This week’s Friday AutoHunter Picks are all from General Motors. Sorry, Brand X folks, but that’s just how the cookie crumbles. Am I exhibiting a GM bias? Not really, as I hand-selected four individual vehicles that I felt warranted further examination. Still not convinced? Then you should visit AutoHunter and tell us which other cars move you — we’d love to hear what you’d pick.
1967 Chevrolet Camaro SS/RS
I saw this car and noticed the description said it was powered by a 1971 402. Is it possible to determine what was the original engine? I dug deeper by checking out the data plate, where I discovered the code 4N. That determines what the original engine was, which in this case was the 325-horsepower 396. SCORE!
So, to you numbers-matching snobs, what’s most important here is the pedigree of this vehicle. The fact that it is a real big-block four-speed (2L) Camaro Super Sport with the Rally Sport package (3L) is desirable enough, but the big-block puts it on a whole other level. This car is just waiting for the love you can give it, including a proper date-coded 396.
1958 Cadillac Series 62
Though GM’s 1958 lineup is often maligned (especially Buicks and Oldsmobiles), you can’t argue that the 1958 Cadillac had style in spades. The shark-inspired fins were arguably an improvement over the reverse-slant 1957s, and the horizontal hashes on the rear fenders match the fluting on the front bumper and the louvers in the rear exhausts — a nice touch.
There were two ragtops in 1958: the “regular” Series 62 and the Eldorado Biarritz. The latter is in a whole different price class, but there’s nothing lost by settling on this Caddy. It offers the same rocket-inspired 1950s style and 310-horsepower 365ci V8 that was standard for all Cadillacs aside of the Eldorado. Seller reports that the air conditioner was recently serviced, but who cares when all it takes is to drop the top?
1969 Pontiac GTO Judge
An admission: this was the car I wanted to own when I was 16. As it turned out, I didn’t know of any in my area, and I found a local 1970 Olds 4-4-2 convertible anyway. I still haven’t owned one, and sometimes other interests grab my attention because the world of neat cars is vast, yet sometimes I have to linger when I see one. You can imagine that a guy who has a few Fillmore West posters would be keen on the pop art decals.
This GTO Judge here has been upgraded to a five-speed manual, which would make it a fabulous driver in a way that Pontiac never imagined in 1969. If you wish to go stock, it comes with a four-speed. And if you wish for rarity, this Judge was originally ordered with a three-speed manual. Lots of interesting things going on with this Judge.
1971 Cadillac Fleetwood Wagon
You probably are aware that Cadillac station wagons were not a thing from the factory, but coachbuilders would build you one, as they were already building ambulances and hearses on the same chassis. While I am far from an expert on these, I can’t say I recall seeing a Cadillac wagon of this vintage.
What’s neat is that the coachbuilders — in this case, it’s claimed that ASC made the conversion — implemented the new-for-1971 clamshell design used on full-size GM wagons, so what you have here is chariot among chariots. Imagine picking up your kids from school in this behemoth … it’s like an Escalade before the Escalade and, besides, who needs an SUV anyway? Love love love this!