracuda the ultimate and iconic muscle car of it era besides it’s relatively limited production from 1964 – 1974 was its clean lines and muscular stance that shouted “Don’t Mess With Me”.  Sit low in the seat, look over the bulging hood of a ‘Cuda, start the car, hear the distinct Mopar rumble, and hold on as you feel the power.

The 1970 Barracuda I owned back in the 70’s with a 318 V8 and two-barrel carburetor was exciting to drive even if it was not the more infamous Hemi. It was flat out quick. It was not as fast as the 340 ‘Cuda’s I own today but it held its own. I always liked muscle cars, but for some reason I loved that car and so did everyone that saw it. I knew at the time that I had something that was rare and special.

My 70 Barracuda-Purchased in 1975

It was a very sad day when someone hit my car and totaled it. The eyewitness driving behind them was a friend of theirs who told the police that I ran a stop sign two blocks from my home. They were supposedly going 30mph when they hit my car, spun it around in a complete circle, and the Barracuda ended up in someone’s yard. All that damage happened while they were going 30mph or so they say. I was a poor college student who could not afford full coverage insurance so my car got parted out. It took about a week to get over the shock and realize that I lost the car. I even saved a paint chip off of the car and still have it to this day. The memories of that car will remain with me forever.

I needed a car but finding another Barracuda, even in 1977 was no easy task. I bought a 1972 Challenger with a 383 Magnum. It was a pretty good car but for some reason did not seem to have the power of my old Barracuda. I kept the car for a month and traded it in for the 1972 Plymouth ‘Cuda with a 340 that I still own today. It took a lot of looking before I finally found my ‘Cuda. The people that owned ‘Cudas did not want to sell them.

My 72 ‘Cuda-Purchased in 1977

The Same 72 ‘Cuda restored in 1993

After graduating from college I was in the market to buy a new car and retire the ‘Cuda as my daily driver. Being raised on Chrysler products did not leave me much to choose from and the 4-cylinder Mitsubishi built Dodge Challenger was about my only affordable choice. What was I thinking? The 1980 Challenger was my first brand new car or was it a 1979?  To this day, I barely remember the car. I totally forgot that it got wrecked until I ran across some old pictures. What I do remember is an OK car but pretty boring to drive. Not that a car has to be a head turner, but darn it, we are are talking about a Challenger. Plymouth’s version was a Sapporo and I am so glad they did not name it a Barracuda.

1980 Dodge Challenger-My first new car
What was I thinking

Wrecked the car a couple of years later

Then we come to today’s American Muscle cars. The Dodge Challenger of today is a huge improvement over the so-called Dodge Challenger of the 80’s. Chrysler must not be happy that it is not selling as many of the Challengers as Chevrolet’s Camaro and Ford’s Mustang. The Challenger is bigger and heavier than the Challenger of the 70’s and the cost is on the high end of today’s muscle cars which may have something to do with sales. Mustang did something right because the cars have stayed as close as possible to its origin.  When you see a Mustang, there is no mistaking it for any other car out there. That is the direction Chrysler needs to take. Keep the unique Barracuda styling while giving it a modern look. Make it fast with its own distinct sound and make it a car that its owners are proud to own. Make it a car they will never forget.

Come on Chrysler. Do the right thing, even if it means going back to the drawing board. You waited this long. We have received much feedback from fellow Barracuda enthusiasts on Facebook and without fail, they all agree with my assessment.  If you can’t or won’t take my advice then call it a Sapporo and allow the Plymouth Barracuda to remain the iconic muscle car of all time.

Enjoy the Ride,

’Cuda Brothers – Preserving the Barracuda Legend

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My Two ‘Cudas
Come on Chrysler – Do the right thing and maybe I will own 3 – ‘Cuda Brother Sam

Gabriel Interview – Future Hall of Fame Drag Racer

By Sam Locklin

Watch an entertaining video of one smart 7 year old that knows more about muscle cars than most adults at: http://vimeo.com/43791816

‘Cuda Brothers met Gabriel at the Cruizen’ Sherwood car show on June 9th, 2012.  It did not take long to realize that Gabriel’s passion for race cars and Mopars in particular make him one of the most knowledgeable auto enthusiast 7 year olds in the country.  ’Cuda Brother Dan interviewed this very young expert as he discussed drag racing and his memories and experiences at the Woodburn drag strip. He knew all about how the Tiki Warrior funny car ran over 200 mph in the quarter mile, almost breaking a world record.  He also talked about the Mopar Nationals, alcohol race cars, his dad’s Dodge Charger, Cuda’s and Barracudas.  This interview was totally unscripted, unrehearsed, and entirely his own words.

Enjoy the Ride

‘Cuda Brothers – Preserving the Barracuda Legend