Car Lust: 1973-77 Pontiac Grand Prix

25 Mar 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Car Lust: 1973-77 Pontiac Grand Prix
Pontiac Grand Prix

1973-77 Pontiac Grand

I#39;ve no shame whatsoever: I see photo off to the right there and I want to lick it, it#39;s so

I think this could possibly be the genesis, the dawning, the source, the Patient Zero of my Car Lust: a maroon 1976 Grand Prix. It#39;s the first real car I recall a mad crush on, apart from the panoply o f TV cars that mentioned over the years. enough, it was#0160;actually a Catholic that piqued my interest in things.

Fr. Tony, newly assistant pastor at our little in central Wisconsin, showed up one that looked identical to the image here. He was a neat guy is, actually), quite different the usual stodgy priests known up until that and he eventually became a good of the family.

As fine a shepherd as he it was that Grand Prix really captured my eye. had a similar vintage GM Century we all pretty much loathed ), but Grand Prix was a definite above the old family hauler and getter. Two doors instead of a long, luxurious hood in a, to my mind, elegant upright grille, and a short deck with opera windows.

And it was quiet inside: even it had a V8 instead of our pathetic V6, the noise intrude much into the cabin. And it was quite noticeably than our misbegotten tank.

Of it might have been a unreliable piece of junk for all I but I digress. It.Was.Awesome.

As far as history the Grand Prix got its start in most auspicious of years, Back then it was derived the full-sized Catalina (yet of my family#39;s cars which no doubt be featured here at point). I really like the of the first couple of years much like the earlier looked rather clean and and fast even while still. The facelift in 1965 them look …-heavy

All of them were nicely with a range of good-sized most putting out 300+ albeit in a very large They went along well with the muscle car but their styling for most of the leaves me somewhat cold.

John DeLorean had them for 1969 and that#39;s when assumed the familiar shape of post#39;s generation. The wheel went down slightly, but the of the car assumed the familiar long deck proportions that I GM also put more emphasis on apportioning, probably as part of the (domestically anyway) personal direction that was influencing from Thunderbirds to Mustang

Performance was also upped with a new HO version of the 428 that 390 bhp to the back wheels.

One little-noted, but I considered almost too cool for feature that the Grand included in the second generation was a new FM antenna: rather than a thing sticking out of the front panel, it embedded two thin into the windshield itself. Our Century had the same thing, and I wondered why the idea never caught on (/audio geek). It a pretty good way to isolate the from the interference-producing engine and body panels and also for a nice dipole; all the while barely noticeable in the windshield.

In truth, I probably could extended the range of this to include the 1969-1972 models as are pretty similar in appearance to the 3rd although they are a bit boxier for my OTOH, they don#39;t the coming garishness of the later quite as well (if one can reconcile statement at all logically). The abundant for example, just sort of out like a sore thumb, and seems out of place in an otherwise car.

But then came 1973 and assumed the shape beloved by truly. Truth be told, the was more of a radical evolution of the design than something new like (more or less) the had been. They retained the hood/short deck, but bulked up (literally and figuratively) and added a lot in the way of — he says with a irony — styling.

A lot of can be traced to new safety requirements, 5 mph bumpers front and (eventually) and rollover standards. The latter actually never materialized) the pillarless design of the previous unsustainable, so they went to a configuration with the much-celebrated/derided window. Some also that other 1970s the T-top (photo below).

The big grille also stayed but I it looks more integrated the total design than it did

Pontiac Grand Prix

Performance took a hit along nearly everything else much like the Trans Ams of years, it handled really for a large car and, in fact, the suspension was borrowed from the and Firebird. Still, power was way with similar-sized engines down in bhps to the low 200s. interiors got better and early on real wood inserts all instead of the simulated sort.

The seats were also and were, as I can personally attest, comfortable. And quiet . you could be down the highway and actually on a reasonable conversation.

And they well. Really well. The model easily topped the high mark, 1969#39;s with over 150,000 and hit a high point of over cars in 1977.

Now, I have celebrated the redesign of the Chevys (even using a Prix as an introductory photograph for post), but I shan#39;t do the same Like the other A-bodies, it was radically downsized, and became so bland and nondescript. And not even in a way.

From a luxurious cruiser, it to a middle-manager rental overnight. It had brief flashes of inspiration that, notably in the automotive of the late 1990s and onwards but it was … to me after 1977. I had hopes that GM would do the G8 on the Grand Prix and give us a performance sedan for that (to me anyway) nameplate but, it was not to be .

You don#39;t see these too often but being in Car Lust Central as I am, is a nice blue one somewhere in a radius of my abode. There definitely be some consternation in the if and when a For Sale sign pops up in its window, that#39;s for

–Anthony Cagle

Credits: Top from McClelland#39;s Automotive. The two photos are both from T-top is from .

Pontiac Grand Prix
Pontiac Grand Prix
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