Sunday, March 8, 2009

1955 Pontiac Star Chief 4-door Sedan

"You want a car of pace and action. You want a car with sweep and flair. You don't mind a little bit of envy . . . directed your way by admiring eyes. You will want one of these fabulous 1955 Pontiac Star Chiefs . . . but you may have difficulty in choosing for they all present such a magnificent picture of futuristic styling and beauty!"

Since the 20s, the General Motors Empire was built on a well-balanced ranking of its divisions, with Cadillac at the upper and Chevrolet at the lower end of the spectrum. With this concept, the brands didn't compete with each other, while shared engineering significantly reduced costs. Since its creation in the mid 20s, Pontiac was technically tied to Chevrolet, and should bridge the price-gap to the sporty Oldsmobile, GM's technology leader at that time.

Things should change with the appointment of new boss Semon "Bunkie" Knudsen and the 1955 Generation of Pontiacs. Pontiac swiftly shifted from the older man's solid choice to the young racedriver's icon, and suddenly GM had two performance-brands in its portfolio.

The 1955 Pontiacs were based on GMs all-new "A-body" structure and shared the roofline with the Chevrolets. Under the hood though, there was much more punch, provided by a new "Strato-Streak" V8-engine with more than 40 percent more power output than the outdated inline Eight of 1954. While the design, executed by Paul Gillan, wasn't on par yet with the new-found sporty image, already the next generation of Pontiacs unmistakably should visualize their inner values as well.

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