1976 LeMans

For 1976, the LeMans and Grand LeMans were the only Pontiac intermediate offerings with the discontinuation of the Grand Am series.

All models received new rectangular headlights with distinct grilles unique to the base and LeMans Sport and another one for the Grand LeMans. The Chevy-built 250 six was now standard on all LeMans and Grand LeMans sedans and coupes along with the LeMans Sport Coupe with V8 options including a new "Oldsmobile-built" 260 V8 and Pontiac V8s of 350 and 400 cubic inches with two- or four-barrel carburetion (400 four-barrel still standard on all Safari wagons), along with the return of the 455 four-barrel V8 after a one-year absence.

The three-speed manual transmission was standard with the Chevy six with Turbo Hydra-matic optional, the latter now the only transmission offered with all V8s except the small 260 which could be ordered with a five-speed manual in the LeMans Sport Coupe.

Also new for 1976 was an "Enforcer" police package on LeMans sedans with either the 400 or 455 V8s that included Turbo Hydra-matic transmission, variable ratio power steering, heavy duty power front disc brakes and suspension tuning. The following year, 1977, an Enforcer police pursuit LeMans sedan was one of the featured cars in the motion picture Smokey and the Bandit.

1976 History and Identification

Styling features of the Grand LeMans Sedan included a split, segmented grille; dual rectangular headlamps; newwraparound taillights, and a formal six-window roof treatment. Interior appointments were highlighted hy paddedupper door panels; simulated rosewood dash accents; acockpit-style instrument panel; Custom cushioned steering wheel; column-mounted headlight dimmer switch, andelectric clock. It was designated Style Number G29 and prices began at $5,120. A total of 8,411 copies of this 3,976pound Pontiac intermediate were built. Fender skirts,wheel covers, and wide lower body beauty panels were other identifying features of the line.

Peaking in popularity at the 14,757 volume level was theStyle Number G37 Grand LeMans Coupe, which could be purchased for as little as $5,017. It had a formal rear quarter window roof line and was available with a new type of landau top. The seating arrangement choices were a full-width notch back bench or contoured bucket seats.This 3,863 pound car came standard with a 250 cubic inch Six. The engine had anew two-stage choke system forsooth cold idles. Five V-8 options were marketed, including the small 260 cubic inch V.8. This motor was actually built by Oldsmobile Division and was good for 110SAE net horsepower. Only 17.8 percent of all LeMans models were equipped with bucket seats.

Although it slipped in favour with buyers this year, the LeMans-Sport two-door Hardtop Sport Coupe was one of the more attractive offerings from PMD. It had a definite European flavour, especially when ordered with its exclusive louvered rear quarter window treatment, as depicted here. The Six was the standard motor, but collectors, of course, would be looking for something a bit more exotic. How about the 400 cubic inch V-8 attached to a five-speed manual gearbox? And the four-barrel Pontiac'455' engine option was available, too. In either case, all-Morrokide bucket seats were the normal interior accommodation. This was the nearest thing to a GTO or GrandAM in 1976 and the 3,959 pound gem could be bought for as little as $4,865. Officially designated Style NumberF37, a production run of 15,582 units was realized.

Included on the options and accessories list for the StyleF37 LeMans-Sport Coupe were goodies like a sliding sunroof, a vinyl top, and Rally II wheels.

As far as the poweroptions, the 400 cubic inch four-barrel setup cost $258 extra and the big 455 cubic incher, with the same type of induction, added $321 to the price.

Outputs were rated 185and 200 horsepower, respectively.

Style Number D29 was the base LeMans Sedan. Prices started at $4,762 for this 3,876 pound car. It proved fairly popular and found 22,199 buyers. Comfortable full-width seats were found inside and were trimmed with a cloth-and-Morrokide combination. A richer Custom interior was also available at extra-cost. With either upholstery choice came simulated rosewood dash accents; nylon-blend cut-pile carpeting, and a DeLuxe steering wheel. The standard power train was the 250 cubic inch Six hooked-up to at hree-on-the-tree manual gearbox. Only 8.5 percent of all LeMans intermediates got the Six and 99.8 percent were automatics.

Like all LeMans Coupes. the base edition-Style D37-was on a 112-inch wheelbase with 208 inches between the bumpers (four-door models were on the 1l6-inch wheelbase. with 212-inch lengths for Sedans and 215.4 forSafari). The base Coupe had the same grille and horizontal tail lamp treatment as the LeMans-Sport, but came onlywith glass rear quarter windows and with textured cloth.and.Morrokide bench seats standard. Differences from Grand LeMans were in the grille design, the lack of fender skirts and wide rocker panel accents and the general levelof appointments. This car was base-priced $4,717. It had a3,767 pound curb weight and 21,130 examples were built.The five-speed manual transmission was not available on the base LeMans Coupe.