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Stalled Restoration: 1965 Pontiac GTO Convertible

It isn’t clear when it happened, but at some point in the past, a previous owner had begun to undertake a restoration on this 1965 Pontiac GTO Convertible. It stalled pretty early on, so the next owner is going to have to pick up the pieces and get the job done. If this is a project that you want to take on, then you will find the GTO located in Trenton, New Jersey, and listed for sale here on Craigslist. All you need to do is to hand the owner $5,000, and this baby is all yours.

The GTO started life finished in Fontaine Blue with a Black top. There is plenty of rust present in the car, and it was while a former owner was just beginning to tackle this that the project stalled last time. They started to replace the trunk pan and lower quarters, and cutting out the rusted sections is as far as they managed to get. However, a nice new pan with braces, along with new patches for the quarter panels, are included with the car. The floors will also need some work, with the driver’s side showing the majority of the problems. It also looks like there will be some work required in the lower fenders, bottom corners of the doors, and maybe the rockers as well. In other words, all of the places that we’ve all come to know and love.

When we delve inside the GTO, we find that there’s plenty of work to do here. It doesn’t look like there are any seats, while the remaining interior trim and the dash will all require a full restoration. We also get no engine photos, but the owner believes that the engine is original. That would make it a 389ci V8, and in this case, it is backed by a 4-speed manual transmission. I believe that the GTO might be fitted with power steering, but I’m unsure whether it has power brakes. The car doesn’t currently run, but the current owner does say that a previous owner did have it running off a gas can about 5-years-ago. I hope that the engine and transmission are in good health because that would mean that the next owner will have 335hp at their disposal. This is enough to push the GTO through the ¼ mile in 14.7 seconds. That’s none too shabby for a car that tips the scales at 3,555lbs.

This 1965 GTO Convertible is going to require some pretty major restoration work. I know that from what we’ve seen in the past, we have plenty of Barn Finds readers with the skills and the motivation to restore a car like this. The big question will be whether we have any readers who are in the position to take it on at present.


  1. bobhess bobhess Member

    When’s the last time you saw one of these? A bit rough, price a bit high, but nothing that wouldn’t take a little more money and a fair amount of time. Could be a good one.

    Like 7
  2. Gaspumpchas

    BobHess said it right. Hope somebody brings it back. Would have to look at the underbelly to see how the frame is. Good luck to the new owner!!

    Like 7
  3. RedBaran

    The 1st gen GTO’s have always been one of my favorite cars; the convertible makes it that much sweeter. Wish I had the skills and ability to rescue this one!

    Like 4
  4. Jimmy

    I had one but a hard top 389 / 4 speed, loved that car but life changes had to sell. This one would be nice restored but not at my age and too much $$$ to get it right.

    Like 2
  5. Chuck Foster Chuck F 55chevy

    I’m guessing the seller got it for about $2500 or less, I usually double the price when I flip cars, depending. I think it’s worth 5, I love convertibles.

    Like 1
  6. TimM

    Floors, quarters, trunk, and rebuild the motor and transmission!!! Talk about being upside down!! There’s got to be s better one out there to start with!!!

    Like 1

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