87k Original Miles: 1969 Pontiac Catalina

Disclosure: This site may receive compensation from some link clicks and purchases.

While it was essentially the same under the skin as the 1968 model, 1969 brought a major update in styling for the Catalina. This gave the car a far squarer and more aggressive look that has stood the test of time quite well. This Catalina looks like it is in fairly reasonable condition, and seems ripe for a restoration project. Barn Finder Ikey H spotted this Pontiac for us, so thank you for that Ikey. The Catalina is located in Wood River, Illinois, and is listed for sale here on Craigslist. The owner is asking $3,000 for this classic.

At first glance, things don’t look too bad with this Catalina. The owner is a bit light-on with his photos and description, so we are in the dark about the condition of the floors and frame. It appears that there are a few rust spots on the car, mainly in the bottom corners of the front doors and around the rear wheel arch on the passenger side, but otherwise, it does appear to be fairly solid. The paint looks pretty reasonable, while all of the trim and glass looks to also be in good condition.

What is under the hood is one of those things that is going to have to remain a great mystery. The owner does claim that the car has only traveled 87,600 miles, but doesn’t indicate whether he has any evidence to back this. We know that under the hood will either be a 400ci or 428ci V8, but we don’t know which it is likely to be. What we do know is that the transmission is the 3-speed Turbo Hydramatic unit. The owner doesn’t indicate how well the car runs. There are also the same sorts of questions hanging over the interior, although it looks like it is red vinyl. The dash looks like it is free of cracks, while the back seat looks like it has managed to avoid the sun-rot that can impact on cars of this age.

With more aggressive styling than its predecessors, the 1969 Catalina is a car that lends itself nicely to some custom touches. There is certainly room under those wheel-arches for some much larger wheels and tires, while dropping the ride-height just seems to accentuate this look. However, if someone wants to buy this car and restore it to its original condition, I certainly wouldn’t criticize them for that. If the car is solid and clean, then the asking price could represent a pretty decent entry-point for a project car.

Auctions Ending Soon


  1. Mountainwoodie

    Looking at this gives me the shakes! When my mother got divorced her first car was a new gold colored ’69 Catalina..why I have no idea. She had no clue about cars and was probably talked into by a fast talking salesman or saleswoman. I hated that car,and I still do. They are boat………..anchors.

    Like 0
  2. TimS

    Cue the “2 doors too many” & “twice the doors, half the price” posts by folks thinking they’re the world’s most clever commenter.

    I don’t like red interiors but would greatly enjoy daily driving one of these cars. Would look like a muscle car on today’s streets.

    Like 3
  3. Capriest

    Paint it black put on some more aggressive looking rollers and a nice dual exhaust and you’ve got a nice sinister looking classic to cruise in. The red interior is a big bonus here as it wouldn’t look out of place. It really needs to be a darker color with such a mean looking grill the white just doesn’t fit for me on this car. If it’s relatively solid underneath and runs decent it seems like a good deal.

    Like 1
  4. David

    4 doors are creeping up in value; so many went to the crusher. Since the seller and our reporter leaves us hanging… For those really insterested; make that call, does it have A/C? CID? We’re disk brakes standard?

    Like 0
  5. Mark

    I would drive the dog snot out of it. When I was 16 my dad gave me $1,000 to buy a car with. My mom didn’t drive.

    It was 1976. I found a 69 Pontiac Bonneville. Room for 8 teen guys or 4 couples.

    I had entirely too much fun in that car. 428 Quadrajet required 97 octane leaded gas. 76.9 cents/gallon. Good times.

    Like 4
  6. Fred W

    Well, even if it’s the “lowly” 400, your HP will be either 290 or 330. Not a bad place to start considering the 80’s version would have about half that! The perfect sleeper and priced right.

    Like 1
  7. Kenneth Carney

    Had a wagon version in ’78. Mine ran a
    330 horse 400 V-8 mated to a T400 tranny. It also had a 12 bolt posi out back
    with HD rear suspension too. Loved that
    car! Only real trouble I had with it was in
    winter time when slush and snow would
    freeze the starter solid! I agree with you
    Fred, paint it black or dark blue metallic
    and that would make for one sinister
    looking ride. I’m planning on doing that
    to my ’91 F-350 pickup when I get the
    cash to do it. Great way for someone to
    get into the hobby on the cheap. These
    were solid family cars that ran forever.
    I really like it!

    Like 0
  8. David Rhoces

    my old man had a 69 2dr h.t. ….said it was the best car he had ever had

    Like 0
  9. 68custom

    Change the lousy nylon timing gear add some duals and get it running well! Then add lowered coil springs and shocks, disc brakes up front and a set of ralley twos. Then cruise into the sunset!

    Like 0
    • Rokky

      Yes, 68 Custom changing the timing gear is the first thing I did when the car was new..
      BTW I still own it and that 400 CID 290 HP is a sleeper.
      My 2 DR HT is white with the Blue interior.
      The Red just didn’t do it for me.

      Like 1
  10. Jerry C

    Seeing this brings back memories. In ’74 my dad bought his boss’s ’69 Catalina convertible. It had a factory 8 track player mounted on the hump. My dad put two tops on it. It leaked like a sieve. There was an interior gutter that was supposed to catch the rain, then discharge it to the exterior. The water never made it to the exterior, so much rusting ensued. This became my first car. Had some good times with it, but sold it when the floor boards rusted through.

    Like 0
  11. John Nydam

    Boy, every time I see a beautiful 4 door sedan the first thing that comes to my mind is pieces cutting it up to build that next station wagon,GTO or Firebird, the parts abound to build something. I know crazy isn’t it!

    Like 1

Leave A Comment

RULES: No profanity, politics, or personal attacks.

Become a member to add images to your comments.


Get new comment updates via email. Or subscribe without commenting.

Barn Finds