AJ’s Car of the Day: ’70 Pontiac LeMans Convertible

AJ’s Car of the Day: ’70 Pontiac LeMans Convertible

Car: Pontiac Lemans 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 for five generations, the LeMans line was replaced by the downsized Pontiac Bonneville for the 1982 model year.  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 two- and four-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. 

What made it famous: This year, bigger engines which had previously reserved for GTO’s were made available on lesser Tempest/Le Mans models including a 400 cu in 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 H.O. was discontinued.

Why I would want one: Actually, I had one, but mine was a base, two-door sedan coupe with the 250- inline 6 engine. But loved the style, and hoped to transplant a V8 which the opportunity never arose.

Fun fact: The Pontiac Le Mans nameplate was revived in 1988 as a rebadged Daewoo LeMans; a subcompact car sold in the North American and New Zealand markets until 1993 as a captive import.
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