It’s not just Americans who share a love for American musclecars. Australian drag racing godfather Graeme Cowin — the owner and founder of Rocket Industries, the parts warehouse that distributes over 250 world-renowned brands — sought to create a project Mopar that would not only impress all who beheld it, but represent his high performance brand as he takes it across the continent.
“We started Rocket Industries to fund our love of drag racing. We started in the late ’70s and our complete commitment to the business, our love of the sport, and the help of some great staff has been the key to growing,” Graeme explains in an interview with FreeStyle Rides. “We poured everything back into the business to ensure its success and enable it to sustain our drag racing goals.” The Plymouth Barracuda, in all its glory, serves as Rocket Industries’ promotional vehicle, paraded at events around the nation.
Inspired by Joe Rogan’s “Sick Fish” build, Graeme’s streetable Hemi-powered ‘Cuda was originally intended to take a year to complete, but resulted in a five year project taking six times the budget. “The car took control and we had to feed it. It consumed people’s lives and we all wanted to quit multiple times. Believe me, if I had known what it was going to take, I would’ve never started. But I guess it was something we had committed to and I like to finish what I start,” Graeme recalled.
Powering the ‘Cuda is a 528 cubic inch Indy Hemi, which Graeme hired John Kuiper to assemble and Vince Rigoli to tune. Topped with dual throttle bodies feeding twin runners, the Hemi is backed by a TorqueFlite 727 B&M transmission that has been “manualized” by Al’s Race Glides and a Strange 9-inch differential assembled by Diff Technics. The Plymouth rides on custom independent front suspension; four-link rear; Air Ride Technologies ShockWave airbags, and rolls with Baer six-piston calipers and rotors, and Billet Specialties Stiletto wheels (18×7-inch front and 20×10-inch rear) wrapped in Pirelli P Zero tires.