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Rare Original: 1955 Pontiac Star Chief Custom Catalina

This surface rusted 1955 Pontiac Star Chief Custom Catalina has a lot going on. To begin with, it has a clear Canadian titled, but is located in Pembina, North Dakota, The seller says all paperwork is available to register it the US. The VIN is listed along with 71,456 miles on the odometer. There is a Buy It Now price of $5,500 or you can make an offer. You can view more here on eBay.

According to the listing, an intact but condition unknown, original 287 cubic inch V8 resides under the hood. That is connected to a Hydramatic automatic transmission, although the driveshaft is not connected but is included with the car. If you are worried about how to move it, they do note that all the tires hold air. It is also equipped with some top of the line “Kelsey Hays” wire rims.

Inside, there is some rust in the floors, particularly on the passenger side and trunk. Dirt covers all the dash and any other interior surfaces. The rear seat bottom is missing and so is the driver side door glass. More glass is needed due to cracks, specifically the windshield and passenger side door. The listing also notes that there are lots of parts that come with the car, but since they were in the trunk when they purchased it, they are not sure if they actually go with the car.

While the seller boasts of rust free a lot throughout the ad, I see a lot of rust. Surface rust, rust and holes in the floor and other parts of the body. If they intended to say rust free frame, they don’t show that, and I doubt it is rust free. Even with all that in mind, the price for what you are getting does seem fair. There are not a whole lot of these cars out there and attempting to preserve them is always a valiant effort.


  1. Ramone

    What a beautiful car this must have been once! Have to agree with Brentton, that rust fights will be much more than the seller indicates. That said, it’s mostly all there, and rolls. Not sure why it has a Canadian registry. We didn’t get these high end models much. Likely crossed over years ago. Would make a great project for someone considering a tri-5 Chevy?

    Like 3
  2. TimM

    Could be a real nice ride!!

    Like 1
  3. Bob S

    That is a US made car. All the Pontiacs made in Canada in those years, were made on the shorter wheelbase Chevy frame and were equipped with Chevy engines. The wheel bolt pattern of the Canadian car will be Chevrolet. These American built cars were not sold through the Canadian dealerships, so my belief is, that this car was imported.
    I am not ready to believe that the odometer hasn’t been around the clock once.
    It is still a great buy for someone.

    Like 2
  4. Sanityfactor@outlook.com

    Iirc those wheels were recalled due to failure….

    Like 1
  5. LARRY

    Did the engine get rolled around in some mud? It looks out of place

    Like 0
  6. Gaspumpchas

    Zero rust? what does this guy call rust?? the drivers side floor is GONE.. I agree with larry, eng does look out of place like it was in the mud! Nice car when done but you are looking at some pricey parts. Ask seems high. Good luck to the new owner, and Caveat Emptor–seems this guy doesn’t know what rust is…


    Like 2
  7. James Martin

    Look honey it’s got two doors, it has got to be worth atleast 5000 dollars. Where does everybody get there prices? 2000 dollar car at best.

    Like 1
  8. Glen Riddle

    You all have clearly misunderstood the seller. He means that the rust is FREE.
    Yep, buy the car and the rust is included at NO extra charge! :-)

    Like 4
  9. Del

    500 dollar parts car.

    New front clip.

    Accident victim located at wreckers ?

    Like 2
  10. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry

    As a lad growing into my teenage years back in the early 60’s. I knew some teenage lads that owned cars like this Poncho or it’s brother Olds. They were nice cars back then, but many years have past since then. This car brings back some nice memories, I remember one in particular that had a factory installed record player, some had A/C, they were equipped with such amenities as power steering, power brakes and electric windows, some even had electric seat. It was normal to put spinner wheel covers on them. these guys washed and waxed their cars every weekend, and kept them immaculate inside and out. Just a trip down memory lane.
    God bless America

    Like 0
    • Bevis

      wow–a record player?

      Like 0
  11. Bob McK

    I recently sold one of these that was an Arizona rust free restored car that ran and drove beautifully. Got $13000. For it. You do the math.

    Like 5
  12. karl

    It was quite a car back in its day, but this car has had a rough life- Most likely the front was hit and a new front clip installed sometime before it ended up in a junkyard where it sat for years with the drivers door glass down (or broken ) , which ruined the interior pieces on that side as well as rotting the floor . A flipper probably got it out of the junkyard and hopes to make a killing on it

    Like 0
  13. Don

    luv to see this restored..you see a bunch of Chevy’s, Ford’s & such of this year, but not many Poncho’s.. be a great project!

    Like 1
  14. ken b

    Had a 55 just like this many years ago. Wouldn’t give a dime for this rusted out hunkojunk.

    Like 0
  15. Mark Evans

    I wasn’t aware that Canadian Ponchos had different motors than American until the 80’s until G.M. started to put the same engine in every product. Were they different?-Would love to hear more.

    Like 0

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