Our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy have changed.

By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the new Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

2 of 7
1964 - GTO
1964 -  GTO
The GTO was originally a performance-grade upgrade available on the 1964 Pontiac Tempest LeMans, the brand's top-of-the line model.

"GTO" was appropriated from Ferrari, where it stood for "Gran Turismo Omologato." A translation is irrelevant, because it was chosen simply to add a little marketing muscle to go with the car's big engine, a 389 cubic inch V8 producing as much as 389 horsepower.

GM soon marketed the GTO as a separate car. And by dropping a high-output engine into a small (for its day) two-door, Pontiac created the basic idea of the "muscle car."

The GTO also firmed up Pontiac's image as GM's "excitement division," although Pontiac dealers have always sold a mix of fare from spicy to mild.

NEXT: 1967 - Firebird

Last updated May 15 2009: 3:11 PM ET
Email | Print | Share  |  RSS
google my aol my msn my yahoo! netvibes
Paste this link into your favorite RSS desktop reader
See all CNNMoney.com RSS FEEDS (close)
Find Your Next Car
More Galleries
Black Friday 2015 in pictures Shoppers around the country braved the crowds to get their hands on the best Black Friday deals. More
Driving the ultimate in '50s Mercedes-Benz style The SC was the car that re-introduced Mercedes-Benz as a global luxury car icon. More
Driving the world's first car Driving a replica of the 1886 Benz Patent Motorwagen, the first internal combustion automobile. More

Special Offer