31k Mile Survivor: 1970 Pontiac Bonneville 455

Foggy photos or not, this 1970 Pontiac Bonneville looks like one fantastic survivor sedan. The fact that it has a mere 31,292 miles on it over the last 51 years makes it even better, and even more unusual. The seller has it posted here on craigslist in Stillwater, Minnesota and they’re asking $5,500 cash for it.

Unless I’m mistaken, this car appears to be wearing possibly its original bias-ply “triple-stripe” whitewall tires? Other than the left-front tire which is a dual-stripe tire. The seller mentions that it could use new tires – yes if they’re decades old, or even a decade old, that’s very true. My ’66 Lincoln Continental coupe had “brand new” bias-ply tires on it but they were four decades old and even though they looked like new, they probably weren’t too safe for use on public streets.

1970 was the last year of the fourth-generation Pontiac Bonneville and I think they’re absolutely beautiful. They were partially redesigned for 1970 with an interesting new grille and headlight treatment and The seller mentions having the rear fender skirts which I would proudly use. On the car, I mean… I love that look but it’s probably 50/50 as to whether others like fender skirts or not. Another love-it-or-hate-it feature is this car doesn’t have a vinyl top. Any thoughts on that? Good? Bad? Either way works?

The interior looks beautiful with the nice, blue brocade fabric seats both front and rear. Not having power windows in a luxury car doesn’t seem to have been as big of a deal in this era but I always notice when a big car that was about the top-of-the-line for any car maker doesn’t have power windows and power locks. One thing that’s missing by this point in most cars would be the wing windows or vent windows in the front. I wish those would come back but as with operable windows in office buildings, they probably never will, at least on a large scale.

A weekend spent on detailing the engine would do wonders and a wonderful engine it is. This is Pontiac’s 455 cubic-inch V8, a powerhouse that had 360 horsepower – I’m assuming that this isn’t the high-output version which had 10 additional hp. The seller says that it’s been sitting in a garage for a while and it could use a tune-up but should run great. If I had a longer garage this would be very tempting since it’s only a half-hour from our house so no shipping charges for a change. But, at almost 19-feet in length, it wouldn’t fit. Are there any fans of this era Bonneville out there?

Fast Finds


  1. Bluetec320 Bluetec320 Member

    Wow! What a breath of fresh air to actually see a decent car at a decent price! I am so tired of seeing the daily parade of “lipstick on a pig flippermobiles” with outrageous asking prices. Good luck to the buyer and seller!

    Like 37
    • Hoss

      I Totally Agree with you !!!!

      Like 11
      • bry593

        I had a 70 hardtop Catalina with a 400. Pretty cool. Love that front end treatment. Back bumper has to grow on you.

        Like 3
    • Terry

      Except the ad is gone. I think it was fishy somehow.

      Like 1
      • Mikefromthehammer

        Sure sounds like a scam. Too bad. If it wasn’t a scam someone would have gotten a beauty.

        Like 4
  2. jwzg


    Like 2
    • Scotty Gilbertson Staff

      Dang, I didn’t think it would last long. Here’s the original ad, since craigslist did away with their “adsaver”.

      Like 13
  3. JCA

    Gone already probably to a flipper. That was a deal

    Like 5
    • Bluetec320 Bluetec320 Member

      Unfortunately, your right, it probably went to a flipper. Wait about 6 months and it will show up on EBay with a 18K BIN, lol.

      Like 9
  4. normadesmond

    Loved the fender skirt comment. 👍

    Like 4
  5. MattR Member

    Maybe Scotty changed his mind and bought it?

    Like 5
  6. MLM

    I didn’t think this Poncho would last that long at that price.Somebody got a deal. Can’t say that I blame them.

    Like 4
  7. CCFisher

    Put a set of Rally II wheels on it, put the skirts back on, and it will look sensational.

    Like 4
  8. J.B.K. from Lancaster Co. PA

    Putting the skirts back on would be the first thing I would do. Beautiful car. Love the color. I had a ’72 Caprice coupe in this shade of blue which I believe Chevy called Ascot Blue.

    Like 4
  9. Mark

    Nice car. A friends family had a 70 Catalina this color blue with a white painted top. Their son in law was service manager at the local Pontiac dealership. They drove it 8 years.

    I like the 1970 front end.

    Like 2
  10. bone

    Wow, this brings back memories of high school ! My best friend ended up with his parents dark green 70 Catalina 4 door hardtop . It only had a
    350 but that car would cruise and the ride was so smooth . Once when driving in rush hour on a 4 lane road a 280z pulled in our lane, causing my friend to swerve; before he could get back into our lane he hit a Pinto left headlight to left headlight . I didn’t have seat belt on and never even had to put my hand on the dashboard – the Pinto absorbed the impact. When we got out of the car , the bumper of the Catalina was sitting on the top of the Pinto’s tire ! It basically wrecked the 3/4 nose of the little Ford ; we backed off the Pinto and drove the Pontiac to his house , all the was bad was the fender had a bend and the fiberglass around the headlights was broken, even the end of the bumper, being a three piece item just moved a bit. $75 later we had a fender and the headlight panel , put them he got enough insurance money to get the car repainted. .

    Like 7
  11. John Oliveri

    Guy on my block had a 69 Bonneville 2 dr, blue with black top and interior 428, every option available in 69 including factory 8 track mounted to the Trans tunnel, thing was a torque monster, had the 390 hp version, beat a lotta unsuspecting muscle cars

    Like 1
    • Mark

      I had a 69 Bonneville in high school. (1976)

      It would chirp through tires in first and second.

      Party barge. I had 8 guys or 4 couples in it often.

      Like 3
  12. S

    I really like this! Nice color inside and out. The interior is outstanding! OK with or without a vinyl top, though a vinyl top gives many cars a nice “two-tone” look. Not really a fan of fender skirts, at least on this body style. Even though the Bonneville was the top of the line Pontiac, Pontiac was not a top of the line brand. That would have been Cadillac or Buick. I’m not surprised to not see power windows or locks. People really did not order them much on cars then. Not till the mid 1980s. I only remember Cadillacs and Lincolns having them back then. People ordered options individually, and they were concerned about the overall price of the car and didn’t always want to load them up with options like they do now, and have a huge sticker price. Having the nicer trim, better engine, an automatic transmission, an AM radio, power steering and brakes was enough for most people then. A/C would have been a high cost additional option and not everyone got that either. Triple stripe white wall tires? Those are form the early 70s! They’re super cool but you can’t drive any distance on them. Only 31,000 miles? Crazy low after 51 years. This car must have spent a lot of its life in the garage – which isn’t a bad thing.

    Like 3
  13. Pete Jackson

    I have great memories of my 70 Catalina 400, spent 3 nights in the car while driving from Louisville to Los Angeles with my new wife. 72,000mls 1 owner car that we sold in LA for $100 Great days then with great cars

  14. Howard A Member

    My friends dad just out of HS had Poncho like this, only a 2 door. 455, that car rolled like thunder. He didn’t get it often, because his dad knew he’d beat the heck out of it, so we used his moms Cutlass,,,and beat the heck out of that. When he bought it, he got a job in Milwaukee, but hadn’t moved the family from Phillips, so he commuted on the weekends. Normally, a 4.5 hour drive today, he’d make it in just over 3 hours, and that was on 2 lanes. Aside from towns, he never went below 80. You could do that back then, N.Wis. was still pretty desolate. I know it doesn’t look like much, but Pontiac was known for it’s road cars.

    Like 1

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