Look what showed up on eBay… half of the Pontiac Banshees in existence. (Well, yeah; there were only two built…)
So far the price is up to just over $85,000 (reserve not met), but I predict it’ll go much, much higher in the five days left in the auction. I might throw a bid in there, knowing I’ll get out-bid, just so I can say I was THIS close to buying that car…
But really, I’m surprised to see this car on eBay; it would likely do much better in an auction house like Barrett Jackson. But the seller didn’t ask me I guess.
Pontiac didn’t ask me if they should’ve built them back in the ’60’s either, but that’s just as well because I was just a dopey little round-headed kid back then. But seriously, this car should’ve seen production. It was designed to go head-to-head against the Mustang, and as it stands I think it would’ve kicked the Mustang’s butt in the market. But then again these were concept cars, and the production version probably would’ve had a back seat, which would’ve added to the roof length and thrown the visual balance of the car way off…
Maybe it’s best that we just have these two. Or in my case, just the photos.
1964 Pontiac XP833 Banshee Concept Car Coupe
Title: 1964 Pontiac Banshee Firebird Corvette Concept Show Car
Mileage: 1,498 miles
Location: Milford, CT
Warranty: Vehicle does NOT have an existing warranty
For sale by: Private seller
Body type: Coupe
Engine: 6 – Cyl. Cylinder
Exterior color: Silver
Fuel type: Gasoline
Interior color: Red
XP-833 CONCEPT CAR
Created by John Z. Delorean – then General Manager of Pontiac
Built by the Pontiac Motor Division of General Motors
Debuted as a Banshee Prototype in 1964
**This car is the original one-of-a-kind prototype Pontiac Banshee Coupe**
History of the XP-833 Banshee
The early Ford Mustangs were so popular that Pontiac’s brass decided to build a Mustang competitor while DeLorean wanted to offer a two-seat sports car as a Corvette alternative to compete with the Mustang. Secretly, the XP-833 project was born. DeLorean declared the XP-833 Banshee a Mustang beater after the concept prototypes were built.
The XP-833 prototype was a preview of future GM designs to come. Long nose, short deck, swooping “coke-bottle” profile, broad grille with chrome bumper surround, raked windshield, bulging fenders, triple slit taillights and hidden headlights with a suggestive power bulge on the hood.
However, the design of the XP-833 was so far ahead of its time that GM’s top executives became worried that it might be too much of a threat to their prized Corvette so they stopped the project. To compete with the Mustang, in 1967 Pontiac ultimately came out with the Firebird that shared both chassis and sheet metal with the Chevrolet Camaro. In 1973 John Delorean left General Motors and formed the DeLorean Motor Company to create his dream sportscar the DeLorean, which was later featured in the movie “Back to the Future” and the rest is now history…
Unfortunately, the Banshee never reached production, but most exterior angles of the redesigned third generation 1968 Corvette interestingly mirrored the XP-Banshee prototype except for the distinctive Pontiac grille and Firebird style tail panel.
There’s so much Corvette influence that a Banshee prototype was shown at Bloomington in 1990 and this car was even invited to be displayed at the Meadow Brook Hall Concourse d’Elegance in 2001 as a legend of automotive history.
Amazingly, the two drivable Banshee prototypes (a coupe and a roadster) avoided destruction by being hidden in shipping crates after the project was canceled by GM. Eventually, the cars were spared death by the crusher and sold by GM to employees that were closely involved in the XP-833 project.
Bill Killen received this prototype coupe directly from GM and the Killen family has owned the car until it changed hands a few years ago. The car has less than 1,500 original miles on it with most of the miles coming from the early developmental days while at Pontiac. The car is a true unrestored survivor as it still is the way that it was when shown to the GM management over 40 years ago including the original paint, interior and drivetrain…
The Banshee prototypes and their legacy remain a huge part of automotive lore and have been featured in countless automobile history books and car magazines over the years. Now that we have seen an end to the Pontiac marquee, this historically important Pontiac will surely be a much sought after car by collectors and enthusiasts into the future.
This car is a one-of-a-kind prototype and was built with the following features
Silver exterior with a red interior
- Unique solid-body construction of exterior fiberglass with Steel underbody
- Special hinged roof/top that flips up for easy access
- Specially-built cross flow head OHC inline six engine (155 horsepower)
- Four-speed manual transmission
- Solid live rear axle
- Cooling air intakes under its long nose
- Fixed seats with adjustable – movable pedals
- Stylish sport car dash
- Large 120mph speedometer
- Large 8,000 RPM tachometer
- Gauge pack (temp, oil pres, oil temp, water temp, amps, clock)
- Wood sport steering wheel
- Pontiac radio
- Rally II style wheels
For additional information or to set an appointment to see this car in Connecticut, call Mark at (949)226-7053**