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Thread: Pontiac GTO (1st gen) 1964-1967

  1. #1
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    The Pontiac GTO is an automobile that was manufactured by American automobile manufacturer Pontiac from the 1964 to 1974 model years, and by GM's subsidiary Holden in Australia from the 2004 to 2006 model years.

    The first generation of the GTO was a muscle car produced in the 1960s and the 1970s. Although there were muscle cars introduced earlier than the GTO, the Pontiac GTO is considered by some to have started the trend with all four domestic automakers offering a variety of competing models.

    For the 1964 and 1965 model years, the GTO was an optional package on the intermediate-sized Pontiac LeMans. The 1964 GTO vehicle identification number (VIN) started with 82, while the 1965 GTO VIN started with 237. The GTO became a separate model from 1966 to 1971 (VIN 242...). It became an optional package again for the 1972 and 1973 intermediate LeMans. For 1974, the GTO optional package was offered on the compact-sized Ventura.

    The GTO was selected as the Motor Trend Car of the Year in 1968.

    The GTO model was revived from 2004 to 2006 model years as a captive import for Pontiac, a left-hand drive version of the Holden Monaro, itself a coupé variant of the Holden Commodore.

    Origin
    In early 1963, General Motors' management banned divisions from involvement in auto racing. This followed the 1957 voluntary ban on automobile racing that was instituted by the Automobile Manufacturers Association. By the early 1960s, Pontiac's advertising and marketing approach was heavily based on performance. With GM's ban on factory-sponsored racing, Pontiac's managers began to emphasize street performance.

    In his autobiography Glory Days, Pontiac chief marketing manager Jim Wangers, who worked for the division's contract advertising and public relations agency, states that John DeLorean, Bill Collins, and Russ Gee were responsible for the GTO's creation. It involved transforming the upcoming second-generation Pontiac Tempest (which reverted to a conventional front-engine with front transmission configuration) into a sporty car, with a larger 389 cu in (6.4 L) Pontiac V8 engine from the full-sized Pontiac Catalina and Bonneville in place of the standard 326 cu in (5.3 L) V8. By promoting the big-engine option as a special high-performance model, they could appeal to the speed-minded youth market (which had also been recognized by Ford Motor Company's Lee Iacocca, who was at that time preparing the sporty Ford Mustang variant of the second generation Ford Falcon compact).

    The GTO disregarded GM's policy limiting the A-body intermediate line to a maximum engine displacement of 330 cu in (5.4 L). Pontiac general manager Elliot "Pete" Estes approved the new model, although sales manager Frank Bridge, who did not believe it would find a market, insisted on limiting initial production to 5,000 cars.

    Name
    The name, which was DeLorean's idea, was inspired by the Ferrari 250 GTO, the successful race car. It is an Italian abbreviation for Gran Turismo Omologato ("grand tourer homologated"), which means officially certified for racing in the grand tourer class. In reality, however, the Pontiac GTO was never really a certified Grand Tourer race car. Internally, it was initially called the "Grand Tempest Option", one of many automobiles in the Pontiac line up with a 'Grand' in it. Despite these things, the GTO is one of the fastest cars ever manufactured by Pontiac.

    First generation (1964-1967)
    1964
    The first Pontiac GTO was available as an option package for the Pontiac LeMans, available in coupé, hardtop, and convertible body styles. The US$295 package included a 389 cu in (6.4 L) V8 rated at 325 bhp (242 kW) at 4,800 rpm with a single Carter AFB four-barrel carburetor and dual exhaust pipes, chromed valve covers and air cleaner, seven-blade clutch fan, a floor-shifted three-speed manual transmission with a Hurst shifter, stiffer springs, larger diameter front sway bar, wider wheels with 7.50 × 14 redline tires, hood scoops, and GTO badges. Optional equipment included a four-speed manual transmission, Super Turbine 300 two-speed automatic transmission, a more powerful engine with "Tri-Power" carburetion (three two-barrel Rochester 2G carburetors) rated at 348 bhp (260 kW), metallic drum brake linings, limited-slip differential, heavy-duty cooling, ride and handling package, and the usual array of power and convenience accessories. With every available option, the GTO cost about US$4,500 and weighed around 3,500 lb (1,600 kg). A tachometer was optional, and was placed in the far right dial on the dash.

    Most contemporary road tests by the automotive press such as Car Life criticized the slow steering, particularly without power steering, and inadequate drum brakes, which were identical to those of the normal Tempest. Car and Driver incited controversy when it mentioned that a GTO, which had supposedly been tuned with the "Bobcat" kit offered by Ace Wilson's Royal Pontiac of Royal Oak, Michigan, was clocked at a quarter mile time of 12.8 seconds and a trap speed of 112 mph (180 km/h) on racing slicks. Later reports strongly suggest that the Car and Driver GTOs were equipped with a larger 421 cu in (6.9 L) engine that was optional in full-sized Pontiacs. Since the two engines were difficult to distinguish externally, the subterfuge was not immediately obvious. In Jim Wangers' Glory Days he admitted after three decades of denial that the red drag strip GTO had its engine swapped with a 421 Bobcat unit. Since the car was damaged during the testing, and Wangers did not want anyone looking under the hood, he used the blue road course GTO to flat tow the red GTO 1,500 miles back to Detroit. Frank Bridge's initial sales forecast proved inaccurate: the GTO package's total sales amounted to 32,450 units.

    Bobcat
    Throughout the 1960s, Ace Wilson's Royal Pontiac, a Pontiac car dealer in Royal Oak, Michigan, offered a special tune-up package for Pontiac 389 engines. The components and instructions could be purchased by mail, as well as installed by the dealer. A majority of the GTO's made available for media testing were equipped with a Bobcat kit.

    Milt Schornack joined Royal Pontiac and helped improve the performance enhancement package. The components of the kit varied, but generally included parts to modify the spark advance of the distributor, limiting spark advance to 34–36° at no more than 3,000 rpm (advancing the timing at high rpm for increased power), a thinner copper head gasket to raise compression to about 11.23:1, special intake manifold gaskets to block the heat riser to the carburetor (keeping it cooler), larger carburetor jets, and locking rocker nuts to hold the hydraulic valve lifters at their maximum point of adjustment, allowing the engine to rev higher without "floating" the valves. Properly installed, the kit could add between 30 and 50 horsepower (20–40 kW), although it required high-octane super premium gasoline of over 100 octane to avoid spark knock with the higher compression and advanced timing. Adhesive "Royal Bobcats" stickers were also included.

    Source: Wikipedia

    Matt posted all GTOs possible, but I could not find old models here.
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    Last edited by Man of Steel; 11-18-2019 at 11:33 PM.

  2. #2
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    '67 was mos def the best year.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forever92
    '67 was mos def the best year.
    I agree... although the tail lights are the only difference between 66 and 67 the louvered tail lights on the 67 are hella sweet...
    ...Utah! Get me two...

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    An emotional moment for me....
    John Buffum was the man.

    UCP's most violent member; a lump of destructive energy.

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    1965
    The Tempest model line up, including the GTO, was restyled for the 1965 model year, adding 3.1 inches (79 mm) to the overall length while retaining the same wheelbase and interior dimensions. It had Pontiac's characteristic vertically stacked quad headlights. Overall weight was increased by about 100 lb (45 kg). The brake lining area increased by nearly 15%. Heavy-duty shocks were standard, as was a stronger front antisway bar. The dashboard design was changed, and an optional rally gauge cluster (US$86.08) added a more legible tachometer and oil pressure gauge. An additional option was a breakerless transistor ignition.

    The 389 cubic inches engines received revised cylinder heads with re-cored intake passages and high rise intake manifolds, improving airflow to the engine. Rated power increased to 335 hp (250 kW) at 5,000 rpm for the base four-barrel engine; the Tri-Power engine was now rated 360 hp (270 kW) at 5,200 rpm. The 'S'-cammed Tri-Power engine had slightly less peak torque rating than the base engine 424 lb⋅ft (575 N⋅m) at 3,600 rpm as compared to 431 lb⋅ft (584 N⋅m) at 3,200 rpm. Transmission and axle ratio choices remained the same. The three-speed manual was standard, while two four-speed manual transmissions (wide or close ratio) and a two-speed automatic transmission were optional.

    The restyled car had a new simulated hood scoop. A seldom seen dealer-installed option consisted of a metal underhood pan and gaskets to open the scoop, making it a cold air intake. The scoop was low enough that its effectiveness was questionable (it was unlikely to pick up anything but boundary layer air), but it allowed an enhanced engine sound. Another exterior change was the black "egg-crate" grille.

    Car Life tested a 1965 GTO with Tri-Power and what they considered the most desirable options (close-ratio four-speed manual transmission, power steering, metallic brakes, rally wheels, 4.11 limited-slip differential, and "Rally" gauge cluster), with a total sticker price of US$3,643.79. With two testers and equipment aboard, they recorded a 0–60 miles per hour (0–97 km/h) acceleration time of 5.8 seconds, the standing quarter mile in 14.5 seconds with a trap speed of 100 miles per hour (160 km/h), and an observed top speed of 114 miles per hour (182.4 km/h) at the engine's 6,000 rpm redline. A four-barrel Motor Trend test car, a heavier convertible handicapped by the two-speed automatic transmission and the lack of a limited slip differential, ran 0–60 mph in 7 seconds and through the quarter mile in 16.1 seconds at 89 miles per hour (142.4 km/h).

    Major criticisms of the GTO continued to center on its slow steering (ratio of 17.5:1, four turns lock-to-lock) and subpar brakes. Car Life was satisfied with the metallic brakes on its GTO, but Motor Trend and Road Test found the four-wheel drum brakes with organic linings to be alarmingly inadequate in high-speed driving.

    Sales of the GTO, abetted by a marketing and promotional campaign that included songs and various merchandise, more than doubled to 75,342. It spawned many imitators, both within other GM divisions and its competitors.

    1966
    The GTO became a separate Pontiac model (model number 242) in 1966, instead of being an "option package" on the Tempest LeMans. The entire GM "A" body intermediate line was restyled that year, gaining more curvaceous styling with kicked-up rear fender lines for a "Coke-bottle" look, and a slightly "tunneled" backlight. The tail light featured a louvered cover, only seen on the GTO. Overall length grew only fractionally, to 206.4 in (5,243 mm), still on a 115 in (2,921 mm) wheelbase, while width expanded to 74.4 in (1,890 mm). Rear track increased one inch (2.5 cm). Overall weight remained about the same. The GTO was available as a pillared coupe, a hardtop (without B-pillars), and a convertible. Also an automotive industry first, plastic front grilles replaced the pot metal and aluminum versions seen on earlier years. New Strato bucket seats were introduced with higher and thinner seat backs and contoured cushions for added comfort and adjustable headrests were introduced as a new option. The instrument panel was redesigned and more integrated than in previous years with the ignition switch moved from the far left of the dash to the right of the steering wheel. Four pod instruments continued, and the GTO's dash was highlighted by walnut veneer trim.

    Engine and carburetor choices remained the same as the previous year, except the Tri-Power option was discontinued mid-model year. A new engine was offered that saw few takers: the XS option consisted of a factory Ram Air set up with a new 744 high lift cam. Approximately 35 factory-installed Ram Air packages are believed to have been built, though 300 dealership installed Ram Air packages are estimated to have been ordered. On paper, the package was said to produce the same 360 hp (270 kW) as the non-Ram Air, Tri-Power car.

    Sales increased to 96,946, the highest production figure for all GTO years. Although Pontiac had strenuously promoted the GTO in advertising as the "GTO Tiger," it had become known in the youth market as the "goat."

    1967
    The GTO underwent a few styling changes in 1967. The louver-covered taillights were replaced with eight tail lights, four on each side. Rally II wheels with colored lug nuts were also available in 1967. The GTO emblems located on the rear part of the fenders were moved to the chrome rocker panels. The grill was changed from a purely split grill, to one that shared some chrome.

    The 1967 GTO was available in three body styles:
    Hardtop – 65,176 produced
    Convertible – 9,517 produced
    Sports coupe – 7,029 produced

    The GTO also saw several mechanical changes in 1967. The Tri-Power carburetion system was replaced with a single 4-barrel Rochester Quadrajet carburetor. The 389 cu in (6.4 L) engine received a larger cylinder bore 4.12 in (104.6 mm) for a total displacement of 400 cu in (6.6 L) V8, which was available in three models: economy, standard, and high output. The economy engine used a two-barrel carburetor rather than the Rochester Quadrajet and produced 265 hp (198 kW) at 4,400 rpm and 397 lb⋅ft (538 N⋅m) at 3,400 rpm. The standard engine produced 335 hp (250 kW) at 5,000 rpm; and the highest torque of the three engines at 441 lb⋅ft (598 N⋅m) at 3,400 rpm. The high output engine produced the most power for that year at 360 hp (365 PS; 268 kW) at 5,100 rpm and a maximum torque of 438 lb⋅ft (594 N⋅m; 61 kg⋅m) at 3,600 rpm. Emission controls were fitted in GTOs sold in California.

    The 1967 model year required new safety equipment. A new energy-absorbing steering column was accompanied by an energy-absorbing steering wheel, padded instrument panel, non-protruding control knobs, and four-way emergency flashers. A shoulder belt option was also featured, and the brake master cylinder was now a dual reservoir unit with a backup hydraulic circuit.

    The two-speed automatic transmission was also replaced with a three-speed Turbo-Hydramatic TH-400, which was equipped with a Hurst Performance dual-gate shifter, called a "his/hers" shifter, that permitted either automatic shifting in "drive" or manual selection through the gears. Front disc brakes were also an option in 1967.
    The GTO sales for 1967 totaled 81,722.

    Source: Wikipedia
    Last edited by Man of Steel; 11-18-2019 at 11:34 PM.

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