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For most of its life the Pontiac Parisienne was sold in Canada, where people speak French and don't mind driving a car that translates to "French lady from Paris." Unfortunately, for a few years Pontiac thought it would be smart to resurrect the name in the United States for a rebadged Impala with a Caprice nose and a Pontiac grille because customers wanted a RWD car from the brand. Clearly, people who demand RWD sedans also demand to drive the French lady from Paris.

In early 1983, to gain back Pontiac customers who longed for a large rear wheel drive car, the Parisienne was imported from Oshawa, Ontario, Canada (where the full-size model had not been dropped) and sold in the United States. Externally, it was a rebadged Chevrolet Impala (1983-84 models had the Impala rear taillight panel fitted with Pontiac-spec taillight lenses, whereas the nose was borrowed from the Chevrolet Caprice fitted with a Pontiac grille). The 1985 to 1986 models resumed use of the rear-end styling from the 1980 to 1981 Bonneville.

Two Parisienne ranges were sold - a base model (similar to the former Catalina and the then-current Oldsmobile Delta 88 Royale) in four-door sedan and Safari station wagon form, and a more-luxurious Brougham four-door sedan (with velour upholstery that featured loose-pillow fitted seats). No two-door models were offered for the United States market, although a coupe version was available in Canada through 1983. The Pontiac Parisienne was a success, especially with customers who wanted a nicely appointed car at a reasonable price. The Parisienne still sold well when GM decided to drop the line after the 1986 model year. A front wheel drive model with the Bonneville name replaced the Parisienne; however, the wagon model (known just as "Safari") continued until 1989.


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