Pontiac

Pontiac

Posted on by Terence 15

The Pontiac G8 GXP is a tremendous performance bargain, built with the best parts from the GM parts bin; the GXP offers owners quite possibly the best fun/dollar ratio on the market. It comes complete with a 19 inchCadillac CTS-V inspired wheel and brake package as well as an LS3 V8 from a Chevrolet Corvette sending 415 HP to the rear wheels via an optional six-speed manual and a very racy limited slip differential. This is all good for a quarter mile time of 13 seconds flat at 108 MPH and a 0 to 60 MPH time of, with the luxury of four doors.

Pontiac G8 GXP

There was once a Car and Driver comparison with a subtitle that read: Dundee and Goliath: A dark knight from Down Under rattles the BMW M5 , and you’ll never guess who builds it. The car that author Aaron Robinson was comparing with the luxury performance sedan back in 2001 was the Holden Commodore HSV GTS R 300. Think Cadillac Catera body on top of an LS1 Corvette power train and whatever other special parts that GM had ad their disposal. At the end of the article, the BMW BMW squeezed ahead thanks only to fit and finish, but the fun to drive award went to the Holden. This was even more astounding because the special edition HSV was selling for only a fraction of the pride of the M lineup.

Pontiac G8 GXP

Since the turn of the century General Motors has invested heavily in their rear wheel drive platform and imported another Australian V8 super car, the Holden Monaro based GTO with LS1 power. After the initial test run, Pontiac Pontiac brought over the 21st century goat’s cousin, the Commodore, except it was more commonly known at the G8, which is a tremendous performance sedan. With the recent demise of the brand the Pontiac G8 could go the same way as the ill-fated GTO, but if that means no more GXP we are going to have to ask Obama for our bail out money back. It would be just like an American automaker to kill a $37,610 sedan that makes a BMW M5 seem ridiculously overpriced. GM is offering a $3,500 cash incentive on all variations of the G8 Sedan.

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Maybe now Bob Lutz has learned a lesson about making promises he can’t keep. It wasn’t that long ago when the high-ranking GM official talked to Automobile Magazine and all but guaranteed that the Pontiac G8 would be spared from the chopping blocks and be re-christened as the Chevrolet Caprice.

Lutz’ declaration was met with raised eyebrows, especially those coming from GM CEO Fritz Henderson who previously said that the G8 – and all subsequent Pontiac models – would cease to exist by the end of the year. Turns out that Lutz may have bitten off more than he could chew and in a recent entry on GM’s blog took back his proclamations and said that upon further review, the supposed G8-turned-Caprice wouldn’t make too much sense given the unstable state of the US auto industry.

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Source: Fastlane
Posted on by Terence 2

We have just received a real gem into our Top Speed test fleet. The once endangered and now recently saved Pontiac G8 is an excellent performance sedan. The stylish sedan came from the land down under where the Australians prefer their race cars with a V8 up front and four doors all around. It was this rear wheel drive formula that made the G8 such a hit when it originally debuted with either V6 or V8 power. However this is no ordinary G8, this is the high performance GXP version , a model that combines the fun of rear wheel drive, the power of an LS3 and the control of a six speed manual and is said to compete with much higher priced sports cars like the BMW M5.

Initial thoughts: Pontiac G8 GXP

Our Sport Red Metallic car rides on a set of stylish 19 inch polished aluminum rims that when combined with the oversized Brembo brake calipers, bears a striking resemblance to the Cadillac CTS-V. Aside from the impressive rolling stock the exterior of our G8 GXP looks just like any other of the four door imports from Queensland. The only other features that hint at the outstanding performance under the bonnet are the pair of sport inspired hood scoops and a set of reasonably flared fenders. Apart from the cleared out taillight lenses and the aforementioned details, there is no other way to tell this hot rod G8 apart from any other of Pontiac’s rear wheel drive grocery getters.

The Onyx interior is about the same as a base Pontiac G8 except that the aluminum sport pedals and GXP logos embroidered into the backrests of the leather wrapped front sport buckets hint at something special. That sensation is further reinforced by the Corvette-like shifter. The grip is connected to a six speed manual that sends 402 HP and 402 lb-ft of torque from the 6.2 Liter V8 through a limited slip differential directly to the rear wheels. The G8 GXP should be good for a 0 to 60 MPH time of about 4.7 seconds and a quarter mile time of 13.0 seconds flat.

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The sad demise of Pontiac is a true American tragedy, not just because the brand is associated with everything that is American, but because it could’ve been salvaged if it’s parent company, General Motors, was in a strong financial position.

Unfortunately, the economic crisis laid waste to the auto industry and obviously, there were some casualties, with Pontiac Pontiac being one of them. It’s a pity because the brand was on the verge of coming out with a number of vehicles that could’ve easily been successful if there was just enough support given to them. One of the vehicles that Pontiac launched amid much fanfare was the G8 Sports Truck , which was unveiled at the 2008 New York Auto Show.

Pontiac had stirred up excitement with a marketing program that asked consumers to name the future the Americanized version of the popular Holden Ute from GM Australia. The doomed automaker had a few fun offerings in the works, but just couldn’t get them into showrooms fast enough. What could have been had General Motors had more time and financial resources?

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For those who know their American car history, they would know that the name ‘Pontiac’ is synonymous to ‘American original’.

For over 80 years, Pontiac has been responsible for producing some of the most iconic vehicles in the US, responsible for the likes of the Bonneville, the GTO, the Grand-Am, and the Firebird. But while Pontiac has enjoyed a remarkable run, spanning generations of Americans, the road has finally come to an end for Pontiac.

And as soon as the last production Pontiac vehicle - thePontiac Solstice – rolls out of the plant, Pontiac’s doors will now forever be closed.

The American muscle car tuner Hurst is preparing a High Output version of the Pontiac G8 and a G6 convertible. The special edition edition GM cars will be limited to a total of 52 units, each one being built by hand.

The H.O. Pontiacs will each recieve their own numbered identification and will feature Hurst’s iconic white/gold and black/gold paint scheme along with a set of forged alloy Hurst wheels, a supercharged engine, high performance suspension mods, a specially trimmed interior and of course a Hurst shifter.

The aftermarket manufacturer will also commemorate Gerorge Hurst’s partner, the Doc, by recreating a modern interpritation of his famous Pace Cars. Only ten HURST/Pontiac G6 convertibles will be built and used as parade and special event vehicles, we couldn’t think of any better duty for a HURST modified muscle car.

Press release after the jump.

The whirlwind of activity surrounding General Motors these days appears to be far from over. The latest piece of news we’ve heard is that GM is discontinuing the Pontiac Vibe , two weeks after it said that it had plans of continuing the car through next year.

It wasn’t that long ago when GM said that of all the Pontiac cars earmarked for 2010 releases, only the Vibe and the G6 would be rolled out with the G6 specifically earmarked only to fleet customers.

Now, it appears that the Vibe won’t even make to September as GM has just confirmed that production of the Vibe will finish this August, with poor sales – down 35% through May – being largely attributed as the culprit regarding the Vibe’s untimely demise.

Source: N.Y. Times

If there is one car that has to be considered as the Godfather of American muscle cars, no vehicle can make a better case than the 1967 Pontiac GTO.

Conceptualized by the dynamic trio of Russell Gee, Bill Collins and John De Lorean, the GTO rose into prominence for creating a car that paved the way for future muscle cars to grow somewhat of a cult following among the speed-induced, thrill-seeking youth market of the 70’s. While the car is universally lauded these days as a true American icon, it actually was developed in the mold of a Pontiac Tempest, the difference being the GTO – which incidentally was named by De Lorean as a tribute to the Ferrari Ferrari 250 GTO – included a 389 CID (6.5L) Pontiac V8 engine, as opposed to the 326 CID (5.3L) standard Tempest V8. Despite drawing criticism for the use of the ‘GTO’ tag, which in Italian stands for, Gran Turismo Omologato, Pontiac went ahead and put the car in its production line with modest expectations. Suffice to say, Pontiac had no idea the car would hit over to the market so much that it has since become a classic masterpiece, and a cultural icon to boot.

As the end draws near for one of America’s most iconic cars, the Fairfield County Concours d’Elegance is doing its part to ensure that Pontiac does not ride off into the sunset in relative anonymity. As such, the organization is arranging a two-day extravaganza to celebrate the irrepressible legacy of the car that has captured the imagination of America in its 83-year run.

The two-day event will be held on September 12 and 13 at the Fairfield County Concours d’Elegance in Westport, Connecticut. The main thrust of the event is to pay homage to the Pontiac Brand through a wide-ranging display of the most significant and iconic Pontiac models in history.


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