Saturday morning cartoons during the 1980s and ’90s in America were never complete without Looney Tunes, and no Looney Tunes conversation could ever omit mention of Wile E. Coyote and the roadrunner.
Surprisingly, the rivalry between those two characters started more than 70 years ago in 1948, when animation director Chuck Jones and writer Michael Maltese pieced together the first of what ended up being more than 50 episodes featuring the duo.
Even the automotive community embraced those iconic cartoon characters, and Plymouth went so far as to pay Warner Brothers $50,000 for the rights to use the likeness and name of the roadrunner in the late 1960s on its mid-size performance car.
Plymouth reportedly paid an additional $10,000 in development costs to create a “beep-beep” horn that mimicked the cartoon roadrunner’s famous greeting.
It seemed fitting that Plymouth would pick such a name for its performance car, as the roadrunner branding conveyed a sense of speed and agility. When the Road Runner launched for the 1968 model year, it was offered initially as a two-door-post body style, but a hardtop followed shortly thereafter.
For 1969, there were changes to the grille and taillights, and the first appearance of the now-famous cartoon logos fitted to the body. Three available engines ranged in size from a 383cid V8 to a 440cid V8, as well as the 426 Hemi, with both automatic and manual transmissions available.
The Road Runner featured in this listing has some custom equipment, including a raised roadrunner in the rear back panel and emblems on the seats. There is no indication in the ad as to which engine is under its hood.
The seller indicates that the vehicle was last sold two years ago from a dealership fittingly named Coyote Classics.
The Road Runner has since undergone a number of upgrades including installation of a performance Flowmaster exhaust system, a custom stereo, and a disc brake conversion.
“I promise the car is the real deal,” the seller states. “The car has been meticulously cared for.”
At $30,000 or best offer, the car will probably speed away as quickly as the roadrunner himself.
To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.