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http://comcast.vehix.com/articles/auto-news/5-pontiac-cars-we-will-miss/?cid=806






5. 2009 Pontiac Solstice: Easily one of the best-looking Pontiacs in the past decade. This was a lovely little road machine with a comfortable interior and credible performance. The entry-level Pontiac Solstice (view photos) came with a 173 horsepower (which made 170 lbs feet of torque) 2.4 liter engine. The line culminated in the Solstice GXP. This model had a 260 horsepower (making 260 lbs feet of torque) turbocharged, 2.0 liter Ecotec. The GXP was said to go from 0 to 60 mph in under 5.5 seconds and featured 18-inch wheels, a limited-slip differential, Stabilitrak traction control and anti-lock brakes. Some people expected the Pontiac Solstice to fight the excellent Mazda Miata MX5 head on. Although the normally aspirated Solstice could not dance with the likes of the MX5, it was a brilliant, comfortable open-top cruiser. The GXP was competitive, but lost some of its nice highway ride. Either way, if you simply enjoy the ride, soak in the good looks and let either Pontiac Solstice play in the canyons – you’re in for a treat.




4. 2009 Pontiac G8 GXP: Now THIS is the good stuff. The regular and GT versions of the Pontiac G8 are very much worth your time. They both represent a solid, comfortable and fun family ride with just enough chassis tuning to make either vehicle (but especially the GT) a real hoot to drive. The Pontiac G8 GXP (view photos) feels like driving a four-door, five-passenger Corvette. If you get one with a 6-speed manual and saunter over to a track, prepare to awe spectators. The G8 line is attractive with the GXP being the sportiest with its larger wheels and huge hood scoops. Allow the 415 horsepower (which cranks out 415 foot lbs of torque) 6.2 liter V8 to sing and scare just about any sporty 4-door on the road. Best of all, this tiger is a pussycat in traffic and highways. Many agree, the G8 GT and G8 GXP are definitely the Pontiacs collectors are searching for. If you want a supremely tuned yet reasonably priced V8 with 4-doors, I can think of nothing better.



3. 2009 Pontiac G6: Even with Oprah’s backing (she used the G6 on a free car giveaway) this vehicle was never the sales success it should have been. The lines are lovely and there is a ton of space inside. G6s were built on the same platform as Chevrolet Malibus. The handling and build quality is competitive while being unique. The forward-leaning rake is racy without being obnoxious. There were some nifty doodads available in the G6 (view photos)like a segmenting, folding sunroof that opened up a massive space above. There are a variety of power-plants used in the G6 line, namely the top-of-the-line 252 horsepower 3.6 liter V6. A219 horsepower 2.4 liter 4-cylinder and 219 3.5 liter V6 were also available. The sedan and coupe came in three trims: regular, GT and GXP. Convertibles were available only in the GT trim. A few years back, Pontiac offered a GTP with the coupe and convertible. If you look hard enough, you might find a rare 6-speed manual GTP. What is Pontiac’s loss could be your gain if you are looking for a discounted FWD vehicle that has good dynamics and great power (especially with the 3.6 liter matched with the 6-speed automatic). This was the best front-drive car Pontiac ever built.




2. 2009 Pontiac Vibe: Imagine getting a Toyota Matrix (which is essentially a Corolla wagon) for less money with a longer warranty. That is what you will get with the final model of the Pontiac Vibe (view photos). There are a few unique body and interior parts, but the resemblance is unmistakable. A 1.8 liter 132 horsepower (making 128 lbs feet of torque) is available in the base model. The 2.4, AWD and GT come with 2.4 liter, 162 horsepower (which makes 158 lbs feet of torque) 4-cylinder engines. All models, with the exception of the AWD, have standard 5-speed manual transmissions. The nifty hatchback design offers up to 49 cubic feet of east to reach cargo space. All Vibes get good gas mileage with the base model 1.8 liter achieving up to 26 mpg city and 32 mpg highway. This is still a smart buy for anyone looking for Toyota quality on the cheap.




1. 2006 Pontiac GTO: Some lament the passing of the reintroduced and once again discontinued Pontiac GTO (view photos). Based heavily on the Australian Commodore, this two door coupe was a hell of a ride. The last year of production saw the Corvette’s 400 horsepower, 400 lbs feet of torque, 6-liter LS2 as the sole power-plant (originally, it had a less powerful LS1 engine). Many considered the design over restrained; some even called it “boring.” One thing is for sure – its performance was never boring. This beefy machine zoomed from 0 to 60 in just over 4.5 seconds and quarter mile times fell around 13 seconds. On the track, the GTO scared competitors and was deceptively fast. I’ve driven quite a few and was rewarded with a vehicle that provided excellent feel, superb road manners and enough oomph to scare any passenger. They are just unusual enough to gain collector’s status and are exciting enough to garner admiration.
 

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Being a fan of the Rolex Sport Car Series, already I'm seeing the absence of Pontiac. I watched the Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona and visibly absent were the G8 pace car, several G6 race cars, and even some of the DP cars (like the #99 Gainsco), have switched from a Pontiac power plant to Chevy.

However, this opened the door for the Camaro to enter the series. :)
 
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