Clean, straightforward, all-business. Trimmed hair, suit dialed in to perfection, tie choice excellent and demure. The man’s man of the early 1960s…all business, all professional. The days where wearing a hat outdoors no matter what was still not only proper, but usually expected. The days where a drum-tight appearance told the world that you had everything going on, that you were a solid choice for whatever the task needed. You didn’t need a beard, long hair and a full tapestry of tattoos to explain how much of a badass you were. You didn’t need scarves, thick-rimmed glasses and “you probably have never heard of…” in your vocabulary to explain how cultured you were. And you certainly didn’t need thumping techno music and three straight years locked in a gym to prove how virile you were. You just went about your business and let your appearances do the talking for you.
Compare this 1965 Belvedere to Mopars of the very tail end of the musclecar era. No curves, no flashy colors, no radical body modifications, no shaker hoodscoops, no stripes, no nothing. Just a smooth, black shell, some minor ornamentation and a new pair of shoes. And a booming voice that didn’t have to shout to explain what is really going on under the hood. Oh, it can get loud, sure. That man in the suit can get angry, can get in the mood for fighting, and can throw a good blow or two as well. But if you aren’t at 10/10ths in this Belvedere, it comes off almost mild. You aren’t hiding a 499ci big-block’s tone no matter how hard you try, but at low revs it just sounds like any other big-cube Chrysler. The Tremec five-speed manual is a welcomed nod to modern times..combined with 3.73 rear gears, the Plymouth will cruise nicely. The four-wheel disc brakes are equally as welcomed, surely.
Sometimes, it’s fun to leave everyone guessing just how good you truly can be. Why shout it out to the world? Sitting still, this Belvedere looks ready to party, but it doesn’t have the “look at me!” nature of, say, a Superbird. Remember our 1960’s made man? Didn’t shout intentions to the world, but one look said “good to go”. Just don’t go adding alcohol to the equation…Belvederes on hooch, just like a 1960’s suit-and-tie, are a different animal entirely.