1965 Pontiac Tempest LeMans GTO Hardtop

Summary

Breathtaking acceleration, a race car name, and a relatively low price -- what's not to like? Pontiac's GTO was a hit, especially among baby boomers with first jobs or generous parents. Other automakers followed with their own big, brawny "muscle cars." But young drivers plus powerful engines produced more accidents and higher insurance rates. That -- along with rising gas prices in the 1970s -- ended the muscle-car era.

Breathtaking acceleration, a race car name, and a relatively low price -- what's not to like? Pontiac's GTO was a hit, especially among baby boomers with first jobs or generous parents. Other automakers followed with their own big, brawny "muscle cars." But young drivers plus powerful engines produced more accidents and higher insurance rates. That -- along with rising gas prices in the 1970s -- ended the muscle-car era.

Artifact

Automobile

Date Made

1965

Creators

De Lorean, John Z. 

General Motors Corporation. Pontiac Motor Division 

Place of Creation

United States, Michigan, Pontiac 

Creator Notes

Manufactured by General Motors Corporation, Pontiac Motor Division, Pontiac, Michigan; engineered by John De Lorean.

Location

Not on exhibit to the public.

Object ID

87.70.1

Credit

From the Collections of The Henry Ford.

Material

Metal
Glass (Material)
Rubber (Material)
Vinyl
Chromium
Plastic

Color

Ivory (Color)
Red

Dimensions

Diameter: 3.75 in  (Bore)

Weight: 4.063 lbs

Length: 52 in  (Stroke)

Height: 73.1 in

Length: 115 in

Width: 206.1 in

Wheelbase: 3171 in

Inscriptions

On left and right side decals: GTO / 6.5 LITRE On rear fenders: GTO On right side of trunk: GTO On trunk edge: PONTIAC On front grille: GTO

Specifications

Make & Model: 1965 Pontiac Tempest LeMans GTO hardtop

Maker: General Motors Corporation, Detroit, Michigan

Engine: V-8, overhead valves, 389 cubic inches

Transmission: 4-speed manual

Height: 54 inches

Wheelbase: 115 inches

Width: 73 inches

Overall length: 206 inches

Weight: 3478 pounds

Horsepower: 360 at 5200 revolutions per minute

Pounds per horsepower: 9.7

Price: $2,855

Average 1965 wage: $5,810 per year

Time you'd work to buy this car: about 6 months

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