1969 Pontiac GTO Judge Convertible Barn Find!

1969 GTO Judge Barn Find

In the world of rare and desirable muscle cars, the Pontiac GTO Judge is one of the more sought after cars. Put it in convertible form and you have near unobtanium! Finding one is next to impossible, considering only 108 convertible Judges were built, the chances of finding one in a barn is even more unlikely. Yet reader GW has managed to find one of these elusive muscle cars parked in a barn. Well, actually he has known about this Judge since he was just a kid. The owner is a close family friend and has been like an uncle to GW. Over the years, they have talked about the future of this car and GW just recently got an incredible holiday surprise from his dear friend!

1969 Pontiac GTO Judge Convertible Barn Find

From GW: You are looking at a real 1969 GTO Judge convertible in storage since the 1970’s. This is a true Judge convertible. One of 108 built and this car is one of 29 Ram Air 3 automatic cars. This was a special order car. This car was ordered with every single option that was offered. It is believed to be one of only several cars ordered with every option, maybe even the only one, I was told.

1969 Pontiac GTO Judge Convertible Barn Find 4

The car has factory power windows, power locks, power seats, power antenna, power trunk, tilt wheel, cruise control, air, twin visor mirrors, AM/FM Stereo with factory under dash 8 Track, hideaway lights, I could not get a photo of the front of the car due to stuff everywhere around it. Every option you could think of. I saw the build sheet which shows several thousand dollars in extra options which was a lot of money back then. If you look at the inside photo, you can see all the power options. The car has not been moved in well over 30 years but at least it’s inside and dry. The car is all original and it looks like the paint will polish right up.

1969 Pontiac GTO Judge Convertible Barn Find 2

Here you can see a photo of the power windows and power locks on the door. I also sent a photo of the rear wing with the Judge on it and a photo of the Ram Air hood. Again, it’s very clear what this car is. It’s the real thing and was just an unwanted car when it was put away during the gas crunch of the 70’s. The paint and decals are original. The car has never been restored. This is a serious muscle car find and you guys are the first to see it! And no, it is not for sale!

1969 GTO Judge Convertible Ram Air

So what is that incredible holiday surprise I was speaking of earlier? Well, the owner of this Judge decided it was finally time for it to go to a new home where it can be brought back to life and enjoyed as it should be. Since they are essentially family now, he felt GW was the right guy for the job and has signed the title over to him! Now he just has the massive task of getting this Judge back on the road. He plans on getting it cleaned up first so he can evaluate what needs fixed and what can be left alone. He has promised me to keep us updated with his progress as he brings this rare beauty back to life! I have to thank GW for not only sharing his find with us, but we are honored to be the first to feature it! Also, remember, this car isn’t for sale. It has far too many memories for him to part ways with it right now. Good luck GW!

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Comments

  1. Jim B

    WOW. GW, it’s the car of a lifetime. Enjoy yourself, my friend! It won’t be easy, but it will be worth it! (And I don’t mean financially…)

  2. Duncan

    WOW…. Merry Christmas.

  3. Jim

    Lucky guy.

  4. Brian

    That is my dream car. GW you are one lucky bastard, lol.

  5. Bob Salter

    Wow, I’d imagine it was pretty pristine when it went into “Storage” in the 70’s. Hope the new owner takes the opposite approach to storage. Glad it has been liberated from the decline.

  6. Charles H.

    Lucky guy indeed!…..best of luck, and enjoy!…..please send in plenty of pics and info of your progress!

  7. JW

    From one GTO lover to another congrats and I’m jealous as hell !!!

  8. Birdman

    Gee Uncle GW, that sure is a swell car you have there…Have I ever told you you’re my FAAAAAVORITEIST uncle in the whole wide world? :D :D :D

  9. Dan the Man

    WoW!! What an incredible find!! Good Driving to you, G.W.!!

  10. PaulG

    Just goes to show you, “Do unto others…”
    Your friend is a special person, and the only thing I could add is “What took him so long!!”
    JK, Good luck and send us some in the daylight, cleaned up photos.

    Like 1
  11. Braktrcr

    I am confident you deserve the car. Enjoy every minute, every step

  12. randy

    It is great when folks think of family and friends first. I wish more people were like this, especially my family. Great job sir!! Go slow and steady, no rush.

  13. Dolphin Member

    This is a terrific example of one car guy passing on a special car to another car guy—just two guys and a car, where crazy greedy asking prices for rustbuckets don’t enter into it.

    It’s great to read a story like this. I’m tempted to look the valuation up in the SCM Price Guide, but I don’t really need to know, because it’s priceless. Thanks for telling the story, GW.

  14. Rick C

    Where is Gas Monkey Garage when you need them? Richard would have talked the guy down to 12,000 got it redone under the 3 week dead line, abd sold it for 2 million at Barrett Jackson.

    But really folks; I look forward to the updates.

  15. A.J.

    Great car. Too bad it is an auto.

  16. Robert White

    Poly tarps are under $25., BuckO. Frankly, when I see cars like this filled with 30 years of barn dust, and pigeon droppings, I shake my head in disbelief at a God that would allow anyone to let a car like that go to pot because they are too lazy, and cheap, to buy a tarp.

    Bob

    • Woodie Man

      We dont know the reason why it has been stored like this, but I agree with you that minimum effort is needed to cover any car. Funny how when it was put away nobody cared….and now all we see is dollar signs. Things are waaaaay out of hand. Thankfully it has an auto so I am not in the least jealous!

    • Steve

      Nowhere near as valuable as this GTO but just as loved, we had a professional rotisserie restoration done on my wife’s parent’s first car, a ’64 Corvair Monza 110hp, 4-speed that her Father on occasion drag raced in ’65 here in North Carolina with Ronnie Sox! It was truly a labor of love. With the intention of restoring the car, in 1977 her Dad removed all the chrome and placed the ‘Vair on cement blocks under a pecan tree and covered it with several tarps. He never did get around to the restoration and passed away 13 years ago as the car sat for the next 33-years. Since the car was well covered (tarps/covers were changed several times over the years) it was in very good shape even outdoors. When my wife and I were dating I told her if we ever got married we were going to have that car restored! “Betsy” now looks and run great. (I have a ’72 Camaro nearly identical to my first car which was a ’71) My parents always had Pontiacs and I love the 60s-70s best. Good luck GW and I’m sure well deserved! Looking forward to seeing your Goat back on the road!

  17. randy

    Tarps can easily do more damage than good. I’m not sure in this case though. Maybe he could have put the top up at least. I would not turn it down though.
    This story will have a great ending, non the less.

  18. 64 bonneville

    An unobtainium gift ! Who says there is no Santa Claus. It is tales like this that gladden my heart to be part of the old car hobby for many, many years. GW you have been richly blessed, not so much with the gift of the car, but with the love and friendship of a car guy, among other family members. Just do what is needed to make a driver of it and collect a huge number of trophies in the Historical Preservation of Features class at shows. Hopefully when the time comes, you will have a daughter or son or another family member to pass it on to keep its’ provenance.

    • Josh Staff

      GW actually told me he hopes he can pass this car on to his kids one day! He also plans on cleaning the car up and hopefully get it running without have to do any major restoration work. With any luck, he will be able to preserve this car as is!

  19. Sneezy McGee

    Could be the angle of the pictures but that looks like a hardtop rear deck wing. Convertible wings for 1969 were wider.

  20. Jim

    Love the car! I am a Pontiac man myself. Why no mention of the Trans Am sitting beside it. Is it for sale?

  21. Kevin

    super good positive news

  22. Mark S Member

    GW I congratulate you firstly on your life long friendship, at least your friend kept the car out of the elements. The first place I’d take this car is to a professional detailer to clean it up. You might be surprised at the condition of the car, it is probably much better than it looks in the pictures. Especially if the storage was at least dry, keep us posted on the progress of this rare gem.

  23. Brian

    I’ll never understand why anyone would store a convertible with the top down. I had a neighbor that had a 69 firebird convertible stored in his gargae for years with the top down. The car was beautiful but had an inch of dust covering it inside and out. All that time and I never even knew the car was there till 2 weeks after he moved away and a flatbed came and dragged it out of the garage. I hope he sent them to pick it up and it wasn’t abandoned there.

  24. sir mike

    beautiful find…a lot of work ahead for you….and dare I say..people that do this to cars should be shot…

  25. Doug

    Hmmmm…..

    To much work. I would’ve turned it down.

    NOT!!!

  26. DanielDC

    Congratulations to you. Nice to see that there are people who think keeping it in the “family” is better than the quick buck. Good luck on the restoration of this true gem. Please keep us up to date on the progress. BTW – I’m jealous as hell.

  27. Jim R.

    I love most muscle cars, but WOW. Even if the paint is not perfect, don’t restore it. WOW! I love barnfinds.com

  28. shawn

    great gift who cares what it cost. its a keeper in my eyes, I have a 70 455 convertible.

  29. Pete

    Happy Christmas! Enjoy

  30. Alanjnc

    Very cool!!!
    Don’t forget the update posts!!
    Alan

  31. Cassidy

    What a great gift! Keep us informed on what you’re doing to the car! Has Alan F. done anything with his Judge that was featured in July?

    • Alanjnc

      Cassidy,
      The judge is coming back together. The “surprise” (which I knew HAD to be somewhere ) was right below the cowl stainless piece….nothing but air (rust) which went into the dash. New cowl piece from the air box back and a dash repair. All fixed and being assembled!

  32. piper62j

    Top shelf !!!

  33. OhU8one2

    To the new owner. Has reality sunk in yet? Do you know this is the Holy Grail of Goat’s. It doesn’t get any sweeter than this. Here is my nickels worth of advise. Photograph,document,research,research,attend car shows,join a club GTOAA,talk to other owner’s,stay organized, write tons of notes,keep it clean. And set up a plan,stick with that plan,start each project from beginning to end before starting a new one. If you get frustrated ,ask question’s,the Internet is fantastic at giving answer’s quickly. Secure the car in a lockable shop,insure the car immediately. When it’s done,DRIVE It! I want my son to hear all the stories about cars and the time frame in history. Seeing it drive past will spark the interest. The ol tin Indian has been passed,and YOU are now it’s caretaker. I wish you the best in the future! Remember we’re ALL watching from here on. Take a deep breath,and welcome to the BF family.

  34. john

    OhU8one2 is spot on!
    Lucky fella with this car. I wish you a good journey of restoration and then many miles pf pleasure with this fabulous car.

  35. Doug Roberts

    GW, you are very blessed, but I believe you deserve it! I agree with the Holy Grail comments. I also wish you a good journey of restoration and then many miles of pleasure with this fabulous car. BTW – One of my car club friends has one of the 28 other 1969 Judge Ram Air convertibles. It is completely original, loaded, and beautiful. He shows it at all of our local shows. If you wish to make contact with him, please send me an email. We are in Arizona, close to Scottsdale.

  36. van

    You know I’d love to see a show where this car is being restored with amateurs and professionals. You know a step by step of before and after. Somebody should contact Velocity and Year One about a show. I’d watch that. How about “BarnFinds” on Velocity, pro’s and owners take time to restore the car. This is how the non pro can do a realistic restoration on a somewhat limited budget. What must be perfect and what’s ok when it’s just good enough.
    Rock on boomers.

    • Josh Staff

      Great idea Van! That’s one show I’d watch!

  37. A.J.

    Awesome car but a couple of nits. Since all Judges came with the RA III at a minimum the real holy grail is the Judge Convertible with the RAIV 4 speed. Also, I would put a stock convertible with the RAIV 4 speed in front of a judge convertible with RAIII (4 speed or auto). Still a great car. Good luck with the resto.

  38. Nessy

    The comment about a Ram Air 4 car being the real “Holy Grail of Goats” may not be the case when it comes to this car. Since many muscle car convertibles were loaded up cars and most hardtop cars were stripped down models for speed, plus, the fact that you could not order factory air with the Ram Air 4 and this car has air, I would say if air was offered with the Ram Air 4, this car would have had it too. I guess air was a more important option for whoever ordered this car. Ram Air 4 cars only had 4hp more, or so they claim. I was behind the wheel of both a Ram Air 3 and a Ram Air 4 GTOs and did not feel much of a difference, if any with power. With this said, I think that the car we are looking at is the official “Holy Grail of Goats”. I mean for real, how many GTOs have factory power seats, ect, let alone a Judge Convertible? For this car, I don’t think it matters that it’s not a Ram Air 4. This car is one of one.

    • randy

      I’m going to side with Nessy on this one, for the simple fact that some folks prefer to ride in comfort and luxury, even in a muscle car. This car you could easily drive to car shows in comfort, on a hot sunny day. I bet this would sit right up there with ANY Judge, in comparable condition.

  39. A.J.

    The top end musclecars are valued based on the engine/tranny. Performance options factor in but stuff like A/C, power windows, etc screams cruiser and not drag strip. The RAIV is a drag engine while the RAIII is a performance hop up on the stock 400. There is no comparison. Apples to apples condition wise, a standard GTO convertible with the RAIV/4speed combo would bring 50% more than this car would bring.

  40. Trey

    There’s nothing “special-order” about this Judge. Unless PHS has been ordered, it’s either a car ordered by a customer or a dealership (perhaps for display?).

    Also not feeling Nessy’s comments – he could not be more wrong.

  41. Rob

    FYI.. for 1969, there were 6725 Judge hardtops, and 108 Judge convertibles w/Ram Air III; out of those 108, only 31 had the optional A/C with automatic trans.. yep, to still be all there, a damn rare car. As it’s gonna be passed thru the family, ’tis imao even more so :) See for Spec’s: http://www.gtoheaven.com/gtostats/69gto.html

    • Trey

      Rob, you have your numbers wrong.

      6,725 Judge hardtops and 108 ragtops were made in TOTAL.

      31 GTO convertibles were built with the RAIII/auto combo. That includes regular GTOs and Judges.

      787 Judges had AC, which is a bit over 10%.

      • Rob

        @Trey.. my point was NOT about the amt of Judges with AC (I knew that #), it was that it was a Judge ‘convertible’ w/AC and automatic trans, and just one of those 31 total GTO and/or Judges specially ordered that way, ‘n that translates to a ‘bit’ under 5% of those 787 Judges produced, and of course, how many of those could possibly still be left?

        Personally I wish I hadn’t sold my ’65 Grand Prix back in ’70, as it was an unusual beast that I’d ordered ‘special’, i.e. when GM would take it off the line for those ‘options’ back then. I’d ordered it with a white exterior, equipped with the 421 HO Tri-power option, close ratio M-21 4-speed Muncie, posi-rear, the Catalina’s 2+2 dash w/tach, optional bench seat w/blue-black brougham interior, ‘n every other power and radio option available.. cost me an extra $2500. up front on order, over the base GP price which I then financed. ‘Twas all the luxury I wanted, but when that urge hit me, ‘n I put pedal to the metal, it went like greased hell-fire. I often wonder if it survived, the ‘build-sheet’ taped under the back seat would get many a peep these days scratching their heads.

  42. Dj

    Great car. I’m restoring my 72 Lemans Sport. After repairing a hole in the cowl, I painted it and was installing the carpet and found this. So really look your rare car over good for rust.

  43. A.J.

    If you take a GTO with the RAIII/Conv/Air/Auto combination the only thing that is important to the value is the RAIII/Conv combination. Honestly, the Air is a wash as some people might like it down south and other guys are purists and think it makes the car a boulevard cruiser. The Automatic transmission is a big negative and price guides will tell you 10% for the manual but in reality it is closer to 20-25%.

    Also, other than the RAIII engine option the Judge package is a bunch of decals that some guys like and others don’t. So again a wash. The engine/conv combination is the only thing that really matters here.

  44. Nessy

    Trey says “nothing special order” about this Judge while A.J. thinks it’s a wash because of the automatic and the factory air? So guys, how many Judge convertibles have any of us seen just like this one? None. What makes this car more special than just about any other Judge known to date are several things….First, of course it’s a convertible, second, the car is LOADED WITH EVERYTHING and last, it’s been an unknown car in hiding since the 1970’s that is all original including the paint. Geez, that car looks like it only needs a good wash and a wax to look pretty good again. The interior looks like it will really clean up as well. That car should never be restored. Just clean it up. This looks like one of the greatest barn finds of the year and I think we all know it.

    • JW

      I totally agree with you Nessy.

    • randy

      I still agree, it seems like some guys here would just pass up a dolled up car like this. It’s a good thing too, as they would yank out the trans, and jerk out the A/C.

  45. Trey

    @Rob

    You said “out of those 108, only 31 had the optional A/C with automatic trans” and I merely responded you are incorrect as that number is for all GTO RAIII/auto ragtops and not just Judges.

    @Nessy

    No one is saying this car is not special. But when it comes to Pontiacs, AC/automatic doesn’t bring a premium to Judge folks. And I’d want to see the PHS to actually know what “loaded with everything” means.

  46. A.J.

    Don’t misunderstand me, car is very cool and certainly rare.

    I was simply trying to dispel the “holy grail” talk.

  47. Mark

    NICE car!! Looks like a mid to late Trans Am next to it!

  48. krash

    Wow GW…..you were definitely on Santa’s Good List this year….Just amazed that he was able to stuff it down your chimney…

    Good Luck!

  49. Utes

    ‘…….it looks like the paint will polish right up.’

    Luvin’ it !

  50. SD

    Just a note, that’s not an original Judge. I know the car, I grew up with it. Was my dad’s car. We’ve got the original build sheet, and it did not have the Judge option on it. I drove the Trans Am next to it in the late 80’s, was a fun car, and has the 4.9 Turbo in it.

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