Still Savable? 1966 Pontiac GTO

When I first saw this 1966 Pontiac GTO, the nose-up stance had me thinking it may not have an engine. However, the ad states this car was originally a 389 car and still retains the same size engine although the current powerplant is from 1965. The car can be found here on eBay with a buy-it-now price of $7,900. Being sold by 500 Classic Cars in Knightstown, Indiana, I’m not sure where this car spent its life, but I’m guessing it was somewhere wet. You’ll see what I mean below.

If you look at the floor, you can see what will be the biggest challenge of restoring this car. What looks like gravel on the floor is in-fact, gravel under the car. Yep, this car’s floor is almost completely gone. The trunk photos show a similar story. There is a photo of the rockers and frame that show severe rust damage. This close-up photo of the driver’s floor show just how much of the structure is gone.

To say this car has an engine is a little generous. It has a block with some parts bolted onto it. Other than that, not much is under the hood. I’m guessing this may have been an abandoned project. Perhaps once the restoration was started, the rust issues stopped the build?

The front end of 1965 through 67 GTO’s has to be one of the best designs of the era. The stacked headlights, mean grille and hood scoops make these cars very handsome. Of course, any car can be restored with enough time and money, but I fear this car may be too far gone for anyone to take on. What do you think? Is this car worth restoring or is the rust a deal-breaker?


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  1. Troy s

    Just a wrecking yard parts car, which it stills has plenty of. That’s it.

    Like 2
    • Rick Rothermel

      Rolling shrapnel, except for the ‘Rolling’ part.

  2. Glenn Schwass Member

    Repairable floor and rockers but can’t tell if the frame is done.

    Like 1
  3. OhU8one2

    I’m thinking a Protouring build. Holding nothing back.

    • Steve R

      Guys doing high end builds start with better cars, it’s far cheaper in the long run. This is the type of car a beginner is likely to buy since it’s entry price is cheaper than most other GTOs on the market.

      Steve R

      Like 2
  4. Johnny

    $7,900. !!! I don,t see $900 in parts.,but when you see the words CLASSIC –OR RARE–Look out. They think about mentioning the money and hard work locateing parts and labor to make it just safe to drive. I know I would not give what he is asking. What he will get is alot different. I went and looked at a sharp looking 65 mustang. The man sent me photos. I hired a man to take me . With his trailer. Expecting to buy the car. He said the 6 banger and transmiision was stuck. The car set down in a steep incline garage. Said it was solid. I asked if I could pop the hood. No problem. The right shock tower was eat up bad. He said he put in a new carpet. I asked if I could look under it.No problem. Looked at the drivers side .A hole big enough to put a basket ball trough and the floor s was really bad.The ONLY thing I see holding the car together was the chrome strip along the bottom. I told him and I was NOT interested. He got mad and asked me about the time he took to wait on me. I asked him about my time and money to hire some to haul the car.Forget it.You lied and IF anyone did buy it.Getting it out of the hole would break it in too–SO LOOK FOR YOURSELF AND DON,T TAKE ANY ONES WORD.

    Like 6
  5. George Mattar

    Highest ever GTO production was 1966. Find a better car. This heap needs to go to the recycling pile.

    Like 4
  6. Del

    Amen, George

    Like 1
  7. JOHN Member

    $7900 is awfully optimistic, but, I’ve seen worse cars restored. If it still has a functional Muncie 4 speed and a posi rear, tail light assemblies appear to be good, dash doesn’t appear to be cut up, the hood and trunk lid appear to be decent (without seeing the bottom of then it definitely is worth more than $900 in parts. The intake is a 67 or up, who knows if the engine is a boat anchor at this point. the dash, grab bar all add up to well more than $900 in parts. But, at the end of the day, I’ll be more than happy to pass…

    Like 3
  8. TimM

    $7900 doesn’t seem like a price I would ever pay to replace floors, trunk, quarter panels and probably the frame!! The motor is toast so what are you buying a rusty front clip and a 4 speed???? Not this guy!!!

  9. Craig H.

    I wouldn’t give the asking price, but it’s a 389 GTO. They aren’t making anymore of them. Someone will fix it, if I had the resources I would.

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