1971 Buick GS Stage 1 Vs 1971 Plymouth ‘Cuda Drag Race: Video6
Let’s go racing! Our featured race today pits a 1971 Buick GS Stage 1 against a 1971 Plymouth ‘Cuda. This is a Pure Stock Muscle Car or Factory Appearing Stock Tire race. Let’s take a look at the competitor’s stats and features.
1971 Buick GS Stage 1
First up is the 1971 Buick GS Stage 1. It is equipped with the legendary 455 cubic-inch V8 producing 345 horsepower and 460 pound-feet of torque. Compression was reduced for the 1971 model year, dropping to 8.5:1. A Turbo Hydramatic three-speed automatic transmission moved power to the 3.73 rear gears. The Buick GS tipped the scales at 3,788 pounds with driver.
1971 Plymouth ‘Cuda
The Plymouth ‘Cuda is equipped with the potent 440 V8. As Plymouth dragged their feet in regard to emissions compliance, the ’71 Cuda still had 10.3:1 compression, helping the 440 produce 385 horsepower and 490 pound-feet of torque. Backing the 440 was a TorqueFlite three-speed automatic and a set of 4.10 rear gears. The Plymouth tips the scales at 3,832 pounds with driver.
Now that we have both cars bona fides, let’s see how things shook out. In the first race, the Buick GS laid down a 12.85-second pass at 114.89 miles per hour. The GS clearly had issues with traction, and was slow out of the gate. It was gaining on the ‘Cuda, but couldn’t match the Plymouth’s 12.74 elapsed time at 109.42 miles per hour. The win goes to the ‘Cuda.
On the second pass, the Buick GS was still plagued with getting the power to the ground without igniting the tires, but still managed an impressive 12.45 at 115.26. The ‘Cuda redlighted, so even though it passed the finish line first, the GS got the nod. Winner: Buick GS.
On the third pass, the Buick GS finally put it all together. It leaped ahead from the starting line, and walked the ‘Cuda all the way down the track. Despite its best efforts, it never caught up. The GS made its fastest pass at 12.18 seconds and 115.48 miles per hour versus 12.85 seconds at 108.99 miles per hour for the Plymouth. The win and the best-two-out-of-three overall win goes to the Buick GS.
You can see all of the action on this video from Cars and Zebras.
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Wow how impressive is that Buick! It has 8.5 compression, higher gear ratio and probably a higher drag coefficient. The curb weights are about equal and the GS has a real back seat. On paper I would have given this match to the Cuda hands down. In my opinion the cars seem to be almost equal, the difference being driver skill.
That shows why a 1970 Stage 1 will clean a hemi’s clock.
Uh, the 440 is not a Hemi. The 426 is the Hemi.
Uh, yeah. And this is a 1971 low compression Stage 1 GS. The 1970 high compression Stage 1 GS is the Hemi eater. Oh, there was also a 426 wedge, made earlier, that was not a hemi. Any questions?
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Thank you so much! 🙂
Stock 1971 440 magnum motor with single 4 barrel carb had 9.7 to 1 compression was 370 horse power and 480 torque.
Of course, who is still running stock parts in their engines 50 years later!?