Tri Power 4-Speed Drop Top: 1965 GTO Convertible

Brian BirknerBy Brian Birkner

Tri power 4-speed convertible rolls off of the tongue so nicely, and is a fantastic selection of options for any classic car. GTO’s are well known and admired for their styling and power, so naturally a convertible of this caliber would be a desirable car.  Found in the wooded hills of Tennessee, this GTO has some concerns, but isn’t nearly as rough as you would expect from having lived in the open elements. Although lacking its original engine, the factory 4 speed is in place, along with a few other parts. Bidding is has risen to $2,390.00 with the reserve not yet met. Take a look at this forest find here on ebay out of Nicholasville, Tennessee.

Having to cut down trees to pull this convertible from the wilderness, this GTO isn’t as rough as you may imagine it. The front section of the floor has some holes, and the trunk floor needs some help to say the least. There are some interior components remaining, but the most exciting part is the stick shift attached to the factory 4 speed. Having lived under tarp for quite some time, there were a few leaks that sprung over time, so there may or may not be more rust in the floors.

The exterior looks fair with rust present in the expected areas of any classic car. The seller has described some significant rust in the wiper cowl area, as well as in the lower portion of the quarters. Surprisingly the rockers look decent, with no evidence of rot present. There is a hole in the lower wing of the driver front fender, and the passenger door has a few holes and blisters present as well. By no means a cream puff, this Pontiac seems like a very reasonable project for someone looking to take on something as extensive as this convertible. The body seems very reasonable needing a few patch panels, but the doors and front fenders could be replaced with better condition units. The factory equipped options make this project seem that much more worthy of restoration. Would you take on this Tri Power 4 speed Convertible?

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Comments

  1. 68 custom

    seems like a nice resto candidate provided the price stays low. rust in the cowl area really concerns me though. be sweet once it is finished! 65’s have a cool aggressive look!

    1+
    • James dell

      Keep your head up dude fixed it’s easily a 6 figure car that car will fetch an easy $10.0000 net the bottom feeders keep well wishing they can steal this car

      1+
  2. OhU8one2

    Okay,before starting one thing I would get a PHS ran on the car. If it comes back as a genuine Goat. Then I would do a nut and bolt resto all back to stock. But,include the Royal Pontiac mods,and bore the block out to a 421ci. And locate a set of Hurst wheels.

    11+
    • JamestownMike

      Already has PHS docs with car.

      4+
    • BILL GRAHAM

      A 421 has a 1/4 inch longer stroke than a 389. The main journals are also larger, but the deck height is the same. If you turn down the main journals on the 421 or get a custom crank you can make a 421 or 428 out of a 389. The original engine is missing so why not just get a 428 or 455 and run with it.

      6+
  3. jeepster

    There is no Nicholasville here in Tennessee, this car is in Kentucky

    1+
  4. ccrvtt

    There’s a guy at Year One getting a list together right now for the lucky winner.

    20+
    • Curtis

      One of best quotes I’ve ever seen here! 👍

      5+
  5. Sal Monelli

    More trouble than it’s worth, unless you’re looking for a labor of love ….Full blown Concours resto would easily top $75K…. just go buy a nice one and enjoy from day one !!!

    3+
  6. Elrod

    Some of us are builders, not buyers. I live for the torch, the welder, the smell of ground metal in the air. After I hit the key and sort the car out – I move on to the next stepchild. This car is a perfect major project car – you will be busy for a longgggg time. Its value will be reasonable when done which is all you can ask for when the smoke clears. If you are a resto addict like me – this car is a paradise 🙂

    8+
  7. goatman64 Tom

    I am a big Pontiac guy. Having restored a 64 GTO to a condition 2 (or better) from a car that was very original, I appreciate the idea of bringing cars back to spec. The problem with this candidate is that it is a convertible. Outdoor stored convertible Pontiacs from the 60s tend to be afflicted with really bad frame rot in front of rear wheels and other spots. Without the Tri power motor, this one (sad to say)is better off as a parts car. This one should die to let others live.

    4+
    • flmikey

      Just for the sake of argument, if this one has a solid frame, would you then think it is worthy of restoration? I tend to agree with you, though, this one may be toast….very expensive toast…

      0
      • goatman64 Tom

        Depends on condition of frame and price. I purchased a 64 gto post coupe,389, 4 speed, 323 posi, etc with original drive train for $15,500 with delivery. It ran and had solid floors, trunk, frame and sheet metal. There was an older restoration on the rear quarters. And some rust on inner rear wheel wells. All in we spent $25k plus to have the engine rebuilt, bodywork and paint, headliner, disk brakes for front, rims tires. Total $40k or so investment.

        1+
      • goatman64 Tom

        In this case the seller is offering a pile of rusty junk and a valuable cowl tag. Genuine Tri power convertible GTOs can go for big money. I looked at a 64 vert with original Tri power engine and a bad frame. Price was $15k non negotiable. I spoke to a guy in the GTO forum that had the exact same car, since 64. His was insured for $90k. The combo of Tri power 4 speed convert in 64 was rare. Like less than 1000 units. Not sure about 65.

        1+
      • goatman64 Tom

        If the frame is salvageable and someone gave me this car, I would modernize everything, make it an awesome driver, and drive the hell out of it. If you want to stay pure Pontiac power, use a 60s or early 70’s 400 or 455 block. Hit butler performance for a sick custom Pontiac mill. The m20 will need a total rebuild. You are better off putting in a modern 5 or 6 speed. Rear would need a rebuild, but should be good for a street build.

        0
  8. Tyler

    My father bought a 65 Tripower GTO new, & being a 65 model myself, coming home from the hospital in it, 65 Goats have always had a special place in my heart. I would absolutely love to have this car, but my pockets aren’t deep enough to give it the love it deserves.

    I’m torn though, if it’s solid enough to restore, & since the original engine is long gone, do you find a date code correct 389, a later 455, or say screw it, & drop in a LS3 crate engine & 6 speed while keeping the rest as it left the showroom?

    I need to go buy a Powerball ticket…

    0

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