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‘Gran Turismo Omologato’ a name borrowed from Ferrari by Pontiac for their new Tempest. The GTO, considered by many to be the first true muscle car, came into being when Pontiac dropped a big block engine into the intermediate frame, creating the hottest performance car yet. The GTO would sell in large numbers fueling a competitionbetween GM, Ford and Chrysler that would keep the muscle car industry thriving until the OPEC embargo.
The ‘389’ engine wasn’t the only thing that made the Tempest into the GTO. Pontiac gave this car a complete performance package by including a stiffer suspension with specially valved shock absorbers, a seven blade I8-inch fan with a cut- off clutch, dual exhaust system, special 14′ wheels, a 10.4 inch Belleville clutch, and of course those twin (fake) air scoops mounted on the hood.
The GTO not only has plenty of horsepower, but is well built with a luxurious, comfortable interior. It rides and handles as a high performance car should. The ‘Goat’, as it would be called by its fans, would be discontinued after 1974. 6,644 convertibles were built in 1964.
- The first year for the GTO (short for “Grand Turismo Omologata”), often referred to as the “Goat” by fans
- Just 6,644 convertibles produced in 1964
- Price new: $3,081