1977 LeMans

The year 1977 was the finale for the LeMans and Grand LeMans built off the 1973-vintage Colonnade body. Appearance changes were limited to revised grilles and tailight lenses. Engine offerings were revised with Buick's 231 cubic-inch V6 replacing the Chevy inline six as the base powerplant in sedans and coupes.

The base V8 (standard on Safari wagons and optional on other models) was Pontiac's new 301 cubic-inch engine based on the same V8 engine block as other Pontiac V8s but utilized many lightweight components. Optional V8s were pared down to Pontiac-built 350 and 400 four-barrel powerplants. The three-speed manual was the standard transmission on V6 models, while the Turbo Hydra-matic was optional and the only transmission available with the V8 engines. Those drivetrain offerings were available in 49 states.

In California, Pontiac V8s were not offered for 1977 due to the inability to meet that state's more stringent regulations. In the Golden State, the Buick V6 was standard on most models but the V8 engines offered there were Oldsmobile's 350 and 403 four-barrel engines. Turbo Hydra-matic was the only transmission offered in California.

A sporty/performance model based on the LeMans Sport Coupe called the Pontiac Can Am was a one-year only offering for 1977. The Can Am came standard with the 400 four-barrel V8 in 49 states or the Olds 403 four-barrel in California, along with Turbo Hydra-matic transmission, a Grand Prix instrument panel and console, along with Strato bucket seats, and rear spoiler.

For the final year of the Colonnade LeMans models, they were joined by newly downsized B-body Catalina and Bonneville full-sized cars, which weighed a few pounds less than the "intermediates" and rode on the same 116-inch wheelbase length as the LeMans sedans and Safari wagons and also had similar dimensions as far as length and width were concerned. The downsized big cars of 1977, would be followed up with downsized intermediates for 1978 including the LeMans/Grand LeMans and the personal-luxury Grand Prix coupe.

1977 History and Identification

Features that separated the Grand LeMans intermediates from other models in the midsized lineup included the grille; stand-up hood ornament; special hub caps and tail- lights and fender skirts. Inside there was a distinctive wraparound instrument panel; special trims; padded upper door panels; electric clock and pull-straps on all doors. Vinyl body side moldings were a $40 accessory and bucket seats, at $66 extra (vinyl) or $152 (velour) could even be ordered for this Sedan, which was Style Number G29. It had prices starting at $4,731 and registered a shipping weight of 3,849 pounds. PMD built 5,584 examples.

Formal opera window styling was featured on the Style Number G37 Grand LeMans Coupe. It had a suggested retail of $4,603 and weighed in at 3,697 pounds. Vinyl, landau, and padded landau top treatments were available options at prices of $111 to $180. The perforated DeLuxe wheel covers were a $34 accessory and the bumper guards cost $19. A console was available for cars sold with bucket seats and it had a price of $75. Assemblies for this model peaked at the 7,581 units level. The three-speed manual gearbox was still standard, but most cars had Turbo Hydra-Matic. Only 0.62 percent of all 1977 LeMans were stick-shift cars.

Still in its own series was the Style Number F37 LeMans Sport Sport Coupe. It could be spotted by equipment such as its wider taillamp styling; body color door handle inserts and special badge identification on the front fender side. This $4,205 car was the only LeMans available with the louvered rear quarter window design, although buyers who wanted an opera treatment could have a slightly less distinctive edition at the same price. High back bucket seats were optional, but at no extra cost. A notch back bench type was considered standard seating. The 3,686 pound sportster saw 12,277 assemblies for the year.

A great way to outfit a LeMans-Sport Sport Coupe was in this attractive G.T. option package. It was available only for this model. For some reason, the price was only $446 when a stow-away spare tire was ordered, too. otherwise, the special group cost $463. Features included two-tone body color treatment; body accent stripes; Rally RTS (radial-tuned-suspension); Rally II wheels; Grand Prix style instrument cluster panel; Rally gauges; body- colored sport mirrors, and a blacked out grille. There is no record of how many G.T. optioned examples were built, but surviving examples are certainly not abundant. The car was not very highly promoted and it's really too bad.