The world knows it as the 1970 Plymouth Road Runner Superbird. But given its rarity and how quickly it became an anachronism, it might as well be a dodo bird.
With its bullet-shaped, bolted-on nose and sky-high wing in back, Superbird is one of the more unusual looking cars ever to go on sale. Now one is coming up for auction.
Despite its strange looks, it's valued by the auction house at $400,00 to $500,000. That's all for a car designed to conquer NASCAR with a design so outlandish that it was never expected to be sold in large numbers.
Only 2,000 of those were sold. Of those, only 58 had Hemi four-speeds, says RM Auctions and Southby's, which is putting one on the block Nov. 21 in New York.
RM says it was designed with one person in mind, NASCAR champion Richard Petty. Superbird was meant to lure him from Ford to Chrysler by taking advantage of 1969 NASCAR rules that required sales of 500 cars of a particular model a year to qualify. By 1971, NASCAR had changed the rules to limit horsepower to cars with big wings, dooming the Superbird.
This one has 16,360 original miles, RM says, and was restored in 2002. It originally sold in New Jersey for $5,503.