Here’s a beautiful 1959 Pontiac Catalina convertible that was subject of a comprehensive restoration – doesn’t she look great?
Catalina was a brand new series for 1959 basically replacing the Chieftain line. The name had been used previously though and from 1950 it had been used to refer to the pilarless hardtop models.
All Pontiacs received a major styling change this year, not least the new split grille at the front that was to go on and form somewhat of signature for Pontiac over the next decade. 1961 was a bit of an exception though as they reverted to the single grille format. Work was already underway for this design long before the ’59 models were launched so they didn’t know what a hit they had on their hands.
At the rear there was a new twin tailfin design that formed a V shape at the rear and sat on top of road backup lamps. Taillights were now oval and sat at the ends of coving that had PONTIAC spelled out between the lights.
1959 also saw Pontiac’s new wider stance – the wider track offered better handling. The term “Wide-Track” was heavily used in advertising campaigns.
While the Catalina was Pontiac’s entry model they still had better trim and appointments than the Chevrolet Impala.
They also had more powerful engines than Chevrolet with all Pontiac’s coming with a 389 cubic inch V8 with various power outputs. The Catalina came with a 389 CID Tempest 420, 2-barrel that output 245 with the 3-speed manual. It managed 280 horsepower when paired with the Super Hydro-Matic, a $231 option that this car is fitted with.
Other options on this Pontiac include: Circ-L-Aire heater and defroster ($101.65), Wonder Touch power steering ($107.50), power brakes ($108), Decor Group (this consisted of a deluxe steering wheel, deluxe wheel discs, chrome pedal trim plates and custom trim moldings costing $59.39), back-up lamps ($10.75) and E-Z-Eye tinted glass ($43).
Pontiac sold 14,515 convertible Catalinas in 1959 with a base price of $3,080.
This ’59 Pontiac Catalina is currently for sale on eBay. (follow the link for even more photos)