Pontiac Catalina 2+2
In the mid-60s, the Pontiac GTO was at the forefront of the exciting new muscle car movement. With its performance, powerful engine and great Pontiac styling, the GTO was the perfect car for the moment. But, it wasn’t the only stellar performance machine coming from Pontiac. In 1965, there was another pure muscle car icon in the form of the Catalina 2+2.
Behind this strange name, they hid a full-size Catalina model available as a coupe or a convertible, but with a performance twist. The regular Catalina was a great-looking and decent-selling model, but in 2+2 form, it transformed into a true Gran Turismo with a luxury interior and fire-breathing engine. Since the Catalina was a full-size model, it was eligible for engines over 400 CID according to GM rules of the time. This meant the Catalina 2+2 came with the famous 421 V8.
You could also get the Tri-Power intake system, which was the same as in the GTO. It boosted your car’s power to 376 HP. In addition to that, buyers could order limited-slip differentials, heavy duty steering and brakes, and a lot more. And all that made the Catalina 2+2 well-appointed, but unfortunately, quite expensive, too.
The top of the line 2+2 cost over $4,000, which was a hefty sum. In fact, it was much more than the similarly equipped GTO. Pontiac produced around 11,000 of these fine machines in 1965, but only around 200 convertibles.