Thursday, September 21, 2023

Automotif CDVIII...

Yesterday afternoon, northbound on College Avenue, there appeared a 1956 Pontiac Chieftain hardtop coupe. I think this one is in Bolero Red and Rodeo Beige.

1956 was the second year of this body style, a platform-mate to the famed '55-'57 Chevies.

The 1955 Chieftain and Star Chief debuted Pontiac's first in-house V-8 motor, dubbed the Strato Streak. The '55 version displaced 287 cubic inches and could be had in 173, 180, or 200bhp flavors, the latter with a 4bbl Carter carburetor.

For 1956, Pontiac lengthened the stroke of the Strato Streak, bumping the displacement to 317 cubes. The base 2bbl version was rated at 192 SAE gross BHP and 4bbl versions could be had in 216 and 227 horsepower variants. Pontiac also sold some two hundred cars with 10.0:1 compression ratios and dual quad carbs, intended for NASCAR and drag racing. These boasted a claimed output of 285 gross horsepower and were kind of a big deal at the time, outmuscling even the most potent '56 Corvette motor, the 240hp 265cid Small Block Chevy.