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Numbers Matching Project: 1966 Pontiac GTO

Many consider the Pontiac GTO as the “godfather” of the mid-size muscle car market. From its introduction as an option on the Tempest/LeMans, practically every U.S. automaker jumped on board with their own factory hot rods. This example from 1966 is numbers matching and runs/drives but it’s going to need at least a cosmetic makeover. Located in Riverside, California, this “GOAT” is available here on eBay where the next bid over $10,099 could take it home.

When the car was first proposed, the bean counters at Pontiac thought they’d only sell 5,000 copies a year. Guess what? They were wrong. More than 32,700 were built in 1964 and another 75,300 were produced in 1965. That demand was enough for Pontiac’s czars to decide to make it a series of their own the next year. The public responded by scooping up nearly 97,000 GTOs in 1966 (which would be the peak before the nameplate was retired in 1974). 80% were sold with the 389 cubic inch V8 with a 4-barrel carburetor (the rest had Tri-Power).

Not much is known about the history of this 57-year-old Pontiac. The VIN properly decodes this vehicle as a ’66 GTO rather than a LeMans. The original 389 engine resides under the hood, backed by an automatic transmission. Since the seller says it runs and drives, we assume the car can at least be driven around town. We’re told that everything works, so (to me) that means the brakes, lights, and other important functions.

The mileage is 80,000, which may or may not be accurate. The body seems okay, but the black-over-red paint (maybe an older respray) has seen better days and is due for a refresh. The same can be said of the interior which comes with bucket seats and a console. As a project, this appears to be a complete car – and then some: there’s a spare transmission in the trunk, but no mention is made if it fits this car.


  1. Cooter Cooter Member

    About as original and complete of a Goat I have seen here and has great potential. Being from the Southwest, the old tin worn won’t present the problems many of these do. Restore this to original condition and you’ve got a real gem!

    Like 5
  2. Bub

    I see what I think is an A/C compressor front and centre under the hood. But I see no other indicators that it is an air conditioned car.(?)

    Like 1
  3. Ken

    Smog pump its california

    Like 2
  4. Bub

    Thanks Ken. Didn’t know it was mandated that long ago.

    Like 2

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