Guilty Pleasure: 1961-63 Pontiac Tempest With Trophy 4 Engine


1962 Pontiac Tempest

1962 Pontiac Tempest

Enlarge Photo
Most of the vehicles in this series were built in the last 25 years, but what about classic Detroit cars that nobody in their right mind would want?

The early Pontiac Tempest was a John Delorean-backed machine with plenty of wildly innovative features, including a rear-mounted transaxle and flexible cable-style driveshaft.

One of those innovative features, however, wasn't so great: the four-cylinder "Trophy 4" engine, which was a designed-on-a-shoestring-budget-at-the-last-minute deal, essentially one cylinder bank of the 389-cubic-inch V8, knocked together by Smokey Yunick on a random workbench in his Florida shop.

The Trophy 4 was nearly as heavy as a V-8, would shake the fillings out of your teeth if it wasn't tuned perfectly, and only the most frighteningly completist Tempest zealots--if there is such a thing--would ever want one today.

Now, your early Tempest with the 215-cubic-inch, destined-to-become-the-Rover-V-8 engine is pretty cool, and the Tempest with the 326-cubic-inch V-8 is also cool. A few years later, you could get a Tempest with a SOHC six-cylinder engine boasting the first timing belt in production automobile history, which is extremely cool.

Everybody wants one of those cars. The Trophy 4-equipped cars, however, are seen as somewhat shameful things, so of course I want one for my fleet of Guilty Pleasure cars.

1962 Pontiac Tempest

1962 Pontiac Tempest

Enlarge Photo
 
Follow Us

Commenting is closed for this article

Take Us With You!

 

Get FREE Dealer Quotes

From dealers near you
Go!

Research New Cars

Go!


 
© 2015 MotorAuthority. All Rights Reserved. MotorAuthority is published by High Gear Media. Stock photography by izmo, Inc. Send us feedback.