In the early 2000s, in a barn in Southern France, a group of French racing enthusiasts discovered this 1970 Chrysler Plymouth Hemi Barracuda. Turned out the car was being daily driven and the owner was oblivious to its incredible racing past. Sporting only a solid white coat of paint that, once stripped away, revealed this Barracuda was indeed the most decorated France Group 1 race car of the 1970’s with over 60 verified circuit and hill climb wins in just 3 years of racing.
It was the official car of Chrysler France’s racing group, Ecurie Chrysler, and was driven by Henri Chemin. Chemin, as the director of Chrysler France’s racing efforts, had the Barracuda imported directly from the United States to Paris in 1970. The car was branded under the Chrysler namesake because Plymouth hadn’t been introduced to the European markets at the time.
In 2012, the car was shipped and was back in the U.S. for the first time since it came out of production in 1970. It then went through an extensive restoration at Redline Restorations where the entire car was overhauled and returned to its former glory, including Ecurie Chrysler’s signature two-tone white and teal livery.
Chemin was even given the chance to drive the car again after its restoration was completed in 2013. 43 years after he initially had it shipped to France. After running 15 laps at Paul Ricard Circuit in the reinvigorated ride, Henri signed the dash and authenticated its amazing history.
The story of Henri Chemin and the Barracuda, as well as the car’s restoration, were covered in a short documentary called “Henri Chemin’s Ex Works Hemicuda” that you can watch below.