First Stop in Alabama–Wellborn Musclecar Museum

I left Georgia and Old Car City with a lot of thoughts buzzing about my brain, in a couple of hours I would enter a museum that had classic muscle cars, not in a rusty patina, but most likely, in typical museum condition.  Several years ago I had gone to the Muscle Car Museum in Sevierville, TN.  They had an extensive collection of some really unique cars – many of them were COPA versions of street cars.

So I was interested in just how this museum in Alexander City, AL, would pick up the mantle of being a muscle car museum.

I was almost taken buy surprise as I drove down Broad Street and saw the impressive building.  It was right next door to a Sonic, which seemed appropriate.  I pulled into the spacious parking lot, checked for my camera, and went in.

The manager gave a friendly greeting and then it was a short walk from the gift shop to the display area.  It was clear that the owner had a passion for MOPAR cars.  There were others, but the bulk of the collection is currently Chrysler/Plymouth.  Do keep in mind that this museum is only in its third year. It is clear that there is more to come.

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In the VIP spot was a special “pilot” version of the first hemi Charger built in 1971.  It was a beautiful red and displayed up on a chrome pedestal.  A pilot version of a model car was basically assembled by hand so that the actual assembly line process can be perfected.  Typically these pilot cars are then scrapped and never sold.  So this is an exceptional find and a real gem for this museum.  They also have the last production 1971 Charger built in their collection.

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They also had some very interesting AMC (American Motors Corporation) cars.  AMC was what was left as many older makes of cars were continually absorbed between the 1950’s and 1960’s.  Packard, Studebaker, Hudson, Willy’s Jeep, etc. all became what was to be known as AMC.  In their effort to stand out from the Big Three (GM, MOPAR, Ford) AMC worked hard to go right to the edge with styling and was as involved in racing as much as their budget allowed.  The AMC Javelin and AMX were both raced in the Trans Am racing series and by none other than Team Penske.

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For three years the Alabama Highway Patrol used AMC Javelins as high speed pursuit cars.

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Included in the collection here is Burt Reynolds’s personal Pontiac Trans-Am.

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This muscle car museum has a top quality collection of some very interesting cars.  I was allowed into their garage area to see one of their latest acquisitions.  A barn find from Texas.

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It will be interesting to see how this collection grows over the next few years.

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