The Beat Goes On… In a ’68 GTX

The 1967 model year sales slogan “Plymouth is Out to Win-You-Over” had been a great success for Plymouth with over a quarter of a million owners of other low-price cars moving into a new Plymouth. According to the 1968 Plymouth commercials, the ’67 theme “started a movement, a momentum, a beat”. With ’68 model lineup, Plymouth looked to continue their success of ’67 with “The Plymouth Win-You-Over, Beat Goes On” campaign. “The Beat Goes On” originally sung by Sonny and Cher, a top 10 smash on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1967, became the lyrics of the advertising mantra for the 1968 Plymouth line.


The new flowing looks of the ’68 b-body Plymouth family was a successful transition from the previous boxy looks of the ’67 models. Part of the 1968 comprehensive federal government safety regulations legislation was the federally mandated side marker indicators. Chrysler elected to use lights (amber for the front fenders and red for the rear quarters) to mark the sides of all their cars for the 1968 models.

 

The Plymouth b-bodies were an all-new style for 1968. The boxy, sharp lines of the 1967 b-bodies were replaced with a flowing “Coke bottle” shape (mirroring the ’68 Dodge Charger) that was a softer, smoother shape for the 1968. The line consisted of the Belvedere low-trim base model and moved up through the line to the Road Runner, Satellite, Sport Satellite, and the high-line GTX. Depending upon the model desired, a two-door, four-door, or the new wagon could be selected for 1968. Additionally, the selection of the two-door version allowed the buyer their pick of a coupe (two-door post), hardtop, or convertible option. Engine choices were limited only based upon the model the new car buyer elected to purchase and the engines ranged from the utilitarian 145-horsepower slant-6 all the way to the largest displacement engine 375 horsepower 440 or the mighty 425 horse 426 HEMI.

 

 

 

 

 

 
Less than one out of every 18 GTXs produced in 1968 was a convertible. This GTX came standard with a heavy-duty suspension, power assisted heavy-duty drum brakes, a 727 Torqueflite, and a Sure-Grip equipped 8 ¾”. Additional options consisted of a solid-state AM radio, a driver’s side remote control mirror, a passenger side manual mirror, a console, a clock, and the light package including fender mounted turn signal indicators.   The 440 call out badge mounted on the hood bulge lets the public know of the seriousness resides beneath the covering. The fender mounted turn signal indicators are part of the light package option on the GTX.

The GTX, often referred to as “the gentleman’s muscle car”, back for a second year, was the zenith of performance and luxury in the Plymouth line. The standard engine, fed by a single Carter four barrel, was the Super Commando 440 CID engine producing a ground pounding 480 lb-ft of torque at 3200 rpm and 375 horsepower at 4600 rpm. The only optional engine for the GTX was the twin four barrel 426 HEMI fed by two Carter four barrel carburetors producing an even greater 490 lb-ft of torque at 4000 rpm and 425 horsepower at 5000 rpm. While the rev-happy HEMI was the pinnacle of internal combustion engines produced by the Chrysler Corporation, Car Life magazine concluded in February 1968, “As a performance car, the GTX has few equals, with the 440 engine, it offers as much performance-per-dollar as anything on the market, and more than most”. The 440 was an easier engine to keep in tune and the big wedge engine twisted out gobs of low-end torque for an unmatched performance on the street and strip. The suspension was coordinated with the performance theme of the GTX. A heavy-duty torsion-air suspension up front could be had with drum brakes or a pair of optional factory disc brakes. When coupled with a Torqueflite a pair of HD rear leaf springs located the 8 ¾” axle, stuffed full of a 3.23:1 gears, providing wheel-hop free launches when the loud pedal was matted.