VIDEO: Mike Musto Takes a Spin in a Resto-Mod ’72 Monaco

Everyone here at Timeless Muscle can trace their roots back to their youth, where we grew up working on musclecars from the ’60s and ’70s. From first-gen Camaros and Mustangs to mid-size muscle like Chargers and Chevelles, all of us can certainly identify with the original classics, as well as decipher what is and isn’t a “real” musclecar.

Full-sized coupes technically don’t fall into the category, although there have been exceptions to the rule, such as the Impala SS 427 or a Hurst/Chrysler 300. But what about a Monaco? You could probably make a case for the ’74 cop car used in 1980’s Blues Brothers, with its “cop motor, cop tires, cop suspension…” but that car was never really considered a musclecar. It had four doors, for one.

However, thanks to the aftermarket and ever-changing ideas from hot-rodders and the OEs alike, many are starting to consider larger (and even 4-door) vehicles that have been infused with power, performance or cosmetic flair as musclecars. Whether you agree with the notion that car vehicle can be transformed into a musclecar after its left the factory or not is entirely your opinion, but it begs the question.

Recently, Mike Musto over at Big Muscle took a ’72 Dodge Monaco for a spin. A full-sized coupe with massive curb weight, plenty of girth and a very mild 360ci. Chrysler small-block, on the face of it, many would be hard pressed to consider this a legitimate example of iconic Detroit iron.

But once you dig a little deeper and find out that the 360 has been warmed over a little, a Shaker scoop borrowed from a ‘Cuda has been slid into place and the wheels, tires and brakes have been beefed up using modern components from the aftermarket, the Monaco takes on a whole new personality. Is it fast? No. However, it has an attitude that’s part Charger R/T and part tinted-out Chrysler Imperial. It’s a blend of muscle meets luxury and Mike’s totally digging it.

Now that we think about it, so are we… So can a boat like a ’72 Monaco coupe ever fall into the “muscle” category? We’ll let you decide…


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