Big Continental Kit: 1958 Pontiac Bonneville

The 1958 Pontiacs were a one-year wonder. All the tooling work that was done for the Chieftains, Super Chiefs, Star Chiefs and Bonneville’s were done for a single year of production. One that would ironically turn out to occur during a recession year for automobile sales. The cream of the crop was the Bonneville, and none were more specular that the 2-door hardtop with a Continental kit like the seller’s car. It’s a beautiful machine with a 20-year old restoration that can be viewed in person in Buffalo, New York. It’s available here on eBay were the bidding stands at $31,858 and the reserve has yet to be met.

Pontiac’s Bonneville was built between 1957 and 2005, usually on full-size platforms. The Bonneville became a separate model in 1958, available only as a two-door hardtop or a convertible and was one of the largest Pontiacs ever built. It had the honor of pacing the Indianapolis 500 that year. The Bonneville came with a 300 hp, 370 cubic inch V-8 with a four-barrel carburetor and dual exhausts as standard equipment. It was a big car by anyone’s yardstick, with a wheelbase of 122 inches, length of 212 inches and width of 77 inches. Because it was the top-line model, the series had the smallest of sales compared to the other Pontiac cars. 12,240 Bonneville’s were built for 1958, with 9,144 being hardtops like the seller’s car. Thanks to Pontiac Registry for the production info.

A friend of the seller has listed the car on behalf of the widow of the deceased owner. The ’58 Pontiacs were tail-fin-free, which perhaps makes them some of the most handsome Detroit cars ever built. Finished in white, the car has a massive presence from any angle you choose. We’re told the coupe was treated to a frame-off restoration 20 or so years ago and has held up well, save a chip or ding here and there. The restoration included all the trim and chrome pieces which still look fabulous. There is no mention of rust and – given the apparent constant inside storage of the car – we’re guessing none is there to be found.

There are no disappointments in the passenger cabin, with all the correct materials employed and having been babied. The automobile was well-appointed with power steering and brakes, power radio antenna, power windows and even speed alert which was a buzzer/warning light that went off when the driver went an excessive speed. This beautiful land yacht was powered by a 370 V-8 which could be had in more than one output configuration. It also came with the 4-speed Super Hydra-Matic transmission. Even with a car this heavy, the automobile should have plenty of giddy-up.

The mileage is low for the age of the vehicle at a presumed 50,000 miles. There is no reference to the Continental kit in terms of something original or added later. Either way, this has to be one of the largest ones on the market in terms of additional length that it adds to the rear section of the car where several people could hide in the trunk going into the drive-in movies.

There is mention of spare parts for a 1958 Pontiac, but they’re not part of the sale and would need to be discussed separately. The seller says the car will come with a transferrable registration and bill of sale as we’re told that the State of New York did not issue titles prior to 1973. This also tells us the owner must have bought the car sometime prior to that time. Hagerty has a great deal of faith in the resale value of these cars as Excellent will command nearly $60,000. So, if the bidding doesn’t get crazy toward the end – and the reserve isn’t too high – it might be a nice investment purchase for someone.


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  1. alphasud Member

    Beautiful car! I think the continental kit could serve as a picnic table for the family outing. Perfect car to show the neighborhood you have arrived.

    Like 17
  2. Howard A Member

    Wow, what a sweetheart. If some remember, a neighbor of my parents had a ’58 Bonneville, with fuel injection. It was THE classiest car in the neighborhood. Some may laugh at the continental kit, but it was a very fashionable option back then, and the ’58 Poncho wore it well. I look at this, and the choices for a car today, I just shake my head. These were REAL cars, not plastic tinker toys, when driving a car like this really meant something, you had great taste in automobiles. Beautiful cars.

    Like 37
    • Stan Marks

      I had a ’58 white Chieftain convertible. with light blue trim, white top and white boot. It didn’t have the continental kit or fender skirts. We drove it back and forth, from Philly to L.A., three times, in ’61 and ’62. First time out, on Rte 66.
      Talk about seeing the country… I have home movies of that trip.
      Traded it in, in ’64, for a new ’65 GTO.
      What a difference.

      Like 5
  3. MH

    Beautiful car. To bad the owner cant back it out of the garage to take some real pictures. Better pictures = more money I think.

    Like 11
    • OldMarine

      He’s dead…

    • OldMarine

      He won’t be able to do that, he’s dead. I know the former owner…

      Like 1
  4. Jim

    I guess I’m in the minority….I think continental kits are hideous.

    Like 38
    • Skorzeny

      I’m with you Jim, I think it’s horrendous. The car is a work of art, the kit, not so much.

      Like 13
    • Sherminator

      I like big butts and I cannot lie…

      Like 13
      • Howard A Member

        No you don’t,,,you’re just settling for one,, :)

        Like 5
    • Dovi65

      I’m not a big fan of them either. They may have been “all the rage” in the 1950s/1960s, but I feel they take away from the beauty of the vehicle.

      Like 2
      • Stan Marks

        IMHO, I don’t think so. Butt, I respect your wrong opinion. LOL!

        Like 1
    • Brian

      I agree Jim. I cant think of one car that looks better with the addition of a continental kit.

      Like 1
      • Bill McCoskey


        I agree, the vast majority of 1950s American cars don’t look right with an “extended” type of continental tire kit. There are of course a couple of cars that don’t look right when the tire is missing, for example; the Metropolitan. [It was built by Austin in England, but it was designed in the USA with input from Italy, so from a design point, it’s American.]

        The 2 exceptions I feel are:

        [1] The 1953-54 Packard Caribbean. I’ve seen 1 Caribbean that had the set-up removed, and all who were looking at the car said it simply didn’t look right The set-up was standard on the Caribbean those years.

        The 1955-56 Packard Caribbeans were already quite flamboyant, with their 3-tone paint work, Dick Teague’s “Cathedral taillights”, and bumper ends that wrapped around the taillight assemblies & contained the exhaust pipe exits, so Packard wisely didn’t even make the continental tire an option.

        [2] The first generation Rambler American from 1958-60. Because the taillights jut out quite a bit from the trunk lid and lower back panel, and the rear bumper is a simple style reminiscent of much earlier cars, when the continental tire is fitted to one of these, it looks like it was intended to be there from the beginning.

        My opinion, bolstered by most of the true car nuts & gear heads I know, feel the American car craze for continental tires quickly disappeared from use about the same time the rear fender fins disappeared as well.

        Like 2
      • moosie moosie

        It seems to be that the longer and lower the car is , particularly the rear deck area, the better the car looks with a “connie kit” especially if the car is running cruiser skirts. I was 11 when this car was new and remember the upper crust car guys running Bonnevilles, Olds 98’s ETC. while the blue collar guys ran Impala’s. It was a good time to grow up in.

        Like 3
    • wcshook

      Jim, you and many others, may not be from this era. I would have been about 6 or so. People put the continental kits on their cars much like people today, do the low rider thing, which I don’t like. While I don’t like the low rider, it isn’t my car, but theirs. Same deal for cars with the continental kits and other modifications.

      Like 3
  5. Spud

    And it’s a pet peeve, but I truly do not understand the habit of taking pictures of a car with it’s cover either only partially removed, or (like here) left sitting on a corner/fender. Totally makes no sense to me.

    Like 12
    • Robert White

      When car restorers or car enthusiast collectors start thinking about other things aside from car collecting they invariably end up selling their collection. When the FUN runs out of collecting and it comes time to sell the collection it is such a drag that sellers usually just go to the bare minimum when displaying the car for sale as they are no longer really interested in all the features that new car buyers of collector cars enjoy.

      When the enjoyment runs out so too does the selling job of a car enthusiast and that’s why they only pull the car cover off enough to photograph a majority of the car.

      The owner at least waxed and polished the car beforehand. That indicates that they are doing their level best to sell it before they have to work on it to the extent of deciding that they actually like the car again and no longer wish to sell it.

      That happened to me when I sold my 66 Acadian Canso Sport Deluxe.


      Like 5
    • Steve Clinton


      Like 1
  6. Will Fox

    I see the question on originality of the continental kit was made, but easy to figure out. Through Pontiac parts depts. one could order this option, but it was not a GM accessory; it was by an aftermarket co. The only cars that shipped with a cont. kit installed were Ramblers & Nashes. Anything else got one after delivery to the dealer.

    Like 7
    • Gordon

      All 1956 Thunderbirds were shipped with continental kits.

      Like 7
    • Bill McCoskey

      1953-54 Packards were available from the factory with continental tire sets. The came standard on the 1953-54 Caribbean convertibles.

      Like 2
      • Stan Marks

        Back in the late 90s,I took a group of Packard owners to Warren, Ohio.
        There’s a Packard Music Hall. They had a weekend show of Packards. Every conceivable model and year. Bill, it was like you were in Packard heaven.

        Like 1
      • Bill McCoskey


        Thanks for the comments, I’ve owned Packards since the mid ’60s, and drove them as everyday transportation for years. I’m familiar with Warren, Ohio. We attended the Packard Club National meet there in 2016.

        My “Packard Heaven” happened in 1973, when the club’s Motor City Packards region hosted members in Detroit, and we were actually allowed to drive our Packards down the “assembly line” and over the famous arch over East Grand Blvd. [Said arch, due to the city of Detroit’s neglect, collapsed this past winter.]

        We were also allowed to drive the Packards on the former Packard Motor Car Company’s 2.5 mile banked oval track. I watched as a V8 Packard Caribbean convertible drove at very high speed at the top edge of the banked corners.

        Like 3
      • Stan Marks

        Bill, that’s awesome you experienced the Packard Music Hall. I live on the Pa. line from Ohio, off I-80, 25 minutes from Warren.

  7. Johnny

    What a great beautiful car. This is a pride and joy automobile hear. Love it

    Like 5
  8. R Soul

    I was never a fan of Continental kits, it takes away from the look of the back end of this beautiful classic.

    Like 8
  9. Lance G Nord

    Wow… that’s stunning. My garage isn’t deep enough to store that car unless I get rid of the washer/dryer. I suspect my wife wouldn’t appreciate the tradeoff.

    Like 8
  10. Stan Marks

    This is what my ’58 Pontiac conv, looked like, until I traded it in for my new ’65 GTO.
    Only difference, between this pic & my car, mine didn’t have the ugly fender skirts.
    I drove that ’58, three times across the U.S. back & forth from Philly to L.A., in ’61 & ’82 on old Rte. 66.

    Like 10
  11. Stan Marks

    For some reason, I can’t attach a pic, of my ’58 white conv., with blue trim.

    • redwagon

      PIty as I would love to see it!

    • Howard A Member

      Sometimes I have that trouble. Has to be a certain jpeg size, whatever that means.

      • Stan Marks

        I hope this doesn’t confuse you, Howard…..

        The Advantages of JPEG. 1. High Resolution: One of the notable advantages of the JPEG standard is that it supports 24-bit color with up to 16 million colors. Hence, it has been widely used for compressing and encoding digital images with high resolutions.

    • moosie moosie

      Stan, I think members are the only ones able to post pictures.

      • Stan Marks

        Red & Moosie..A little favor…..
        If you go into your search engine & type 1958 white Pontiac Chieftain convert. blue trim. four pics will come up.
        The pic, on the far right, is the best one. Click on that pic, again & then copy the address & attach it here.
        I would greatly appreciate it, guys.

      • Stan Marks
      • Stan Marks

        Here’s our 2-tone blue ’55, we traded in for the ’58.

      • moosie moosie

        Stan, I tried but the pictures are not 8MB jpeg or smaller and I cannot get them to post here, that ’58 of yours was a stunning car,

    • Stan Marks

      As you can see, I was able to post the pics, after all. Thanks for your help, Moosie and guys.

  12. Joe haska

    As everyone has stated what a beatiful car. Also, I agree with some, not a fan of the continental kit, but is probably one of the biggest ones, I have ever seen. If I owned the car I would “86” the continental kit and keep it at the Man Cave or a conversation starter or as you said a picnic table.

    Like 3
  13. DON

    I’d ditch the Continental kit , I’ve never been a fan of them and it takes away the looks of the car IMO . Nothing else to hate on this car, its beautiful !

    Like 4
    • Stan Marks

      Seems most don’t care for the Cont. kit….. today.
      Back then, they were very popular.

      Like 7
      • Stan Marks

        IMHO, Of all the decades, in the modern era(50’s-today), cars of the 50’s had the best style. In the mid 60’s & beyond, many turned into boxes.

  14. Arby

    That dash reminds me of going to Vegas, baby!

    Like 2
    • Stan Marks

      7 come 11…….
      Snake eyes…

  15. LarryS Member

    Pontiac listed the continental kit as a dealer-installed option. Part number 988899 – $158.15.

    Like 9
    • Stan Marks

      That was big $$$ back then.

      Like 1
  16. ACZ

    That thing is L O N G! Also beautiful as is.

    Like 2
    • Stan Marks

      And heavy…

  17. charlie Member

    My driveway apron to an uphill driveway is not unusual, but the kit extension would hit the pavement every time going in or out, it would just scrape going in, but would be crunched the first time I backed out. The only ones that looked right to me were on the first series of Lincoln Continentals, ’41 – ’48 where the “trunk” was shortened and the tire sat outside.

    Like 1
    • Stan Marks

      I’ve got your driveway solution, Charlie.
      Install rear hydraulics in the rear.

  18. Rik

    Isn’t the point of a Continental Kit to get the spare tire out of the trunk?

    Like 6
    • Stan Marks

      Nothing to do with it, Rik. It was all about style.

      Like 2
    • Chuck Dickinson

      Absolutely. The factory GM accy c. kits on 58 Chevys, the ‘horseshoe’ bumper style, actually came with a trunk cardboard which covered the spare tire well in the trunk of 58s with all the directions on how to mount the spare tire cover and tire outside.

      Like 1
  19. no reply

    Seller says “4 speed automatic”.

    What transmission was that?

    Like 1
    • David Buswell

      I had 54 Cadillac with 4 speed automatic.Won every time I took it to Ubly dragway.

    • Bob C.

      That transmission is one of the original Hydramatics with 4 forward gears. The quadrant read PNDSLR with the S representing “super.” In other words, it would hold in 3rd gear while accelerating to high speeds.

      Like 1
    • local_sheriff

      Dual Coupling Hydramatic. Utilized by Pontiac to ’64, Olds to ’60 and Cadillac to ’63

      Like 4
  20. Erich

    Just an FYI, the transferable registration does not indicate he purchased it prior to 1973, As a New Yorker, I can tell you the manufacture year of a vehicle determines a title or transferable reg. Not the purchase date. If it’s a pre ‘73 there is no title required. (Hence racing for pink slips only works for pre ‘73 vehicles here)

    Like 2
  21. MLM

    I would take this stunning machine with or without the Continental Kit.This baby is beautiful!

    Like 4
  22. LarryS Member

    You commenting on the same car? See very few negative comments here.

    Like 2
  23. Russ Ashley

    Sometimes it’s hard to imagine a car like this just being an old used car, but I saw a 58 Bonneville convertible with fuel injection sit in a driveway uncovered until it deteriorated into a pile of rust with flat tires. This was on Moreland Avenue near I20 in case there is anyone here from Atlanta, but don’t go looking for it as it is long gone. I have often wondered what happened to it and hope it didn’t go to a junk yard. Regarding the continental kit on this car, those were considered beautiful and very classy in the fifties and sixties, back when nice cars were a status symbol, not just an appliance to get around in.

    Like 5
    • ACZ

      Isn’t that by the old Atlanta Gas Light offices?

      • Russ Ashley

        It was farther out, near Memorial Dr. On the right going out. I always suspected that the reason it was parked was due to the Fuel Injection. Not many shops knew how to fix them back then.

        Like 1
    • Stan Marks

      Amen, Russ.

      Like 1
  24. Ken Bagby

    Damn I need to get another job! Absolutely beautiful!

  25. local_sheriff

    IMHO the sweetest design from ’58. This model just has so many details that I never get tired of re-discovering every time I get a chance to get a closer look. The silver threads in the carpet is one of those… 😍

    Like 2
  26. moosie moosie

    In late 1968 I had a ’58 Starchief, a 2 tone blue, 2 dr. h.t. 3 spd. stick on the column. It was my winter beater in between cars car. I really liked it but a close friend needed a good running cheap car so he wound up with it. The interior was spacious, the back seat especially + the heater worked especially well. It was a very clean car in and out, straight no rust body, interior in showroom new condition, but that 1969 Road Runner was calling my name.

  27. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry Member

    This car is beautiful I can’t keep my eyes off it. I’ve studied it for hours before finally writing a comment. Now that my favorite NFL player Cole Beasley is in Buffalo perhaps he should check this out.
    God bless America

  28. Steve Bush Member

    Agree with the others-beautiful Pontiac from my birth year of 1958. Even like the skirts and continental kit.

    Like 1
  29. OldMarine

    I know this car, it belonged to a dear friend of mine, a former Buffalo police officer. This bad boy was his “baby”. Trust me, Vinnie took exquisite care of this Bonnie, it’s as nice underneath as it is on top! Vinnie has passed on now, his wife is selling the car, although she really didn’t want to sell it. He did have a lot of other Poncho “stuff”. Bid away fellas, you will NOT be disappointed!

    Like 1

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