One Of One: 1969 Pontiac GTO Judge

1969 Pontiac GTO Judge Convertible

I know we tend to stay away from already restored cars, but this GTO Judge is just too special for me to ignore! I’ve always loved the looks of the Judge and clearly based on values, I’m not the only one. Now being a convertible GTO Judge Ram Air III is pretty special all by itself, but being the only triple green example built is down right amazing. Personally, I would rather have one of the brighter and more flashy colors, but when it comes to muscle cars it’s all about the options.

1969 Pontiac GTO Judge Engine

This car, which our buddies over at BoldRide tipped us off to, is set to go to auction in just a few days at Auctions America’s Fort Lauderdale event. I would love to be there not only to see this car, but to see what it ends up going for. Here is a breakdown on just how rare this car is. Pontiac built just 108 GTO Judges as convertibles, of those only 29 were equipped with an automatic. This is one of those 29 cars. Now if only it had been optioned with the Ram Air IV system. I think I could live with Ram Air III though, as this car would still have more than enough power!

1969 Pontiac GTO Judge Interior

One of the reasons we stay away from restored cars is that you just never know what things have been changed, what might be hiding under that beautiful paint and not to mention that all the car’s original history has been lost. While I would prefer for this one to be all original and untouched, the deed has been done. Of course with a high end car like this, I don’t really blame the previous owner that restored it for doing so. Seriously, who wouldn’t enjoy climbing into this beautiful and clean Judge? I can’t help but wonder though how much an all original barn find ’69 GTO Judge convertible would bring in today’s market.

1969 GTO Judge Convertible

Speaking of value, the auction house estimates that this no reserve GTO will fetch between $100,000 and $140,000. I think that estimate is a good one, but I can’t wait to see what happens with it. It looks to be in spectacular condition and is the only one built as a triple green car, but that being said I don’t think it has the appeal of one of the brighter color schemes. It has always amazed me how much factory colors and options affect muscle car values. While I would enjoy seeing and driving this one, I think I will save my money until I find a Judge still in the barn, waiting to be revived! So does the one of one status do it for you or would you be inclined to keep hunting for that all elusive Judge in the barn?

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Comments

  1. Jack

    I love Judges too, this one doesn’t stir my soul enough for a $140k bid. I would at least need a 4 speed for that kind of money.

  2. DRV

    Green was the bomb in ’69, and I like it here as it is a more calm presentation for too wild of a driver.

  3. Charles

    Sweet! The most important part of this car is the documentation.

  4. JW

    If you were to restore a judge from out of a barn it would cost you as much if not more than buying this one. Even if the barn find has all the original parts unless it was kept in a climate controlled garage which would not be a barn find then most if not all the parts would have to be refinished and that is not cheap compared to repo parts. This is a very nice car even though I’m not fond of the color.

  5. Gnrdude

    1 of 1? Wonder if it’s the Same One I saw In An Auto-trader mag about 5-6 yrs ago Located in Austin TX. That was a Triple Green Pontiac GTO can’t remember if it was a 68-69 Claiming to be one of One the Guy wanted some ASTRONOMICAL Number for it like 239K$

  6. Rick

    Personally, if it were mine I’d change the color to orange with black interior like a proper Judge, and change it over to a 4-speed. Or it would be a great parts car for an orange one. And Bob Falfa woulda sure had fun with you if you had driven up along side him wanting to race.

    • grant

      Why on earth would you use this for a parts car? Or change anything? The color isn’t my favorite either, it reminds me of appliances my parents had in the 70s, but “1 of 1.”

  7. John Newell

    Not all cars that have been restored have lost their history. Many cars that haven’t been restored have no history. Just sitting around does a car no favours. If it isn’t driven it deteriorates. Just last night I found a 15,000 mile unrestored Rebel Machine in Sonic Silver. A good colour. The engine was beefed up long ago and runs on aviation fuel. It is a fast car. It has always been garaged. The history of this car exists right back to day one. Yet the new owner of the car has spent thousands turning back the hands of time to get it running and safe again. This is not a restoration. It”s a clean up.

    The thing is, there were lots of Judges built but not that many Machines. Which would you rather have if money was not a factor? Which would be more fun? I’d go with the Machine.

    One of one of a colour? Give me a break. That happened lots of times with different makes. And you’re right about the green. Not popular now. Was very popular back then but indicates an older generation buyer. So the green is more in keeping with the era than a flashier colour but diametrically opposed to the marketing plan and what the car was all about. So the colour and the car is out of sync with the plan.

    When you factor in the money, The Machine would go for a hundred grand less. Is there any sense to that?

    So supposing Machines were made in different colour schemes than simply Red, White and Blue? More would have sold. The car would have been much more popular. But the reality was that AMC was being corporately sabotaged in the performance magazines to prevent AMC from making serious inroads into the performance car market. This despite the big three ridiculing AMC years earlier for not being part of the performance scene.

    When AMC committed to a venture, it got serious. When it was finally financially their best option, AMC hit the performance market running and hit the ball out of the park with an eye opener.

    The SC/Rambler arrived and blew everyone’s doors off. That put the fear of God into the big three and they were ready the next year when The Machine was launched. To this day AMC values suffer from that collective anti-AMC campaign that was initiated by Steve Kelly in Hot Rod Magazine. There is no remarkable difference in the quality of build between GM or Ford. Chrysler quality was abysmal by comparison with all the others.. There was a distinct difference in handling with AMC being vastly superior to any of the offerings by the Big Three – especially between The Machine and any other intermediate sized, comparably equipped intermediate two door hardtop.

    Yet this green goat gets the the projected high sticker price while The Machine remains undervalued by that hundred grand. The market was fooled then and remains blinkered.

    So what do you think this one of a kind Mode III 472 hp Rebel Machine in yellow trim would be worth?

    • moosie Craig

      Back in the day AMC was a hard sell,,,,,,,,,,, probably still is except for a select few die hards.

      • Al8apex

        agreed

        same with other makes

    • grant

      The cars year of manufacture indicates an “older generation” buyer, not the color. Anyone who bought ANY new car in 68 is 40 years older now. They would have been the “younger generation” when they made the original purchase.

  8. Brian

    Green kicks ass. You herd boys can ask for red, black, white, all with black interior if you’d like. Just like your grey on grey Toyota Camry that you drive everyday.

    • Van

      Hay next thing you know, Brian is going to say a red C2 vett isn’t rare.
      Shame shame shame.

  9. Richard Prokopchuk

    Ok…I’m gonna ask the question. What is triple green? Body, green. Interior green. What’s the third?

    Rick

    • Jack

      The third green is all the money you will need to buy this rare emerald. Plus the convertible top.

  10. Woodie Man

    Not to be the spelling poleece…but “Elusive” ……Judge in the Barn! Now that I ve scratched THAT itch, a slushbox is a slushbox no matter the prettty wrapping it’s in! And pretty it is.

    • Josh Staff

      Thanks for pointing that one out Woodie Man! Not sure how I made that mistake, darn spellcheck! I’ll get it fixed ASAP

  11. Nessy

    No thanks. I’ll take the real barn find Judge Convertible you guys featured here December 2nd over this one….

  12. Little_Cars Alexander Member

    GM was putting green convertible tops on these cars originally?

  13. AMX Brian

    I’m getting flashbacks of My Cousin Vinny… Metallic Mint Green Convertible

    • Rocco

      Hey, My Cousin Vinny comes on Fri. night at 8-7 central on TV Land I think. Great movie. Marisa Tomei won an Oscar for her role. To me the best part is her on the witness stand.

  14. mat

    I know where one of these is in north texas just sitting in someone’s yard.
    orange hardtop with white interior.

  15. scooter8

    always mopars,black,blue,purple.got a 69 GTX similar grn ,red int. blk vinyl. kinda weird? same 440 stick dana as others. car kicked ass! miss it the most!

  16. John Newell

    Well that was interesting. Not one of you answered my question.

    AMC is no longer the hard sell you guys seem to think they are. Especially the performance cars. They go pretty quickly. What they lack is publicity.

    As for the Green Machine: in Canada, no one knows what a solid colour Machine is no matter what you do with it or how you explain it. A Red, White and Blue Machine is a completely different story. People get that even if they’ve never seen one before. No trouble selling one of those I can assure you, no matter what condition it’s in.

    As for the green Judge: Green body, green interior, matching green convertible top and double green graphic stripe so the car is quadruple green, not triple green. Somebody can’t count. The carpet looks like it’s black and the dash is black.

    • Jack

      The pictures on my computer show a green dash, look at the picture of the vin tag. A vehicle is only worth what somebody is willing to pay for it.

      • John Newell

        I copied the shot of the dash into iPhoto and increased the exposure. That showed a black dash with the green tint from the windshield reflected along the top of it. The windshield is a green tinted item.

        And yes you’re right, a car or anything is only worth what a person is willing to pay for it.

        However, how much a person is willing to pay is strongly influenced by market factors such as how well known it is, fame, historical significance and countless others.

        In AMC’s case, the value of the cars even when new was very seriously negatively impacted by the big three “ganging up” on AMC through the use of paid for articles in the performance car magazines. The rumours started there had a long lasting effect effect on AMC market value that lasts to this day and the evidence of it is very visible on this forum often enough with those same rumours being repeated time and again.

        Recently, Chrysler fans have been starting to take notice of AMC and are beginning to realize that not only are they wonderful cars that outperform their expectations, AMCs are far better built than any Chrysler product of the same era.

        Chrysler in the muscle car era was building the shoddiest cars out there. They got away with it entirely due to the mystique surrounding their engine and transmission line up which was excellent. The bodies were a disgrace.

        The big difference was in the publicity and the race on Sunday, sell on Monday philosophy that took AMC much too long to adopt. But once they did, they were winners wherever they put an effort in. Unfortunately, AMC never had the money to sponsor a complete corporate racing program and that also hurt.

        Ganging up on AMC eventually backfired because that eventually killed AMC and opened the door to small foreign imports that the big three are all in danger of being swallowed by. Poetic justice.

        Like 1
    • Jack

      It clearly shows a green dash, you need a new computer. Hijacking this thread about a another car isn’t proper etiquette. This thread is about a Pontiac GTO Judge.

      • Richard Prokopchuk

        I have a nearly new computer. The dash is black. It seems to get a greenish cast from the windshield, but that’s about it. Production numbers of certain colors, Pontiac would not likely produce a green dash. But, as usual, I am mistaken, for they did. I just don’t see a green dash in this car’s interior. In the linked photo below, I do.

        http://www.barrett-jackson.com/Events/Event/Details/1969-PONTIAC-GTO-JUDGE-2-DOOR-HARDTOP-102124

      • Mike

        The pictures aren’t the best but views shown of the interior, particularly the console, show a dark green. The armrests, dash and console would all be the same color – which it seems in this car is dark green.

      • John Newell

        I don’t agree. Despite the comment that someone thinks I need a new computer, my computer is a new 27″ iMac with a great artwork program on it for analyzing colour. On top of that as an interior designer with a career of analyzing how light affects colour, unless someone actually sees the car in person, I’d say the dash is black. GM did and still does put dashes in cars while other parts of the interior upholstery are a different colour. The reason for doing so is reflectivity. Black dashes don’t reflect in the windshield while other dashes including green do depending on the angle of the dash top. Hopefully someone can check and put the matter to rest.

  17. Little_Cars Alexander Member

    Armrests are black too. Mr Newell, I don’t think anyone is ignoring you or fussy about your comments on American Motors. It’s just that this is not the forum for it…the comments need to specifically relate to the Barn Find up for sale. Also…this forum thrives on brevity–so lots of words on a quasi-related topic will turn people away especially if they’ve signed up to receive all comments after a car is posted. Hope you take my comments in the spirit they are being given. BTW, I purchased a 1970 Rebel station wagon from the phone company in 1980 and had big plans to convert it into a “Machine” clone. Peace, out…

  18. John Newell

    Thank you Alexander. I’m not much on brevity and I’m not a member here for brevity. A lot of people here have a lot of knowledge not easily found elsewhere so when they write and expound I suck up the details. Brevity is vastly over rated. People who don’t want to read can skip my comments. People who do read can learn stuff from me. Not many on here know much about AMC and that’s a shame and a lot of what they do know is wrong. Also a shame. So in my small way I attempt to shed a little light on a corner of the old car hobby and hopefully some people benefit.

    So what happened to your wagon?

  19. Little_Cars Alexander Member

    The Rebel wagon long ago parted this earth, I suspect. Along with my loaded 73 Gremlin. I helped a friend restore his 1960 Rambler a few years ago and was reminded how downright simple these cars were to repair.

    I would be curious what happened to the phone company’s “Rebel fleet.” There were at least 30 of these wagons behind a chain link fence in the Fall of 1980. All of them sold for hundreds of dollars. Mine had a immaculate back seat because Bell Telephone had the seats down and a cage installed in each of its cars. Ah, memories!

  20. John Newell

    Going back to the Judge and its restoration/paint job. I wouldn’t let a paint job put me off if I could stand next to it with a fridge magnet. Those little magnetic scraps of plastic let you know in a hurry how solid the sheet metal is. A trip under the car in the dirt is worth ruining a shirt over if you’re serious. But there is no substitute for knowing all about the type of car you intend to buy and exactly what hardware is supposed to be there holding it together. In this car’s case, it looks like a lot of attention to detail was paid and regardless of whether it’s an automatic or not, it’s virtually a new car.

  21. dj

    My 1972 was this color. I seem to remember lots of GM cars this color.

  22. Nessy

    John, you seem to like AMC cars the best. I was thinking last night about AMC cars, I have owned 11 of them over a period of time. They are not my top pick in cars. I’m really an Oldsmobile/Cadillac/Packard guy but I thought you would like to know there are AMC guys on this site. I still have one AMC left, a 61 Rambler Classic. As for this Judge, I’ll still take the orange Judge convertible barn find from December over this one as it’s unlikely anyone is going to find another Judge convertible in a barn again.

    • John Newell

      While I’m partial to AMCs, I really only like The Machine and have four. But before them, I was into 1957 Buicks Specials. I had four of them, a 56 and a 59 LeSabre. They were great cars to drive and I had a lot of adventures with mine. All claimed by rust.

      I also had a couple of 74 Oldsmobile Cutlasses and a unique glass top 80 Oldsmobile that was specially built for a Xerox executive. They were great cars.

      I’m also very partial to all the GM muscle cars. I never owned any because by comparison with my Machine, it was pretty obvious they were way more expensive to maintain than my Machine ever could be.

      I like the Chrysler products too – to look at. What turned me off them was when I closed the trunk lid on a Hemi Road Runner. It was so tinny I did it again a couple of times to see why it sounded like that. It turned out there was no metal structure under the lid. Upon closer inspection the entire car was like that. Flimsy. So those cars looked good to me but were too poorly built for me to risk my life in. Of course they handled exceptionally poorly as well. Ford, GM and AMC all put Chrysler in the shade when it came to handling and safety.

      The cars I like the least though are Fords. Fix Or Repair Daily was the story with them. Especially my 69 Mach I which was the worst car I’ve ever owned. That was in 1970 and I bought it as a demo. Great car to drive, terrible car to own. And embarrassing too since it always broke down at the worst possible moment. Two months was two months too long. It was an Edsel disguised as a Mustang. Ford will get bad press from me over that car as long as I live.

      That is due to their ignition systems.

      By comparison, GM ignitions were terrific in my opinion.

      Now in modern times, I’m a diehard Chrysler guy since Chrysler cleaned up its fit, finish and quality. I’ve had five of them and a couple of Jeep Cherokees after Chrysler took over AMC.

      I’d still take that Green Judge. And dislike the colour. It’s different.

  23. John Newell

    You’re right. It was one of the most popular colours of that era. However, it was not popular among young drivers. It was seen as an old man colour. So when you see a muscle car this colour, you know it was bought by an older man or even a woman. Not a young street racer.

    No street racer of that era wanted to be seen in a car that looked like it was owned or bought for him by his great-grandmother. That did happen by the way.

    Also, when you see a muscle car as heavily optioned as this one, that is another indicator that the purchaser was an older person – they had the money for the options. Most younger drivers didn’t and were in debt for most of the price of the car. They tended to be under-insured as well. So many muscle cars soon had crumpled front fenders from tail-gating that they couldn’t afford to fix. The word OUCH! would be painted in pink next to the dent.

    On top of that, that older sort of driver tended not to drive the car in winter or not much at all. So they stayed in garaged and in good shape. Those are the same age as the drivers who bought Trans Am Firebirds and Buick GSXs. Big dollar cars with all the options available. But those cars were not painted olive green. Those drivers tended to be doctors and dentists etc.

    • Joe

      I saw this car in person about 10 years ago, the attention to detail on the restoration is unbelievable. It also had a stack of documentation if I remember correctly, I know it did have the PHS paperwork with it. Also it had a binder full of pictures and receipts from the restoration. The green top is documented on the PHS if I remember correctly

  24. Charles

    I can see this triple green, 1:1, well restored, well documented GTO getting lots of attention at the Pontiac shows. As for price, it has always been and still is about supply and demand. The car is worth the highest price an individual is willing to pay for it. I’ll go ahead and admit, it is out of my league, however I would love to see it at a show some day, get an up-close look and it, and a few photos.

  25. Joe M

    The 69 gto judge correct color is limelight green. Had one

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