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If there were a Mount Rushmore of muscle cars, the Pontiac GTO would be carved into George Washington’s spot. Widely acknowledged as America’s first true muscle car, the GTO (aka the Goat) only lasted a little longer than a decade, but its influence is still being felt in the high-performance vehicles of today. Born in 1964 as a performance option for the Tempest, the original GTO upgrade gave the car a powerful V8 engine plus a four-barrel carb and dual exhaust pipes. Pontiac rolled out the GTO in 1966 as a separate model to immediate success, moving nearly 100,000 GTOs that year alone thanks to its curvier styling, distinctive “stacked” headlights and even more powerful 389-cubic-inch engine; that engine increased in size to 400 cid the next year offering up to 360 hp. A redesign in 1968 added even more aggression to its curves plus more fastback-like styling to the GTO, along with dual hood scoops and an optional Ram Air II package. A new version of the GTO called The Judge (popular amongst enthusiasts and collectors) emerged in 1969 with a hugely powerful Ram Air 400 engine and a new spoiler on the rear; it would stay in the lineup until just 1971 but remains famous for its usage in two films: Two-Lane Blacktop and Dazed and Confused. The GTO’s initial run lasted through 1974, when it returned to where it started: as an options package, this time on the LeMans and the Venture. While the badge was briefly revived in the mid-2000s for a three-year run as a midsize coupe, the GTO remains in the hearts and minds of car lovers as the vehicle that proved that power and performance could equal success, and kicked off the muscle car craze that led to creations like the Chevelle, the Charger and so many other beloved vehicles.