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Pontiac Unveils Red Bull Solstice GXP for Drifting

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Written by: News Wire Long Beach, Calif. – 5/3/2006

As expected, Pontiac has replaced its GTO drifting car with a new Solstice model. Pontiac unveiled its next generation drift vehicle based on the upcoming turbocharged Solstice GXP at a ceremony in Long Beach on Tuesday. The new Red Bull Solstice GXP Drift, which will once again be piloted by 2005 Formula Drift champion Rhys Millen, will make its official Formula D drifting debut on June 10 at Soldier Field in Chicago, as he bids to defend his drift Formula D championship.

The GXP Drift features a race-modified version of the Solstice GXP turbocharged 2.0-liter Ecotec engine.

“The Red Bull Solstice GXP Drift is an excellent match for the tuner market, where turbocharged engines dominate,” said Carmen Smith, GM Racing program manager for drifting. “Additionally, the GXP Drift maximizes the use of GM production components and race parts available through GM Performance Parts. Not only is the engine based on the production Ecotec, the transmission is a GM production six-speed and we’ve maintained the production GXP rear differential. Of course, we’ve used many race parts from GM Performance Parts and from sponsors such as Bridgestone, Rotora, Exedy, Racing Hart, and Sparco.”

The heart of the Solstice GXP Drift is the Ecotec 2.0-liter turbo engine, producing over 500 horsepower, roughly double the horsepower of the street-legal GXP available in dealerships this fall. This competition Ecotec turbo engine, running on E85 ethanol-based fuel, uses thick-wall iron cylinder liners, a race-ported cylinder head, tubular stainless steel exhaust headers, a performance camshaft, a unique engine control system and a water to air intercooled turbocharger. It was developed by the same GM Racing engineers behind the successful Ecotec sport compact drag racing motors, which generate over 1,400hp in a 2.2-liter turbocharged configuration.

Consumers got a sneak peak of the production Solstice GXP roadster convertible during the L.A. Auto Show in January. The GXP is based on the hot-selling Solstice that was launched last year as Pontiac’s first production two-seat roadster and became almost instantly popular for its classic roadster style, crisp handling and spirited performance. The 2006 model of the Solstice is sold out and there is already a waiting list of customers for the 2007 model.

“With a powerful product like Pontiac and the experience of team RMR, this fierce combination of response and talent has helped me win events and ultimately the championship,” said Millen. “The Solstice has sold like crazy in the marketplace and I can only imagine the excitement of the fans when I bring the Solstice GXP Drift to Chicago. With the added power, this new drift vehicle is sure to give me a boost against some very strong competition while fighting for our second drift title.”

I'm not a big drift fan, but she's 8) none the less

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I think this has been posted somewhere? But thanks for posting.

The engine is goint to be 550 HP at 450 FT LBS in a 2.0. Looks like good stuff.

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Cool.... I'm still hoping the Drifting craze will bring us

more RWD cars from all manufacturers. A FWD car

is as useless in drifting as a $h!-flavored popcicle. :D

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