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Sonic's Mk3 Crew #17
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4,888 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I figured I'd put together a thread for the car that led me to get my Focus in the first place. Just last Friday I took home a Yellow Blaze sedan (http://www.focusfanatics.com/forum/showthread.php?t=269468) which is now referred to as the 'little brother' to this one.

It's a 1992 Pontiac Grand Prix SE sedan, originally bought brand new by my parents in the spring of '93. When I got my license it became my daily driver and I also started tinkering with it, changing things here and there.

Fast-forward to this summer, and the decision was made to finally retire it from winter, as it has seen enough salt and rocks and will now be stored during the cold months. It's a car I intend to keep forever, and sooner or later its days as a year-round daily driver would have to come to an end. Long story short, I picked up the Focus from the dealership I work at and now it's my daily driver. This will be kept for the meets, cruises, shows, and the like during the summers.










This winter when it's in storage, I'm hoping to finally get a chance to install the custom coilovers that have been waiting to go in for a while, and also use it as an opportunity to do a little bit of body work that needs addressing. Otherwise, it's nearing what I would consider 'completion', for now. Even though it's being modified, I also try to keep a balance of original, as it has the original drivetrain, interior, and around 75% of its original paint still intact, after nearly two decades of use.

And for those wondering, here's a list of what's been done to it so far.

Exterior/Lighting:
-OEM optional side skirts
-OEM optional rear lip (Black)
-OEM '88-'91 base model tail lights
-Yellow vinyl tinted fog lights
-'Iron' vinyl tinted brake lights
-Matte black vinyl beltline trim
-Colour-coded side reflectors
-FTW side diffusers
-Matte black vinyl license plate recess/front bumper accents
-Halo Solaris Yellow fog light bulbs
-Halo Super White LED license plate lights

Interior:
-OEM tape deck
-Alarm
-Broadway 270mm rear view mirror
-OEM push-button trunk release
-OEM red courtesy lights
-Colour-matched rear view mirror

Engine/Bay:
-K&N filter
-Magnaflow catalytic converter
-Tucked headlight harnesses

Chassis:
-OEM 3.4L Cutlass convertible front strut bar
-AWeb rear strut bar
-Goodridge stainless steel braided brake lines
-OEM Grand Prix coupe Crosslaces (16x8 +25) custom painted satin black w/silver time-attack stripes
-215/60R16 Goodyear Eagle GTs

Meanwhile, I'll keep working on it, and try to control myself when it comes to the Focus. [giddy]
 

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Titular Wit Here
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5,205 Posts
Welp... that's probably the cleanest 1992 Grand Prix sedan left in existence. Nice that it's been in your family the whole time. [thumb]
 

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I say swap a SC 3.8 in there this winter. That would be sick. Or the Turbo GP Motor from that Generation.
 

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Sonic's Mk3 Crew #17
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4,888 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Thanks guys! I'm still enjoying it for a little while longer until winter hits and it has to go away. Hopefully next year when it emerges it'll finally be lowered and maybe have a couple more new items thrown on. The engine is the final area that needs some more work to round out the car, but it'll be kept simple with just an intake, exhaust, and probably not much else.
 

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Sonic's Mk3 Crew #17
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4,888 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Seeing as how the Grand Prix is out on the road again and seeing some updates alongside the Focus, I thought I'd post up a timeline of how the GP has progressed so far to bring the thread up to date. It's been my project for about 3 and a half years now, but as mentioned my parents bought it new so I've known it for a lot longer than that.

Anyway, without further delay, here's what's happened:

This is one of the first pictures from when I first got the GP. It was bone stock aside from an OEM tape deck, OEM push-button trunk release, and an alarm. This picture is from February 2009, about a month after I got the car.



The first new part was bought in March '09; a 270mm Broadway rear-view mirror because the original was too small for my taste.



In April I came across an old roof rack from one of my parents' previous cars. I put it on but later found out that I'd need to upgrade it.



In May the original windshield was finally replaced with a nice, new one. That was a big improvement. Following that, I also repainted all of the locks, antenna, and part of the wiper cowl black. Details count.




This picture was taken the last day of high school (June 14) and is still one of my favourites.



A few days later I dropped in a new air filter. I went with a lifetime K&N filter and noticed a huge jump in my fuel mileage.



In September, a few days before my birthday I picked up a used (But mint) Thule roof rack. It replaced the original rack which proved to be WAY too noisy.



I got bored and decided to tuck the headlight harnesses.

Before:



After:



I also picked up not one, but two Thule 555 fairings (Discontinued and hard to find), for the roof rack.



In January (2010) I won an AWeb rear strut bar off of eBay. I installed it as it was, and then when the weather warmed up I took it out and painted it flat black.





Come April, I got my hands on both an OEM optional rear valence (Single-exhaust specific) and red courtesy light lenses for the doors. The red lenses match my red interior better than the originals.





Later that month I picked up a front strut bar. It's an OEM piece from a 3.4L Oldsmobile Cutlass convertible.




I then ordered Goodridge stainless steel braided brake lines to replace the originals. A co-worker of mine installed them, as I had no experience working with brakes and didn't care to learn on my daily driver.




I then got a set of OEM optional side skirts to go with the rear valence. Obviously, they'd need paint first though.



More to come....
 

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Sonic's Mk3 Crew #17
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4,888 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
At the end of may I then stripped most of the interior and sent the car off to the body shop to have some rust removed. The roof and driver's quarter panel were repaired, while the driver's door was reshelled. I picked up the car towards the end of June.









While I was waiting though, I picked up '88-'91 base model tail lights, a sport cluster, front valve cover, and upper intake manifold. The VC and UIM will be powder coated at some point.






When it came home, I reassembled it and put in the new tail lights, after having them buffed by the body shop.







The next new part was a new catalytic converter from Magnaflow. The old one had developed a nasty rattle so it had to go. The replacement was installed by a local exhaust shop.




Following that it was time for some vinyl. I chose yellow and Iron (light tint) for the car's fog lights and tail lights, respectively.





I picked up some OEM sideskirt-specific (As far as I can tell?) mudflaps (which I never installed) and garnet red front floor mats. The mats actually came from a '91 Cutlass, but are identical except for the 'GM' squares in the lower corners.



September 2010 saw my side skirts finally going on. Over the course of a couple of days a friend of mine and I installed them.






With that, the OEM lip kit was complete.



I also re-did the red pinstripe on the bumpers with red vinyl, as they'd badly worn out and were a dark burgundy instead of bright red. Once trimmed (Which it's not in these pictures), it became impossible to tell it's a vinyl overlay.




I also had some fun and wrapped my rear-view mirror in carbon fiber vinyl.




Still more to go.
 

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Sonic's Mk3 Crew #17
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4,888 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
During the winter of 2010/'11 I began collecting parts for converting the car to coilovers, but that's still an on-going process. It's far from a bolt-on, all-included kit for these cars.

Wanting to do more, I made a custom set of side diffusers to mount under the side skirts.



I also pulled out the vinyl again and covered the chrome beltline trim. Aside from the front emblem it was the only chrome on the entire car, so it was rather out of place.




Still in February 2011, I ordered some new lights. LEDs for the license plate lights, and yellow bulbs for the fog lights.





By March new shoes arrived.




I picked up OEM Grand Prix coupe Crosslaces. They measure in at 16x8 +25, while the stock wheels are 16x6.5 +38. With the help of a couple of friends, we completely stripped and repainted them matte black.



While still waiting to refinish the wheels though, I got some white vinyl from a friend to see how 'colour-matched' side reflectors would look. The vinyl is still on the car, so sooner or later I need to get around to making it permanent.




The side diffuser install finally started during an 'install day' some friends and I had at my house.




Throughout the year, the GP popped up from time to time on a local blog, as pictures of local meets were posted.



I used some black vinyl to highlight the license plate recess, and better tie in to the carbon fiber plate frame I had picked up.




As mentioned, the wheels then saw paint and new tires. I settled on quick-and-easy matte black as the car had a lot of black accents.






I also added some time-attack stripes as a final touch to the wheels, shortly after.



The 3.1 finally saw some attention, with some new dogbone mounts from MRZ. They only lasted the one season though, they're currently on a shelf in my garage.




With an invitation to a local year-end show and shine (September 2011) I detailed the GP and replaced the CF vinyl wrapped mirror with a colour-coded one.




It was just a couple of weeks after that I picked up the Focus, but not before the GP's odometer hit the 150K mark (kilometers, that is).



I swapped the wheels and dogbone mounts back to stock and hid the car away in storage in October.





We're almost up to date now.
 

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Sonic's Mk3 Crew #17
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4,888 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
For months the GP sat in its locker along with my mother's Thunderbird. I regularly visited it though, and drove it around the storage lot when the weather allowed, to keep things moving.




A picture from a friend, showing an original sales brochure, is providing the inspiration and drive to keep working on the GP this year.



By March I'd had enough and brought the GP home. It went back into hiding for a few weeks following this though, due to our crazy weather.



A couple of weeks following getting the car back on the road, I dropped a couple of parts off for fresh paint. The rear lip was starting to show its age so I took the opportunity to have it painted Bright White to match. A replacement driver's mirror was also given fresh paint.





At the start of June the ol' sedan came out of storage for good. As I said it went back into hiding, and ended up staying there for a few weeks, unfortunately. I made sure to give it a good clean as it unfortunately had to go away dirty.



I brought it to work with me (I'm a detailer at a local Ford dealership) and shampoeed the engine bay as a start to making the car cleaner overall for 2012.




I also gave the driver's floor mat and footwell a quick shampoo as they'd gotten a little dirty. The rest of the interior was clean, as always. [hihi]



And now, NOW, this thread is up to current day. This is where the car sits at the moment. Next on the list the Crosslaces are being refinished again to continue updating the car's look for this year. Now with the Focus in the picture the Grand Prix is merely a fun toy. It's been here too long and means to much to me to be given up on, and now I can concentrate on keeping it cleaner and kept to a higher standard than was possible before. Just today I had it out for a spin, and it still puts a smile on my face.

That is why I bought a brand new car for winter, so that I could save a 20-year old GM sedan. This car is irreplaceable.
 

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Good work man! I have to tell you im not the biggest fan of the older body style but I mean it practically looks new! I love the 3.1 as well! great job man!
 

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Sonic's Mk3 Crew #17
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4,888 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
Good work man! I have to tell you im not the biggest fan of the older body style but I mean it practically looks new! I love the 3.1 as well! great job man!
Thanks! I always say it's not the age of a car that matters, it's the condition. I enjoy keeping the Grand Prix looking as young as possible. [:)]
 

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Quarter Tank Racer
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I don't think I ever have, or ever will, see a cleaner W-body. God dayum.
 

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Sonic's Mk3 Crew #17
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4,888 Posts
Discussion Starter #15

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Sonic's Mk3 Crew #17
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Discussion Starter #16
Today was productive.

Coming up soon - August 5th - is a big local show and shine hosted by some friends of mine. Both the Grand Prix and the Focus have been registered, so now's the time to hurry up and cross items off of the to-do lists for each.

Last night I picked up the GP's summer wheels from the storage bin (July and I'm still on winters, that's a record) as they are one item on said list. Today a couple of friends came over to my house, and with supplies in hand we got to work.



Three of us had split the cost and picked up a large can of Plastidip. We borrowed a spray gun and redid a few sets of wheels. My Crosslaces were the last to be done.




The black CRX already had its wheels done, as well as an Integra.



With no time to get the wheels professionally redone, it was Plastidip to the rescue. I only need this to last temporarily anyway.




At this point the coats are almost done. I need to pick up a spray can or two to finish off a few spots that are still a bit thin, but we used up the rest of the can so this was as far as we could get today. Regardless, they are well on their way to being done and are one of the last updates to make to the GP.
 

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Sonic's Mk3 Crew #17
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4,888 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
I had a chance to bring the GP home from storage today. It had been hiding again for a couple of weeks, but now HAS to stay out until the show. I also picked up several feet of white vinyl from Terence (see my Focus' thread, he helped install the lip) to wrap the black front valence. I hope to get to that soon.
 

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Sonic's Mk3 Crew #17
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4,888 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Immediately after getting home from work this afternoon I got to work on the GP's valence.

With 13 days until the show, I have no time to track down another valence and send it off for paint. Therefore, it's vinyl to the rescue again. Over the years I've pieced together the OEM optional lip kit, but there was still one thing missing. GPs equipped with the kit also had a colour-matched front valence whereas those without had a black piece. Since mine originally had no side skirts or rear lip, mine was black.

That's where the aforementioned vinyl came in.



However, this was by far the most annoying piece I've ever wrapped. I never want to do that again. As it sits it's not perfect, I hate to admit (it has some bubbles and wrinkles) but I'll see how much of it works out by letting the car sit in the sun these coming days. If my OCD gets the best of me, I'll rip it off and try a last-minute re-do. I have enough for another go.

 

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That interior is really clear for as old as that car is. Looks like you took care of it!
 

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Sonic's Mk3 Crew #17
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Discussion Starter #20
That interior is really clear for as old as that car is. Looks like you took care of it!
Thanks! The car was well used its whole life but we kept it clean. Just today at work a vendor walking by did a double-take and commented on how clean it was. [:)]

I gave it a bath and took it instead of the Focus to tonight's weekly meet. Sadly, it's only the second one the GP has attended this season. I need to drive it more.

 
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