Junkyard Gem: 1989 Pontiac Sunbird SE Coupe

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General Motors built the fantastically successful J-Body cars starting at the dawn of the 1980s and continuing well into our current century, on five continents. The Pontiac Division's version of the J started out being called the J2000 and the 2000, then got the Sunbird name originally used on the Pontiac-ized Chevy Monza starting in 1983. Here's a once-slick-looking 1989 Sunbird SE Coupe, found at a Minneapolis-area boneyard way back in 2016.

The best-known of all the J-Body cars, here, was the Chevrolet Cavalier, but Pontiac far outdid even the most blinged-up Cavalier Z24 when it came to elaborate taillights.

Because this is Minnesota, the car is a patchwork of various layers of junkyard-obtained rusty body parts.

One fender has TURBO badges from a Sunbird GT.

The other side has the correct engine badges for this model.

That engine is a 2.0-liter, single-overhead-cam straight-four from an engine family originally developed for the Opel Kadett D. This one was rated at 96 horsepower when new.

This one has the automatic transmission, so it wouldn't have been very much fun to drive. Check out that cool parking brake handle, though!

And, hey, is that a full can of Colorado Cool-Aid in the foot well? You'd think a proper Minnesota Pontiac would at least be full of Grain Belt cans.

It appears that Higley Ford in Windom, Minn., had this car on the lot at some point. Windom is closer to Sioux Falls than to Minneapolis.

This final mileage total looks good for a car living in Tinworm Country.

Pontiac built this generation of Sunbird from the 1988 through 1994 model years, though it was really just a facelift of the first-generation cars. Starting in 1995, the Pontiac J-Body became the Sunfire, and production continued until the J platform itself got the axe in 2005.

In the 90s, fun will become the exclusive province of the rich. To which the Sunbird driver replies, "Bullish!"

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