1966 Pontiac 2 Door Coupe
Configuration: Longitudinal front engine
Engine: GTO V8
Horsepower: 335 at 5,000RPM
Torque: 430 ft/lbs
Transmission: 4-speed manual
A Little History
The first GTOs were released in the 1964 model year, following the massive success of the 1964 Pontiac Tempest GTO, which is widely considered to be the first “typical” muscle cars. Pontiac placed their most popular big-block engine, the 389cid V8 into the medium-sized Tempest body, resulting in noticeably increased power and speed. The model name “GTO,” which stands for Gran Tourismo Omologato, was intentionally borrowed from the Ferrari racing program at the time. It was meant to imply that the car had been homologated, or approved, for stock races and was being sold in limited numbers as a street-legal vehicle.
The GTO was available in three different body styles: the two-door hard top, the two-door convertible, or the two-door coupe, the one we currently have on display. It’s equipped with a dual exhaust system and has multiple carburetors; it was the last model year that the SCCA, Sports Car Club of America, permitted this in any models aside from the Corvette. It was the most popular muscle car in the first half of the 1966 market year, outselling all of its competitors. However, General Motors had recently made the questionable decision to forbid any intermediate-sized cars from being fitted with an engine larger than 400cid, which drastically hurt its sales after the release of the Chrysler 426cid Hemi later that year.
Did You Know?
The Pontiac GTO is nicknamed “The Goat.”
The Tri-Power option package was available only through 1966 on all Pontiacs for an additional $113.
The 1966 GTO was the most popular Pontiac ever made, selling a total of 96,000 units that year.