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Two-Owner Survivor: 1974 Pontiac Grand Am

I’ve previously discussed how I find classic cars with known ownership histories attractive, and many potential buyers share that sentiment. However, it sometimes doesn’t translate into feverish bidding activity when the time comes for an owner to part with their pride and joy. Such is the case with this 1974 Pontiac Grand Am Colonnade Coupe. It is an original survivor with no urgent needs and would suit an enthusiast seeking something rarer than the average Trans Am. The seller listed it here on eBay in Barnhart, Missouri. It has received a solitary bid of $11,500 in a No Reserve auction. With time remaining before the hammer falls, the subdued action means someone could become this Pontiac’s new owner by submitting a single bid.

Pontiac introduced the Grand Am in 1973. They based the car on its A-Body platform, integrating the Grand Prix and Trans Am into one package designed to tackle head-on Japanese and European models combining luxury and performance. Sales during the first year were respectable but collapsed by a staggering 60% in 1974. The following year was even worse, prompting the company to ax the plate after three years. This Grand Am is 1-of-13,961 Colonnade Coupes produced in 1974. It wears Ascot Silver paint with a matching vinyl top. The seller states the original owner performed a repaint in 2005, and it still holds a healthy shine. It isn’t perfect but has a few marks and imperfections the new owner could tackle at their leisure. The panels are straight, but the “Endura” nose has many cracks requiring attention. Contacting a specialist to determine whether it is salvageable could be a good start. However, the new owner may need to brace themselves and spend around $800 on a high-quality fiberglass reproduction. The rest of the exterior trim is suitable for a survivor-grade classic, and the only rust is some tiny bubbles on one lower front fender.

One aspect of this Pontiac requiring no cosmetic attention is its interior. The original owner ordered it trimmed in Red vinyl, and its condition is impressive for its age. There are no rips, tears, marks, splits, or signs of UV damage or abuse. The dash and pad look excellent, the console is spotless, and the faux woodgrain has not faded or lifted. Any flaws are functional, including an inoperative speedometer, a non-functioning factory AM radio, and the fan doesn’t work on “high.” It isn’t weighed down with luxury appointments by modern standards, but the bucket seats, console, and ice-cold air conditioning were rated highly in 1974.

This Grand Am emerged during The Malaise Era, making the power output from its 400ci V8 of 175hp unsurprising. However, buyers could order their new toy with more potent versions of the 400 and could even opt for a 455ci V8 if they craved something extra under the right foot. The company offered no manual transmission, so buyers received a three-speed Hydramatic. When combined with power steering and power brakes, this Grand Am should be a relaxed long-distance cruiser. The seller indicates that they have performed many tasks during their six years of ownership to ensure the car is mechanically sound. They replaced the rear springs, tires, brakes, battery, two motor mounts, and the A-Arm bushings on both sides. The engine and transmission drip slightly, but this is unsurprising in an original vehicle with nearly five decades under its belt. Otherwise, it is a turnkey proposition the seller describes as fun to drive. The winning bidder could fly in and build a relationship with their new purchase by driving it home.

With a 1974 sales total of 13,961 versus 10,255, more people handed over their cash for a Pontiac Grand Am Coupe than the more iconic Trans Am. However, more people have preserved the Trans Am, meaning these cars rarely hit the market. Considering its originality and minor needs, the bidding could drag its way to $15,000 if enough people become interested. Otherwise, somebody could secure it with a single bid well below that figure. Are you tempted to try your luck and see if you can strike automotive gold?


  1. Tony Primo

    The four speed was available on these cars Adam, as I recall getting smoked by one back in the day in a stoplight drag.

    Like 7
    • Bick Banter

      0-60 in 8.4 and quarter in 16.5. What were you driving??

      Like 4
      • 455RAIV

        State of tune etc. it probably wasn’t stock 400 – 455’s can be hopped up to run with anything :)

        Like 1
  2. CCFisher

    A 4-speed manual was available with the 4-barrel 400. Unlike the 1973 Grand Am SD-455, there were actually some 4-speed Grand Ams built in 1974, including at least one 4-door sedan.

    Like 6
  3. Stan

    Cool Collonade. The stick shift would of course be ideal.

    Like 3
  4. Clark

    Hi I have a 1968 GTO. That’s has never been titled in an owner name . Still titled in the name of the dealer . I guess you can call it a zero owner.

    Like 0
  5. Jim in FL

    I’ve troubleshooted the “No high speed” fan on these. 70s gm blower motors had one feed for the lower speeds and a separate feed for the high speed. That feed has either a relay or an inline fuse under that hood that’s gone bad. If the seller (or buyer) is reading this, it’s probably a minor quick fix.

    Like 10
    • Chuck Dickinson

      That was common knowledge in the 70s & 80s. Lots of Chevys & other GMs had the same problem. I learned about it on my 75 Caprice when it was only a year or two old.

      Like 0
  6. DGMinGA

    So, while it is a “no reserve” auction, it had a “starting price” of $11,500, which seems higher than what a reasonable reserve should be on this car. One bid of $11,500 ? Maybe it is that one buyer who was looking for this specific car, but more likely a shell account or a “buddy bid”. Wouldn’t surprise me to see this one show up again on Craig’s List or another site, or perhaps a relist with a lower “starting price.”
    Cool car, but there are probably only a handful of people in the world willing to pay that price for this car. If it is a “for real” bid, I hope he(she) gets the car and loves it.

    Like 2
  7. Conrad A

    Wow, this one’s really nice! I’m surprised that the bidding hasn’t gone higher, seeing as there are so few of these left. And Jim in Florida is right about the 70’s GM blower motor and the fact that they’re inexpensive to fix. I’ve owned two 74 Cutlass coupes, one in the early 80’s, and it never cost much to fix that no high speed issue. I’m sure whoever gets this car will be glad they did. It’s not perfect, but what 74 car is at this age? I bought my 74 Cutlass Supreme coupe survivor about 5 years ago. It looked great, and it wasn’t perfect so I hemmed and hawed a bit before I pulled the trigger, but what pushed me over the edge to buy it was – When will another as nice as this come along? Probably not anytime soon, I told myself. And 5 years later, none has.

    The same mindset applies to this Grand Am…

    Like 4
  8. Homer

    I worked at a Pontiac dealership during the Grand Am period and loved the way they drove. Very solid and tight handling.

    Like 5
  9. Lester Cline

    I owned one in 1976 , it was my first car that l owned after returning from the army.l put a a set of Good year GT radials under what a great handling car.L also picked up a 63 Grand Prix as a project car.The last one L owned was 2000 Grand Prix that l gave my wife for her birthday. The biggest mistake GM evermade was ending Olds And Pontiac.

    Like 0
  10. wjtinfwb

    Great looking car and a fantastic interior and dash. I really wanted a Grand Am but fell hard for a smoking deal on a ’77 Cutlass Salon coupe and bit on the much more conservative Olds. Big mistake.

    Like 1
  11. Connecticut mark

    This and the Can Am look like such Fast cars, too bad were not made earlier.

    Like 3
    • Emel

      Aerodynamically they were. Their body double, the Chevy Laguna S ruled NASCAR for several years. Still holds a few records for amount of wins, mostly by the great Cale Yarbrough, when NASCAR rocked.
      Southern Rock(ed) that is !!

      Like 0
  12. Bakes

    Always loved these but I thought the 73 nose looked lighter and more “right.” When I was an early teenager these were the cars I wanted tremendously. Had a chance to ride in/drive a friend’s one once and for a mid-70s car it was quite a good handling and responsive car.

    Like 0
  13. JoeNYWF64

    Now THIS below is full door glass styling! & you tell me how that mirror can be adjusted from the inside with the moving glass in the way!
    Today, car “designers” just either put in an ugly fixed piece of triangular plastic or a fixed “vent window” up front to allow STRAIGHT LINE DIRECT routing of wires or cables to adjust the mirrors. & most of the mirrors today are ugly too. & too big. Just shaking my head repeatedly.

    Are the tailights here designed to be seen by tractor trailers? lol

    Like 0
    • DGMinGA

      The window adjustment is controlled by wire cables inside of a jacket which runs underneath the window track (down, under, up, although it might be run around the front the way that window is situated in the door (unless it is electric, which I doubt.)

      My 1979 Cutlass has the same controller, although the “joystick” is mounted on the lower door panel, so it makes more of a “J” than a “U” under the glass and tracks.

      Like 0
  14. R Paine

    Buddy had a 1973 Grand Am 4 door 4 speed. Not sure which 400 engine configuration he had but it was fast.
    73 had a better looking rear end too.
    So odd in the day for a hot rod 4door but
    Sought after now.

    Like 0
  15. Emel

    There was hardly any or any japanese car competition in this size vehicle in 1973. The few imports you saw were either japanese sports cars like the 240z or the little rust buckets compacts like the B210 or such. Wasn’t much
    Euro competition either in 1973.
    Until Ford decided their Grenada looked like a Mercedes a few years later. lol

    Like 0
  16. geomechs geomechs Member

    I had one of these three years later. It was only a 301 with 4bbl. For that small engine it still went like Jack, the Bear. Only problem was I had it during the National 55 MPH Speed Limit. At 55 it was a grumpy, shuddering, gutless POS. But if you could avoid the Highway Patrol, 75 was great; mileage was by far the best at that speed.

    Coming back from the gun show in Kalispell, my buddy and I were talking guns (duh?) and I wasn’t watching the speedo. An “Inflato-Patrol” materialized on my tail and he had me doing 72. I told him about coming back from the gun show and I wasn’t even looking at the speedo. The trooper put me in the car and the two of us talked about the gun show (which he sadly missed) while he cited me $5.00 for “Abuse of a Vital Resource.” He wished us well and we parted company…

    Like 1
  17. George Mattar

    Those NOS wheelhouse moldings are like hens teeth. Will never be reproduced for 73 to 77. Love this car.

    Like 1
  18. DON

    Another ‘Malaise” jibe at a 70s car ? Which would you rather have – a 74 Grand Am , or an 84 Grand Am ..I rest my case

    Like 0
  19. Connecticut mark

    1974 in a heartbeat, no fwd 4 cylinder. I will take the good looking slower 8 cylinder

    Like 2
  20. Rosalia

    Hi, I am looking for a Pontiac Grand Am 1974 or 1975 with red interior. Please let me know if you have one. Thank you…

    Like 0

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