How Much Do You Know About Classic Muscle Cars?

John Miller

Image: schlol/E+/Getty Images

About This Quiz

Tired of hearing about electric cars and autonomous driving? Forget about it! 

We’re living in a golden age of muscle car performance. Mustangs, Camaros, Challengers and Chargers with 500+ horsepower V8s and a new-car warranty are yours for a monthly payment. Modern muscle  cars may be better than the classics in many ways, but the old ones possess a  striking coolness that makes them unforgettable. Plus, there were way more muscle car models to choose from in the '60s and early '70s.

From AMX to Z/28, the names sounded like poetry carved in asphalt: Boss 429, Chevelle SS, Hemi ’Cuda, GTO, 4-4-2, Road Runner, Super Bee and many others.

They prowled the streets like predators on the hunt, fueled by Sunoco 260 and the driver’s excitement. Sure, streaming tunes through your iPod today beats fiddling with a clunky old 8-track tape deck any day. But ’60s and ’70s muscle cars didn’t need high tech to become some of the most celebrated vehicles ever made.

You love these iconic high-octane coupes, but how much do you really know about them? Can you tell a GTO from a GTX? Do you know what turns an ordinary Mustang fastback into a Boss, or a Barracuda into a ’Cuda?

Crank up some Credence or Stones and bring your knowledge to the starting line. Rev it up, drop the clutch and take this quiz to match brain power to horsepower.

What is a "muscle car?"

A muscle car is a high-performance model, most often with a powerful V8 engine and known for very rapid acceleration. In the ‘60s and early ‘70s, American carmakers produced a wide array of muscle cars.

Classic American muscle cars were built mostly for _____.

Inspired by drag racing, the classic American muscle cars were built mainly for straight-line speed. As in that motorsport, the main measure of a muscle car’s performance is acceleration in the quarter-mile.

What sort of muscle car was the "The Dukes of Hazzard's" General Lee?

The backwoods boys of "The Dukes of Hazzard" TV show drove a 1969 Dodge Charger they called the General Lee. The orange muscle car had a Confederate flag painted on the roof.

The first muscle cars became popular in which decade?

American muscle cars were born in the ‘60s, a melding of trends in drag racing and a youth population boom. All the major carmakers fielded contenders.

The Plymouth Barracuda is often simply called what?

Plymouth introduced the sporty Barracuda in 1964 and in 1969 added a high-performance version called the ‘Cuda. Many people use the name for the whole series.

The Chevy Camaro was introduced as a direct competitor to which car?

Chevy’s Camaro debuted for 1967 and offered SS 350 and SS 396 models with muscle car performance.

What was the first Oldsmobile 4-4-2 named after?

Pronounced “Four-Four-Two,” Oldsmobile’s 4-4-2 muscle car kept its name even when equipped with an optional 3-speed automatic transmission or the Tri-Power intake using three two-barrel carburetors.

The Shelby is a variant of which popular muscle car?

Ex-racer Carroll Shelby turned the 1965-1966 Mustang into the high-performance GT350 sports car (and SCCA road-racing champ). The 1967 GT500 was more muscular, using a 428 cubic inch big block V8.

Which manufacturer offered a famous muscle car called the GTO?

Pontiac created the GTO in 1964 by installing a 389 cubic-inch V8 from its full-size models in the midsize Tempest. The GTO kicked off the whole muscle car category.

What does "GTO" stand for?

Pontiac took “GTO” from the 1963 Ferrari 250 GTO, a sports car homolgated (“omologato”), meaning approved, for a certain class of road racing.

Chevy called its muscle cars "SS." What did the SS stand for?

On some Chevys, Super Sport or SS was just a sporty trim package. But used on the Chevelle and Camaro, SS meant a comprehensive high-performance upgrade.

Which car maker produced the GTX?

The 1967 GTX was Plymouth’s response to the Pontiac GTO. It may have come three years late, but it outgunned the GTO with a fierce 375-horsepower 440 cubic-inch V8.

What was an obvious visual feature of the 1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird?

On the Plymouth Road Runner Superbird, a low, pointy nose and a high rear wing improved aerodynamics for NASCAR racing. The 425-horsepower Hemi V8 was the top engine option.

All first generation Camaros were built in the United States?

First-generation Camaros were also assembled in other countries, including Belgium, the Philippines, Peru, Switzerland and Venezuela. These were not sold in the U.S. and did not include the muscle car versions.

Which manufacturer introduced the Torino?

Ford introduced the Torino, named for Turin, Italy (“Torino” in Italian) in 1968. It was an upscale version of the redesigned Fairlane, and the optional 390 cubic-inch and 428 Cobra Jet V8s made Torino a muscle car.

Which muscle car has a "Boss" version?

In 1969, Ford introduced the Boss 302 Mustang, a high-performance version of its ponycar. The Boss 302 engine made 290 horsepower, and the car had a distinctive C-stripe.

The Chevy II is better known as the _____.

Nova was the upscale trim line of the Chevy II compact. Starting in 1969, all versions were called Nova. Muscle car variants offered high-performance small-block and big-block V8s.

What was one of the defining features of the Chevrolet Nova SS?

The 1968 Nova SS was a compact model weighing about 3,000 pounds. The standard 295-horsepower 350-cubic-inch V8 engine could be replaced with an optional 396 big-block V8.

The 1970 Chevrolet El Camino offered how much maximum horsepower?

Muscle car or muscle truck? Like the Chevelle it was based on, the El Camino pickup was offered as the SS 454 version, including (for 1970 only) the LS6 450-horsepower version of the 454-cubic-inch V8.

Which muscle car offered a "Cobra" variant?

Ford intermittently used the Cobra name on various Fairlane, Torino and Mustang models from the late 1960s until the early 2000s.

Which of the following cars came first?

The 1965 Ford Mustang is credited with starting the “ponycar” segment, but the 1964 Plymouth Barracuda beat it to market by a couple of weeks. Muscle car versions of both came later.

Why did the 1964 Dodge 426 Hemi Super Stock package have no sound dampening features?

The 1964 Dodge Super Stock lightweight drag racing package with the Hemi 426 V8 had no sound dampening, reducing weight for maximum speed in the quarter-mile.

The 1967 Camaro was offered in how many basic versions?

The 1967 Camaro was offered in four basic versions: Sport Coupe, Rally Sport (RS), SS and Z/28. The three upgrade models were actually options on the Camaro V8 Sport Coupe, and the RS package could also be combined with the SS or Z/28 packages.

What type of engine did the 1967 Camaro SS have?

The 1967 Camaro SS came with a 295-horsepower 350-cubic-inch small-block V8. The big-block 396 V8 was optional in 325-, 350- and 375-horsepower versions

Which brand produced the Super Bee?

In 1968, Dodge introduced the Super Bee as a bargain-priced muscle car. It was basically the same package as the Plymouth Road Runner, but in the Dodge Coronet body. A 335-horsepower 383-cubic-inch V8 was standard.

Why were some versions of the Super Bee called the "Six Pack?"

Introduced in 1969, the Six Pack option for the Dodge Super Bee used an intake manifold with three two-barrel carburetors (a “six pack”) on its 440-cubic-inch V8, which made 390 horsepower

The Plymouth Barracuda was almost named what?

Business types at Plymouth initially wanted to name their sporty Valiant-based 1964 fastback “Panda.” Somehow, we don’t think that would have had quite the same ring as “Barracuda.”

Which muscle car was offered in a special version called "The Judge"?

In 1969, inspired by the Plymouth Road Runner’s Looney Toons character image, Pontiac named a special version of the GTO “The Judge.” The name came from the “Here come da judge” skit on the popular “Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In” TV show.

The 1970 Chevelle SS 454 base model produced how much horsepower?

The 1970 Chevelle SS 454 came standard with a 360-horsepower 454 cubic-inch V8 known as the LS5. The optional LS6 version had 450 horsepower and became one of the most famous muscle car engines ever.

Which car maker produced the Demon?

A year after Plymouth introduced the 1970 Duster compact coupe, Dodge got its own version called the Demon. In both, a “340” performance package used a 275-horsepower 340 cubic-inch V8.

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