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Pontiac drops 2 Vibe models after '06 model year

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Posted ImagePontiac drops 2 Vibe models after '06 model year

Jamie LaReau | Automotive News / March 30, 2006

DETROIT -- Pontiac will discontinue the GT and all-wheel-drive versions of the Vibe wagon after the 2006 model year due to sluggish sales of those models and changes in U.S. emissions standards that would have made them costly to redesign.

Pontiac will continue to offer the base-model Vibe for the 2007 model year. It may bring back the GT and awd versions with the next-generation Vibe, a spokesman says.

In a bulletin to Pontiac dealers Thursday morning, Buick-Pontiac-GMC General Manager John Larson told dealers they had until April and May to put in their last requests for the GT and AWD versions. Larson cited changes to U.S. regulatory standards as the reason.

"These changes would affect key structural components," Larson wrote. "The cost of redesign is prohibitive."

U.S. regulatory policy for 2007 has an ultralow emissions standard that the GT and awd versions did not meet. The base does meet the standard, says a Pontiac spokesman.

Sales also factored into the decision. Pontiac sold 64,271 units of the Vibe last year. That was up 9.1 percent from 2004. But dealers say the base model has accounted for the bulk of those sales.

"The GT and awd are very low-penetrating models right now," says Pontiac spokesman Jim Hopson. "There's still a very good possibility we'll resurrect both of those as we look at the next generation of the Vibe over the next couple of years."

The Vibe is a joint project that GM builds with Toyota Motor Corp. at the New United Motor Manufacturing Inc. plant in Fremont, Calif. Toyota builds the engine. Sources close to Pontiac say the NUMMI arrangement is profitable and the killing of these versions does not indicate that the relationship will end.

Pontiac will produce about 45,000 Vibes for 2006 model year, Hopson says. In July, Pontiac starts production on the 2007 base Vibe.

The base Vibe price starts at $16,990, the awd starts at $19,990 and the GT is $20,665. All prices include shipping.

Link: http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/arti.../1003&refsect=#

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Guest Josh

what's the story with the Matrix? no XRS or AWD for them too?

or is this just another nail in Pontiac's coffin?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Interesting indeed. One has to assume those models will be cut as well, however the article only states General Motors.

I mean, the headline is "GM CUTS 2 Vibe Models!!!!" (you get the point).

It does not read that "GM/Toyota Cut Two Models"

No, can't put Toyota in there.

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Interesting indeed. One has to assume those models will be cut as well, however the article only states General Motors.

I mean, the headline is "GM CUTS 2 Vibe Models!!!!" (you get the point).

It does not read that "GM/Toyota Cut Two Models"

No, can't put Toyota in there.

What I don't understand is why it is a big deal...

Outside GM-no one really cares...

It's just a trim level...most people just want a good wagon that is good on gas..

I never saw the point of the AWD one anyways...kinda pointless...

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so there'll only be really underwhelming models... nice.

Not really....

please explain why the others ones were needed...

There wasn't even much of a difference between models!

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the AWD and GT were too spendy, plus the GT only made power above like 7000 rpm.

for those who are distrought, i think they still offer the dealer installed factory supercharger kits. those had more torque than the GT anyways.

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The AWD and GT were slugs. You need to rev the hell out of the 1.8 to get anything out of it. And the AWD was only put on the 1.3, further sapping an already weak engine.

I really wish they'd just drop the Vibe altogether and replace it with something Delta/Ecotec based.

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Sluggish sales = get rid of it.

That's the only equation you're likely to ever see, for good reason. I am surprised just how expensive the Vibe models are. I didn't see too much bang-for-the-buck in their design or feature offering to warrant a sticker price as high as listed.

A retool seemed overdue anyhow.

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Perhaps this is a sign that the Vibe is on the way out.

GM may be slowly cutting it's ties with Toyota.

Too soon to tell but I think it's interesting that we haven't heard a thing about the next generation of both models.

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The AWD and GT were slugs. You need to rev the hell out of the 1.8 to get anything out of it. And the AWD was only put on the 1.3, further sapping an already weak engine.

I really wish they'd just drop the Vibe altogether and replace it with something Delta/Ecotec based.

You know, ricers love that. My friend's Si friend keeps insisting that the engine should always be kept in high RPMs, and comment how my pushrod can't rev, and is not "racing tuned".

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The Toyota 1.8L in the Vibe is truly awful. I haven't driven the GT but I can only imagine it's even worse than the base model.

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Some cars are fun with a high-revving engine. The Vibe isn't one of them because it's just feels like working the engine really hard. The Vibe isn't that heavy, but the weak engines sure make it feel like a ponderous vehicle. The loss of these models is no big deal, though it would be nice if the GT's 4-wheel discs migrated to the base model.

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Hmmm....

So, the Toyota 1.8L sucks (Yet no complaints by the media in the Matrix)

Toyota apparently ISN'T cutting the Matrix (According to this SENSATIONAL headline)

I *thought* a new Vibe was already UNDER development.

The Vibe is getting some age now with little to no updates, but I think it's STILL a conquest seller.

I hate to see these trim levels go, Pontiac seems to really be getting hit hard by cuts this year (GTO, Vibe models, SV6, eventually Torrent) But I guess it's okay if most sales are for base models AND if some of the features filter down. Hopefully the next generation will be "More Pontiac"

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Guest YellowJacket894

I think it makes a lot of sense for Pontiac to merge the G5 and Vibe lines together, since they are both compact cars and their relationship is something like the HHR and Cobalt's (although the HHR and Cobalt may have a closer relationship due to the fact they both share the Delta platform).

But, from what I am hearing, the Vibe will still be warmed over Toyota-developed crap. Great. Perfect. Wonderful.

Yeah, right.

I see the Toyota and GM partnership as something that will somehow weigh down a company that will, without a doubt, become a great automaker here in our lifetimes with great products that Toyota will not be able to touch.

But, somehow I think that the Toyota-GM relationship is a big, ugly leak in keeping what GM has coming -- no doubt a one-two punch -- that only benefits Toyota. And I hate to know that's probably how it works.

Well, maybe GM will scrap the Toyota boat anchor in the next-generation Vibe and keep the shared parts only down to the platform.

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Its very sensible. I've seen a few GTs and an AWD or three ever. Z is right; the GT revs too much and the AWD has measly power. Good riddance.

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so there'll only be really underwhelming models... nice.

I got news for you! They were all really underwhelming models-especially after the unnecessary 2005 facelift and the adding of dull colors and taking away Yellow and Fusion Orange (i.e-WHY are there 3 drab grey colors-Platinum, Moonstone and Stealth)-I thought Base/AWD were going to get cut-just redesign this thing based off Delta, move it to Chevy, and end the NUMMI thing-way too long.

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The NUMMI thing has been interesting. Toyota got to deal with the UAW. They also learned about doing business in the U.S. and developing relationships with suppliers. GM learned about Toyota's production methods. GM now gets only a small fraction of the plant's production. Should GM sell off its interest in this joint venture?

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Its very sensible. I've seen a few GTs and an AWD or three ever. Z is right; the GT revs too much and the AWD has measly power. Good riddance.

an Ecotec Vibe would be a good answer, but by now its way too late.

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an Ecotec Vibe would be a good answer, but by now its way too late.

Absolutely. Alot more potential for turbo/supercharging, etc. Alas.

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Wouldn't it be easier to put Toyota's 2.4L from the Camry or Scion tC in the Vibe?

Edited by ehaase

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