“Dear Li’l Sis’s First Car”: 1968 Pontiac Catalina Convertible

d2

If you don’t click through to this auction listing, you are really missing out! The seller tells a great story about this car, which apparently was his sister’s first car and was purchased when it was ten years old–and it sounds like he really doesn’t want to sell it! It’s located dangerously close to me in Marietta, South Carolina–one state away–and is listed here on eBay. The opening bid is $4,500 but there’s a reserve higher than that.

d6

The seller’s description of the body condition is perfect; plain language, not over selling the car and pointing out the good with the bad. Here’s what they say: “Midnight blue Imron paint applied in 1980 shows its age but looks pretty good, considering. The exterior shows a few small signs of rust, but is mostly quite solid and very straight except for the hood, where stress cracks at the hinge mounts have caused considerable damage. As far as we know there’s no Bondo in the body, except where an earlier attempt was made to fix the hood. There’s a crack in the windshield, and evidence of leakage around its edges. The chrome is all straight, but there’s flaking & rust on the bumpers. White convertible top is from 1995 (?) and is in pretty good shape, though much of the weather-stripping isn’t. The top motor works fine and the intact plastic rear window is about as cloudy as you’d imagine.” Why can’t all car listings be like this one?

I love the styling of this car with it’s 1960’s “Coke Bottle” curves and the great Pontiac rallye wheels. At some point soon I want to get an American convertible about this size and vintage for summer family cruising. This might be a nice choice, but the timing isn’t right for us.

d3

The seller mentions the hood damage, which you can see on the left, and other corrosion spots, one of which you can see on the right. There are more pictures included in the listing. I think, given the issues with the hood, I would try to source another one. Matching paint that old would be very difficult, though. And that might mean a repaint. See how these things mushroom? They also discuss replacing the floors, which apparently are pretty rusty due to leakage from the top.

d7

The seller tells us that “at least four tan Naugas gave their hides for the interior, which has seen far better days but is still more or less functional.” I’m thinking at least one more is needed for repairs! I can’t say I’m a fan of the aftermarket steering wheel as well, although generally the interior’s okay for now.

 

d9a

The seller waxes on about the engine, which they obviously feel is the highlight of the car. It’s not the original engine, rather it’s a 1967 GTO 400 cubic inch V8 making an estimated 335 HP. There’s also big valve heads, an Edelbrock manifold and Holley carburetor. They purchased the engine from someone who wrecked their GTO immediately after rebuilding the engine and the seller estimates there are only 10,000 miles on the engine. I suspect the engine is the majority of the value of the car, at least as far as the seller is concerned. What do you think?

 

 

Like This? Get Our Daily Email

Comments

  1. Fred W.

    “at least four tan Naugas gave their hides for the interior”…

    …And to replace those hydes you’ll have to illegally go Nauga hunting, since it is now an endangered species. Closely related to the Snipe.

    I see more value than just the engine- this one is easily restored as a driver.

    • Skloon

      They are really endangered from using their eggs for egg-Nauga more commonly known as eggnog

  2. MH

    That’s only if it isn’t a flood car now.

    • JM

      Marietta is not near the coast and got very little rain. The car seems to have normal rust for a southern car.

  3. CelestialGryphon

    Just spent 10 minutes reading about Nauga. Freakin’ adorable.

  4. OhU8one2

    I like the car,but I would have to change the front grille to hide-away headlamps. Get a stock steering wheel. Then fix the body,and repaint the whole car. New rubber seals,windshield ,etc…….

  5. RoughDiamond RoughDiamond Member

    This Pontiac Catalina convertible would make a sweet weekend cruiser for sure. I love this comment by the Seller regarding doing the floor pan repairs before correcting the leaks “…would be an out-of-sequence repair that might get in the way of someone wanting to do the whole job right. It would be like putting a new kitchen in a house with sagging floors to improve sales appeal, and that’s just fundamentally dishonest.” I’d say you could pretty much take what the Seller is saying about this old Pontiac to the bank.

  6. Wm Lawrence

    With that interior I wonder what color the car started with. Doubtful it was blue.

    • Lori

      The car was cherry red with a red interior. I’m the “dear ‘lil sis” mentioned in the write up. It’s time for this car to find a home where someone can love it like I have. It’s hard to give her up, but my life demands I have a boring, dependable appliance of a car right now. She’s a great car and one day I’ll probably regret giving her up.

      Like 1
  7. Todd Barrett

    Probably the most honest add I’ve ever read

  8. Bruce Best

    The Imron paint was a very bad idea as the paint can hide many rust problems. I have see this before where Imron was used on cars and it finally failed long after the unibodies car was structurally unsound but the paint looked good.

    There is a reason factories do not paint cars with this stuff besides it being far more expensive and it is the same reason they chrome suspension parts on open wheeled racing cars. If the paint or chrome flakes off you can easily see that the part has been damaged. Imron is like a snake skin it keeps it’s shape and the rust can continue and you can not be certain what is happening below.

    On this car be certain to go over that body with a magnet to make certain you still have good steel behind that paint or what looks good could just be a wonderful surface over rust particles.

    Imron is wonderful paint but it should not be used on cars, or building but only on high speed aircraft the place it was designed for.

  9. Bruce Best

    As apposed to my previous comment my neighbor had one of these when I was an early teenager. What an amazing boat. I think we had one adult and 9 kids all sitting on seats one time.

    It made the neighborhood ride to the Dairy Queen totally amazing. This is a perfect summer evening car when the air is still warm and thick with moisture when you stand but cool at speed. His was the lighter metallic blue with a light blue interior and white top. I miss him and those neighborhood trips.

    • Thomas Spelino

      My neighbor down the street had a car like the one you described almost 20 years i watc g ed her drive it she was a widow i think and didnt like kids on her hill new york weather wShed away the beauty of the car as an zdult i saw it one last time in the 80s still being driven but like you the memoriez stay in the mind

  10. Rolf Poncho

    I’m a Pontiac lover it’s a nice car like hart tops
    over convertibles

  11. Ted Foureagles

    I’ll attest that the paint is hiding nothing. It was applied when the car was 12 years old and had never been kissed. The only damage or rust that the car has ever had is evident in the photos and description of the floorboards. There probably are some spots where the body man used a little filler to smooth things because that’s what you do, but not to fix dents or rust. No crashes, no holes, nothing at all hidden.

    Replacement of the floor pans would not be a body-off-frame endeavor, as the structural sills, transmission tunnel & firewall are all sound (bottom of the firewall might need a little work where the pans attach). It could all be handled from above. We’ve checked that possibility with someone who know this stuff, and I think I included his estimate of $1200-1800 in the original posting, though certainly not everyone would bid it so cheap. If you intend a 95-point restoration then yes, drop the frame and perfect every little thing, but that’s not necessary. Right now the only thing that the rusty floor really hurts is weather integrity and something to which to attach the gas pedal. It’s a body-on-frame car, and holes in the floor are structurally insignificant until the seats fall through.

    By the way, that’s the original steering wheel, isn’t it Sis? Non-original parts comprise the usual maintenance stuff plus the engine, paint, upholstery, top, front disc brakes and period-correct Rally wheels. This old lady is an American Jaguar, and I hate to see her go. Compensation has nothing to do with the sale price, but the idea that she’ll still be a beautiful thing and maybe even better when someone else owns her.

    Fair warning: If you come to look at this car I’ll scrutinize and judge you as I would if you were coming to date my little sister. If you seem like someone who just wants to buy & flip, I have a signal for the dogs. But if you appreciate the car for what it is you’ll be welcomed like family and offered a beer.

    I’ve had Miss Kitty over 140 MPH with the top down. If not for the seatbelt I’d have been sucked skyward. That’s the difference between this car and your typical big American parade convertible.

    }}}}

  12. Lori

    Bro, I added that cheesy after market wooden steering wheel back in college. The big old bus-like steering wheel was falling apart. Other than that, I’ve drilled a few holes here and there for things like stereo speakers behind the side panels and to mount a sliding stereo/8-track player.

Leave A Comment

RULES: No profanity, politics, or personal attacks. Don't post your car for sale in the comments. Click here to get it featured on the homepage instead.

*

Notify me of new comments via email. Or subscribe without commenting.