Most people will agree that muscle cars are the best things that American automotive industry has bestowed upon us, and they will likely be right. Even modern muscle cars are some of the most prolific nameplates available, and they often grace the covers of world’s best known auto mags. However, not every muscle car has been given the praise it deserved. This is one of the reasons there’s so few of them now. Another reason is their incompatibility with the modern, more pragmatic era in terms of efficiency. But, let’s get back to the fact that many muscle cars throughout history haven’t exactly been appreciated during their time.
There were always many reasons why a single muscle has failed to become an icon. By looking at the picture as a whole, we can easily find out a different perspective. Back in sixties, early seventies and even eighties, there were simply way too many V8-powered cars ranging from ponies to full-size limos. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that some of them were simply below par in terms of overall quality. These cars don’t interest us here. We’re searching for those quality ones which have remained underrated and under the radar throughout their careers, and still are. Neither of the following cars have actually been engulfed by oblivion, but you’ll agree that they rarely cross your mind and even more rarely appear on any type of modern media platforms.
AMC Gremlin Randall 401-XR
You might call them ugly, but they were like that on purpose. After all, just take a look at their name. One thing you can’t call them, however – slow. At least Randall 401-XR models weren’t. 20 or so of these cars came out of Mesa, AZ Randall dealership during the course of three aforementioned years. Apart from Randall, rest of the nomenclature strategy takes its powertrain into consideration, while XR stands for Gremlin X and Randall respectively. Thanks to its 401 ci 6.6L V8, 401-XR was able to achieve 106 mph in 13.9 seconds, in quarter mile drag. There was some beauty to them, after all.