Smash, Scrap, Part,or Race: 1995 Pontiac Grand Prix

Steven Lang
by Steven Lang
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smash scrap part or race 1995 pontiac grand prix

Have you ever seen a car truly ratted out? I’m not talking about the Oscar Madisons amongst us who leave their food wrappers in their cars til’ kingdom come. I’m talking about a real rat car. Interior seats with more thread than fabric. Transmission shifts that make the car jerk quicker than John Ashcroft at a Mardi Gras. Panels with more dents than…. you get the idea. The owner of this Grand Prix decided to get an advanced pharmacology degree during the waning moments of ownership. He was kind enough to bring what was left of the car after his latest meeting with the local magistrate, and with $410 left on the note I could…

Smash: You think I’m kidding? Believe it or not, this car may make more money going through this route first. For someone else that is. One of my good friends in the business decided to bring a 20+year old conversion van for a high school fundraiser a few years ago. $20 per window. 2 good panel whacks for $5. $5 per headlight and taillight. Throw in a few ‘all you can whacks’ when it’s all said and done, my friend managed to raise about $700 for intramural activities at the nearby high school. I’m thinking that a $500 contribution to the neighborhood school would be more than worthwhile.

Part: There are some things that may be worth keeping in this vehicle. The recently installled junkyard transmission in this model can go into an endless slew of GM models from this era. The 3.1L had a 4-speed automatic that was used in everything short of a Cadillac or Saturn back then. I have a few cars on the road with similar specs. As well as a few auction vehicles which may be bought on the cheap with a bad tranny. The alloy wheels on this model would also go nicely with a low mileage 1996 Bonneville I just got from Carmax. Toss in an extra compressor and a few other odds and ends… and you have a nice parts reserve for a rainy day.

Scrap: Then it’s on to the carcass. Catalytic converters can be cut out and sold for $40 to $60 at this point, and metal is still out there for $10 to $11 per 100 on the wholesale level. This car coming in at 3200+ pounds would net somewhere close to $360 or so for the steel and cat alone. That leaves me with a lot of good spare parts for about $50. Not too bad of a deal.

Race: I can see it now. LeMons riders quaking in their high heel boots from the awesome power of a heavily imblanced front-wheel drive Pontiac from the Clinton Era. Baruth begging to get the keys off his umpteenth racer and terrorize the tarmac with a mid-90’s… grocery getter. To be frank I never understood the charm of this vehicle. From the front it looks like a squinting turtle. The rear is almost Bangle butted and the middle is a portly Beretta. It’s time to change this car into something Chinese and worthwhile.

Steven Lang
Steven Lang

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2 of 23 comments
  • Mnm4ever Mnm4ever on Mar 16, 2011

    I hate seeing this, its sad, even on otherwise crappy cars. Why cant people see the value in taking care of a car?? But this car is actually a nice ride, I love that front end design. There is a guy near me who has one in absolutely MINT showroom condition, its amazing, just looks perfect, his paint is nicer than my 2008 (probably a re-spray but still!). Only problem is its dark green with tan interior, and gold emblems and pinstripes. Kind of dated, but still so nice to see him keep it up.

  • Armadamaster Armadamaster on Apr 05, 2011

    When I was 16, and knew nothing about cars, one of these teased me from a tote the note lot near my parents' house. I thought they were the best looking examples of this platform at that time and still do. Then I grew up, bought a GM B-body, and am on #11 at the moment 15 years later. :D

  • Analoggrotto Buyers are skipping these in droves and heading down to sign the golden paperwork for a new Telluride. ATPs speak volumes and we have 'em. Our customers are telling us that we offer Mercedes quality for a better deal, and our suite of luxury features rivals any luxury automaker. Insult me all you want, but AVMs, DSDs and BSODs tell the truth.
  • Ted Lulis The Exodus from California is mind-boggling. No surprise from the rectum of the country
  • Mr Imperial Seeing the adjusted-for-inflation amount always makes me sick, I can't believe how much it has gone up in my 40-some-odd trips around the sun. Still fondly remember seeing these and Ford Explorers everywhere.
  • Kyl65759578 👋
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