If you’re looking for a high-performance, attention-grabbing ride with the horsepower and torque to really get you moving down the road or track, then the muscle cars category is perfect for you. Yet the world of muscle cars is an interesting place. With a broad and diverse definition, it can be hard to nail down what really qualifies as one.
Now that’s a tricky question! The iconic muscle cars include the Pontiac GTO “Judge” and the Oldsmobile 442, to name a few. The Chevrolet Chevelle and Dodge Charger are also considered muscles and the category typically includes those classics that give off that aggressive, yet sleek vibe. If these American classics are muscles, then where do pony cars fit in? What’s the difference between a pony car and a muscle car? Pony cars are a highly stylized, affordable coupe with the look and feel of a muscle car, yet usually containing a smaller engine.
Whether you’re considering a muscle car as an investment or just for a ton of fun, it’s important to know that what you’re getting is the real deal. That discernment comes with knowledge about muscle car information in general. So let’s explore a little history!
Probably the most general definition says that a muscle car is any vehicle with an upgraded interior, fancy paint scheme, and improved wheels but most notably will also have a large displacement engine and transmission pairing, as well as the suspension and steering components to handle the power and speed the vehicle will produce. But that’s a pretty broad range and doesn’t satisfy most muscle car enthusiasts.
It all comes down to reviewing a little history of muscle cars. These cars are not just the result of American grease monkeys in the 60s who were looking for a way to get their kicks. Muscle cars grew out of an era when people wanted something more from their car than what they could find in any factory-produced model on the lot. They soon found that it was possible by dropping big block V8 engines into smaller and sleeker sports model chassis, thus modifying these cars after-market for higher speed and performance. And so began the muscle car golden age–all thanks to those hot rodders back then putting in the elbow grease and building a muscle car!
At the time, only the Oldsmobile’s Rocket 88 had this option at production but the trend eventually caught fire with Chrysler releasing its HEMI and Chevy introducing V8 power, both reaching levels never before seen in these types of vehicles. Soon, the best selling muscle cars had certain elements in common, thus creating the broad definition of a muscle car:
The most popular muscle cars in the United States have withstood the test of time, proving to be the best selling muscle cars for years. As the epitome of power, with light chassis’ and as much kick from the ponies under the hood as possible, the most muscular of classic cars with the maximum horsepower and performance take the title. Again, almost all the lists of best muscle cars to buy or most popular muscle cars in the US, will vary greatly, based upon the author of the list. We get impassioned about our cars and everyone has a slightly different take on what makes the top tier of muscle cars. Here are a few beauties to whet your whistle!
Want to get your own piece of Americana in the form of a seriously fierce and powerful road warrior? We get it. One of the best places to buy a muscle car, hands down, is The Vault. We trade, consign, sell, and buy specialty cars of all kinds, including the all-American muscle cars that we all know and love. Call The Vault or visit our muscle car page today to get your very own prized whip…there’s nothing better than burning rubber as you drive off into the sunset!