What the End of Pontiac Means To You

Pontiacemblem Today GM announced it would stop producing new Pontiac models by the end of 2010. This is the end of an era for the once-proud performance brand, but it also leaves a lot of questions for car shoppers and Pontiac owners.

We talked to Jim Hopson, Pontiac’s manager of communications, this morning to clarify GM’s statement. He said that Pontiac will continue to operate normally even with today’s announcement. All warranty work will be completed as usual; any new Pontiacs sold will have the same full warranty they did last week, one which has the backing of the U.S. government. The government's backing is to help ensure consumers that its safe to still purchase new GM cars while the company seeks to restructure. Only cars purchased through May get the government-backed warranty.

GM will continue to make parts for Pontiac models indefinitely and most Pontiac dealers also sell the Buick and GMC brands and will continue to operate. The automaker still produces replacement parts for the defunct Oldsmobile, which GM shuttered in 2004.

What Hopson couldn’t say was when certain models would be phased out.

The current Pontiac lineup reads as follows, including how many days of inventory was sitting on lots as of April 1.

  • Pontiac G3: 617 days of inventory
  • Pontiac G5: 443 days of inventory
  • Pontiac G6: 83 days of inventory
  • Pontiac G8: 92 days of inventory
  • Pontiac Solstice: 276 days of inventory
  • Pontiac Vibe: 149 days of inventory
  • Pontiac Torrent: 99 days of inventory

The national average for all brands is 83 days of inventory.

We detail specific information on Pontiac models below.

Hopson said the 2009.5 Pontiac G6, which gets a mild updating that we detailed here, has already gone into production. The Pontiac Vibe is sold as a 2010 model.

Pontiac will announce future plant closings in May, which could reveal the models that will disappear first. The Wilmington, Del., assembly plant that produces the Pontiac Solstice and Saturn Sky will likely be an early target of any closing schedule. The Pontiac Torrent has already been killed off.

The Lake Orion, Mich., plant, where the G6 and Chevy Malibu are built, will likely continue to make the more popular Chevy model , however, a Kansas City. Kan., plant also produces the Malibu and is gearing up to produce an all-new Buick LaCrosse. Buick is one of four “core” brands for the slimmed down GM.

The G3 is made in South Korea, and the G8 is built in Australia.

Current incentives end Thursday, and there are considerable cash-back deals as well as low-financing offers on new Pontiacs. We’d assume these deals would be expanded or extended through May as the company continues its restructuring plans.

Regardless of any incentive, the expected resale value of any new Pontiac will see a decline with the news, much like what Oldsmobile experienced earlier this decade. However, Pontiacs already have low resale value. The predicted resale value of the current Pontiac lineup after the first year is 24 months is listed below. A 2009 Toyota Camry resale value for the same time period is 60%.

  • 2009 Pontiac G3: 53%
  • 2009 Pontiac G5: 51% (base coupe)
  • 2009 Pontiac G6: 45% (base sedan)
  • 2009 Pontiac G8: 40% (base sedan)
  • 2009 Pontiac Solstice:  54% (base convertible)
  • 2010 Pontiac Vibe:  n/a
  • 2009 Pontiac Torrent: 43% (base FWD)

Source: KBB.com

Comments 

H

So what warranty is offered for buyers after May? I guess that coincides with the June 1 judgment day where GM goes Ch.11 or the government accepts their viability plan.

Original sheth

How is Kbb calculating resale values for cars that have never hit the used car market? The G3 has NO resale value to speak of since it just came out and has barely sold. The G8 has only been out since last year so its resale track record is non existent.

segfault

"Current resale value?" I assume they mean the predicted resale value, and I assume it's a percentage of MSRP, but after what time period?

You couldn't find a Solistice when they first came out, I guess people have since figured out the Miata was still better.

The rest of the lineup points out exactly why they were doomed. One decent car, and the rest suck. They'll have an inventory of G3s for decades to come.

C

Well, the whole lineup are rebadged vehicles, what do they expect?
But the interesting thing is that they are keeping Buick which has only 3 models now instead of Pontiac.

Al

Too Bad for Pontiac. The G8 was a cool car.

James

The G8 is a cool car. Finally something in the Pontiac line-up that I wanted to drive (aside from the GTO). Too little to late I suppose. Strange how Pontiac sales were twice as much as Buick, yet they're keeping Buick.

Cory

Wait a minute, you guys expected a resale value of a Pontiac. How else could they be anything more than a guess. Before you can get a value you have to have someone wanting to BUY it.

Guys,
We fixed the resale value above. It's been a bit busy this morning. Thanks for pointing it out.

Colin B.

Pontiac's sales numbers were heavily buoyed by fleet sales -- much more than Buick's. When Pontiac isn't selling to fleet they're attracting a very low-rent buyer -- the average money down on a Pontiac is $1,600, which is about even with Kia.

Overall, Buick attracts a much older buyer and has one of the highest rates of people paying in cash. GMC also attracts a higher-end clientele than Chevy truck consumers.

It makes sense to keep the two profitable brands and drop the one that's basically used as a commercial/ fleet contractor.

GM should be able to keep about 65% of Pontiac's sale volume by simply ratcheting up fleet sales over at Chevy.

All-in-all, this brand isn't a great loss to GM or the world.

America

With the death of GMs bankability and GM on the whole it will be up to Ford and Chrysler to try to recoup those job losses and profits, but the credibility of the boatshit brands is now nonexistent. Detroit is a dead failure ensured dead by Obama and his Task Force to Kill America and their oil terrorist leaders. Now all there is left is civil war, eviction and execution. Yes we can. Yes we will.

d

1 of my faves wuz the 1997 - 2003 Grand Prix!!

Original sheth

I still dont get how we can predict the resale value of the G8 when its been out for about a year. How many used G8s are there? Predicted resale values that arent based on existing data are worthless.

Someone said the entire lineup was rebadged. Thats a lie. The G5 and G3 are rebadged. How are the G6, G8 and Solstice rebadges? The G6 and Solstice look totally different from their platform mates. Also, the G6 was the only FWD GM model available as a convertible and midsize coupe.

ACC

This is the worst thing that GM could possibly do! Pontiacs have been some of the best, sporty, and cars that differentiate themselves from the rest of the other GM cars. Yeah the Aztec was a bad idea, but there are have been other ugly cars that GM has made in other brands, just like there has been with other manufacturers. They should kill Buick in the US and keep it in China where it is liked. The G6 is much better than a Malibu, the G5 much better than a cobalt, the G3 better than an Aveo and G8 is great, especially if it was a two door with a manual tranny. They also need to move GMC to an only heavy duty like with out light duty trucks. *sigh* Oh well, maybe in the future they will bring back Pontiac, or just KEEP IT!

Juan Carlos

sad to see it go. is the vibe staying? that is a toyota matrix version done by gm. if one plans to keep a the car for long time, you will get one for a great price and still be able to take it to the chevy dealer for repairs. forget resale value. .

Terry

There goes the excitement.

and1

Wow that guy America is pretty scary.

I'll miss the G8, but maybe now I can get it cheap.

J

Original Sheth,

Keep whining or saying prayer to your brand. It is not gonna change the fact that they are the same vehicles under the skin.
The G6 sedan is the Aura and by seeing them on the roads around here every single day, I am beggining to lose the ability to tell them apart. G8 is Commodore. Solstice is the Sky deep inside. You happened to forget to mention the Torrent (if it is still in production).
They are lack of a totally unique vehicle to their own brand. There is no Camaro twin in GM's lineup (yet).

smokin88lx

Maybe in the next year or 2 the resale will be down but will be pretty desirable in 5+years. Affordable V8 RWD sedan is pretty rare these days.

smokin88lx

I'm refering to the G8 above.

smokin88lx

Maybe in the next 2 years resale will be down for the G8 but in 5+ years will be pretty good. An affordable V8 RWD sedan.

smokin88lx

Maybe in the next 2 years resale will be down for the G8 but in 5+ years will be pretty good. An affordable V8 RWD sedan is getting rare these days

Original sheth

"The G6 sedan is the Aura and by seeing them on the roads around here every single day, I am beggining to lose the ability to tell them apart."

Perhaps you need glasses. They share a wheelbase. Thats about it. Totally different body panels and interiors. Until recently the G6 didn't even have the same head unit. I don't even own a Pontiac but the cars are not "all" rebadges as someone said. The government wanted more brands cut and Pontiac is gettng the axe. It's that simple and has nothing to do with the G5 being a rebadge.

The Torrent is out of production and the G8 had no counterpart in the US market. Get a clue.

crazypaul

Sad day in GM for the Pontiac Brand. I currently own a 2006 GTO and wouldn't trade this car in for anything. G8 which is also a nice car. They should let Buick go. That brand isn't worth a cent.

LinCar

All I know is the Pontiac was an AFFORDABLE car for someone like myself that did have a bit of the Driving Excitement about it. I have owned 2 Grand Prix. Loved my beloved 2000 GT! Now own a Granite gray G6 (2007). I love this little car! Pontiac styling is just IMHO more eye catching. I cannot honestly think of another GM make/model that I don't find BORING in the extreme save the Camaro (I've had 3) and the Corvette (husband has had 3) which are now priced out of my reach. My 24 year old daugher and neice both drive (and love) their Grand Prix GTs. I have bought my last GM car.

Original sheth

crazy:

Buick is worth something. Increasingly models sold in the US and China (where buick is doing well) will be similar. Pontiac isnt sold ANYWHERE but in north america. Buicks sell at higher prices and are less reliant on fleet sales than Pontiac. As Buick moves upscale (new lacrosse tops out at $40k) the profit per vehicle will increase. Pontiac (except for G8) was competing with Chevy in pricing and was likely losing money.

crazypaul

Original sheth

Thats true they sell alot more Buicks in China and over seas then they do here. I thought for awhile maybe they should cut GMC but that is there next biggest seller. I did see they are planning after the G8's production runs out in 2011 they are planning on bring it back over but as the new Chevy Impala interesting...

GM has stated they will not resell the G8, Vibe or any Pontiac, Saturn or Hummer as another brand. Not sure where the information that they will is coming from but the CEO was asked that directly and he responded no.

crazypaul

Here is the article: Dave T.

TheGMSource - With news breaking over the weekend that General Motors is expected to announce the Pontiac brand is closing many have wondered what will happen to the G8. As we reported a few days ago, the Pontiac G8 was the best selling retail car for Pontiac in the month of March.

The G8 is a well designed and engineered rear-wheel-drive sedan. Luckily the engineering and design won't go to waste as we can report that the highly anticipated shift of the Chevrolet Impala to rear-wheel-drive will happen after all.

Enthusiasts and auto rags have predicted the Impala will move to rear-wheel-drive for several years. GM announced two years ago that the Impala would stay FWD and continue to be produced at GM's Oshawa assembly plant in Canada. While it's unknown if the current Impala will limp on with no cosmetic changes we do know that the replacement for the Impala will come in the form of a rebaged Pontiac G8.

What we can confirm is that as of three months ago GM's Holden division had plans to produce the Pontiac G8 through 2011. While rumors pegged the G8 production moving to Canada as early as next year those reports are false. In February of this year GM began to gauge suppliers for 2011 contracts for the G8 to be produced in Australia.

At tomorrows announcement it is expected GM will announce the Pontiac G8 will run its course until 2011 when the car will no longer be produced wearing the Pontiac badge. Production of other Zeta models is then expected to move to Oshawa, Canada. The Oshawa plant currently has "production rights" to the Impala name much like the St. Therese plant had production rights to the Camaro name.

While we don't know if the rear-wheel-drive Impala will have any significant sheetmetal differences from the G8, we can confirm that once the G8 production cycle ends in 2011, the Impala returns to its rear-wheel-drive roots in 2012. Yesterdays article 4/26/09

They sell the G8 as the VE Commodore in Australia. By all accounts it's a pretty good drive.

Ken L.

Sad to see the Pontiac brand about to die, but here's a link for those to remember the good times.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pG8TaZrJ74s&feature=related


SS

This is a smart move as it will allow the General to focus on their successful top-selling core of cars: Aveo, Cobalt, Malibu, and Impala. The General was never going to be able to keep up with the sales under the Pontiac brand name so it was best to shut it down now before they became stretched too thin. Many of the Generals cars like the Malibu and Impala can barely keep up with demand as it is. Check your local Chevy dealers inventory and you'll see what I mean.

Crazypaul,
Yes, that story was written before CEO Fritz Henderson denied it entirely stating they would not use those cars at all earlier this morning.

They were incorrect. That's why we usually wait until word comes from confirmed sources before publishing anything like this.

If we do, like in the Fiat story that we ran today, we call it speculation and make sure the source, like the WSJ, is cited.

Aussie

Its ok that pontiac is going out of business, it means that GM can focus their spending on better cars in fewer brands. and i dont mind about the G8, i live in Australia =D.

SS,

I was just tempted to search our local Chevy dealer. 25 Malibus and 14 Impalas. And it's a relatively low-volume dealer, too.

Agree with the poster above, keep Pontiac and get rid of Buick.

mike gsx1300

i think its a shame that pontiac is being axed, isn't GMC kinda redundant as well? or Buick...talk about boring, do they come with walkers and blue blockers? the G8/GT was one the better GM products (ironic thats its imported) to come out lately. fit, finish, ride quality, and dont forget 361hp mated to competent RWD platform, finally real performance! compared to a recent and very uninspiring impala SS test drive.
this is what happens when a company that has great potential to build competitive and exciting vehicles becomes complacent and badges bland platforms to death albeit with poor build quality.

Melissa Smith

I was so excited when the concept for a new Trans Am was unveiled. I can't even believe the brand that "gave birth" to muscle cars will be gone! It is so sad to see a part of American history go down in flames.

The Lexus Bumper never did give names to their cars, instead consistently using letters and numbers to designate the coupes, sedans and the SUVs. With the Infinity Q45 being the flagship sedan, the Infinity found its place in the American market.The Infinity vehicles never did give names to their cars, instead consistently using letters and numbers to designate the coupes, sedans and the SUVs.

Thanks

Infiniti parts
http://www.iautobodyparts/lexus/

frank

Cannot find a USA 2009 replacement for the Grand
Prix, so looking at a Nissan Maxima, kind of a nice upgrade also ! GM is
building cars for the rich and the Country Club types.
Chevy is for welfare people. There were alot of
Olds and Pontiac buyers who
feel abandoned !

Zack

Look at some of the new Buicks - they're as sporty as a Grand Prix.

EDDIE

PONTIAC SOLD 200,000 FIREBIRDS IN 1979!! WHAT HAPPENED TO GM!!!??? WHAT DID THEY DO TO PONTIAC?? WHY????

Moanalua

I'm holding-out hope that GM might still be convinced to revive Pontiac, and the sooner the better. They've already lost about 60% of Pontiac's buyers. The brand is iconic, and has a large following. Please, GM: Bring it back.

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