Benched Beauty: 1972 Pontiac Grand Prix – SOLD!
September 25, 2021 Update – We confirmed the seller of this Pontiac Grand Prix “Classifind” deleted their listing, so we’re now able to call this one “SOLD!” While this one got away, please reach out either by email or call us directly if you’d like to be informed when we come across something similar.
The car that wasn’t supposed to be. The 1972 Pontiac Grand Prix based on the second-generation John Z. DeLorean design. Pontiac originally scheduled an all-new third-generation for a 1972 model year launch to replace the second-generation model launched for 1969. However, a 67-day corporate-wide strike at GM in late 1970 delayed the company’s 1971 “B” and “C” full-size model introductions consequently then set back 1972 model production plans. Consequently, 1972 Grand Prixs such as this restored example originally listed in September 2021 in Rittman, Ohio features minor trim and styling changes compared to a 1971 model. However, this example is special in that it features the rare bucket seat delete option. Buyers who deleted the standard Strato bucket seats and console in favor of a bench seat received a price credit on their new Grand Prix.
This recently restored, rust-free Alamaba-sourced car is currently being offered at $21,000. Comparing that price against the Hagerty Insurance Online Valuation Tool confirms the private seller has their Grand Prix priced between this guide’s #3 “Good” estimate of $16,800 and its #2 “Excellent” appraisal of $25,800. Similarly, the Collector Car Market Review Online Tool reveals the seller’s ask falls between this guide’s #1 #2 “Very Good” estimate of $14,500 and its “Excellent” appraisal of $23,725.
Forced with a carry-over design for 1972, Pontiac designers made minor styling revisions on the 1972 Grand Prix that included a new cross-hatch grille up front and triple cluster taillights in the back. Inside, the burled-elm trim was replaced by a new teakwood design, and upholstery trim patterns for vinyl and cloth selections were revised for both bucket and bench seat offerings. Engine offerings remained the same as before with the major change being the change in power measurements from the previous gross method on a dynamometer to the new net ratings as installed in a vehicle with accessories and emission equipment which made the horsepower ratings of 1972 models lower than their 1971 counterparts though actual performance did not change much between the two years. Under the net horsepower measurement system, the standard 400 cubic inch (6.6 Liter) V8 with a four-barrel carburetor was now rated at 250 horsepower.
At mid-year, Pontiac released a radial tire option for the Grand Prix, which increased the wheel diameter from the standard 14 inches to 15 inches. This was the first time that Pontiac offered a radial tire option for the entire model year. In 1968, Pontiac announced a radial tire option for the GTO that was quickly discontinued due to production problems. Also at mid-year, a new “Fasten Seat Belts” light with a buzzer was added to comply with Federal safety regulations. This light was located in the speedometer pod and the speedometer was changed from displaying a high of 140 mph to 120 mph.
Consumers likely don’t remember that when GM was the largest automobile manufacturer in the world, it was fair game for each division to compete against other General Motors’ Brands. Despite both cars being based on GM’s G-Body architecture at the time, check out how Chevrolet’s marketing department tried to pan the more expensive Grand Prix against the Monte Carlo for 1970:
As one of the last minted Baby Boomers who spent much of his elementary years riding around in the back seat of 1969 Pontiac Grand Prix Model J, nicely restored versions hold a special place in my heart regardless of color combination. However, as rare as the option is, the character of the Grand Prix’s personal luxury is lost with the bench seat option.
Here’s the seller’s description:
“Absolutely gorgeous 72 GP. Numbers matching 400ci with Automatic transmission. Both were completely rebuilt 600 miles ago. This Grand Prix is no ordinary model. It is equipped with the rare bench seat option. You’re likely to never see another one. Alabama rust-free car was completely disassembled and repainted the right way. Color is Shadow Gold. 75k original miles on the body. Everything is like new. Car runs and drives like a dream. Also has a new top and the bumpers re-chromed. Won’t find a nicer classic Pontiac for the money.“
Show or go: what would you do with this restored Grand Prix? Comment below and let us know!