5 potential Pontiac project cars under $20K
Even though the brand has been retired for more than 12 years, Pontiac fans are still loyal and make up a big portion of the muscle car and classic car market. We have several Pontiac owners on the Hagerty media and valuation staff, so the watercooler chat frequently includes mentions of Poncho project cars and potential future project cars thanks to the Hagerty Marketplace. We skimmed the listings to find some prospects that span a wide variety of enthusiast niches, from light and sporty coupes to big and comfy cruisers. Being realistic, we started with the most affordable and worked out way up. Which one of these five, each under $20,000, is your kind of driving excitement?
Yeah, this one’s rough, and it doesn’t have an engine, but bear with us. This is a real Trans Am and its asking price of $6500 could make it a good place to start on the ’77 Trans Am of your dreams, especially if numbers matching isn’t your bag. Want to build a Bandit tribute? Here it is. Looking to welcome the aftermarket with open arms and build a Pro-Touring beast to conquer canyon roads and your local track? This could be the one.
GM’s first production mid-engine car, the Fiero was billed as an economical commuter but its light weight and mid-engine design naturally made it a fun driver, too. This well-preserved 1985 model is equipped with the largest, most powerful engine option, a 2.8-liter V-6. GM’s 60-degree pushrod V-6s of the era weren’t known for incredible performance, but the Fiero made the most of it. We love the red and tan combo here, and just know it would look amazing at RADwood. We’d find every excuse we could to get behind the wheel of this little beauty of it found its way into our collection.
We’ve always advocated for late-’60s and early ’70s full-size coupes. Many of them had great lines and came with the same burly V-8s that turned mid-size coupes into muscle cars. This 1968 Grand Prix is a great example, as it packs a Pontiac 400 V-8 behind its stylish perimeter grille and hidden headlights. The engine bay is almost as clean as its white-upholstered interior and the asking price is right at the current #4 (Fair) value. This was the last year for Grand Prix on GM’s B-body platform, but the chassis lived on well into the 1990s and saw lots of suspension and brake upgrades over the years, so OEM plus modifications are a piece of cake.
The Solstice created quite a buzz when it was launched, with its design translating nicely from concept to production. It sold well and received solid reviews thanks to its spirited handling and solid grip. While its 2.4-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder base engine wasn’t anything special, the GXP model received a direct-injection 2.0-liter turbo four good for 260 horsepower that gave the compact roadster a solid shot of performance. GM Performance Parts also offered a warranty-backed Stage 1 kit that included a MAP sensor and a tune to add 30 more ponies and a boatload of torque for those that wanted to really surprise the pony cars of the era. This GXP comes with relatively low miles and some fitted luggage, which is good considering the convertible’s strange trunk situation. It’s an awful lot of top-down fun for $15,000.
Pontiac moved the Grand Prix to a long-wheelbase version of the A-body platform in 1969, giving its personal luxury coupe unique proportions. Chevrolet would follow suit with Monte Carlo in 1970. Like the Monte Carlo, the Grand Prix would offer upscale interiors and some powerful V-8 engine options. This clean example is powered by a 250hp version of Pontiac’s 400 V-8 and its interior, chrome, paint—possibly Lucerne blue—and vinyl top look to be in great condition. This one needs nothing, so if you’re looking for a turn-key cruiser it might be your best bet.
Check out the Hagerty Media homepage so you don’t miss a single story, or better yet, bookmark it.