1971 Plymouth Cuda

Multiple records set at Mecum Indianapolis 2021
Friday, 14 May - Saturday, 22 May 2021
Not sold at a high bid of
$5,750,000 - $6,500,000
Est. Range
Lot Number
Older restoration
Mecum Auctions
Auction House
Chassis no. BS27R1B175215 Winchester gray with black Hemi graphics and black top over black vinyl. 426/425hp Hemi, 4-speed, 3.54 Sure Grip, power steering, power brakes, Power windows, Hurst pistol grip shifter, Polyglas GT tires, hood pins. Comes with original French title.

Evaluation: Sold new in France, where it surely stood out even in these muted colors (for a Mopar), then came back to the U.S. in 1993. One of 12 Hemi Cuda convertibles in 1971 and one of three with the 4-speed. Represented as matching numbers, which is rare for a Hemi. Clean underneath. Wheels look fresh. Factory gaps. Some small bubbles in the rear decals but nothing serious. Good paint with some light detail scratching visible in certain light. Older restored interior. One of the most desirable muscle cars in existence on its matching numbers drivetrain and condition alone, but the unique French history makes this Cuda even more of a standout.

Bottom Line: Although the Parnelli Jones Big Oly Bronco was the most anticipated offering at Indy 2021, this Hemi Cuda had the potential to be the most expensive. In terms of value, Hemi Cuda convertibles are well known as king of the muscle car hill and Mecum has sold several of them before. Indy was probably the perfect venue for this car and 2021 is a perfect time to sell, so it’s hard to imagine the consignor getting a much higher offer than the reported $4.8M high bid. Had that offer been taken, it would have been a record price.

by Andrew Newton
29 May 2021
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Condition definitions
Condition #1: Concours
Condition #1 vehicles are the best in the world. The visual image is of the best vehicle, in the right colors, driving onto the lawn at the finest concours. Perfectly clean, the vehicle has been groomed down to the tire treads. Painted and chromed surfaces are mirror-like. Dust and dirt are banned, and materials used are correct and superbly fitted. The one word description for #1 vehicles is “concours.“
Condition #2: Excellent
#2 vehicles could win a local or regional show. They can be former #1 vehicles that have been driven or have aged. Seasoned observers will have to look closely for flaws, but will be able to find some not seen by the general public. The paint, chrome, glass and finishes will all appear as excellent. No excessive smoke will be seen on startup, no unusual noises will emanate from the engine. The vehicle will drive as a new vehicle of its era would. The one word description for #2 vehicles is “excellent.“
Condition #3: Good
#3 vehicles could possess some, but not all of the issues of a #4 vehicle, but they will be balanced by other factors such as a fresh paint job or a new, correct interior where applicable. #3 vehicles drive and run well, but might have some incorrect parts. These vehicles are not used for daily transportation but are ready for a long tour without excuses, and the casual passerby will not find any visual flaws. “Good” is the one word description of a #3 vehicle.
Condition #4: Fair
#4 vehicles are daily drivers, with flaws visible to the naked eye. The chrome might have pitting or scratches, the windshield might be chipped. Paintwork is imperfect, and perhaps the body has a minor dent. Split seams or a cracked dash, where applicable, might be present. No major parts are missing, but the wheels could differ from the originals, or other non- stock additions might be present. A #4 vehicle can also be a deteriorated restoration. “Fair” is the one word that describes a #4 vehicle.
Condition #5: Poor
Running, but battered, incomplete, and perhaps rusty.
Condition #6: Parts car
Parts car.
Hagerty only assigns condition ratings to vehicles we can inspect in person or, for online listings, via high-quality photography.