Forget the hum drum run of the road transportation – buy a Pontiac.
That’s just one of the strap lines that was used by Pontiac back in the 60’s, designed to get the average motorist thinking of what life could be like if they owned a Pontiac. The Pontiac Ventura was produced between 1960 – 1977, and truth be told, it was never really a great sales success, even now, the values will reflect just how … unloved … the Ventura was.
The name Ventura came from Ventura in California.
1966 Pontiac Ventura Design
A 4-door sedan or 2-door hardtop were the options for the Ventura, although if you went for the Catalina (which was near identical aside from badging), there were plenty more options. For a brief period, the Ventura was marketed as a sub model of the Catalina.
As with all Pontiacs of the time, the headlamps were vertically stacked, and there was a decent power bulge in the hood, giving the impression of something a little menacing underneath. 1966 was the first year of curved glass being fitted.
1966 Pontiac Ventura Interior
‘Morrokide’ is the word of the day; this was Pontiac’s own answer to a leather look vinyl material which just about covered all of the interior, including the tri-tone bucket seats which came as standard and something of a rarity at the time, factory fitted seat belts were standard also. The Ventura came pretty well equipped.
1966 Pontiac Ventura Specs
List price: $3,219 Curb Weight: 3,715 lbs Length: 214.8” Wheelbase: 122” Width: 79.7”
Available as standard or option: Power assisted steering, power brakes, power windows, power antenna, air conditioning and AM/FM radio which had just two speakers fitted; one in the dash, the other on top of the rear seats.
1966 Pontiac Ventura Performance
All V8 power units, choice of auto and manual transmission. Power ranged from 256 BHP right up to a snarling 376 BHP with the Tri-Power package added. This power meant that despite lugging nearly two tons, the Ventura could sprint to sixty in 7.2 seconds and pull a ¼ mile run in 15.5 seconds.
1966 Pontiac Ventura Collectability and price
The Ventura was never that popular, despite having pretty good credentials (at least on paper). Expect to pay less than $5,000 for a fair condition example, the most expensive we’ve seen in recent history went for less than $20,000, and that was a concours example. Add a further 5% if it has the factory fitted air conditioning system.