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1968 Pontiac GTO

Illustration for article titled 1968 Pontiac GTO

This is actually the car that inspired the Down on the Street series in the first place; it parks in my neighborhood, and every time I passed it I'd say to myself: "Hey, the Jalopnik readers would probably like this car." Then I realized such cars were all over town. But parking is tough in this downtown 'hood, and it's been hard to catch the Goat when it isn't hemmed in by a couple of parallel-parked Sentras and thus unphotographable.

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Illustration for article titled 1968 Pontiac GTO


As anyone who knows GTOs can tell you, this car maybe- or even probably- didn't start life as a GTO. Most didn't. But thanks to GM's paperwork system of the 60s, it's just about impossible to tell if you don't have the original build sheet (VINs mean nothing on these cars)- just put the right engine, hood, and emblems on a Tempest and you double the value!

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Illustration for article titled 1968 Pontiac GTO


But you know what? As long as you're not trying to buy the thing, who cares? This car's got a genuine 4-speed, and it drives every day. And I tell you what, it sounds mighty good.

Illustration for article titled 1968 Pontiac GTO


The GTO for '68 came with a 350-horse 400 engine... but this car could have a 455... or a 350... or even a 326. The cool (though frustrating) thing about the Pontiac V8 is the easy swappage potential and near-identical external appearance.

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Illustration for article titled 1968 Pontiac GTO


This GTO has a lot of rough patches, but the owner has gone with black primer for the bodywork, so it looks all right at a distance. The rear springs are weak, though, which doesn't look so great.

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Illustration for article titled 1968 Pontiac GTO


Nice grille emblem! It's gotta be real! Or not.

Illustration for article titled 1968 Pontiac GTO
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One of these days I'm going to do a poll in which we all vote on our favorite hood scoops. These would definitely make my personal Top Ten Favorite Hood Scoops list.

Illustration for article titled 1968 Pontiac GTO
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It's hard to believe we've been seeing this wing style for nearly 40 years. It was kinda cool... back then. But those Pontiac-emblem-shaped marker lights will still look cool when mesh-tired Pontiacs are driving on the Moon Base.

Illustration for article titled 1968 Pontiac GTO
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If I'm being totally honest, I prefer the angular '64-67 GM A-bodies over the bulgy '68-72 ones. But still, this design looks great.

Illustration for article titled 1968 Pontiac GTO
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Wait a minute... isn't that bumper supposed to be chrome?

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DISCUSSION

Those hood scoops look like nostrils.

Angry, flared nostrils.

My former boss's boss has 2 GTOs, both in excellent condition. A baby blue convertible, and a bronze 2 door. He claims the bronze one is original paint.

For a while it was my dream to buy a Delorean, then have a picture taken of me and my Delorean and him and his GTOs side by side. Then we'd send prints to John Z. Delorean for an autograph (which John Z. was apparently only too happy to do for his fans). Alas, John Z. Delorean died a few years ago and I still don't have a DMC-12.