Rare 4-Speed: 1970 Pontiac Grand Prix Model J

The late 1960s and early ’70s were good times for Pontiac, their lineup offered just the right combination of performance and styling. The GTO had the performance market covered and the Catalina was there if you wanted spacious luxury. The Grand Prix was a good middle ground between the two. In my opinion, the Grand Prix was perfect for the buyer that wanted performance but preferred a more refined look and feel. This example is a rare 4 speed, A/C equipped car that is claimed to be 1-100 made as equipped. Check it out here on eBay in Las Vegas, NV with a BIN of $9,995.

The second generation Grand Prix was built from ’69 until ’72 and was the first model to be built on the General Motors G-Body platform along with the Chevy Monte Carlo. This particular car is a “J” model and left the factory painted Atoll Blue with black leather interior, perhaps the remaining paint is original. On the subject of the paint, the seller makes it clear this is a project in need of a complete restoration. The body has a considerable amount of rust on the quarter panels, fenders, and trunk area but the frame appears to be in good shape. The seller believes is partly due to the cars earlier life in Tennessee and Virginia.

Under the hood is a 400 CI 4V rated at 350 HP, which is respectable and should make for a fun driving experience mated to the 4 speed. The factory 12 bolt rear end is still there and the drivetrain is matching numbers. The engine looks complete but running condition is not mentioned. Since it is a restoration project we can probably assume the engine does not run hopefully, it turns over. The car left the factory equipped with A/C but the compressor is not present, although the rest of the system remains intact. In 1970 Grand Prix engine options were a 400 4V like we have here, a 400 2V and a 455 rated at 370HP and 500 lb-ft of torque. There was even a steam-powered prototype experimented with for the ’69 model year.

On the inside, we can see the tattered remains of the black leather interior. Although in need of work, it’s nice to see a fairly complete interior, the radio and ashtray are the only items said to be missing. The interior will also need a complete restoration but it is good to see items like the rally gauges and console with the “model J” emblem are still intact. Maybe some Pontiac experts can tell us if the Hurst shifter is factory or not. The Grand Prix is not the most popular model but with this rare combination of options it would be nice to see this one restored, but it may not make financial sense to do so. Hopefully, someone is willing to go to Vegas and take a gamble on this old Pontiac.


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  1. RandyS

    How tall was the person taking the pictures? No picture is over 3′ in height.

  2. Ron

    I have never seen a that generation Grand Prix with a 4 speed. So very cool. I ran across a 454 Monte Carlo with a 4 speed back in the day once so it makes sense Pontiac offered it too. Very cool.

    • z28th1s

      There was never a factory built ’70-’72 Monte Carlo built with the 454 and 4 speed trans. You could get the 4 speed behind a 402 and the small block in ’70 and ’71 but not the 454.

      • George Gillespie

        I bought a 1970 ss 454 new in September of 1969. It only came with the turbo 400! The second owner of the car still has it in St. Louis, MO with just over 50000 miles on it.

  3. Redwagon

    That’s a lot of rust. It’s rare but it may be cheaper to start with one in better condition.

  4. gbvette62

    Back around 72, I knew a guy with a Verdoro Green 69 Model J with a 400 4 speed. It was pretty tired and beat up, especially for a 3 or 4 year old car, but it was still neat. I can’t say that I’ve ever come across another 4 speed Grand Prix, though I have seen a number of 4 speed Monte Carlo’s. In 1970, my cousin had to get rid of his 68 Corvette, when he found out his wife was pregnant. He traded it in on a new 70 Monte Carlo with a 350 4bbl, 4 speed and bench seat. I know a guy who has a nicely restored red 70 Monte Carlo SS 454 4 speed.

    The 400 ran pretty good in those old GP’s. My mother had a 72 Model J. Under hard acceleration it would break loose the F78x14 bia plys, when the automatic shifted into second.

    • George Gillespie

      The 70 ss454 with a 4 speed is not a true factory original car, just a wannabee clone.

  5. CPeterson

    My dad ordered a new 1970 Grand Prix SJ, Verdoro Green, 455 4 speed that I grew up in. Love them!

  6. stillrunners

    Wow it’s pretty rare….even the SS454 Monte Carlos were seldom fitted with a stick. This would be so bad with a 455…..and just pulling up to any SS at a light…

    • Steve R

      There have never been any documented SS454 Monte Carlos. You could get them with the 396/402 and the small block, but not the 454.

      Steve R

      • mlm

        Yes there was some SS454 Monte Carlos in 1970-71.

      • CCFisher

        @Steve R – I think you meant SS454/4-speed.

      • Steve R

        CCFisher, thank you, you are right. Failure to proofread strikes again.

        I meant to say no 4spd SS454 Monte Carlo’s have been documented.

        Steve R

  7. Gaspumpchas

    To be this is one butt ugly car, but beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Love the cockpit; the shape of the console with the hurst shifter sticking thru it warms this ol buzzard’s heart. With healthy mill this had to be a blast to drive. buy in seems reasonable for a 4 speed car, IMHO. Good luck to the new owner!! BTW I didn’t know you could get a Monte with a 4 speed!!



  8. Jay M

    In the early 80’s I went to high school with a guy who drove a 69 SJ 428-4 speed.
    The car had some weird options, power leather seats, hood tach and port hole windows.
    Never seen another quite like it.

  9. Robert Sabatini

    This, and the ’67 Grand Prix undoubtedly the finest rendition of all Grand Prixs’. My family’s ’74 GP could easily scratch it in second with the TH400!

    • Ol' Campaigner

      One of my high school teachers had one of these when they were new. I rode in it once as he “short shifted” the big 400 through town. Very cool.

  10. Dan Parker

    Someone commented there errent ant documented 454SS Monte’s. Here you go.

  11. Dan Parker

    And another

  12. Dan Parker

    And lastly.

    • Johnny Joseph

      Dan, read the comments. They said there were no 4 SPEED 454 Monte Carlo’s.

  13. Paris Marshall

    Well U have to also remember back then when they made cars , everything wasn’t buy the book so it was alot of cars made with different engine specifications , I know for a fact they used whatever they had at the time for certain cars , just 2 keep the workers busy , anything from a straight 6 to a 454 ..

  14. Lynn

    Very true Paris, my dad had a 79 mustang with a 300 ci straight 6. Needed a radiator hose one day. Part number was for a truck

    • ctmphrs Member

      A Ford 300 six would never fit in a 79 Mustang.

  15. scottymac

    Wonder if the console for the four speed is different from the automatic? If you can find one, the ash tray will probably cost you $2,000!

  16. Cary Dice

    Can’t tell from the photos but I believe these 4-speeds had a shifter that had a kink in it to bring it closer to the driver.

  17. J. Harkenreader

    I have a numbers matching XH code 400 rated at 345 hp and 450 flb torque in my garage. I never understood why my 70 GP didn’t have limited slip. A 70 mph kickdown would draw smoke off the fat right rear tire (275 60 15 Chargers). I would love a manual GP but I’m looking for a much nicer example. No disrespect, this is a very unique ride.


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