World’s Only 1968 Pontiac LeMans Safari Pickup Heading To Auction


World’s Only 1968 Pontiac LeMans Safari Pickup Heading To Auction

Now THIS is cool. Coming in a couple of weeks, the Leake Auction Company will be holding their Oklahoma City Auction and with it are some really interesting cars, none more so than the one you are looking at now. This is the one and only 1968 Pontiac LeMans Safari pickup ever built and it was not assembled on a factory line but instead by a New York car dealer who was trying to convince the brand that they needed something to compete with the El Camino.

The story is interesting and it is kind of a neat display of how much the world of car dealerships have changed over the years. There are many stories of manufacturers “getting the message” from their dealers building the cars they already should have been. Tasca’s creation of the Cobra Jet is but one of the most famous. In this case though, the work and the yells fell on deaf ears as the Pontiac division had no interest in pursing this project. Looking at this car, that’s a damned shame because we’re digging this hard!

Adirondack Auto Sales in Potsdam, New York built the car. They bought a new El Camino and then they bought a new four door LeMans. The only Chevrolet parts are the cab and bed assembly. Everything else is Pontiac. Engine, interior, front sheet metal, etc. We think it looks awesome. The car has a 280hp 350ci engine (the 2bbl version) and was designed to show what a mass production model could look like.

Imagine one with a Ram Air engine and a four speed and now you’ve really got our crank spinning! Perhaps GM figured as soon as Pontiac got one Olds and Buick would need one too and that there was not enough market to support all of them? What’s your take?

Click here for the auction listing for this Pontiac LeMans Safari pickup

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5 thoughts on “World’s Only 1968 Pontiac LeMans Safari Pickup Heading To Auction

  1. Frank

    This last summer I saw what I think was about a 1970 LeMans ElCamino for sale. It was a silver blue color and the front fender line went into the door skin and the dashboard was also Pontiac.

    Reply
  2. Frank

    I forgot to post that this show was in Greenville, Pa around the 4th of July, so probably alot of guys on here might have seen this.

    Reply
  3. DanStokes

    So is there a 4 door LeMans with a Chevy engine, dash, etc. out there somewhere? Seems like an enterprising dealer wouldn’t just throw out the donor when it could be turned into some sort of a car.

    Dan

    Reply
  4. C.M. Bendig

    Sticks in my Mind …John Delorian had one or two built.

    As for making the El-Camino on a GM A body: You use a Station Wagon, not a 4 door car. Has to be a 2 seat not 3 row seating wagon. A filler panel at the front of the Floor, then El-Camino specific inner bed parts & roof, The Rear door skins can be welded in to the Quarter panels. Less work then reshaping El-Camino quarters to B-O-P- style lines.

    As for buying a El-Camino and cutting it up: A GM Dealer could have ordered all the parts new, could have found a wrecked unit, or any number of less destructive and lower cost methods then buying a New Chevy and cutting it apart.

    One also has to remember a number of these ‘stories’ were embellished in the 1980’s & 1990s when first reported.

    Reply
  5. Steve

    Several years ago I built a 1978 El Camino with a 1981 Pontiac LeMans front end on it. I also installed a 1984 Pontiac Grand Prix dash, bench seat and door panels. Everything was direct bolt on. It was a fun project.

    Reply

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