First Year survivor: 1958 Pontiac Parisienne Hardtop

The Parisienne name first appeared within the Pontiac brand in 1958 as a deluxe “halo” offering within the Laurentian model. While sources tend to be lightly contradictory, it is believed that only around 1,226 examples of the Parisienne V8 Hardtop rolled off the production line during that first year. That makes it a fairly rare vehicle and not one that you will stumble upon every day. Our feature car is a tidy example with no immediate needs. It isn’t perfect, but getting it to that point should not be difficult. It is searching for a new home, so the owner has listed it for sale here on eBay. It is located in De Pere, Wisconsin, and while the bidding has reached $20,200, this remains short of the reserve.

A combination like Redwood Copper and Dover White is guaranteed to make any car stand out, and that’s what we find gracing the panels of this Pontiac. The paint holds an impressive shine, with only a few small chips and marks to keep it from achieving perfection. The panels are laser straight, with no dings, dents, or ripples. I would love to say that the car is 100% rust-free, but it does have a couple of spots that the buyer will probably choose to address quickly to prevent further deterioration. Both are near the roof drip rails, but neither is particularly big. From a positive perspective, the paint remains intact over both spots, so they shouldn’t deteriorate too quickly. The owner indicates that there is also a professional repair to one area of the trunk pan, but that appears to be the extent of this classic’s rust history. In keeping with the trend at the time, the exterior features enough chrome to make it visible from the International Space Station, and this all appears to be spotlessly clean. I can’t notice any problems with the glass, and the wide whitewall tires provide the perfect finishing touch to this exterior.

Providing the motive power for this Pontiac is a numbers-matching 348ci V8 backed by a two-speed Powerglide transmission. The original owner ordered the car with power steering, but power front disc brakes and a dual master cylinder are later additions. While the Parisienne’s leanings may have been more towards luxury, the 250hp available from that 348 made it a respectable performer. A 17.4-second ¼-mile ET was nothing to be sneezed at from a car of this type in 1958. Frustratingly, the owner doesn’t provide any information on how well this classic runs or drives, but the presentation of the engine bay looks impressive for a car of this vintage. The owner states that it comes with a significant collection of paperwork, including the original User’s Guide, Maintenance Manual, Parts Manual, promotional materials, and a large pile of restoration and maintenance receipts.

The Pontiac’s interior continues the theme of presenting beautifully, but with only some minor issues for the buyer to consider. The “biggie” in this case is the deterioration of the dash padding. This is quite noticeable and detracts from the overall presentation. It looks like the foam beneath has collapsed, so fixing it could present a challenge to the next owner. I performed a brief online search for a replacement but had no luck. The buyer might succeed with some extra time up their sleeve, or they may need to hand it to an expert who can revive what is already there. Beyond that, the rest of the interior seems to be close to perfect. There are no rips or tears, no obvious wear beyond some on the wheel, and the bright trim pieces shine impressively. The original owner ordered the car with a pushbutton AM radio, and this works as it should.

This 1958 Pontiac Parisienne Hardtop is a stunning car, and you won’t come across one of these in the market every day. It isn’t perfect, but getting it close to that point should not be difficult. Its relative rarity makes it difficult to nail down a possible value or where the owner may have set the reserve. However, I wouldn’t be surprised if bidding had to double before we hit that mark. This auction could be worth watching closely.

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Comments

  1. Terrry

    I always like the ’58 Pontiac, they didn’t have quite the excess styling that so many GM cars of that model year had, and this one has the Chevy drive train of the day!

    Like 2
    • Blyndgesser

      I believe Canadian Pontiacs almost all came with Chevy powertrains.

      Like 16
      • JoeNYWF64

        Just for once, i would have liked to have seen the reverse – on any yr any chevy. Or with a buick or olds v8 in a chevy.
        Never happened.
        I think what chevy wanted – chevy got.

        Like 2
      • Bob C.

        Cheviacs!

        Like 2
      • Allen L

        The full size Canadian Pontiacs finally got the Pontiac V8s in 1971, when that years all new platform came out. We had a 68 with a 327, an Uncle had a 70 2+2 that had a 454.
        And for those unfamiliar why we had Cheviacs, Beaumont and Acadians, there was duty on US cars imported into Canada, and vice-versa, until the so called Autopact was signed between the two Countries in the mid-60s. Then GM completely standardized production, and also could then reduce duplication of plants.
        BTW the fuel filler for this 1958 is located behind that stainless steel oval below the left tail light, for those who might wonder, I wish modern cars were so good at hiding them.

        Like 6
      • chuck dickinson

        Because under the sheet metal, it IS a Chevrolet. All came Chevy powered, 6 or V8. One could buy a ‘real’ Pontiac in Canada, but they were US built, imported and at quite a price premium over the CDN built units.

        Like 4
  2. normadesmond

    Snazzy.

    Like 5
  3. Mike

    More 50’s looking than most other 50’s cars.

    Like 5
  4. Mike Roberts

    The rocket-like side chrome is a clear testament to the cultural interests of the ’50’s. Pontiac always seemed to make bolder statements than other GM brands.

    Like 2
    • BobK

      Actually this was the beginning of the bold statements and of course 1959 was considerably bolder

  5. Chris

    Poetry in Motion …..Awesome ride definitely a cruiser . Its just missing me driving it .

  6. Dale

    Canadian Pontiacs had the same wheelbases as their Chevy counterparts, used the Chevy x frame, drive train, etc. the body panels aren’t the same as the US models.

    Like 5
  7. Doone

    I never liked the 58 Pontiac……..until now.

    Like 3
  8. Jack quantrill

    55-57, the best, then this toad! They piled on the chrome, and ugly doodads. Must be Chinese designers.

  9. Tort Member

    At times it seems more appealing putting the powerglide in drive and go for a nice cruise in this than driving my 55 Chevy 4 speed, small block that needs a shot of octane boost to the premium gas. Another sign of getting old??

  10. Frank Matich

    The dash pad looks like a skin that covers the old dash, I bought one for an old Camaro same thing happened. Looked like crap after a short time.

  11. JoeNYWF64

    Allen L, modern “cars” have lot bigger issues than fuel filler door loc – how bout the cheap plastic ugly oversize mirrors MOUNTED IN THE WRONG PLACE on most “cars”, plastic headlite covers & cheap plastic exterior trim that both wind up looking ready for the junkyard after not that long, mismatched unevenly parked wipers, rough ride due to you know what, hard seats, too many std features(sticker shock), insane excessive tech(such as body control modules for everything), gangsta glass(good luck getting out through the small windows if the vehicle & occupants go under water), etc., etc.

    Like 1
  12. Gary

    I had a tri power Bonneville convertible. It was rough, unrestorable really, but it ran like a scalded dog. Paid $400.00 for it and sold it a few months later for not much more.

    Like 2
  13. Gary

    Allen L, I agree. Didn’t all the late fifties GM cars have the most interesting gas cap hiding places? 55,56 Chevys behind the taillight, 57 Chevy behind the trim spear, these behind the oval. Jack Q, the chrome is over the top but it works. The mesh grille needs something else, it looks to one dimensional to me. The 58 Corvette is horrible, they ruined the beautiful 56-57 body with that turd.

    Like 1
  14. Frank

    Pretty car always better looking than the 58 Chevrolet.

    Like 2
  15. jokacz

    I remember Canadian Parisiennes from the 60’s that sat on Chevy frames. Only problem was the wheelbase was too short and the rear wheels didn’t line up with the wheel well openings. The duty on American made cars was crazy in those days, a new Corvette in 66 was around $10,000 Cdn. And the Canadian dollar was worth more than the U.S. dollar in those days.

    Like 2
  16. Steve Clinton

    This design made the ’58 Chevys look positively austere.

    Like 1
  17. Roy

    My first car, I was 15, gave $656 hard earned back in 1962.

    Like 1
  18. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    Funny to think how things have reversed. If this were a Chevy in the same condition, it would go for 5 to 10K more.

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