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The John Wick franchise features some of the most action-packed movies of the last decade, and even though they don’t revolve around cars, John drives an awesome muscle car from the 60s that’s pretty iconic – a 1969 Ford Mustang Boss 429. Also regarded as one of the best Mustangs ever manufactured, it’s safe to say that John Wick apparently knows a thing or two about muscle cars.
As a whole, the late sixties were some of the most important years in muscle car history, with several extremely enticing models from multiple American manufacturers that shook the industry in one way or another.
So, with the Ford Mustang Boss 429 as the perfect example, it’s worth looking back at some of the most badass pony cars to emerge in the 60s. Here are 10 that even John Wick himself would be proud of.
10 1969 Ford Mustang Boss 429
What better way to start off than with John Wick’s car itself? The 1969 Ford Mustang Boss 429 is as badass as muscle cars can get, and as we already mentioned, it’s one of the most iconic Stang’s in the model’s history. Like its name suggests, the Mustang Boss 429 sports a new-at-the-time 429 cubic-inch V8 that Ford built with NASCAR competition use in mind. It generates 375 horsepower along with 490 pound-feet of torque, though it’s commonly believed that Ford was conservative with its rating. A few mods are enough to boost the Mustang Boss 429’s performance significantly, and when you factor in its devilishly good looks, it becomes clear why it’s an icon.
9 1968 Dodge Charger R/T
The second-generation Dodge Charger R/T is an absolute beast of a machine when equipped with one of the most important engines in muscle car history – the Hemi 426 V8. Capable of generating 425 horsepower, the 1968 Charger can accelerate from 0-60 mph in just 4.8 seconds, while also being able to achieve the standing quarter mile in 13.5 seconds.
8 1969 Chevrolet Camaro ZL1
In 1969, Chevy offered the ZL1 as an optional engine for the Camaro, and at a price of $4.160 – which was more expensive than the car itself, it was one hell of a mill. Intended specifically for drag racing, the ZL1 engine came in the form of a 7.0-liter V8 capable of producing 430 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque. This allowed the Camaro to blast from 0-60 mph in 5.3 seconds and complete the quarter mile in just over 13 seconds.
7 1968 Plymouth Road Runner Hemi
The ‘Hemi’ part of its name says more about the 1968 Plymouth Road Runner than we can. In of itself, the Road Runner has all the ingredients to make a perfect muscle car – which is why it’s comfortably one of Plymouth’s best models ever, but John Wick would probably only go for a Road Runner equipped with the range-topping 425-hp Hemi 426 V8.
6 1967 Pontiac GTO
With its split grill and gorgeous shape, the Pontiac GTO arguably has one of the best muscle car designs from the 60s, but that wasn’t its only forte. Standard power was already great, courtesy of a 325-hp 6.4-liter V8, but buyers could opt for a high-output 6.6-liter variant with a maximum output of 360 horsepower. The latter configuration allows the 1967 Pontiac GTO to accelerate from 0-60 mph in just over 5 seconds.
5 1970 Plymouth Superbird
Built solely in 1970, the Plymouth Superbird is essentially a heavily modified Road Runner that served as the follow-up to the similar Dodge Daytona. Its range-topping engine option was the familiar Hemi 426 which enabled a 0-60 mph runtime of 5.5 seconds, but the Superbird’s reputation is almost completely owed to its styling. With a massive rear wing and a slick overall body, the 1970 Plymouth Superbird is one of the most distinctive muscle cars from the 60s.
4 1967 Chevrolet Corvette Sting Ray
The C2 second-generation Corvette – which saw the introduction of the Sting Ray name – might have sports car styling, but mechanically, it was a purebred muscle machine. When paired with Chevy’s well-known 427 L88 big-block V8, the Corvette produced up to 430 horsepower, but as was common at the time, this rating was definitely downplayed, and unofficial tests suggest that the L88 Corvette was actually capable of producing something around 560 horsepower.
3 1968 Pontiac Firebird
Pontiac was late to the muscle party compared to other manufacturers, but its release of the Firebird was a great start, and things only got better with the model’s second-year run for 1968. With a total of 7 different engine options (yes, you read that correctly), the Firebird’s range-topping mill was a 400 cubic-inch four-barrel V8 with a maximum output of 340 horsepower and 430 pound-feet of torque.
2 1966 Oldsmobile Toronado
The Oldsmobile Toronado is another 60s muscle car that might not stand out in terms of performance, but definitely does when it comes to looks. From its front bumper design with air slits in front of the hood and chromed fins to its fastback shape which feeds into a one-piece tail, the Oldsmobile Toronado is simply timeless. It wasn’t a slouch by any means either, sporting a 425 V8 with a maximum output of 385 horsepower.
1 1969 Mercury Cougar XR-7
The Cougar is Mercury’s all-time bestseller with nearly 3 million units produced, and among them, the 1969 Cougar XR-7 was one of the best. Multiple engine choices were available, chief among them being a 428 Cobra Jet V8 with a 325 horsepower rating and enough kick to blast the Cougar XR-7 from 0-60 mph in under 6 seconds. Styling was also a huge part of the Cougar’s design, most notably because of its distinctive grille with hidden headlights and multiple integrated chrome strips.
Sources: Motortrend, Hemmings, Hagerty.