All fields are required.SCOTTSDALE 2016 CONSIGNMENTS
CONTACT A CONSIGNMENT SPECIALIST
Vehicle to be offered for Auction sale WITHOUT RESERVE and SOLD to the highest bidder January 27th – 31st, 2016 at Russo and Steele’s 16th Annual Scottsdale Arizona Auction. Please contact us for more information.
Having risen from near-extinction during the mid-1950s third place in American sales rankings, a position it would hold from 1962 to 1969 thanks to its “Wide-Track” swagger and successful factory racing program, GM’s Pontiac Motor Division refused to knuckle under to GM’s infamous racing ban of 1963. In fact, PMD continued its winning ways simply by refocusing on street-performance cars that could translate effectively to the racetrack.
Sizing up the growing performance-minded youth market of the early ‘60s, Pontiac engineers Russ Gee, Bill Collins, and John DeLorean considered the potential of Pontiac’s 389 V-8 combined with the lightweight, mid-size Tempest body and chassis. While GM’s corporate policies limited engine displacement for its intermediate models, the 389 was cunningly slipped past the GM bureaucrats as the basis of a new high-performance option package for Pontiac’s Tempest Le Mans, thereby not requiring corporate approval. Rather, the GTO was “green-lighted” by PMD General Manager Elliott “Pete” Estes.
Named ‘GTO’ denoting “Gran Turismo Omologato,” a cheeky but risky swipe at Ferrari’s megabuck GT racer of the time, the GTO option was a comprehensive package and a startling value, endowing the 389 V-8 with 421 HO heads, a high-lift cam, Carter AFB four-barrel carburetor, 10.75:1 compression ratio, and chrome accents. Tri-Power induction with three two-barrel carbs was optional. Much more than the sum of its parts, the GTO option was a well-integrated package of engine, braking, drivetrain, suspension, and appearance features.
Sales were overwhelming for 1964 versus the most optimistic forecasts. Mild styling updates for 1965 included aggressively stacked headlights and crisply restyled bodylines, which developed into the definitive “Coke bottle” body style of 1966-1967. The GTO’s popularity was so great that it spurred product planners to list the GTO as a separate Pontiac model beginning in 1966. Revised tail lamps and an increase in engine displacement to 400 cubic inches were the major updates for the 1967 GTO, which made the great basic car even better than before. It remains an undisputed collector favorite today.
This car is a period correct car and has PHS documentation. Beginning as a California car, it has been maintained and restored to original or better condition and continues to benefit from a body-off restoration that was performed several years ago. The car is described by the Consignor as being rock solid and retaining the original body panels. Recently, this GTO was given a complete engine rebuild to Pontiac’s ‘HO’ specifications, with all the internal parts of the engine replaced with the exception of the crankshaft. Desirable factory equipment and features on this car include the Rally Gauge Cluster, tachometer, wood grain steering wheel with tilt, AM/FM radio, power disc brakes, Firestone G70X14 redline tires on Rally II wheels, and a Turbo-Hydramatic automatic transmission with a factory Hurst Dual/Gate floor shifter.