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Road Runner. Thanks to the System, Amerca's favorite bird is more than a put on.

The ultimate put-on.

That was the way they described Road Runner when it was first introduced in September of 1967.

What? A car with a horn that goes "Beep - Beep," instead of Honk-Honk and uses gawky little cartoon birds for insignia. The very idea.

Where were the usual symbols of Supercar virility? Like maybe ermine carpeting or lightning bolts flashing from your hood-mounted gas gauge? Road Runner? You're kidding. Haw-Haw.

But it was no put-on. Road Runner was the country's first no-nonsense high performance car. Its theme was race-car simple: a rugged two-door coupe, deliberately devoid of interior and exterior frills, with maximum attention on engine, driveline, suspension and brakes, in turn, that meant the price could be held to a minimum, and for the first time, the young people of this country could afford the kind of car they wanted -- brand new.

Haw-Haw. In its first two years, Road Runner sold well over 100,000 units Last year it was named Car of the Year by Motor Trend.

The I970 version reflects both its original product philosophy and its own incredible popularity.

The 383 cubic inch engine with its 440 cubic inch heads, cam and carburetion is still standard equipment. The same goes for the heavy-duty suspension special 11" heavy-duty brakes and heavy-duty rear axle. The only change is that we've substituted a floor-mounted 3-speed in the place of the usual 4-speed, which is now available as an option.

So much for tradition. Over the years, we've expanded Road Runner's model lineup to include a hardtop and a convertible as well as offering options such as fancy interiors, consoles and the like. To give it what our research people call "broadened market appeal." The 1970 Road Runner offers the biggest list of add-on goodies ever.

Of these, perhaps the most newsworthy is a 440 cu. in. V-8 fed by three Holley 2-barrel carbs. Performance, as you might expect, is positively mind-expanding and nearly equals the Street Hemi, even though the "6-bbl." is priced many skins less. And speaking of the Hemi, you Can throw away, your feeler gauges -- hydraulic lifters are now standard.

In addition there's a new Air Grabber induction system available. Touch a switch on the dash and - Zap! The scoop raises up out of the hood like a NIKE launcher.

Beyond that, there are trick options like dust trails that span the length of the body, new fiat-black hood striping, a set of Iow-cost road wheels and extra-wide F-60 rubber.

Funny about those guys who laughed at the first Road Runner.

They're so silent lately.


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