Ultra-rare Roller: 1962 Pontiac Grand Prix 421 SD

Many would trace the beginnings of the muscle car era to the birth of Pontiac’s GTO in 1964, and it’s probably as good a date as any. Yet the GTO was preceded by a number of street-and-strip powerhouses, notably including the 1962 Pontiac Grand Prix. This example is located in Denver, North Carolina, and is up for auction here on eBay. The car has generated a great deal of interest and the bid has climbed to $2,600 at the time of writing, with over two days left to go. Thanks go out to Larry D for the tip!

1962 was the very first year for the Pontiac Grand Prix, and represented a slightly different take on Pontiac’s B-body offerings. Only available in the two door hardtop, the car was virtually bereft of chrome and sat an inch lower than the Catalina. Equipped with bucket seats and floor shift, the interior was luxurious while still emphasizing the driving experience. The base model was equipped with the 389 and a four-barrel, producing 303 horsepower– certainly keeping with Pontiac’s new reputation as GM’s performance-minded marque– and things only got better from there. To get that power to the rear wheels, customers had the option of the three-speed Roto Hydramatic, the standard three-speed manual, or a Borg-Warner T-10 four-speed.

In advertising this example, the seller has definitely dropped some names that should people sit up and take notice. The first of these is Royal Bobcat. As the 50’s turned to the 60’s, Royal Pontiac in Royal Oak, Michigan began offering high-performance parts direct from the factory. Advertised and tested through their own racing team, the dealership also offered race-proven service to wring the most out of factory Pontiacs. Cars that received this special treatment were called “Royal Bobcats,” and sported special paint and badging to advertise their enhanced abilities. The seller also states that this car was originally fitted with a 421 Super Duty. This would have made it one of 16 Grand Prix equipped with this engine, which produced 405 hp.

All this would certainly be enough to render this example worthy of careful consideration, even taking its general condition and the missing engine and transmission into account. Such a car, when treated to a no-expense-spared restoration, might bring a healthy sum at auction and would be certain to stand out at any event. But its real home would be on the street, where the rumble of the 421 SD and the smell of burnt rubber could serve as a potent reminder that the muscle car legends of the mid-to-late 60’s were a product of evolution, not revolution.


WANTED 1960-1965 Ford Ranchero Looking for period-correct cap or topper. Protect-O-Plate was the main brand, but open to any brand Contact

WANTED 1967-1969 Pontiac Firebird Looking for an original 400 convertible, 3 or 4 speed preferred. No restomods. Contact

WANTED 67-69 Chevrolet Camaro Looking for an affordable Camaro in need of resto. Something with a solid frame and cowl. Thanks. Contact

WANTED 1972. -1975 Chev Vega or sunbird BuickSkHacke Chevrolet Vega or sunbird skyHack Just need abody Contact

WANTED 1966 Pontiac GTO Must be Maroon, BLK seats, 4 sp, exl con. every thing else is a plus, Money in hand. Contact

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    Looks to be a factory air conditioning car. If so, it is not a factory drag car.

    Like 6
    • Terrry

      It’s got a lot more air conditioning with all those rust holes and missing body pieces.

      Like 4
    • Sparky

      1 SD GP with A/C was built.

      Like 4
    • John Polacek

      You beat me to that comment. lol

      Like 1
  2. Steve R

    Based on some inconsistencies in the sellers story and the general disinterest from potential buyers, it seems like the market didn’t believe this is a factory SD car.

    If you want a pay day, you need to show proof, plus get the story right. From everything I’ve ever read, these cars came with aluminum inner and outer fenders (not fiberglass), aluminum hood, F&R bumpers as well as brackets, 8 lug wheels and more.

    Steve R

    Like 9
    • Longdogs

      Steve R, The 16 SD421 Grand Prix’s were are steel cars. Only the Catalina SD’s got aluminum fenders, hoods and bumpers. Some SD cars got 8-Lugs and some got iron drum/steel wheels.

      Like 4
      • Steve R

        Thank you for the clarification.

        Steve R

        Like 1
  3. Terrry

    Basically just a ’62 GP with the original engine and tranny removed and a bunch of rust. Sorry, not interested.

    Like 9
  4. Sparky

    VIN is NOT correct for a SD GP.

    Like 5
  5. Tom Bell

    24 bids but that reduces down to 8 bidders. Assuming Sparky is correct on VIN translation, it’s a parts car.

    Like 3
  6. Arby

    As far as I remember, all Royal Bobcats were Catalinas.

  7. Chuck Simons

    At first glance, Looks like a refuge from a locoal short track.

    Like 2
  8. Ron

    Swiss cheesed via the tin worm…

  9. V12MECH

    Perfect candidate for a smokey yunick GN tribute car.

    Like 1
  10. R.Lee

    I have seen only one in my life and it was at Speedway auto salvage near
    East St. Louis about 5 years ago. When you see the 8 lug wheels with aluminum drums you automatically have a closer look. The short finned drums on the 60-62 are like seeing a unicorn for the first time.

    I should have bought the car as soon as I seen it just because the drums and wheels were still with the car. The yard probably thought the car had aftermarket parts and stuck it out there with the other Poncho’s.

    Like 1

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