Pontiac Solstice Debuts in Road Racing
Newly classed by SCCA in Showroom Stock B (SSB) for 2006, a Pontiac Solstice prepared by Phoenix Performance will be driven by 18-year-old amateur phenom Andrew Aquilante.
"Anticipation for this weekend has been building within GM Performance Division since the introduction of the Pontiac Solstice," said Performance Division’s resident racing guru John "Heinrocket" Heinricy. "We always felt the Solstice would be a great option for the weekend racer in SSB, and now we finally have the opportunity to prove that theory."
Aquilante is the SCCA 2004 Rookie of the Year and 2005 Philadelphia Region Driver of the Year. He is also the two-time defending Northeast Division Touring 1 (T1) champion for 2004 and 2005 driving a Corvette C5 Z06.
His race-prepared Solstice is one of the first to roll off the line with the Z0K Club Sport regular production order option package. The option is designed for the weekend racer and is currently available to order through any Pontiac dealership.
Developed by GM Performance Division, the Club Sport package features the standard five-speed manual transmission along with antilock brakes (ABS), a limited-slip differential, an improved power steering cooler and a suspension option called FE3. The FE3 suspension will be standard on the recently announced 2007 Pontiac Solstice GXP.
No other options are available when ordering the Club Sport Solstice, but some components and safety equipment must be added to make it track ready, including a racing-only hardtop, racing tires, higher friction brake pads, rollcage, seatbelts, etc. A catback exhaust system (sans muffler) will maximize the power output.
The Pontiac Solstice’s primary competition in SSB will be the same competition it faces in the marketplace, which includes such competitors as the Mazda Miata, BMW Z4, Acura RSX and Honda Civic.
"The predominantly Asian competition is well established in SSB, but we know the Pontiac Solstice is up to the challenge," said Heinricy. "The Club Sport option provides racers with a current model GM vehicle built to win in SCCA SSB racing, and winning on the race track helps translate into winning in the marketplace."
GM Performance Division develops compelling, low volume, high-performance production and specialty vehicles, including the 205 hp Chevrolet Cobalt SS Supercharged, 395 hp Chevy Trailblazer SS and 400hp Chevy SSR; the 400 hp CTS-V, 469 hp STS-V and 443 hp XLR-V from the Cadillac V-Series; and the 205 hp Saturn ION Red Line.
General Motors Corp. (NYSE: GM), the world’s largest automaker, has been the global industry sales leader for 75 years. Founded in 1908, GM today employs about 327,000 people around the world. With global headquarters in Detroit, GM manufactures its cars and trucks in 33 countries. In 2005, 9.17 million GM cars and trucks were sold globally under the following brands: Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, HUMMER, Opel, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn and Vauxhall. GM operates one of the world’s leading finance companies, GMAC Financial Services, which offers automotive, residential and commercial financing and insurance. GM’s OnStar subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security and information services.