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455 V8 With Mods: 1969 Pontiac GTO Convertible

The GTO was born in 1964 as a performance option on the mid-size Tempest/LeMans. Internal sources at Pontiac only expected to sell about 5,000 units in the first year and were surprised when more than 32,000 deliveries took place. And the numbers would continue to grow from there. More than 72,000 GTOs would be produced for 1969, and just 4,700 of those were convertibles with a 400 cubic inch V8 and an automatic transmission. This ’69 drop-top was restored in 1985 and presents well but has departed from stock in a variety of ways. Located in Louisville, Kentucky, this GOAT would make a nice weekend car. It’s available here on eBay where the bids have reached $22,100 (no reserve).

While the majority of 1969 GTO convertibles came with a 4-barrel carburetor, Ram IV induction was available as an option. The seller’s car didn’t have that set-up when new but it has been added since. That’s just one of the changes the seller has made since owning it for at least the past 27 years. Those other modifications include the following:

  • swapping motors to a 455 cubic inch V8 from a 1973 Grand Prix; it has been modified from its original state for higher performance
  • balancing the engine and installing headers
  • switching the original automatic transmission for an Oldsmobile TH-400; this was a substitution made by a repair shop that the seller was unaware of for at least a year, but it works fine
  • adding 3.55 posi-traction to the rear end set-up; some work was also done on the front suspension, leaving an alignment that’s still needing to be done
  • installing factory-style air conditioning that required replacing the dashboard so it would have the correct duct work

This Pontiac was originally painted white, but the seller stripped it all away and substituted Verdoro Green (without clearcoat) and it continues to look nice. A prior owner didn’t care for the original parchment-colored interior and swapped everything for green that blends well with the exterior color. The car is not perfect, but the remaining issues don’t seem to be alarming ones. For example, there is pitting in some of the brightwork.

The headlights are the hidden kind and one of the vacuum operators leaks, so they’re apt to stay either closed or up but can be coaxed into the other position. The convertible top opens or closes fine but you must press hard on the switch to make it work. The car needs new tires and the brakes appear to be a bit soft to the touch although the power booster looks to be fairly new. As long as perfection or originality is not your primary goal, this could be a great car for weekend outings and car shows.


  1. Michelle H Rand Staff

    Green on green on green! I like it! Call it Kermit.

    Like 5
  2. CCFisher

    Ugh. Another GTO ruined by ugly green paint and upholstery. This would really pop in its original white over white configuration. Whoever changed it should be forced to eat avocados until he sees the light.

    Like 18
    • Dale S

      A good friend ordered a 1968 GTO coupe in Verdoro green, with a black vinyl (center folding armrest) bench seat (Lemans seat), hide-a-ways, rally’s, and redlines. The car was stunning, even though it had a standard floor mounted 3 speed. No better sounding car at idle!

      Like 3
    • John Oliveri

      I don’t mind the green paint, but the top and interior back to white in a flash, and if I’m gonna have the wrong motor, it’s gonna be a 69 428 motor, and a 4 speed, let’s at least make it superior to what it was

      Like 1
  3. Tommy

    Only thing good about it to me is it is a GTO and a convertible.. that’s it.
    Id pass… all the stuff that makes it a true goat is gone in my book

    Like 2
  4. Howie

    $27,400 now, no pics with the top down.

  5. BONE

    Wow, a “restored ” car with the wrong color paint, wrong interior ,wrong engine , wrong transmission , wrong rear , aftermarket radio including cutting the rear panels to put speakers in , added A/C , added Ram Air and who knows what else for $27,000 !

    Like 2
  6. Pete

    LOL yeah, He should had left it white over parchment. I would be bidding on it. But Green? Nope worst luck with green cars. Not buying another.

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