Cohort Outtake: 1968 Beaumont – SD396? Maybe, But With the Wrong Badging

What have we here from that alternate universe to the north of us? Looks like a ’69 Chevelle Malibu with a Pontiacesque (that already sounds like a Canadian car) nose job. Well, it is just that. The Beaumont, a brand unto itself, was sold by Canadian Pontiac-Buick dealers.

And this one is sporting a 396 badge. So is it one of the legendary Beaumont SD 396 models? Well, if it is a genuine SD, then yes, as by this year, all SDs were 396s.

This picture of a genuine SD 396 is wearing its correct striping and badging, but not that there’s no US-style 396 call out next to the front side indicator light.

The dash was borrowed from the Tempest/LeMans. But under the hood and otherwise it was a Chevelle. Meaning the usual line-up of Chevy six (230) and small-block V8s (307, 327, 350), and of course the big-block 396. Exactly which version(s) of the 396, I’m not sure.

The back end is interesting too, with some rather unusual narrow twin tail lights in new end caps.

A quick history recap: the Acadian was the version of the Chevy II sold by Pontiac-Buick dealers. The top trim version,  comparable to the Nova, was called the Beaumont.

But in 1964, the new Chevelle-based intermediate was given the Beaumont name, although the Acadian prefix technically hung around for another year or two.

In 1966, the Beaumont was now a stand-alone brand, having shed the Acadian connection. And starting in 1966, the SD version, including the SD396, was available. This one is a more modest Custom.

And by 1970, the game was over, as Canadian Pontiac-Buick dealers finally got a…genuine Pontiac Tempest and LeMans, thanks to a change in the two countries’ trade agreements.

And there was even a genuine GTO on tap to replace the SD.