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Wheel in the Grass

’57 Pontiac Chieftain, Tonawanda, NY

Although you can’t see a lot of this 1957 Pontiac Chieftain squeezed between a couple of trailers behind a Tonawanda performance shop, here it is. The Chieftain was the bottom rung of the Pontiac ladder in 1957, blow the Super Chief, Star Chief, and the new-for-1957 top-of-the-line Bonneville. While the Bonnie was the eptiome of 1957 chrome-laden behemoths, the Chieftain was the understated, but much better-selling series. The ’57 Pontiacs shared the architecture of the much-beloved ’57 Chevys, but don’t wear it quite as well — the richer but not-as-good-looking cousin who tries to compensate by wearing more make-up. Chieftain four-door sedan prices in 1957 started at $2,527 and 35,671 of them were produced. They all came with a 252-hp, 347- cu. in. V-8 as standard.

Custom Safari wagon brochure art

— Jim Corbran, You Auto Know

Bonneville PR shot

Chieftain brochure art

 


  • Joseph Coppola

    I RECALL THIS MODEL WELL. MY MATERNAL GRANDMA HAD A METALIC GREEN ,57 STAR CHIEF (I THINK) WITH A BAMBOO LEATHER INTERIOR. NO FOOD WAS ALLOWED AND “WIPE YOUR FEET” BEFOR GETTING IN THE BACK SEAT. SHE WAS A GREAT COOK & ALOT OF FUN.