32. Pontiac Grand Ville
The early ‘70s were good times for the Pontiac Motor Division. During the ‘60s, the company reimagined itself, proving to be a leader in several segments with high annual production numbers. So for the early ‘70s, the Pontiac management decided to enter the luxury car segment. They did that in 1971 by introducing a new top-of-the-line model called the Grand Ville. Although the Bonneville sold reasonably well, and most consumers considered it a wise choice in the luxury field, Pontiac wanted more. They imagined something closer to a Cadillac or Oldsmobile than to a Chevrolet Caprice.
So they produced the Grand Ville using a Bonneville platform and most of the sheet metal. Pontiac decided to offer the 400 V8 engine as standard and the 455 as an optional engine, as well as a high level of equipment. But for those who wanted something extra, Pontiac offered a leather interior, climate control, and heavy-duty suspension. The Grand Ville came as either a two or four-door hardtop or luxury convertible but the market didn’t respond well, so sales figures were low. At the same time, the energy crisis hit the USA, so big gas-guzzlers fell out of favor with most customers.