1972 Pontiac Grand Prix SSJ Reproduction

The “personal luxury car” niche – four-seaters with sporty characteristics and high-quality trim – was in full swing by the time the 1970s rolled around. John DeLorean contributed to the trend when he redesigned the Pontiac Grand Prix in 1969. This third-generation Grand Prix was placed on an intermediate platform, shorter by three inches but with the longest hood Pontiac ever offered. Meanwhile, as this new car evolved, George Hurst, running Hurst Performance, was yearning for a special-built Pontiac to carry his badge. Ace Wilson of Royal Pontiac in Royal Oaks, Michigan did something similar in the 1960s, taking Catalinas and GTOs to the track. Hurst’s interest soon produced the SSJ package, which was a specially trimmed Grand Prix. Here on eBay is a reproduction of one of these rare cars, a 1972 Pontiac Grand Prix, bid to $27,800. This car is located in Clearwater, Florida. We’ll review the similarities and differences between the seller’s creation and the real deal. The basics are here: these cars were usually Starlight Black or Cameo White, with the hood and later the trunk painted in Fire Frost Gold metallic.

The Gran Prix – Hurst or otherwise – offered two engines – a 400 cu. in. V8 and a 455. This one has the 400 which came stock with a four-barrel carburetor. When the Grand Prix was redesigned in 1969, it was a hit, blending muscle car performance with luxury looks and tipping the scale for Pontiac farther toward the younger buyer. But by 1972, GM was trying to get ahead of government regulations and performance was being strangled. This motor’s compression ratio declined from over 10 to about 8.2:1 taking horsepower down to 250. Several transmissions were offered originally until 1972 when the Turbo Hydra-Matic automatic become the only option.

The interiors of the Hurst car were usually white, so this car ticks that box. The real-deal console carried a Hurst logo; this one carries a couple. But the sunroof installed at Hurst was a metal sliding roof painted gold; this one is clear.

The Hurst SSJ cars had their roofs partially painted, with a white half landau installed over the back half. This car ticks those boxes as well. By 1972, the trunk lid was being painted, so checkmark there too. Gold-painted American Racing wheels were at all four corners; this car has something similar. A question mark is where all the Hurst logos are placed. This car has the logo all over – the fenders, twice on the trunk, in the engine bay, and at the corners of the landau top. SSJ cars I reviewed were, if anything, subtle in the logo department. Overlooking that point, this is a reasonable facsimile that a buyer should probably acquire for no more than regular Grand Prix money which seems to run from about $22,000 needing work to closer to $40,000 in great shape. A genuine SSJ sold for $56,000 about a year ago. What do you think of the value of this reproduction?

Comments

  1. GtiDave

    Royal Oak

    Like 2
  2. Michelle Rand Staff

    How did I get that wrong. I am actually in Detroit going to a wedding in Royal Oak tomorrow. Had a visit to the Henry Ford Museum today. A “must” for car fans.

    Like 10
    • angliagt angliagt Member

      Those wheels are the wrong ones.I seem to remember it as
      having the Lotus-type “Wobbly Web” ones.

      Like 2
    • Phil G

      Fantastic museum! Cars and so much more- they have the largest steam locomotive I’ve ever seen. With the tender, it seemed a city block long!

      Like 3
    • John Taylor

      I live in Australia and have been to that museum 3 times, it is interesting how they change the theme scenes, that prototype Mustang is interesting how it developed.

      Like 1
    • PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

      That car reminds me of one of my all-time favorite Hot Wheels models I had as a kid – the Jack Rabbit Special.

  3. John

    I had 4 of these. 69 to 72. The 69 had a 428. The other 3 had the 455. Nice car all around. I dont like this fake gp. Too many badges and in the wrong places. Give me a real gp. The four i owed were the sj models.

    Like 5
  4. Mike G.

    I find it insulting that GM appropriated the SSJ designation from the awesome Duesenbergs to market these barges!!

  5. Steve W Watson

    I’ve always loved these cars. If I had more room in my garage I’d sure be bidding on it. Unless the owner is interested in a Corvette in trade.

  6. Michael Berkemeier

    Pure junk. No way that auction has real money on it. That thing is atrocious.

    Like 2
  7. Gary Weightman

    I had a 1972 Grand Prix SJ it had a 455 in it. It had every option that Pontiac put out in 1972. The sticker price was $7400. Mine was burgundy with a white vinyl top white interior. It came with cruise control, tilt wheel, climate control air conditioning and heat it had a sunroof power seats power windows, power, trunk, release, AM/FM cassette. That Grand Prix was really fast is spun tire in first gear when shifted in the second it would chirp the tires. I got rid of the Grand Prix and brought a 1973 Corvette 454 four-speed, white black interior, power windows, and I swear I think that Grand Prix was faster

  8. Rtdreep Member

    I know beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but this sure doesn’t do it for me. Those inserts don’t resemble a true Hurst gold, but even if they did, playing off a white car, in those locations, just doesn’t work.

    Like 1

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