Grand Safari! 1978 Pontiac Wagon Survivor


Pontiac had some great “woody” wagons as well. Ok, I guess they aren’t real woodies, but somehow DiNocies just doesn’t sound as good, does it? Anyway, this is a great 1978 Pontiac Grand Safari wagon, a low mileage survivor that supposedly only has 16,135 miles on it! It’s for sale here on eBay where bidding is at $3,500 but has not yet met the reserve. That gravel driveway the car is so picturesquely sitting on is located in Wellsboro, Pennsylvania.


Acres of mint, original DiNoc! Ok, maybe not acres, but a lot more than you’d find on a car of today, that’s for sure! I think the most recent car I’ve seen with an aftermarket woody kit was a PT Cruiser–anyone seen one later than that? Part of me would like to see one put on a modern BMW or Audi wagon, just for the shock value…but I digress. This car looks absolutely mint, and must have been kept inside for the wood, paint and chrome to look as nice as it does.


Although there’s a little dirt on the load floor here (maybe someone actually deigned to use it as Pontiac intended?) I’m guessing some serious shampooing would clean it up. Just the kind of thing I enjoy doing with a new acquisition! By the way, this wagon does not have the third seat, although there is a cargo compartment under there.


Both the front and rear seats are in mint condition. I’m pretty sure this in vinyl, although I’d be willing to listen to someone convincing me it was leather. The seller doesn’t tell us. Either way, apart from a little mark in the center of the fake wood dash where it looks like a compass or something similar was attached with adhesive, the interior looks close to perfect.


This is either a 301, 350 or 403 Pontiac V8 (thanks, CH!). The seller doesn’t tell us and I don’t know enough to be able to tell you which one it is, especially since they are all the same basic block/head combination. Yes, I’ve paid attention to you Pontiac enthusiasts that comment on our posts! I can believe the mileage though, based on the appearance under hood, although a good detailing is in order. Want to go on a Safari with me?



  1. C Hefner

    It indicates in the item specifics, that is a 301, which is the least desirable engine option on an otherwise spectacular wagon!

    Like 1
    • Jamie Palmer Jamie Palmer Staff

      Thanks, CH, I missed that! Will correct.

      Like 1
    • Carann

      Why is the 301 the least desireable? Even in 1978 people began to be cost conscious about rising gas prices and depletion of oil reserves. So, was the primary issue was a demand for power? Does the 301 engine have problems?
      I appreciate what kniwledge you can share

      Like 0
  2. Fo Mo Co

    I’ll believe anything with legitimate bonafied historical documentation.

    Like 0
  3. Mr. TKD

    No one offers a woody wagon from the factory, but where there’s a will — and a desire to make a buck…

    Like 1
    • Jamie Palmer Jamie Palmer Staff

      Well! Thanks for that, Mr. TKD. It actually looks “correct”, I guess it’s the retro shape. Too bad they just discontinued the Flex!

      Like 0
  4. Dean

    One would think that if you were trying to pass a vehicle off as “low mileage” you might spend $150 and have the interior shampooed and detailed. I highly doubt that this one has only seen that few miles.

    Like 1
  5. Tom Driscoll

    Nice wagon but…late 70’s and 80’s cars/wagons have become a focus for me, great riding/stopping cars, only problem is they all seem to have 5 liter engines and are rather s-l-o-w. For me, going this route requires high levels of plush seats/carpet, power everything, and maybe you can ignore the people passing you on the entrance ramp. Affordable now with many/some low mileage cream puffs…nice find though.

    Like 0
  6. Rustytech Member

    If this is truly a PA car it wasn’t used in winter. If it was parked in winter then the mileage becomes much more believable. This is a nice wagon, not a collectible, but a very nice family mover.

    Like 0
  7. Barry Nye

    The interior is definitely vinyl. Leather wasn’t optional on the full size Pontiacs until ’79, and even then it was only available on the Bonneville couple when ordered with buckets and console.

    Like 0
  8. Hoos Member

    I wonder what happened to the right side of the cargo area. It is a different color. Other than that, I like it. I do agree with Tom, that power everything compensates for the lack of horses. Fine driving vehicles these GM wagons.

    Like 0
  9. Jubjub

    Would be nicer with a 350 or 400. But do you really need to get anywhere fast in this? Would look even better on a set of correctly painted Rally IIs or snowflakes.

    Like 1
  10. Josh

    403 was an Olds motor. The big 455 CID Pontiac was also still an option in ’78… my burgundy Grand Safari had one. 11 mpg the only time I was brave enough to calculate it!

    Like 0

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