Rare 1977 Pontiac Can Am W72 400

The 1977 Pontiac Can Am has a unique history. Based on the Pontiac Le Mans, Jim Wangers created the Can Am while working with Motortown Corporation and pitched the car to Pontiac. While other manufacturers were producing “sticker’ cars, Wangers wanted to produce a flashy car that had a big motor.  The car is located in Jeffersonville, Indiana and can be seen here on eBay. With one day remaining, the car is bid to $2,500. The car is rough and will need a full restoration.

The majority of the Can Ams were produced with Pontiac’s new W72 400 cubic inch V8 engine.  The W72 delivered 200 horsepower and was designed to replace the 455 cubic inch engine that ended production in 1976. California cars received the 403 cubic inch V8 engine that produced 185 horsepower. While neither engine is fast compared to today’s standards, the W72 400 was respectable and was a good platform for improvements. All Can Ams were equipped with a Turbo 350 automatic 3-speed transmission.

The seller states that this car was purchased out of Tupelo, Mississippi and the floor and trunk show alot of rust. The odometer shows 90,977 miles. The doors and undercarriage appear crusty and the car was once equipped with nitrous.

The rare rear spoiler is damaged but still with the car. Jim Wangers stated that 1,133 Can Ams were produced with 42 of those being sent to California. Pontiac intended to produce 2,500 Can Ams before the rear spoiler mold was broken and production ceased after only 6 months at 1,377 cars officially produced.

The shaker hood scoop is still protruding from the long hood but you can see that the bumper pieces have deteriorated away. Additional pictures show that the hood is bent which will be a real problem when it comes to the restoration. Most of the plastic is faded and the dash is cracked. I think $2,500 is the most this car will bring unless sentimentality comes into play. Who has driven or owned a Pontiac Can Am? Is this car restorable?

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Comments

  1. Will Fox

    I see this one’s missing the RR spoiler end over the taillamp. That’s what stopped production of the CAN-AMs; the mold got ruined for the fender cap spoiler end and they couldn’t make anymore. Production was to be 5,000, but ended up stopping at 1,377 due to this. So unless you have a spare, you’re SOL on this part for the car.

    3
  2. JohnD

    I’ll play devil’s advocate and say 3D printing would probably enable you to scan the piece from the other side, reverse the file, and print one. At least good enough to make a mold from. That said, is it worth it? Well, apparently it wasn’t worth it to Pontiac to fix the mold . ..

    8
    • CJinSD

      I should really start reading all the comments before responding to the first one.

      2
  3. Ralph

    This is the only way to be both Smokey and the Bandit at the same time…..

    7
  4. Vin_in_NJ

    With the velocity stack on the engine, I was wondering how the hood scoop was attached. Never would have imagined bungee cords would be used.

    3
  5. Dana

    That part can be made. It was made of fiberglass originally. 3d or fabricated. The rust repair on this thing will be more difficult to repair and likly to costly.

    1
  6. Timmyt

    I have 3 this guy has more you can see 1 in the background and a 66 LeMans he probably got the spoiler parts he needed and the rest is for sale I don’t have any with the 403 Cali emmission motor and they look stupid with honeycomb wheels strangley only 14 were built with honeycomb wheels and only 14 with 403 Cali emmission package I assume the 403, honeycomb,and emmission package all went to Cali,it is a rare car indeed but unfeasable for restoration in it’s condition and seller (flipper) did not validate original powertrain or options on car good luck to the high bidder,ps none came equipped with th- 350 trans

    2
    • md

      Those are snowflake wheels, not honeycomb…

    • JoeNYWF64

      Unlike the ’75 & later t/a which got the smaller t-350 trans(pros & cons), the can am got the more durable turbo 400 trans because the car was bigger & had room enuf under to fit the bigger t-400 next to the wide pellet cat converter.
      Tho, i never liked something that gets that hot next to ANY auto trans.
      Even the shaker scoop is rusted on the inside?! – car went through hell! lol

  7. gbvette62

    You guys need to go back to ebay and look at the ad again. The seller has all 3 pieces of the spoiler, it’s just that some of the mounting bosses are broken. There’s a picture of the rear of the car, showing all of them in place, and one showing the broken mounting bosses on the under side of one of the spoiler sections.

    From what I see, I’m sure the spoiler can be repaired, the question is, is the rest of the car worth restoring?

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  8. Mike

    Please, please crush this car immediately for the goodness of all mankind…

    2
  9. RH

    Plenty of parts for someone restoring one, just not this one.

    2
  10. John Oliveri

    I’m a Pontiac man, nothing special left here, only plus is it’s a 400, not a 403, 90,000 hard miles w nitrous probably later in life, rusty low option, nothing

    1
  11. dyno dan

    leave it alone and watch it turn into a chia pet!

    2
  12. Moparman Member

    Do you suppose that there are enough stickers denoting that it is a Can Am?? :-)

  13. SteVen

    Drat! The insidious Dark Lord of Oxidation strikes again.

  14. jerry z

    What is growing on the package tray?

    • Poppy

      Looks like they roasted a pig back there.

  15. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    SOLD for $2,500.

  16. TimM

    Bet the windshield is rotten all around and the same with the rear window!!

  17. Mark

    You must all be West Coast guys. Here in the rust belt, these types are routinely saved because its what you have to work with. In a world of clapped out, stripped west coast Chevelle’s and their exorbitant prices, saving any 60’s & 70’s coupe is acceptable, so long as you can do most of the heavy lifting yourself, and you have friends that will assist you for beer.

    3

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