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The Pontiac Automobile 1940-1949 & The Pontiac Motor Co.

1937 Pontiac 1926-1939 Pontiac
6-29 - Standard Six
6-30 - DeLuxe Six
401 Six - Master Six
1947 Pontiac 1940-1949 Pontiac
Silver Streak - Fleetline
Deluxe Torpedo Six
Streamliner Eight
1955 Pontiac 1950-1959 Pontiac
Bonneville - Convertible
Super Chief Catalina
Chieftan - Starchief
Pontiac 1940s
The Pontiac Motor Co.
Pontiac, Michigan
1940-1949

Of the four companion makes introduced by General Motors in the 1920s and 1930s, Pontiac was the only one to survive past 1940. The first Pontiac(1926-1932) quickly advanced the popularity of The Oakland Motor Car Co. in the late 1920s and early 1930s. What saved Pontiac(1933-1939) was the policies of General Motors president Alfred P. Sloan.

1939 Pontiac production reached 144,00 units. Pontiac retained sixth place in total production behind Chevrolet, Ford, Plymouth, Buick and Dodge. By 1940 Depression gloom was lifting and the American Automobile industries was gearing up for anticipated war production.

1940 Pontiac
1940 Pontiac
1941 Pontiac
1941 Pontiac
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In 1940 Pontiac series expanded to Special and DeLuxe Six Cylinder automobiles and Deluxe and Torpedo Eights. Each series listed four passenger coupes and four door sedans. Two door Sedans and Business Coupes were produced in the Special and DeLuxe models. Production also included DeLuxe Cabriolet Convertibles and a Special Station Wagon. New for 1940 were the sleek Torpedo Coupe and Sedans.

1941 Pontiac Torpedo - The Deluxe, The Streamliner and The Custom 1941 Pontiac Torpedo - The Deluxe, The Streamliner and The Custom
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Another restyling in 1941 gave Pontiacs higher, wider crisper well designed fenders. Silver Streak trim and near full width horizontal bar grille with a slight center bulge were new for 1941. 1941 Series were reduced to four, a six and eight Streamliner and Torpedo. After record sales of over 330,000 units in 1941, styling again followed General Motors trends.

1941 Pontiac
1941 Pontiac
1942 Pontiac
1942 Pontiac
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The 1942 Pontiac had a larger grill, longer front fenders that were swept back into the front doors and rounded rear fenders. The 1942 Pontiac's came in Standard six and eight cylinders in both Streamliner and Torpedo models.

1944 Pontiac
1944 Pontiac World War II Advertisement

Due to World War II and the needs of the United States armed forces, Pontiac stopped production in 1943, 1944 and 1945. Instead Pontiac production consisted of anti-aircraft guns, Torpedo's, cannons, diesel engines, tanks and trucks.

1946 Pontiac
1946 Pontiac

Like most other makes, Pontiac issued warmed over 1942 models for 1946, 1947 and 1948. However stylist made each succeeding version a little different. The 1946 Pontiac's had a big bell shaped grille of vertical and horizontal bars. The grille was simplified for 1947 then became larger in 1948. So the 1946, 1947 and 1948 Pontiac were entirely prewar in design and specifications.

1947 Pontiac
1947 Pontiac
1948 Pontiac
1948 Pontiac
Click on image above to see full size!

1946, 1947 and 1948 was a time of prosperity for Pontiac. Sales were 137,640 units in 1946, 230,600 in 1947 and 235,419 in 1948. But the big news for 1948 was the introduction of the Hydra-Matic automatic transmission. Our troops were back and they were buying lots of American Automobiles.

General Motors first postwar redesign was their 1949 automobiles. All new A bodies on a 130 inch wheelbase were attractively styled under Harley Earl direction. Chieftains and Streamliners equipped with six and eight cylinder engines. Fastbacks, Notchback, four door Wagons, Business Coupes, Club Coupes and convertibles were produced in 1949. All were available in standard or deluxe trim. Postwar inflation pushed up prices in 1949 but volume rose to nearly 305,000 units.

1949 Pontiac Auto Literature
1949 Pontiac Auto Literature

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  • Fabulous Tail Fins of the 50s & 60s

    1941 Pontiac Silver Streak 1941 Pontiac Torpedo Fleet

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