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Hemmings Motor News Blog

Hemmings Motor News has been around since 1954. We're proud of our heritage, but we're also more than the Hemmings full of classifieds that your father subscribed to. Aside from new editorial content every month in Hemmings, we have three monthly magazines: Hemmings Muscle Machines, Hemmings Classic Car and Hemmings Sports and Exotic Car.

While our editors traverse the country to find the best content for those magazines, we find other oddities related to the old-car hobby that we really had no place for - until now. With this blog, we're giving you a behind-the-scenes look at what we see and what we do during the course of putting out some of the finest automotive magazines you'll ever read.

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Rare Enough to Seem Fictional, the Canadian "Pontiac" Beaumont SD 396 was More Like a Chevelle than a GTO

Posted May 18, 2022 5:00 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: Beaumont pontiac

European and Asian cars have their devotees, American-badged Australian vehicles had a real moment a few years ago, and Yank Tanks are well known worldwide, but seemingly forgotten are the native vehicles of Canada and Latin America. Often, these were derivatives of U.S. designs but with local changes influenced by marketing, tariffs, and sales infrastructure.

Now, our Spanish and Portuguese are não tão quente, so our burning desire to investigate the Ford Falcons of Argentina and the Willys Aero’s second life in Brazil (and their associated performance-car bona fides) remain unfulfilled, but Canadian brochures have long been readily accessible and usually in English, so they’ve always hung out there — familiar yet different, and vanishingly rare even if you grew up near the border.

General Motors, Ford and Chrysler’s predecessors all had manufacturing plants in Canada as early as the 1910s. The big reason at that time was that it gave them tariff-free access to the whole of the British Empire by virtue of being Canadian-, rather than U.S.-built vehicles. For various geopolitical reasons the situation changed little until after World War II, and thus Canadians were given a number of American-styled and engineered vehicles with names and equipment never available here.

The exotic vehicles of Canada included secret-menu Ford products like the Meteor (not related to the Fairlane-cousin Mercury Meteor of the early ’60s), along with Mercury-badged M-series pickup trucks, and 271-hp 1965 Ford Falcons; Plymouths and Dodges running engines externally identical to De Sotos and Chryslers, Plymouths trimmed out as Dodges, and Fargo trucks (twins to Dodge); and perhaps most memorable of all: Canadian Pontiacs and their almost-a-Pontiac companions, the Acadian and Beaumont.

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Re: Rare Enough to Seem Fictional, the Canadian "Pontiac" Beaumont SD 396 was More Like a Chevelle than a GTO

05/18/2022 6:30 PM

Or the "Ford Granada" manufactured by Hyundai. I drove one of these around Korea in '90-'91.

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Re: Rare Enough to Seem Fictional, the Canadian "Pontiac" Beaumont SD 396 was More Like a Chevelle than a GTO

05/19/2022 6:13 PM

Looks like a Tempest grill on a '69 Chevelle...

...or a '68...?

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