The Pontiac Safari is a station wagon that was produced by Pontiac. The Safari name was first applied to Pontiac's version of the 2-door Chevrolet Nomad station wagon. The body style, originally exhibited as a 1954 Chevrolet Corvette Motorama concept car, was shifted to Chevrolet and Pontiac full-size 1955 production vehicles because of the perceived greater sales potential.
During its run, the Safari would be sold as its own station wagon model as well as a designation applied to Pontiac's various other station wagon vehicles. The name "safari" is derived from the Swahili word safari, which means journey,originally from the Arabic. The 1955 Safari was built using the Pontiac Chieftain, and shared body components with the Chevrolet Nomad station wagon, which would also allow both divisions to share in the tooling costs for the special bodied wagons. The Safari was fitted with Pontiac's unique front-end bumper/grille assembly and sheet metal and rear tail light design, both created by Pontiac stylist Paul Gillan. Gillan received a United States patent for the bumper/grille design. For 1957, Pontiac applied the Safari nameplate to all of its station wagons in all of its product lines (Chieftain, Super Chief and Star Chief Custom).While the high-trim unique two-door body style was still available, Pontiac added a four-door high-trim version to the Star Chief Custom series mid-year which was named Safari Transcontinental. General Motors discontinued its unique sport wagon body at the end of the 1957 model year, and henceforth, all full-size station wagon models produced by Pontiac would be named for their series, and as Safaris. While a two-door Safari was fielded in 1958 in Pontiac's Chieftain range, it shared its body with Chevrolet's price leader Delray station wagon. Both models came with few features and were popular with tradespeople and small businesses.Many Pontiac models fielded Safari labeled variants including the Astre, Bonneville, Catalina, Executive, Grand Ville (Grand Safari), LeMans/Grand LeMans, Parisienne, 6000, Sunbird, and Tempest.
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