Muscle cars can be defined as America’s high-performance cars. The term muscle car was coined in the early 1960s and 70s when special editions of cars were being designed and mass produced for drag racing. These cars usually featured a rear wheel drive and were fitted with a powerful huge V8 engine.
At nctransmission.net we consider Muscle cars which are 20 years or older to be considered classic muscle cars. The general theme is any old muscle car with enough historical interest to be considered a collectible and worth restoring or preserving rather than scrapping.
Organizations like the Classic Car Club of America (CCCA) term muscle cars produced in the 60s and 70s as classic muscle cars with the 1974 models as the cutoff. Notable classic muscle cars include 1968 to 1970 Dodge Charger, Pontiac GTO, Ford Mustang Boss 302, Chevrolet Camaro Z28, Plymouth Road Runner, Pontiac Firebird Trans Am, Ford GT40, Corvette C2, Dodge Challenger.
Legally, many states have time-based rules for what would be considered a classic car for the purposes of antique vehicle registration. For instance, Maryland defines historic or classic cars (muscle cars inclusive) as vehicles 20 years old or older and they must not have been substantially remanufactured, remodeled, or altered from the original design of the manufacturer. On the other hand, West Virginia defines classic cars as vehicles manufactured 25 years prior to the current year. And such cars are eligible for classic car license plates.
According to Wikipedia, any car from the 1960s and 70s, the peak of the muscle car era is most definitely a classic. However, that also depends on the extent to which a car has been altered or modified. Pure originals are classics and those which have been extensively remodeled to include modern parts and technology are not. However, a classic which has been restored employing minimal remodeling could still be considered a classic muscle car.