Not Lookin’ Fine: 1969 Pontiac GTO

Jamie PalmerBy Jamie Palmer

While this 1969 Pontiac GTO has definitely seen better days, there’s enough car still there that it’s not a parts car, it’s a project car. The price certainly reflects that, with a no reserve auction here on eBay that hasn’t even hit $3,500 yet. The green (and yet again, it’s another green car, I really believe there’s something in green paint that keeps cars alive longer) GTO is located in Donald, Oregon.

The seller tells us that they know essentially nothing about the car; they purchased it from a neighbor that runs a storage yard. This brings up the whole question of title, but the seller says they can obtain a clear title in 4-6 weeks. I’d certainly tie anything I paid for the car to that title being obtained. Parts of what may be the original paint look pretty decent, but then you look a little closer and there’s a lot of corrosion.

This area at the right rear is a good example. Although superficially solid, by the time you are done cutting all the rust out and welding in new metal, this will be a quite elaborate repair. Nothing for a good home restorer that’s done it before, but if you are paying someone to do it, spots like this will add up in a hurry. Of course, with welders and plasma cutters readily available, perhaps this is a good time to learn by doing, or take a class at the local community college!

The vehicle identification number does decode as a GTO, and this one was actually built in California. The interior is a mess right now, but who knows what you’ll find under the carpet. Metal, rust, or air? The seller offers a video link to those requesting it; I’d start there but I might go further and have a Barn Finds reader inspect this one in person. Don’t forget; that’s a benefit to members only.

While I cannot guarantee my accuracy, I believe this is the most common engine in 1969 GTOs, the 350 horsepower 400 cubic inch V8. The twin snorkel air cleaner and chrome valve covers were stock. We’re told the engine is not seized, although we don’t know anything else about its condition. What do you think, readers? Is this a project worth taking on?

 

 

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Comments

  1. Joe Defelice

    Just a guess, but I’ve found green cars were generally bought by older people. “Fast ” colors were bought by a younger crowd, which usually meant they were driven harder than the green ones.

    3+
    • PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

      Unfortunately, GM didn’t keep records of production numbers by color for most cars. That being said, when I bought a 70 green Corvette, I was surprised to find out via the Corvette registry, that there were more greens registered than any other color.

      That might support your theory that more of them survived, but of the Corvette years where there are color records, Green was one of the top 2 colors sold.
      1968: Green is 1st
      1971: Green is 2nd, behind Yellow
      1972: Green is 2nd, behind Orange
      1975: Green drops all the way down to second last.

      So, late 60’s into early 70’s, Green was a very popular color.
      My favorite car color, BTW.

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  2. Don

    When this car was new I don’t think it was bought by an old man an old man would have bought a LeMans our something like that the person that bought this car new is an older man today ,but he was not back then♿

    5+
    • Joe Defelice

      Not necessarily. Midlife crisis’s are nothing new. I’m not saying only older folks bought green cars. Just speculating on how more green cars survived the decades in better shape than blue, red, orange, yellow, aqua, black, white and silver cars. Brown cars kinda get lumped in with the green ones. They were more likely to attract a more mature owner than someone with muscle car on their mind. I’ve gone through 35-40 cars through the years. Of the 60’s-70’s cars I’ve bought, green cars were predominantly unmodified and in much better shape than the cars I acquired in other colors. I may be completely wrong, but that is how I justify the condition deviation based on color.

      6+
      • Don

        That’s fair and makes sense 👍

        5+
      • Dan

        Maybe they just painted more cars green then, and that is what people of all ages bought.

        2+
      • Tom Member

        I agree Joe. I bought a 67 442 in 1991 from the nephew of the uncle who bought the car brand new in 67 at the age of 55. The uncle ordered the Oldsmobile “old man” Gold with steel wheels and dinner plate hub caps. Special order bench seat with on the column shift, power steering, brakes and windows and EVERY heavy duty performance option that Oldsmobile offered. 12 bolt Posi, factory traction bars, factory front an rear sway bars, heavy duty radiator not to mention the 442 package. Very cool. should have never sold it. The uncle passed away and he was selling it.

        3+
    • JCWJr Member

      I do not agree. I know a man that was a bank vp. Played organ and piano. Bought a new po tiac every 2 years. Bought a orange/red Judge when they came out even had a 4 speed.

      0
  3. JW

    With a PI and some welding skills this might just be a bargain. GTOs are right up there in value when completed with Mustangs / Camaros / Challengers. If you have to pay someone to do the bodywork and or mechanical it better be a keeper not to flip. A 4 speed would have made it more desirable.

    2+
  4. Tom Member

    Black Plate California car is not a bad sign. Plate never left the car so the car never left CA until maybe someone bought it and parked it. It should be fairly solid structurally and that is what matters most. 69 GTO’s are as “cult” as a 69 Chevelle and typically a “Nicer” car, Chevys back then were the low dollar version of the Pontiac, Buick and Olds. Pontiac had the performance of a Chevy and the luxury of a Buick. I am a GM guy all day long. not knocking the chevy’s so don’t hate on my comments.

    3+
    • Loco Mikado

      In the late 50’s through into the 70’s my parents had a green 1950 Studebaker, the house was painted green, green carpeting, green painted walls, green couch, green overstuffed chair, 2 green rocking chairs, green bedroom furniture – headboard, dresser, mirror and night stands which I have even today. My first appliances when I moved out on my own in 1970 were green. Even when I remodeled the kitchen in my first house in 1980 it had a green stove, range and flooring and green painted walls It was a very popular color for over 25 years.

      2+
  5. Joe

    You guys don’t remember. You are finding green cars because green was a popular color for many makes of cars in ’64-70, including GTOs, other Pontiacs, Fords, Buicks, Chevys. Many green GTOs on the road then, as well as on Mustangs, Camaros etc. A great-aunt of my friend bought a green GTO off the showroom floor when she was 60 and drove it for 25 years. Older people also bought powerful cars, even muscle cars. Cheap gas, V-8 high miles potential, and better re-sale value. In business/fashion design/clothing/car colors, popularity of green tends to come in briefly (2 to 4 years) and then out of favor for relatively long 10 to 12 year cycles. Similar to brown. Green came back in popularity in the late 70’s-early ’80s, particularly with imports, then faded again. Remember that green BMWs and many other imports were popular in the early ’90s? Ride the Green wave—it will certainly come back.

    2+
    • mike d

      not nesc. the GTO, but I remember seeing a lot of LeMans/Tempest in this shade of green, and I LIKED it.. was in my mid teens then !

      1+
  6. Joe Muzy

    I wish green would come back
    You go to a dealership today and all you see is white, black and silver.

    6+
  7. GTO MAN 455

    it would cost atleast 40 to restore this goat maybe more. And the fact that its green on green, automatic to boot. you can buy these GTOs done for 35 or 40 I would pass on this one

    2+
    • Tom Member

      I agree with GTO MAN but don’t crush it! Save it until there are no more to buy at a reasonable price.

      0
  8. Andy

    I like green cars, always have.

    3+
  9. john C

    Someone took this baby “out to Pomona, and let it roll”….

    0
  10. Tom

    I am restoring a 68 GTO that looked about like the one listed. It is a frame off and I have spent 45k for the restoration. I would pass on this one and buy one restored!

    1+
  11. Pete

    Lime green 1979 Camaro blew the rings at 12,684 miles. 72 VW Green bug hopeless lil car, 1974 Chevy Green Impala died after 4 weeks, 1970 Green Ford Ranger wouldn’t start the second day I owned it, 2000 Toyota Tundra had to replace a rear axle. Do you know what they all had in common besides being one shade of green? They were all POS’s in one way or another. Why does this car gotta be green?

    0
  12. Tim W

    My Dad ordered a new 350hp 348 Tri-Power 4sp. 61 Impala in Arbor Green, with a green interior. He put chrome spiders on the body color steel wheels, and duel porters, of course 🙂 . I had a 74 green Impala for years as a third car. Loaned it to everybody(family),Paid $200 bucks for it and we had it for probably 6 years. We called it the “Bomber” lol

    0
  13. Keith

    Drives me crazy about the title. “I can get a title in 4-6 weeks”. Okay, then why don’t YOU Mr. Seller get the title, THEN sell the car, instead of having the buyer hope that nothing goes wrong in the title process (which is almost always does) AFTER they’ve already purchased the car from the seller who, once has money in hand, generally works on getting that title right after completing the least desirable things to do on his mile long “honey do” list.

    0
  14. Car Guy

    The GTO brought $8,100. With the amount of rust in the top of the dash most likely the cowl is rusted out too. That is a lot of work to replace. It looks like a base 400 4bbl car. Too bad it was not better protected since it is still basically all there and appears fairly straight.

    I have a 69 GTO convertible with the same green interior. Verdoro green was a popular color that year.

    0

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