Curbside Capsule: 1964 Pontiac Catalina Sport Coupe – Tinworming Its Way Into Your Heart

Not a great way to live out your last days, with a huge gash in your side.  Well, it’s better to be living than dead.  This Pontiac is definitely alive, and tinworming its way into your heart, I bet.

Pontiac’s styling in these years was relatively devoid of bodyside chrome spears or other trim details.  Almost like Bill Mitchell, or perhaps John DeLorean, chose Pontiac to say “See how pure and beautiful my forms are, they don’t need anything!”  Instead of the Pure Food Movement, here we have the Pure Mitchell Movement.  Here the effect is magnified because the single chrome trim line is absent.

Even from the rear, it’s a very simple and unified form, if maybe in this example, a little misaligned.

The same pure forms exist in the interior.  No distractions, simplicity.  Almost Nordic.  How does this compare to the Pontiac Aztek?

Bill Mitchell really was on his game that year, don’t you think?

This is, as best as I can tell, a 1964 Pontiac Catalina Sport Coupe.  The Catalina was perhaps not quite as chic as the Bonneville or the GP, but it was on the slightly shorter 120″ wheelbase, and could be ordered with anything you could get on the latter two cars, all the way up to the 421 cu. in. HO output Pontiac V-8, with 370 Hp and 460 lb-ft of torque, and 3-speed or 4-speed manuals or the Hydra-Matic.  So conceivably the 2-door Catalina, properly optioned, was the fastest of the full-size Pontiacs.

It’s a shame Pontiac had to move away from the “European” influence they so deftly showed in the 1960’s to become Trans-Amified by the late 1970’s, until they completely lost their way in the 1980’s.  Who within GM really loved Pontiac enough to keep it from being just a more garish Chevy?  No one, apparently.  What’s your favorite full-size Pontiac?

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