it's the only game in town, Good Buddy! Amazing that every single '67-'69 Barracuda in 1/25 scale came from the same single set of molds. Fortunately, the body and interior are pretty accurate, at least for a '69. The body is a little tired, but still looks like a Barracuda to my eye. I did end up getting a few of the Retro Deluxes- I like that the rear seat filler, "racing console", and custom parts made it back in. The new decals, white plastic, and slicks don't hurt, either!
Good question! Should it fit? Well in 1:1, the 440 Six Pack engine will go where a Hemi once was. I looked at an unbuilt Fast & Furious Charger (it presumably will have the same block, heads, etc. as the new stock R/T). I pulled out a semi assembled AMT '70 Super Bee Six Pack motor (heads/valve covers/water pump/oil pan attached to the block). And found... ...that width-wise, there will be no problem. The transmission is approximately the same length. You might have to tweak how high it sits by either grinding down the motor mounts on the chassis, and/or the pads on the sides of the engine. Revell Hemis seem to have a nice way of tucking way down under the hood. Most Six Packs in scale don't seem to. Also- the 440 Six Pack block is longer than the Hemi Block by about 1/32". It's enough where it could be a problem. I myself would go for this swap. I would try to jam the whole block and tranny assembly back a little bit, shorten the driveshaft, and try to drop it down lower on the motor mounts a little. I think that will help with any problems you might have fitting the fanbelt and accessories up front, although you will have to watch where the rear of the air cleaner hits the firewall too. I would definitely try to dial this in before you get the engine wired, painted and assembled, from what I saw tonight, I would not call this a drop in, but it should be possible with some careful adjustments & fitting.
I think the last of the MPC Gen II Cuda kits to have both the Slant 6 and the Hemi was the '69 Annual. IIRC, either the Judy Lilly or Boss Cuda came next in about 1972-73, and for those, they lost the Slant 6, ditched the other custom parts, and modified the body a bit (by getting rid of the molded in pinstripes / trim from the upper sides of the '69 body, as well as the '69 marker lenses and the windshield wipers). They also wiped the single exhaust from the chassis plate. After the Judy Lilly and Boss Cuda (Great Street Machines) issues, they added new custom body scoops, side pipes, and a pedestal-mount spoiler for the "Killer Cuda" issue (c 1977). The Killer Cuda is one of my favorites, as I built this one in my childhood, and it had really nice & colorful cartoon Barracuda graphics, based on some of Plymouth's advertising from the late 60's. Round 2 could do worse than to rebox the kit with these graphics. Next up was the "Avenger" Cuda (c 1980)- molded in orange, it was mostly the same as the Killer Cuda, just with different (6-lug!) modular wheels. AMT/ ERTL acquired the MPC tooling after this, and made many modifications to bring the '69 Cuda back to stock (c 1987). They ditched the Hemi engine, tooling a new B/ RB engine in it's place, that looks to have been copied from the MPC '71-75 Road Runner and '77-'78 Dodge Monaco engine. They added back engraving for the side marker lenses and windshield wipers & emblems, added back the stock "Recall" wheels, and kept the custom parts for another building version. The added dual exhausts to the chassis plate then. They reissued the kit several times in this form. The latest Retro Deluxe '69 apes the original 1969 Annual box art. It comes with decals that are enhanced copies of the original '69 sheet (but no stock stripes), and while it's mostly like the 1987-up reissues, they have opened the tooling gates so that some of the original '69 custom parts (and some, but not all of the Hemi and Slant-6 parts) are back. They also threw in some new 5 spoke mags, that look like the same ones they're including with some of their other recent issues. To me, the Hemi was no great loss from this kit (a lot of people complain that Hemis come in every kit now, soooo....take your pick, there are much nicer ones available). The Slant 6 would be a nice building option, but again, there are much better ones available now. The parts in the Retro Deluxe kit will give you an idea of the quality of those original engines. I'd like to see them improve the kit by retooling the inner fenders on the chassis plate - they just don't look right, not at all like A body inner fenders, also, the grille is very tired and the grille surround on the body is a mess. Make those changes, throw in newly-tooled "Cuda" package hood scoops & graphics, and it will have new life. Sticking a new chassis under the MPC/ AMT Gen II Barracuda does wonders. The Revell '68 Dart Chassis is excellent. Even the chassis from the MPC Dart Sport is a big improvement. Just be prepared for some cutting and grinding in order to do this...
I agree...the LA series is something of a "lost engine" in 1/25 scale. The LA's in the old MPC Darts, Dusters, Vans & Volares were way underscale. Same as in the IMC (later Lindberg) A-100. The AMT '71 Duster scales a bit better (it should be AT LEAST the physical outside size of a Small Block Chevy), but to me, that engine doesn't look quite right. I think the engines in the Monogram 1/24 Challenger T/A and '80 Ramcharger, although simplified, at least LOOKED right. I have spent enough time messing around with 1:1 LA's to know. So- Revell NEEDS to do a '70 Swinger 340, at least so we can get a 340 out of it. 😁 And- if they put all of the engine parts on one tree and sold it separately as a parts pack, that would truly be awesome. I'd buy as many as I could. Problem is: the last time Revell went to the well with parts packs (late '90's?), when they rolled out the vintage Ford 427/ Caddy/ Pontiac/ Chev Small block kits...crickets. I think those packs even sold for around $3-$4 a piece at the time, and still, they did not seem to sell. I think all they really did was to serve to devalue the specific old original copies of said packs.
MPC also did Cudas in 1/25...they did every year annually from 1968 to 1974. The '68's, '70's and '71's were never reissued in stock form, so they can be pricy, but you can still find reasonably priced builts once in awhile. The '68 was turned into the '69 annual kit, which, while altered a bit from it's original form, is still mostly a stock '69. It was changed into a pseudo- '68 Super Stock for awhile in the '70's, but these kits really were '69's with a few Super Stock parts and '68 turn signals (the grille & taillights were never converted back from '69 form). The '70 was issued stock for one season (most of these in lime green plastic, maybe a small few in white?). The body was used for a funny car kit (I think Candies & Hughes, definitely blue plastic), then turned into the '71 annual (Mostly in white plastic, perhaps offered in another color as well), then the '71 body was used as a funny car body for the Don Schumacher funny, again in blue plastic. The '71 body was then revised for the '72 annual. For 72-73-74 annuals, the body was mostly unchanged, I think the differences between those years were mostly in the bumpers and custom parts. The body was again used as a funny car body (red plastic, the Dunn & Reath car), and also, a Motown Missile Pro Stock kit was done, using mostly a new hood, intake and wheels, but still the same stock interior and stock chassis with full exhausts (incorrect for a pro stock car). Things get interesting from here. The body was revised to drop onto a common stock car chassis, as a "super stock" racecar. The body was wiped of all emblems, door handles, etc. The headlight buckets were paneled in. After that, in the early '80's, MPC tried to restore the stock appearance of the '74 body. The headlight buckets were never fixed right, as the headlights now sat flat on the buckets instead of being slightly tunneled in. There were two issues: a "Hemi Cuda" in blue, with stock chassis and various street and drag options, and a "Pro Street Barracuda" in orange, which had a new tubbed chassis, race interior, and the old Motown Missile hood. They weren't done with this tool yet: in the '90's, the kit was revised into a promo-style "Snap Fast Plus", with no custom parts or engine detail. This was issued at least twice, now branded as an AMT kit. I saw that Round 2 was talking about reissuing this kit again, maybe they're working on improving the tooling a little? Most of these are fairly common at swap meets and auction sites. The detail might not be be what you're used to with the new Revell kits, but personally, I think the body shapes on the MPC kits are MUCH better. (I think the Jo Han kits have great body shapes too). You could combine the MPC bodies with the guts of the Revell kits to make a nice '72-'74. The only real caveat is that you would have to work on the shape of the headlight buckets to tunnel them in more for any of the '80's and '90's issues, and also, the engines and chassis that come with those MPC kits are REALLY dated now.