January 30, 2022
I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s looked at this 1984 Pontiac Bonneville LE and assumed it was a LeMans. Pontiac juggled some of their model names around in the 1980s, and the last, full-sized rear-drive Bonneville was the 1981 model. For 1982 the name was switched over onto the midsized LeMans line (with the LeMans name being put out to pasture). Pontiac dealers complained loud enough about not having a full-sized rear-drive car in the lineup to convince the decision-makers to bring it back — and they dubbed it Parisienne (which lasted through MY 1986 — the station wagon soldiered-on as the Safari for three additional years). In the 1984 brochure, describing the Bonneville LE they told us “If Pontiac ever made a four-door Grand Prix, this would be it.” I guess the copy writers weren’t in the loop deep enough to know that an actual four-door Grand Prix was in the works and would debut for 1990 (bottom of page); it was about as different from the Bonneville LE as you could get. We found today’s RealRide late last year in Niagara Falls.
Jim Corbran, RRofWNY
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A new post appears daily on buffalocars.com, featuring old/interesting cars & trucks either seen in and around Western New York, seen by WNYers in their travels, or seen somewhere on the road by ex-WNYers.