1966 Pontiac LeMans Review

1966 Pontiac LeMans 2 DR, HT Sprint OHC-6, 4bbl from North America

Year of manufacture1966
First year of ownership1975
Most recent year of ownership2004
Engine and transmission Sprint OHC-6, 4bbl Manual
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.5 / 10
Distance when acquired65000 miles
Most recent distance176000 miles
Previous carPontiac Tempest

Summary:

Pure, hot and clean 60's rolling sculpture

Faults:

Leaking front and rear window.

Water pump replaced 3 times. Biggest single problem.

Rear axle outer bearings each replaced once by 100k. Used Amsoil synth gear oil and Slick 50 for fluid replacement. Now very quiet.

Wiper arms squeak and must be hand repacked every 2 years.

Starter replaced twice.

Valve cover gasket replaced once.

Head gasket replaced at 160k (but I knew a full overhaul was really due).

Distributor needed rubber cover as a good puddle could drown it. I used an section of 3" diam inner tube for a good fix.

Need to hand lube window lift guides and gears at 140k (25 years). Tedious work, but worth it.

General Comments:

I have a 1966 LeMans (yes, that's how to cap LeMans, as it's a French term), 2 DR, HT, silver-grey mist paint and black accents. It has the 4bbl OHC "Sprint" 6 cylinder with 4-speed. She was a great sounding and running car up till about 150k miles when the smoke started. If made today, I'd pony-up again in a moment. Presently, it's under a tarp in the back yard with 176k miles on the clock.

I have a 350 (325 HP 10.75:1 from a 68 'Bird) to put in as soon as the garage finishes. The trans will be a strengthened BPO 4-speed AOD I dropped out of a 82 Olds. It may not quite get to the 24-26 MPG the 6 got on the road, but I will have more scoot in the mountain canyons, and an easier time in town, letting the automatic worry about the gears.

One surprise: the 203 inch-long, 115 inch wheelbase beasty weighs only 3300 lbs! A new 2003 Bird with V6 is 3500! (And look which is better made, snicker.) I love 60's iron.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th April, 2004

31st Jul 2004, 20:12

When you pull the Sprint 6 engine I would be interested in it. I would hate to see it go to waste. It is a nice piece of history.

John.

Jomonb@comcast.net.

18th Apr 2009, 18:19

I wonder if you have the one barrel or 4 barrel carb on your Sprint?

Average review marks: 7.5 / 10, based on 1 review