1966 Pontiac GTO

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    The 1966 Pontiac GTO, which was a collaboration of three Pontiac Division engineers, the most famous being John DeLorean had controversy written over it. DeLorean named it for a Ferrari car which didn't set well with automotive purists. But American's first "muscle car" sold well until the Fed started to meddle with the automotive industry with their restrictive car mandates.

    The GTO was a lightweight-body Tempest compact with heavyweight engine, a 389cid Pontiac V8 from the Pontiac Catalina and Bonneville. With beefed up brakes and suspension and three two-barrel carburetors, sales reached a peak of 95,000 units mainly to power-hungry young drivers who were barely into their third decade of age and who called their GTOs the "goat".

    1966 Pontiac GTO

    Features included turn signals in the grille that were meant to copy Europe-made cars, stacked headlights that were retained until 1970, heavy-duty shocks and springs, along with a stabilizer bar, kicked-up rear fender, and a slightly tunneled backlight. Interior features included ashtray lights, cigarette lighter, carpeting, and a power top for convertibles.

    Options for the interior included Rally Cluster gauges, close-ration four-on-the-floor, center console, walnut grain dash insert. Options for air-conditioning and power steering could set up buyers $343 and $95 respectively. The base 335 bhp could be pushed out to 360 bhp for an extra $116.

    GTO Specs and Stats

    Production  96,946 (1966, all body styles)

    Body Styles  Two-door, five-seater hardtop, coupe, and convertible.

    Construction  Steel unitary body.

    Engine  389cid V8s.

    Power Output  335-360 bhp.

    Transmission  Three-speed manual, optional four-speed manual, or three-speed Hydra-Matic automatic.

    Suspension  Front and rear coil springs.

    Brakes  Front and rear drums, optional discs.

    Maximum Speed  125 mph

    0-60 mph  6.8-9.5 sec

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