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HarleyEarl

2006 Pontiac Solstice

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I hadn't seen the new Pontiac Solstice in white. It looks good to me. Of course this car seems to look good in any color.

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It does look surprisingly good in white. Funny they put a golf bag in the trunk but there doesn't appear to be any clubs in it. I wonder if it still fits once you put clubs in it.
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Northstar, I feel the same, didn't think white would have this impact. I think when there is enough chrome touches and the sparkle of the headlights, great wheels and a sexy shape like this, white can look very good. And on a bright sunny day white can really shine. I had a white Corvette and it looked especially good on hot, bright days.

A trio of Solstice colors:

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I notice this Solstice has different wheels with the Pontiac emblem on them, yet it's not on their option list.

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Those rims look like the Aura rims. I think they must be a GM accessory for the Solstice (dealer installed).
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I didn't notice before, but it appears that there is a S2000 running through the cones behind the Solstice. They were probably doing some comparison tests or something.
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That's a dealer ride & drive isn't it? I think they had (old) Miatas and S2000s there too.
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www.edmunds.com Road Test: First Drive Test First Drive: 2006 Pontiac Solstice Here Comes the Sun By Neil Dunlop Date posted: 06-24-2004 It's good to be the first at something, especially when it involves driving. That's why we were proud to be one of the first publications to drive the Pontiac Solstice. And it wasn't some cobbled-together prototype — it was the hand-built production model that Pontiac displayed at the 2004 Detroit Auto Show. We were prepared for deflation, though. So often, highly anticipated concept vehicles disappoint when fantasy makes the conversion to reality. Not so with the Solstice, at least not so far. While we were limited to sub-25-mph speeds, Pontiac's little beauty still managed to raise our heartbeats both in terms of how it integrated us into the driving experience and in the stirring curves of its sheet metal. So, with everything going our way, it was hard to suppress our grins as we guided the Solstice along a deserted road on a sunny June day in Auburn Hills north of Detroit. Thick grass swayed at the roadside, tree trunks and fence posts flicked past and the breeze rushing by our heads smelled of freshly mown grass. It was a good day to be alive and behind the wheel of the most anticipated new vehicle to come from Pontiac in a long time. One of the major ways a production version of a great concept can disappoint is design. The purpose of a concept is to wow auto show crowds and, often, many of the (usually expensive) wow factors, such as big alloy wheels and dramatic sheet metal sculpting, never make it past the bean counters. The Solstice we drove, however, is a dead ringer for the model shown as a concept at the 2002 Detroit Auto Show. And we were told by Pontiac spokesman Jim Hopson that, save a few minor details, we were looking at what would appear in showrooms late in the summer of 2005. That's good news because the Solstice is stirring to behold. Wide and low, it has presence on the asphalt. It seems solid, muscular and fast, an impression created by its bulging fenders, a beltline that sweeps from the high, round back end to its broad, hungry-looking nose and the large 18-inch alloys set close to the corners. It is no cutesy roadster. It's got a sensual side, too. The Solstice is the first General Motors vehicle to use hydroformed body panels. Hydroforming has been used to create the frames of GM's full-size pickups since 1999 and the frames of C5 Corvettes since the mid-'90s, but never for body components. Much like it sounds, hydroforming is the process of using fluid to shape metal. It allows for more extreme shapes than stamping and produces strong parts of uniform thickness. "It's slower than stamping," said Mr. Hopson, "but it does allow us to get those gorgeous curves." The Solstice's most distinctive curves are the sensuous sweep of the hood from the windshield to the bottom of the front bumper, and the elegant teardrop-shaped aeroshells that extend from behind the headrests and blend seamlessly into the deck. The deck opens clamshell-style to conceal the soft top when it's dropped. Good thing because it would be criminal to cover those aeroshells with folded fabric. Like a roadster should, the Solstice elicits a visceral response as you walk up to it. You want to drive it. When we climbed in and settled into the driver seat, the heavy door shut behind us with a satisfying clunk, reinforcing the car's sense of solidity. The cabin is surprisingly roomy. There's plenty of foot room and the steering wheel cleared our knees and thighs by a wide margin. The seat strikes a nice balance between support and comfort. Decent-sized bolsters hugged our sides but didn't feel constricting, and there was plenty of cushioned support for our back, shoulders and thighs. Our right arm draped naturally onto the center console with the stubby shifter falling right under our hand. The uncluttered dash curves around the driver seat, making it easy to see the chrome-rimmed, white-faced speedo and tach. It's obvious that ergonomics were a serious design consideration for the Solstice. Unlike some other roadsters, we didn't feel shoehorned into a tight spot for the privilege of ragtop motoring. The only complaint we'd make is that many interior surfaces, such as the cowl in front of the passenger, are too hard. We'd prefer softer, more tactilely pleasing material. The seating position is just about ideal. It's high enough to provide a good sense of all four corners, and decent-sized side mirrors create good sightlines. It's also low enough, and the door sills tall enough, to make us feel close to the asphalt and in a sporting frame of mind. The five-speed shifter snicked firmly into first gear. Pontiac sourced the manual gearbox from the same company that supplies the six-speed shifter for the Honda S2000. With lots of foot room, the pedals are easy to find and well placed for heel-and-toe operation. Pedal feel is good with our muscular output matched by the mechanical response, making us feel part of the car. Unfortunately, the tranny of our test car was not in production tune and it felt like we were pulling away in second gear. Another aspect not present on our test car was the final exhaust note. Our tester's engine sounded shaky and timorous. We were assured, however, that engineers worked more than a year to achieve the proper exhaust tone, which is said to reflect both the Solstice's sporty nature and its alluring sheet metal. The Solstice we drove was not a track-ready car so our speeds were limited, but we were assured that all the correct production mechanical components were present. Regardless of how fast we were going, we were able to get a sense of what the production model will feel like for basic cruising. Shredding twisting country roads will have to wait, but our preliminary experience suggests it will be worth the wait. The shifter felt good moving through the gears, with short throws to distinct engagements. The fairly fat steering wheel also felt good in our hands and is firmly connected to the rack-and-pinion steering system. Only rigorous driving would confirm this, but we suspect the Solstice's four-wheel independent suspension, forged aluminum control arms, monotube shocks, coil springs and 18-inch wheels and tires will combine to provide excellent handling response and much driving pleasure. And the standard four-wheel disc brakes should bring it down from speed quickly in a controlled manner. While the roadster's heft makes it seem solid and planted, it also gave it a somewhat lumbering feel to it as we took lazy, sweeping turns. At 2,860 pounds, the Solstice is no lightweight. Pontiac claims the new 170-horsepower, 2.4-liter variable-valve version of the Ecotec DOHC four-cylinder engine is enough to move it from zero to 60 mph in just over seven seconds. Once again, only dynamic testing will tell for sure. (We know, it's a heck of a job, but someone's got to do it.) And, said Hopson, the Ecotec engine could easily be supercharged or turbocharged in the future. Now you're talking. Even naturally aspirated, Pontiac's 0-60 time for the Solstice is just about a half-second more than it takes the Mazdaspeed Miata, which we see as the Solstice's closest competitor. Indeed, the cars are similar in purpose, performance, practicality and price. Both are uncomplicated ragtops created for the express purpose of topless motoring joy. Both use four-cylinder engines to generate near equal power (though with the aid of a turbocharger, the Mazda manages to extract its 178 hp from a much smaller 1.8-liter mill). Neither has much to offer in terms of cargo space or storage: The Miata's diminutive trunk offers 5.1 cubic feet of capacity, while the Solstice provides 4.0 cubic feet with the top up and only 2.0 measly cubic feet when it's dropped — that amounts to a small gym bag, so pack lightly. And, most importantly, both are attractively priced. The Solstice may have the edge in price. A Mazdaspeed Miata runs about $26,000, but Pontiac says even a loaded Solstice will come out under $25K. In fact, when the production Solstice was unveiled at the 2004 Detroit Auto Show, GM Chairman of North American Operations Bob Lutz promised it would cost less than $20,000. Many predicted that would be impossible. They were wrong. "We're going to offer a model of this car for under $20,000," Hopson said. "That's a line in the sand." He assured us the base model would retail at $19,995 when the Solstice arrives in showrooms next year. The base version is not some bare-bones version, either, he said, but includes the aforementioned 18-inch alloys, four-wheel disc brakes and the aluminum sport suspension. Options are few, including just leather upholstery, an upgraded audio system, different wheel finishes and limited-slip differential. An automatic transmission will also be available sometime after launch, but choosing that is like wearing a snow suit in the Caribbean — you're missing the point. Pontiac hopes to sell between 20,000 and 30,000 units of the roadster annually. If the Solstice lives up to its potential, they will all be gone in the first few months.
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In a local Sports Car Trader, some dealer is charging $31,000 for a Solstice with a "Apprentince Edition" package. Well, so much for no mark up.
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It's like you are almost in the driver's seat....feels so good....

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There is a dual cupholder that come out between seat backs and a little cubbyhole as well. Edited by HarleyEarl
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In a local Sports Car Trader, some dealer is charging $31,000 for a Solstice with a "Apprentince Edition" package. Well, so much for no mark up.

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Apperentice Edition? Does it come with the Donald saying "You're fired"? :P
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Oh wow, the Solstice looks good in red in that pic. The other pics I had seen of it in red were less impressive.
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...and you guys wonder I'm feverisly (sp?) awaiting the arrival of my black Solstice. It seems as if I may be getting possibly...and this is a slight stretch...POSSIBLY the very first Solstice of the non first 1k. I can't wait. I'm racking up the deposit as the days go on!
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I think the dark gray (sly) and beige interior looks the best on this car. The Saturn Sky looks a lot better in red than the Solstice for some reason.
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