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hyperv6

Few Tears for Pontiac at the Pontiac Nationals

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I spent yesterday at the Pontiac Nationals and Summit Raceway Park in Norwalk Ohio. This is the largest gathering of Pontiacs in the world. With over 500 Show cars and 500 plus Pontiac powered race cars this is the big time Pontiac event.

I went expecting a wake or a lot of people mad at GM. I found few brought up the end of Pontiac. If they did say anything they were not thilled with the loss but most of them have not cared for many of the recent pontiacs for years.

Note many of Pontiac's best sellers from the last 30 years were not on the show field. There were many G8, GTO and Solstice but no G6, Sunbird, Vibe, G5, Grand Am, or SUV based vehicles other than one Aztek.

Either way while most were not thrilled with the Pontiac loss they were not as upset as many on the web.

I did nail down my class for the 5 time 1st place awards in a row. I have 3 more first and 2 more seconds to go with these from previous years. This has been a well run and fun well judged events and one of the few I show at anymore.

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You went expecting to see a somber crowd? Classic Poncho fans have ignored the new offerings of their favorite GM division for years. The new GTO was a flop in their eyes, the Solstice was too small for their daily needs, and the G8 was 'too little, too late' (the rest - G5, G6, Vibe, Torrent weren't worth their time). At a small all-GM show I attended in April, I overheard a bunch of men around a '38 Pontiac sedan talk about the end of Pontiac, but they weren't all that sad (they were saying 'who's next?'). I read both Pontiac Enthusiast and High Performance Pontiac magazines and many classic Poncho fans/owners have shunned the brand once 'corporate' engines took over (geez, what year was that, 1979 or 1981?). The brand will never be dead as long as the classic Poncho owners keep their cars alive. BTW hyperv6, I'm not singling you out, just commenting on the topic.

Glad to hear you took an award. What Pontiac do you own?

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I went expecting a wake or a lot of people mad at GM. I found few brought up the end of Pontiac. If they did say anything they were not thilled with the loss but most of them have not cared for many of the recent pontiacs for years.

Pretty much as I would expect. In my experience, traditional Poncho fans only give modern Pontiacs a small consideration before buying a Mazda, Maxima or 3 series for a daily driver. The few diehards that would buy ONLY Pontiacs (like me) are few and far between.

I feel that the idea that one is not thrilled by the loss is that Pontiac was the last chance that GM could build a decent, affordable sports sedan/coupe... like the G8... because its obvious that GM feels Chevy is fine with 20 year old W-bodies and Cadillac is a good excuse to charge an arm and leg for the same thing (CTS-V, STS-V).

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Wow... Interesting reading. Oldsmobile reacted differently, but we are different now because when it happened to Pontiac, it was not shock to us. They did not get the same send off we got. Buick better watch its back...

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Been to this event several times.

Just about any RWD Pontiac is represented and revered, the crowd just doesn't care about the FWD junk.

But then, those aren't really Pontiacs anyway.

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THe Pontiac crowd at one point was if it was a post 1979 Post 400 car it was not a Pontiac. Then thing began to mellow. The Pontiac people began to embrace the Firebird and Trans Ams of the 3rd 4th gen. In time the supercharged cars were also accepted. They did not and still are ok with FWD as long as it was a performance car.

The bottom line is if the Pontiac was not a real performance car they did not care about it. People bought Pontiac in mostly for the performace image of ability of each car. The last Pontiacs few where real performance cars as they could not go like hell or even turn better than an average car. It is just sad if you could not sell a Pontiac to a Pontiac fan who do you think will buy them?

I expected a little grumble but we had little

I have a 1985 Fiero SE that I have added the Herb Adams suspension, T tops and my own ground FX too. I also have a 1990 Fiero Nose badge that was documented and was one of the few to get out of Pontiac. I have almost always had a positive response by most at the Pontiac events. Most come by and say I like what you have done. Many will stop by and tell how they either had one or still have one and loved it.

The funny thing is the 1979 Trans Am is often considered the last real Pontiac but many forget the 1974-88 Fiero 4 cylinder was the last true 100% Pontiac. Note it was based on the P body only sold by Pontiac, the 4 cylinder Iron Duke was a Pontiac engine and the car was built in Pontiac Michigan. Even the cars like the old GTO shared frames and other major parts with other GM cars as well assembly lines.

The new GTO, SSEI. Solstice, GTP and G8 all were well accepted by the large crowd as each represented real performance. Now the Aztek and if a G6 had shown up I would say unless it was tubed out no one would care.

Many GTP owners are racing and are fast. There have even been a few in the 11's and One in the 10's. They have gotten respect.

carweb7.jpg

mycar3.jpg

This is my go cart. I have had it 25 years this week and have enjoyed it. I bought it new when I could not afford the insurance on a TA bad then because of my age. I get this out for a little open top time and go to a cruise in or show once in a while. I have a lot of Pontiac buddies and play with their old iron often. One day I will get back to one of the older cars but keep the Fiero.

In fact today I was tinkering on a old 64 GTO today. Once my buddy gets it ready I will take it and detail it for him as long as I get to steal it from him for the weekend. A tripower and 4 speed can be a lot of fun.

Edited by hyperv6
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You went expecting to see a somber crowd? Classic Poncho fans have ignored the new offerings of their favorite GM division for years. The new GTO was a flop in their eyes, the Solstice was too small for their daily needs, and the G8 was 'too little, too late' (the rest - G5, G6, Vibe, Torrent weren't worth their time). At a small all-GM show I attended in April, I overheard a bunch of men around a '38 Pontiac sedan talk about the end of Pontiac, but they weren't all that sad (they were saying 'who's next?'). I read both Pontiac Enthusiast and High Performance Pontiac magazines and many classic Poncho fans/owners have shunned the brand once 'corporate' engines took over (geez, what year was that, 1979 or 1981?). The brand will never be dead as long as the classic Poncho owners keep their cars alive. BTW hyperv6, I'm not singling you out, just commenting on the topic.

Glad to hear you took an award. What Pontiac do you own?

I don't understand why the new GTO was such a flop? I really like the look of it, and I liked the engine choices too. As far as comared to the old I would prefer the new simply because of the newer engines, and suspension.

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I don't understand why the new GTO was such a flop? I really like the look of it, and I liked the engine choices too. As far as comared to the old I would prefer the new simply because of the newer engines, and suspension.

To be honest it was not a flop it just left some wanting more.

The facts are it made money even in low numbers.

Lutz came in and was faced with a division with no RWD performance and no plans or money to make one.

He looked to Holden and got it done cheap, profitable and in a very short time. It was only to carry Pontiac till the Zeta arrived. But the Zeta was delayed not do to Lutz'e ideas but do to cost redesigns.

They were so short money the true duel exhaust and hood scoopes had to wait till the second year as GM had so little money avaiable they could not be done in 04.

The GTO did what it was ment to do Provide Pontiac with RWD performance ASAP, buy time till the Zeta came and not cost GM money. It did all three not counting placing the Zeta delay on Pontiac.

What was a failure was a GM system the killed the Firebird with no performance plan in place. Then they bring Lutz in to fix it but with what. No plans for a real perfomance car and no money to make one. Not many could have even pulled the Holden deal off or provide a RWD car any cheaper or faster. If he had not done this and waited for a Bird it would have never happend.

Edited by hyperv6
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To be honest it was not a flop it just left some wanting more.

The facts are it made money even in low numbers.

Lutz came in and was faced with a division with no RWD performance and no plans or money to make one.

He looked to Holden and got it done cheap, profitable and in a very short time. It was only to carry Pontiac till the Zeta arrived. But the Zeta was delayed not do to Lutz'e ideas but do to cost redesigns.

They were so short money the true duel exhaust and hood scoopes had to wait till the second year as GM had so little money avaiable they could not be done in 04.

The GTO did what it was ment to do Provide Pontiac with RWD performance ASAP, buy time till the Zeta came and not cost GM money. It did all three not counting placing the Zeta delay on Pontiac.

What was a failure was a GM system the killed the Firebird with no performance plan in place. Then they bring Lutz in to fix it but with what. No plans for a real perfomance car and no money to make one. Not many could have even pulled the Holden deal off or provide a RWD car any cheaper or faster. If he had not done this and waited for a Bird it would have never happend.

Don't listen to hyperv6, he doesn't know his a$$ from a hole in the ground. Even Lutz said this car was a flop.

Link: http://www.autoweek.com/apps/pbcs.dll/arti...p;rssfeed=rss01

The Old School GTO Boyz rejected this car, because it didn't look like a GTO, it looked like a Chevy Cavalier. They gave it the thumbs down and that was the beginning of the end for it, that and all the reasons Lutz stated above in the link ...

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To be honest it was not a flop it just left some wanting more.

The facts are it made money even in low numbers.

Lutz came in and was faced with a division with no RWD performance and no plans or money to make one.

He looked to Holden and got it done cheap, profitable and in a very short time. It was only to carry Pontiac till the Zeta arrived. But the Zeta was delayed not do to Lutz'e ideas but do to cost redesigns.

They were so short money the true duel exhaust and hood scoopes had to wait till the second year as GM had so little money avaiable they could not be done in 04.

The GTO did what it was ment to do Provide Pontiac with RWD performance ASAP, buy time till the Zeta came and not cost GM money. It did all three not counting placing the Zeta delay on Pontiac.

What was a failure was a GM system the killed the Firebird with no performance plan in place. Then they bring Lutz in to fix it but with what. No plans for a real perfomance car and no money to make one. Not many could have even pulled the Holden deal off or provide a RWD car any cheaper or faster. If he had not done this and waited for a Bird it would have never happend.

Spot on, Hyper.

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Lutz comments were at the release of the new G8 and were directed at the weak points that were clear to everyone. He also held a different veiw untill he had to change it to promote the new Zeta. Bob is not dumb and will do what it takes to move or promote a car.

"First, it was introduced at the end of a design cycle, making it seem dated despite never having been seen on these shores. It was also overpriced and poorly distributed (too many in the midwest, too few in SoCal, where the drift kids are).

2004 15,725

2005 11,069

2006 13,948

First, it was introduced at the end of a design cycle, making it seem dated despite never having been seen on these shores. It was also overpriced and poorly distributed (too many in the midwest, too few in SoCal, where the drift kids are). We're right on board with the Lutz These numbers were not far off from what was intended. The truth is the new Mustang coming out stole a lot of thunder with its styling and cheaper price.

A true failure is more like a Lincoln Backwood truck a few years back they only sold in the hundreds if I recall.

The bottom line is GM did not take a loss here and made money and sold 75% of the intended possible cars that could be imported. Some here who have a anti Holden bias and want you to only see what they want you to see. The GTO was not a perfecty plan but also was not a failure.

Also note most of these cars were never sold at massive discounts. Only a few of the remaining 06 cars were discounted much and not much at that. Today many lower mileage cars are still holding their value. The ones that are cheap are usally beat up pretty well.

Just for kicks the G8 sold in 2008 were 15,002 units. Not the intended 40,000 units they had hoped. 2009 units 15,691. I think the G8 fell farther below the number of expected sales but I would also not term the car a failure either. Just bad timing and planning by GM.

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Sorry in the above comment I should have stated that 40,000 units for the G8 were possible. I believe Pontiac never expected it would sell that that many. But again because of the deal with Holden they still made money on tha car. Not a major investment into it on Pontiacs behalf and most of the burden of cost was on Holden.

To call the GTO and G8 a failure is a little harsh. The honest assesement is they were more of a disapointment than a total failure based on more than just product issues.

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To call the GTO and G8 a failure is a little harsh. The honest assesement is they were more of a disapointment than a total failure based on more than just product issues.

They were failures, and because of it, both vehicles are dead in North America or soon will be ...

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They were failures, and because of it, both vehicles are dead in North America or soon will be ...

At least they sold to enthusiasts, unlike the mediocre W-Grand Prix which was 77% fleet when it went out...

Rob

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At least they sold to enthusiasts, unlike the mediocre W-Grand Prix which was 77% fleet when it went out...

Rob

Was that somehow supposed to hurt me? It didn't. I have the 07 Grand Prix GXP, 09 Solstice GXP targa, 09 G8 GXP and the 69 Pontiac A Body Custom-S. I have quite the nice little fleet ...

As for the rest of you who are Pontiac fans, as I am, I would suggest you get your Pontiac while you still can ...

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>>"69 Pontiac A Body Custom-S"<<

??? Did you think that was part of the actual name ? Wierd way to name your car.

>>"I would suggest you get your Pontiac while you still can ..."<<

There will always be Pontiacs 'to get', esp for those that value 'real' Pontiacs. :wink:

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Was that somehow supposed to hurt me? It didn't. I have the 07 Grand Prix GXP, 09 Solstice GXP targa, 09 G8 GXP and the 69 Pontiac A Body Custom-S. I have quite the nice little fleet ...

As for the rest of you who are Pontiac fans, as I am, I would suggest you get your Pontiac while you still can ...

They'll be plenty of Pontiacs for years which I can buy without giving money to GM, just as I can find Oldsmobiles today.

Quite frankly, I'm glad that you aren't at BMW anymore, as they may get my voting dollar... and I'd hate to think that my money ended up in your paycheck. You're return to GM is just another reason not to buy GM... the idea that GM has people on payroll actively trying to help snuff out any enthusiasm for their business is just mind-boggling.

Is this supposed to hurt you? No. I don't expect anything spineless to feel pain.

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They'll be plenty of Pontiacs for years which I can buy without giving money to GM, just as I can find Oldsmobiles today.

Quite frankly, I'm glad that you aren't at BMW anymore, as they may get my voting dollar... and I'd hate to think that my money ended up in your paycheck. You're return to GM is just another reason not to buy GM... the idea that GM has people on payroll actively trying to help snuff out any enthusiasm for their business is just mind-boggling.

Is this supposed to hurt you? No. I don't expect anything spineless to feel pain.

Well that's a little harsh, a point of order, "I'm not on GM's payroll until September 1st!" :P

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As for the rest of you who are Pontiac fans, as I am, I would suggest you get your Pontiac while you still can ...

Well, if I know you like I think I do, I better get off my a$$ and into my Pontiac dealer ASAP to see what deal they offer me on a 2009 Pontiac G8 V6 sedan. It will likely be my last chance to see if I can drive away in a brand new Pontiac :(

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Hell we will have G3's for years to come with as many they have left.

There are only three Pontiacs built since the last bird worth having. As a Comp G owner I can't wait to trade it off in a year or so. Not a bad car but far from great. Good thing I got it new $10,000 off sticker it will help on the resale value loss.

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They were failures, and because of it, both vehicles are dead in North America or soon will be ...

No, they were victims of GM misconduct and sabotage.

They, along with Solstice and Firebird, were the only Pontiacs worth a damn in the last two decades - who's fault is that ?

Edited by Camino LS6
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No, they were victims of GM misconduct and sabotage.

They, along with Solstice and Firebird, were the only Pontiacs worth a damn in the last two decades - who's fault is that ?

No sabotage just failure of the old GM system to know or understand what to do with Pontiac.

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No sabotage just failure of the old GM system to know or understand what to do with Pontiac.

See how naive he is Camino? You and I both know better ...

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See how naive he is Camino? You and I both know better ...

Ok Sabotage.... Who, What, Why, When, and Were? It ain't bragging if you can back it up. I would like to hear your smoking gun on the grassy noll version.

By the way I thought you also stated several times here that GM was going under in 3-5 years?

Why the new hitch?

Edited by hyperv6
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