Today’s Nice Price or No Dice Pontiac is named for the famed Bonneville Salt Flats, Utah’s venerated site for speed. The car is claimed to be loaded, but let’s see if its price stings like salt on a wound.
There is a myth that in the 18th Century, a law was enacted in Maine that prisoners could not be fed lobster more than twice a week as doing so would be considered inhumane treatment. That’s a somewhat bemusing story considering what a rare and expensive delicacy the large decapods are considered today.
Owing to its European specs, the 1992 Mercedes-Benz 300 CE we looked at yesterday is comparably rare and, according to some of you, rather expensive. As common as it may have been back in its home market, here, the cloth upholstery and four-speed manual make the car rather unusual which obviously is what engendered the seller to set a sizable $13,000 asking price for its sale. Too few of you were willing to consider that, though, and the Benz bombed in a 72 percent No Dice loss.
Of course, not all old cars are rare. And considering that the model name had been around since 1957, you wouldn’t expect the Pontiac Bonneville to be a particularly rare model of car at all. I’ll bet, however, that these days the only folks that give the model any consideration at all are those that currently own one. With its discontinuation following the 2005 model year, and Pontiac itself having gone down the tubes a few years later, it’s safe to say that those owners could be considered a special breed.
Should anyone want to join that band of brave and bold Bonneville boosters, this 2003 Pontiac Bonneville SSEi looks to be an excellent way into the club.
This Bonneville hails from the model’s tenth and final generation and was built on General Motors’ corporate G platform which at the time was shared with the likes of the Olds Aurora (dead), Cadillac Seville (dead too), and Buick Riviera (doornail poster child). According to the ad, the car comes with having had every option box checked and hence offers cool features like a heads-up display, a Monsoon sound system, and a moon roof.
As this is also the top-of-the-line SSEi model, it also comes with a supercharged edition of the 3.8 liter L67 V6. In the Bonneville, that made 240 horsepower and perhaps, more importantly, 280 lb-ft of torque. That’s mated to the standard four-speed automatic which sends the ponies to the front wheels.
In nearly 20 years time, those front wheels have only pulled the car a mere 62,000 miles. That’s peanuts and the car appears to be in almost as-new condition as a result. The Galaxy Silver paint still seems to be holding its own, as is the chrome on the factory alloys and the plastic lenses on the headlamps.
A heavy tint on the windows has probably helped the interior materials stave off time and the sun, although it should be pointed out that the plastics GM was using in this era were not the best they could be. Also, the Pontiac’s interior design could be considered a bit lurid and fussy for modern tastes. If you’re ok with it, then more power to you. Speaking of power, pretty much everything in this Bonneville, from the windows to the locks to the climate control are all power-operated or automatic.
The ad claims a new battery and shows all the original manuals, but doesn’t give us the car’s title status. That’s due to it being inexplicably posted under Craigslist’s General For Sale category rather than the more comprehensive Cars and Trucks. We can work with that since everything in the ad points to the car carrying a clear title. It also has a $9,500 price tag and it’s now incumbent upon you to comment and vote on whether you think that’s an appropriate amount for the car as it sits.
What do you say, is $9,500 a fair price for this Bonneville that seems so underused? Or, low miles or not, is that just too much to ask for a moribund brand’s defunct model named after a long-dead sea?
H/T to mpssweeney for the hookup!
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