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      A lot was new in the powertrain department. Power was up across the board, primarily due to new cylinder-head designs, which also changed the intake-manifold bolt pattern. The standard engine was the 333-hp 389 4-barrel, but if an automatic trans was specified, the output was 325 hp, as the automatic received the milder 066 cam instead of the slightly hotter 067. Compression was 10.5:1 for both mills. The low-compression 389 was now making 256 hp, and the optional 389 Tri-Power gained 8 horses, up to 338. It was offered as the low-cost Tri-Power option.
      Power was also up on the 421s, which benefited from the new heads. The 421 4-barrel put out 338 hp, the same rating as the 389 Tri-Power. There were again two 421 Tri-Powers, but they were now putting out 353 and, in the HO version, 376 hp.
      The biggest powertrain news was under the floorboards. Gone was the old "Slim Jim" 2-speed Hydramatic, and in its place was the new M40 Turbo-Hydramatic 400. The Turbo 400 was introduced the previous year as a Cadillac exclusive, but by '65 it had filtered down to other GM divisions. It substantially improved performance in all respects, and virtually eliminated durability problems that had plagued the Slim Jim. Although Grand Prix sales were down significantly for '65, public response to the new automatic was very positive; only 1,973 '65 GPs came with a manual shift out of a total production run of 57,881 units.
      The X-400 line of show cars was not continued for 1965 or any year after that. Similarly, there were no 1965 Grand Prix show cars known to tour the shows other than regular production cars. Most of Pontiac's attention at the time was devoted to promoting the GTO.   NEXT >

1965 Grand Prix Sports Coupe.

All-new for 1965, the Grand Prix was perhaps more handsome than ever, although the stunning roofline of the Bonneville fastback stole some of the spotlight from the GP's concave notchback. Sensuous dash was real wood.

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