As Seen on Craigslist – 1964 Pontiac Grand Prix

This is one of those ads that immediately catches my eye, and even though I keep finding things that should scare me off, I can’t look away.  The ’62-’64 Grand Prix is one of the best looking cars of the era, and it’s on my (long) list of cars I’d like to own someday.  The styling manages to look formal and elegant yet simultaneously muscular (a contemporary reviewer said it looked like an athlete in a tuxedo, an apt description).  This particular car lacks the cool 8-lug wheels that were available at the time (the only time drum brakes have looked good), but the understated lines look especially great in dark blue nonetheless.  The dash-mounted tachometer is a cool bit of early-60’s tech, and closer inspection reveals what sure looks like a clutch pedal, but I can’t find a floor-mounted shifter.  It’s that bottom right photo that scares me, though – these cars were meant to be long and low, but the front end looks like it’s sitting way too low, so either somebody cut the springs or the front suspension is garbooned somehow.  The bigger concern is what looks like rust on the fender lip.  If the tinworm has made a home in there, any restoration just tripled in cost – especially since these bigger cars don’t have nearly the aftermarket support of the more popular mid-sizers.  Of course, this seller has neglected to list a price, so your guess is as good as mine as to whether this car is a worthy investment.  If it really is a four-speed runner with a solid body that just needs some cleaning and mechanical reconditioning, I’d be hard-pressed to walk away from it.  But if we’re looking at a rusty hulk that needs complete disassembly and extensive body work, run – don’t walk – away.

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