Category Archives: Pontiac

One Year Winners

One Year Winners

59 Dodge Challenger Silver

Photo Courtesy of www.macsmotorcitygarage.com

In the world of automobiles, setting up an assembly line, creating tools and dies, and producing a new model takes a significant amount of work. This is one of the reasons why so many cars are made for several production years before major changes are made. Despite the work that goes into producing a car model, automakers have been known to occasionally create one-hit wonders – cars that were produced for only one year. Many times the cars were big losers on the lots, but in some cases the single year production cars were big winners. Here is a short list:

1965 Pontiac Catalina

As an elongated low-riding model, the 1965 Pontiac Catalina offered many options from color and performance to engine upgrades. The full size two-door hardtop and convertible versions of the Catalina had the ability to use Pontiac’s 421 cid engine, despite the infamous General Motors ban on engines larger than 400 cid. The ban was in effect for intermediate vehicles, allowing the Catalina to skirt the rule because of its status as a full-size vehicle. This fastback further impressed with the addition of the “2+2” package option, which included the bigger engine among a handful of other upgrades. This option was phased out only 2 years later, in 1967, because it simply didn’t achieve the overwhelming successes of the GTO.

1970 Firebird Formula

1970 Firebird Formula

 Firebird Formula

Photo Courtesy of Mecum

The 1970 Firebird Formula 400 was the third of four models in Pontiac’s 70s Firebird lineup. The first generation of Firebirds, from ’67 to ’69, were closely related to their cousins the Camaros, but also took styling cues from the GTO. Although Pontiac designers had hoped to make a two-seater sports car modeled after the Banshee, a mid-60s concept car, the higher ups at General Motors feared that it would compete too heavily with the Corvette. The Firebirds represented a compromise, but one that disappointed few.

All-American Muscle: The Pontiac GTO

Pontiac GTOOne of the jobs of automotive designers is to look into the crystal ball and try to see into the future. What will attract the public as times change and a new generation of drivers are ready to hit the roadways? The history of the automobile manufacturing industry is filled with hits and misses as the “swamis” of automotive engineering placed their bets on educated guesses that became the next wave of motor vehicles offered by their respective companies.

Transformers and the Iconic Cars

Transformers and the Iconic Cars

'91 Lamborghini DiabloYou might think that the Transformers vehicles are limited to the hot yellow Chevy Camaro, the big semi truck cab, the Hummer, and the Pontiac Solstice. Those who are new to the world of Transformers are often surprised to find out that there are several different versions of the characters that change from recognizable vehicles to powerful robots. These are a few of the most iconic vehicles in the Transformer universe:

Malaise Era: Definition and Examples

Malaise Era: Definition and Examples

'74 Apollo Buick Malaise: This word comes from the combination of French words mal- and aise (which translates to ease). This word generally means a sense of being uneasy or feeling out of sorts. It usually involves the beginning of an illness or feeling less that healthy. The term “malaise” has come to designate the decade of cars produced between 1973 and 1983.

Pontiac T-1000: I Miss the Chevette

Pontiac T-1000: I Miss the Chevette

78 Chevy ChevetteAs a kid in high school during the 1980s, everyone I knew drove a Chevy Chevette or a Pontiac T-1000. This compact hatchback was the perfect car for nearly every driver, but it became the go-to car for high school kids who needed something cheap and reliable.

Pontiac Solstice: Why It May not Be the Collectible It’s Predicted to Be

Pontiac Solstice: Why It May not Be the Collectible It’s Predicted to Be

Pontiac Classic CarsThere are two types of car collectors. One collects cars for the financial investment. The other collects cars for the emotional attachment. The financial collector does research, follows trends, and buys wisely. The emotional collector does not worry about the financial value of the car; the car’s value is in the feeling it provides, usually in the form of a powerful family memory or a joyful driving experience.

Cars That Feed Both Types of Collectors

1970s Television Heroes and their Rides

1970s Television Heroes and their Rides

'63 Ford GalaxieIn the 1970s, television viewers were treated to some fun characters, like the Bionic Woman, Wonder Woman, and the cast of Hawaii 5-0. The characters were bigger than life and they drove iconic cars. These are a few of the best 1970s characters and their vehicles:

Obscure Cars Sold in the United States

Obscure Cars Sold in the United States

'65 Oldsmobile StarfirePeople love their cars and people love to learn about other cars. Since the release of the Model-T, Americans have had a love affair with cars. While many models have grown into icons, some have become simply recognizable and some have become lost in the crowd. These are a few of the most obscure American cars:

Oldsmobile Starfire: While the automaker faded into memory in 2004, there were a few models that Americans forget well before that auspicious year.  The Oldsmobile Starfire was built to compete with the Chevy Monza, this small Oldsmobile did not sell well and many chose not to remember the car that was built between 1975 and 1980.