AJ’s Car of the Day: 1970 Pontiac LeMans Sport Convertible

AJ’s Car of the Day: 1970 Pontiac LeMans Sport Convertible

Car: Pontiac LeMans Sport Convertible

Year: 1970

What makes it special: LeMans was a model name that was applied to subcompact- and intermediate-sized automobiles marketed by Pontiac from 1962 to 1981. Manufactured in five generations, the LeMans line was replaced by the downsized Pontiac Bonneville for the 1982 model year and later resurrected from 1988 to 1993 as a badge-engineered version of the Daewoo LeMans car manufactured by Daewoo in South Korea.

What made it famous: For 1970, Pontiac reshuffled its intermediate lineup with the Le Mans nameplate downgraded to the mid-line sub-series previously known as the Tempest Custom and included 2- and 4-door pillared sedans, while the previous top Le Mans series was renamed the Le Mans Sport in the same three body styles including a four-door hardtop sedan, two-door hardtop coupe and convertible. This year, bigger engines – which had previously reserved for GTO’s were made available on lesser Tempest/Le Mans models including a 400 CID V8 rated at 265 hp with a 2-barrel carburetor or a 330 hp option with a 4-barrel carburetor and dual exhausts. Replacing the Pontiac-built OHC six-cylinder as the base engine for Tempest/Le Mans models for 1970 was Chevrolet’s 250 cubic-inch straight-six engine, while the 350 2-barrel was again the base V8 and the 4-barrel 350 HO was discontinued.

Why I would want one: I love the overall look of the 1970, from the new chrome nose to the taillights enclosed in its rear bumper.

Fun fact: The final year for the mid-sized Le Mans was 1981 with only base and Grand Le Mans models offered initially. They were joined mid-year by a new LJ trim level positioned between the base and Grand models.

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