Plymouth Cuda 2071 Revives Icon as Carbon-Rebodied Dodge Challenger Hellcat for SEMA 2022

Even with Dodge reviving iconic names from Mopar’s past for 2023 as part of its Last Call campaign signaling the end of the line for the current generation of HEMI-powered muscle cars, the Barracuda is nowhere in sight. However, some speculate that this may be the badge chosen for the seventh and final model, which missed the 2022 SEMA due to engines blowing during dyno testing. However, a New York-based shop called Six Twelve Auto Works had a better idea, building a modern-day “2071” Cuda based on the Dodge Challenger Hellcat Redeye.

Everybody and their dog have heard of restomods, but, as electrification takes over, more and more muscle car fans seem to enjoy builds done the other way around: retromods. We’ve already shown you carbon-bodied creations like the ExoMod C68, a Challenger Hellcat dressed up as a 1968 Charger, as well as Trans Am Worldwide’s 70/SS, a sixth-gen Camaro cosplaying as a modern-day Chevelle.

Both of those machines are present at SEMA 2022 and now we can add the also carbon-bodied Cuda 2071 to the list. And, at least to these eyes, this is the prettiest of the lot.

Six Twelve Auto Works already had experience with rebodying modern Challengers in carbon and showcasing them at SEMA. That’s because the company does a ’69 Charger that way, having built nine units to date.

The Cuda (the sportier version of the Gen III Barracuda) may the most treasured classic Mopar out there

Naturally, a model like the Cuda, which many consider to be the most iconic in Mopar history, demanded a fresh start. So, earlier this year, the specialist stripped a brand new Challenger Hellcat Redeye of its body panels—they even cut off the roof—and built a mockup metal reimagined 1971 Cuda body.

That was used to create a temporary fiberglass mold, which then served as the base for a carbon plug. The latter eventually served for building a carbon epoxy mold that the company could place in an autoclave and build the carbon panels that make up the vehicle’s new body. And, as explained in the YouTube clip below, the muscle car is now longer, lower and has a slightly different greenhouse shape.

The company stresses out that this isn’t a replica of the original E-Body’s second model year. Instead, the creation makes for a modern-day Cuda and it’s not difficult to see how they got from 1971 to 2071 for the name.

The Challenger Hellcat headlights stayed (just like on this 1968 Charger Hellcat restomod), but the iconic Cuda grille is a multi-piece aluminum element (future units may get a carbon piece instead). The grille stands out from a mile away, as you’d expect from a reinvented version of a muscle car that almost broke into seven-figure territory during a Barrett-Jackson auction held back in January. The posterior has also been redesigned, with this sporting just the kind of classic Cuda taillights you’d expect.

Most of the body is finished in a vivid shade of purple (stronger than the factory Plum Crazy hue of the classic Plymouth), but there are large exposed carbon areas for our viewing pleasure.

Interior and performance additions

As for the interior, the premium leather package of the donor car means the upper half of the cabin still uses the finish. However, the plastic in the lower area had been covered in suede, while custom elements (e.g. door speaker covers) are present. Oh, and did we mention the also-suede-finished starlight headliner has a custom Hellcat logo that lights up in different colors than the rest of the “sky”?

On the tech front, the Hellcat Redeye’s supercharged 6.2L HEMI already makes 797 hp from the factory, but this example features a custom exhaust. Then we have the Hotchkiss front and rear lowering springs and sway bars—this is the booth accomodating the vehicle.

If the specialist stuck to the original plan detailed in the YouTube clips documenting the build, the rear axle now features 12-inch-wide rims shod in 335-section tires, so this retromod can properly put all its modern power down. And, to get back to that eye candy part, you can check out the finished build at SEMA 2022 in the Instagram video below (lens tip to americanmusclehd).



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