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63 Pontiac Catalina. Lavishly Maintained One-owner Black-plate Original! Wow!! on 2040-cars

Year:1963 Mileage:82491
Location:

Cypress, California, United States

Cypress, California, United States

Thanks for stopping by to take a closer look at this gem of a 1963 Pontiac Catalina 2-door Hardtop with the Ventura option.
 
Here's Some Pontiac Background:

During most of it's earlier years, Pontiac was the conservative step upward from Chevrolet and treated buyers to an eight cylinder (L-Head In-line 8) power option and upscale interiors.  The face of Pontiac changed dramatically in 1959, however,  with its 'Wide-Track' chassis, lower/wider stance, iconic split grill, standard 389 cubic inch engine and a host of performance options. 
 
The 60's were the heady John Z. Delorean (Pontiac's Chief Engineer) days at Pontiac with offerings like Catalinas, Venturas, GTO's and Grand Prix's -  which, over the years, have become coveted pieces of mechanical artistry.  At the time they captured the public's interest and  led the way to Pontiac's major resurgence in the marketplace.
 
One needs to look no further than this Catalina to find a prime example of 60's Pontiac styling.  It features a most stylish example of Pontiac's  recessed split grill - accentuated by the vertical dual headlamps and massive front bumper.  It has what many consider to be the best of automotive hardtop designs with its whisper of convertible top bows.  This greehouse style is augmented by its lengthy trunk  and capped off by a beautifully sculpted taillamp design.  Its clean, lean lines are in stark contrast to the bulbuous look Pontiac adopted for its full size cars a couple years later.
 
History of 3971:
 
I've referred to this one as an 'All-California' Car.  Actually, it's an all-Southern-California-Car manufactured at GM's South Gate plant, transported 40 miles to Tate Motors in Pomona, CA and sold to Marvin Leaman who made a 'have to have it decision' when he saw it arrive on the showroom floor and later returned to purchase it. 
 
Marvin was a citrus rancher a few miles away in Upland and worked for the State Parole Board.  The Catalina's original Black Plates, original dealer license plate frames, and blue key fob have been with the car during it's 51 years and its documented 82,000+ miles - an average of about 1600 miles per year.
 
Because Marvin was provided with a State vehicle, the Catalina was only used for personal outings which included a couple trips to San Fransisco.  The uncracked deluxe steering wheel, dash cover and unpitted chrome and its shiny original paint testify to the car having always been garaged.  In fact, there were some years from the seventies through the 90's it was tucked away under cover of blankets - since Marvin was saving the car for his son, Larry.
 
Larry is the good friend for whom I'm listing the car.  To say Larry is a Pontiac enthusiast and meticulous about the upkeep of his cars would be a gross understatement. 
 
The car migrated from his dad's garage to Larry's in 2003.  During that time Larry has easily spent  ten thousand dollars maintaining the car in perfect mechanical condition and  thousands more keeping it in weatherproof commercial storage.  There is nothing this car needed that it didn't get.  And while he was at it, Larry gathered up all available information he could lay his hands on - a sort of 1963 Pontiac Library, if you will.
 
Cosmetics:
 
One of this  Catalina's prime features is its still-shiny, Factory Original GM Duracryl Yorktown Blue finish.  Another is the absence of rust.  Even the corners  of the trunk seams beneath the rear window molding are corrosion free (see photo). 
 
Every body panel is original.  And while it shows some wear in areas like the top of the driver-side door, some scratches and a few discolored spots, most are evident only when paint is closely scrutinized.
 
Interior shows almost like new.  Over the years the headliner, sun visors and carpet have been replaced with original materials.  Seats are original Pontiac Morrokide over optional foam.  Optional DeLuxe Two-color steering wheel is a mint example with no cracks or pitting on the chrome horn ring.  Instrument panel and uncracked dash cover look virtually new. 
 
Mechanical:
 
Engine is Pontiac's high compression Trophy 389 with Rochester two-barrel carburetor rated at 283 HP @ 4400 RPM.  It is mated to GM's three-speed Hydra-Maric transmission. Both function flawlessly and the transmission throws a crisp 1/2 shift (not always the case with the 'Roto' Hydra-Matic transmissions).  The engine was repainted when out of the car for the rebuild.  Remaining engine compartment surfaces are original.
 
Over the years, Larry has treated the car to virtually everything it needed to function  perfectly (and without leaks or drips).  Here are some relatively recent documented examples:
 
  • Complete engine rebuild @ 80,134 miles by Gordon's Auto Works, Orange, CA which also included replacement of hoses, belts, plugs and coolant, water pump and thermostat - $6905
  • Carburetor overhaul@ 80,500  -    $223
  • Radio parts replacement  -   $126 
  • New Fuel Pump and Defroster Diaphram @ 80,940 -  $419
  • Adjust hood alignment, replace axle bearings, replace gasket and pinion seal @ 81,308 -  $638  
  • Replace transmission seals @81,333 - $883
  •  Oil/filter change and fuel filter replacement @81,604 - $110
  • Install electric fuel pump @ 81,720 - $250
  • Replaced inefficient electric fuel pump with new mechanical, new transmission oil cooler line, replaced transmission pan gasket @82,344 - $407
Extras:
  •  A correct trunk  mat and new trunk lid seal, along with the car's four mint original wheel discs
  •  Owner's manual, Owner Protection Plan, Deluxe, full color, 16 page, dealer brochure, '63 Pontiac Accessories Catalog,  reproduction window sticker, 3/4 inch folder of Pontiac articles and fact sheets (one of 5 folders Larry maintained)
Purchase Information:
 
On an as is/where is, no warranty basis, this car will be sold to the highest bidder meeting the reasonable reserve during this ten-day auction, but owner reserves the right to end the bidding at any time.  The Catalina is available for your pre-arranged evaluation in the Orange/Santa Ana, CA area.  It is highly recommended that prior to entering a bid, you personally inspect the car and draw your own conclusions about purchase suitability.  Larry will assist with the transporter, if required, and can store the car for reimbursement of his storage costs.
 
I look forward to and respond ASAP to your questions.  They are encouraged!
 
Larry can be contacted for any additional information.  Photos of the underside of the car, can be sent to you upon request.
 
Bidders outside the Continental US and those without a solid eBay feedback history MUST contact me prior to submitting a bid.
 
A $500 PayPal non-refundable deposit is due within 48 hours and balance can be paid with the instrument of your choice, but the car will not be released until the instrument is bank approved (includes cash and cashier's checks).
 
Associated Hyperbole:
 
You don't have to remind me that I've been associated with the old car hobby since 1954 when I bought a 40 Chevy two door sedan for fifteen dollars.  Because I'm both car and eBay conversant, I will ocassionally list cars for friends.  But they have to be gems.  What I've learned about  cars over the years is 1) avoid cars with ANY evidence of rust; 2) typically avoid 'restored' cars; 3) buy cars directly from the owner with documented history; 4) match what you see with what you hear; 5) whenever possible, buy cars that are original and unaltered.
 
As you can see, this one fits well into the above categories, has a lot of desirable options and given it's provenance should be a smart buy for both ol'  Pontiac fans and investors alike as the market for pristine examples continues to climb.  This Catalina is ready for touring, showing or just enjoying.
 
Thanks for wading through all this information.  Rest assured I will appreciate your consideration of this 63 Catalina Ventura.

Addendum:  A check of the March/April, 2014 'Old Cars Price Guide' lists the #2 value of the 63 Catalina 2-dr Hardtop at $20,300 and  this one meets the Guide's 'fine' criteria. A comparison check was made with my June, 2010 issue.  Price of a #2 four years ago was $13,300 and offers evidence of significant appreciation in value for pristine examples.
GOOD LUCK BIDDING!
 
 
 

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