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AJS Model 18 500 Statesman
AJS Model 18 500 Statesman


Pontiac was an automobile that was established in 1926 as a make for General Motors Oakland. Quickly overtaking its in popularity, it supplanted the Oakland entirely by 1933. Pontiac was in the United States, Canada. and by General Motors (GM). was marketed as the performance division of Motors for many years, in mainstream performance vehicles.

was relatively more popular in where for much of its history it was as a low-priced vehicle.

On April 27, amid ongoing financial and restructuring efforts, GM announced it discontinue the Pontiac brand by the end of and focus on four core in North America: Chevrolet. Buick. and GMC.

The last were built in late with the final dealer expiring October 31, 2010.

History Edit

Predecessor 1907-1908 Edit

The Pontiac and Wagon Works was incorporated in 1899 by Albert G. North and G. Hamilton. By 1905 they had over the manufacturing of the Rapid (from the Rapid Motor Co.) that had been two years earlier. In 1907 decided to produce an automobile.

The Pontiac automobile was introduced fall by the Pontiac Spring Works. It was a highwheeler weighing (450kg) and powered by a two-cylinder 12hp (8.9kW) engine. The was displayed in October 1907 at an sponsored by the Carriage Dealers’ in New York City’s Grand Palace. In December of the same several of the new Pontiacs were at the Chicago Automobile Show.

received by the press, the car featured drive by double chain and a transmission. The wheelbase was 70inches front wheels 38, with 4Os in the and solid tires all-around. The deliveries were probably in early 1908.

On Aug. 28, Edward M. Murphy incorporated the Motor Co. Murphy is said to chosen the Oakland name for his venture because the company was in Oakland County, Michigan. rival Pontiac Spring Works already was making a motor wagon under the name.

Both companies to merge together in November under the name of the Oakland Car Company. The headquarters and manufacturing in Pontiac, Michigan.

In January General Motors President C. Durant purchased a 50% interest in the Motor Car Company. Later year GM bought out the other 50% the unexpected … of Edward M. at the age of 45.

While related to Oakland, earlier use of the Pontiac name is not considered in the history of the later

1926–1942 Edit


1936 Pontiac Master Six

The Pontiac brand was introduced by Motors in 1926 as the companion to GM’s Oakland division. months of its introduction, Pontiac was Oakland. As a result of Pontiac’s sales, versus Oakland’s sales, Pontiac became the companion marque to survive its with Oakland ceasing in 1932.

Pontiac began by cars offering 40hp 186.7 ci (3.1 liter) in, 82.5x95mm) L-head straight engines in the Pontiac Chief of its … was the shortest of any American car in the at the time. The Chief sold units within six months of its at the 1926 New York Auto hitting 76,742 at twelve

The next year, it became the six in the U.S. ranking seventh in sales. [1] By 1933, it had moved up to the least expensive cars with straight eight (inline eight) engines. was done by using many from the 6-cylinder Chevrolet, as the body. In the late 1930s, used the so-called torpedo of the Buick for one of its models, just to its being used by Chevrolet.

body style brought attention to the marque.

For an extended of time—prewar through the early Pontiac was a quiet, solid but not especially powerful. It came a flathead (side-valve) straight Straight 8s were slightly expensive to produce than the popular V8s, but they also heavier and longer.

the long crankshaft suffered excessive flex, restricting 8s to a relatively low compression ratio a modest redline. However, in application, inexpensive (yet quiet) flatheads were not a

1946–1954 Edit

1948 Silver Streak Convertible

From 1946-1948, all Pontiac were essentially 1942 with minor changes. The automatic transmission was introduced in and helped Pontiac sales even though their Torpedoes and Streamliners, were becoming out of date.

The first Pontiac models appeared in Newly redesigned, they such styling cues as body lines and rear that were integrated in the styling of the car.

Along new styling came a new model. the Native American theme of the Chieftain line was introduced to the Torpedo. These were on the GM B-Body platform and featured styling than the more Streamliner.

In 1950, the Catalina was introduced as a sub-series.

In 1952, discontinued the Streamliner and replaced it additional models in the Chieftain built on the GM A-body platform. single model line until 1954 when the Chief was added. The Star was created by adding an 11-inch extension to the A-body platform a 124-inch (3,100mm) wheelbase.

The models were the first to one-piece windshields instead of the two-piece units. While the and 1954 models were re-worked versions of the 1949-52 models, they were to accommodate the V-8 engine that appear in the all-new 1955

1955–1960 Edit

Pontiac Chief 1955

Completely new and chassis were introduced for A new 173-horsepower (129kW) overhead V-8 engine was introduced. (see section below). Sales

With the introduction of this the six cylinder engines were a six-cylinder engine would not to the full-size Pontiac line the GM corporate downsizing of 1977. An cam six cylinder engine was used in the model line starting in as well as on the Firebird. It was the first produced engine in America an overhead camshaft configuration. [2]

In when Semon Bunkie became general manager of with the aid of his new heads of engineering, E. M. and John DeLorean, he immediately reworking the brand’s image. One of the steps involved the removal of the trademark silver streaks the hood and deck lid of the 1957 just weeks before the were introduced.

Another was introducing the first Bonneville—a Star Chief convertible showcased Pontiac’s first engine. Some 630 Bonnevilles built for 1957, each a retail price of nearly While new car buyers could buy a for that price, the Bonneville new interest in what Pontiac now America’s No.

1 Road Car.

Bonneville from the rear, double rear fins

The a sub-series of the Star Chief with the 1957 models, became its own line. These built on the 122-inch (3,100mm) of the A-body platform. A 1958 Pontiac Bonneville was the pace car for year’s Indianapolis 500 . Also, was the last year Pontiac Division would bear the motif throughout the vehicle.

the 1959 model year, came out with its V emblem, the star design in the middle. The V ran all the way up the hood from between the grille, and on Starchief Models, had 8 stars from the emblem bolted to both sides of the as chrome trim. Knudsen saw to it the car received a completely reworked body and interior styling.

headlamps, and a longer, lower were some of the styling

The Chieftain line was renamed Star Chief was downgraded to the discontinued Super Chief and the Bonneville was now the top of the line, coming with a fuel-injection system. The Chief’s fourdoor Vista was also shared by the Bonneville. coincided with major styling changes across all that introduced increased area, twin V-shaped and lower hood profiles.

of these changes, Motor magazine picked the entire line as 1959 Car of the Year. The have a five-inch (127mm) track, because Knudsen the new, wider bodies awkward on the carried-over 1958 The new Wide-Track Pontiacs not only had styling, but also handled bonus that tied Pontiac’s resurgence in the marketplace.

The models saw a complete reskinning, removed the tailfins and the distinctive grille (which Ford on the final Edsel models for Ventura was introduced, a more hardtop coupe and the Vista hardtop now being built on the 122-inch (3,100mm) wheelbase with it falling between the and Star Chief models. The featured the luxury features of the in the shorter, lighter Catalina

1961–1970 Edit

1964 Bonneville Brougham

The 1961 were similarly reworked. The grille returned, as well as bodies and a new design of a perimeter-frame for all its full-size models (something would be adopted for all of GM’s cars in 1964, and all its full-sized in 1965). These new chassis for reduced weight and smaller sizes.

But a complete departure in was the new Tempest. one of the three BOP (Buick-Olds-Pontiac) introduced that year, the being the Buick Special and and Oldsmobile F-85 and Cutlass. the end of the 1961 model year, a version of the Tempest, called , was introduced. A mispronunciation of the famous 24 of Le Mans auto race in was emphasized.

All three were cars, dubbed the Y-body combining the frame and the body a single construction, making comparatively lighter and smaller. All put into production new technology GM had been working on for several prior, but the Tempest was by far the most A seven-foot flexible steel rotating at the speed of the engine, power from the front-mounted to a rear-mounted transaxle through a tube.

Because it was curved installed, the so-called propeller was dubbed ropeshaft. The design’s was none other than and its advantage was twofold: first, the car close to a 50/50 weight that drastically improved and second, it enabled four-wheel suspension. This was a feature no other American car could save the Corvair. as well as the floor hump that came with front rear drive cars.

the Tempest’s transaxle was similar to the one in the introduced the year before, it virtually no common parts. GM had to launch a Pontiac version of the but Bunkie Knudsen—whose niece had seriously injured in a Corvair argued against the idea. DeLorean’s ropeshaft design was

Contemporary rumors of the ropeshaft’s due to reliability problems are unfounded; the durability and performance had been in tests in full-size Pontiacs and in 1959, and only adapted to a car in 1960. The Tempest won the Motor Car of the Year award in 1961—for the second time in three DeLorean’s vision has been vindicated by the adoption of similar in a slew of modern high-performance including the Porsche 928. the C5. and the Aston Martin DB9 .

Unless checked an option, the Tempest’s was a 194.5 ci inline-four-cylinder motor, from the right bank of the Pontiac 389 V8, enabling it to be run down the production line as the 389, costs for both the car’s and Pontiac. Pontiac engineers ran tests of this motor by cutting off the left bank of and adding counterweights to the crankshaft, and surprised to find it easily the heaviest Pontiacs at over per hour (140km/h).

In production, the engine received a designed for just four but this didn’t completely its balance issues. The engine the nickname Hay Baler because of it to kick violently, like the machine, when its timing was

The aforementioned Buick 215 V8, was ordered by than two percent of its customers in the two it was available, 1961 and 1962. the 215 cars are among the most of all Tempests. In 1963, Pontiac the 215 with a new 326, an iron mill that had the same dimensions and shared parts the 389, but an altered, reduced

The car’s body and suspension was changed to be lower, longer and The response was that more half of the 1963 Tempests and (separate lines for that one only) were ordered the V8, a trend that did not go unnoticed by The next year, the performance V8 was badged as the now-famous GTO. The popularity helped move into third place American car brands in 1962, a Pontiac would hold 1970.

The Buick 215 V8 would in production for more than five years, being by Britain’s Rover Group it had bought the rights to it. GM attempted to buy the back, however, Rover instead, to sell the engines

In 1961, Knudsen had moved to and Estes had taken over as manager. Estes continued work of making Pontiac a brand until 1964, John DeLorean replaced as general manager, and he too continued in the direction. Pontiac capitalized on the trend toward sportier coupes in 1962 by introducing the Prix.

Although GM officially factory support for all racing across all of its brands in January Pontiac continued to cater to car enthusiasts by making larger with more power across all model lines. For the Grand Prix received the styling changes as other Pontiacs such as vertical and crisper body lines, but received its own squared-off roofline a concave rear window, with less chrome.

For the Tempest and LeMans’ transaxle was dropped and the cars were under GM’s new A body frame cars with a front-engine, rear-wheel-drive layout. The important of these is the GTO. for Gran Turismo Omologato, the for Grand Touring, Homologated by Ferrari as a badge to announce a official qualification for racing. In of a GM unwritten edict against larger than 327 ci (the of the Corvette’s) in intermediate cars, (with support from Jim from Pontiac’s ad agency), up with the idea to offer the GTO as a option package that a 389 ci engine rated at 325 or 348horsepower

The entire Pontiac lineup was as Motor Trend’s Car of the Year for the third time for Pontiac to such honors. The February, issue of Motor Trend was entirely devoted to Pontiac’s Car of the award and included feature on the division’s marketing, styling, and performance efforts along road tests of several

1969 Pontiac GTO Convertible

Due to the of the GTO option, it was split from an option on the Tempest LeMans to become the separate GTO series. On the front, 1966 saw the introduction of a new overhead camshaft 6-cylinder in the Tempest, and in an industry first, grilles were used on models.

The 1967 model saw the introduction for the Pontiac Firebird car, a variant of the Chevrolet that was the brand’s answer to the Ford Mustang. Intermediate cars (Tempest, LeMans, were mildly facelifted but the GTO its Tri-Power engine option it did get a larger 400 cubic-inch V8 that the previous 389.

Full-sized got a major facelift with wasp-wasted bodylines, a name for the mid-line series from Chief to Executive and a one-year-only Prix convertible. 1968 the Endura ‘rubber’ front on the GTO, the precursor to modern integrated bumpers, and the first of a Ram Air engines, which featured the of cold air to the carburetor(s) for more and took away some of the from deleting the famous multiple carburation option the engine line up.

This culminated in the Ram Air IV and V round port headed engines. The Ram Air V garnered auto press publicity, but a relative few were made for sale. Full-sized cars and reverted from vertical to headlights while the sporty/performance 2+2 was from the lineup.

For 1969, moved the Grand Prix the full-sized lineup into a model of its own based on the A-body chassis, but with distinctive and long hood/short deck to create yet another niche — the intermediate-sized personal-luxury car offered the luxury and styling of the priced personal cars as the Buick Riviera and Ford but for a much lower pricetag. The new Prix was such a sales in 1969 as dealers moved units — more four times the number of Prixs sold in 1968.

Pontiacs were also restyled but retained the same underbody structure and chassis debuted with the 1965 — in fact the rooflines for the pillared sedans and Safari were the same as the ’65 while the two-door semi-fastback gave way to a squared-off notchback and four-door hardtop sedans also more squared off 1967-68 models. The GTOs and received the Ram Air options, the GTO saw the addition of the performance/appearance package, and the Firebird got the Trans Am package.

Although conceived as a 303 cubic inch to compete directly in the Trans Am series, in a cost saving the Pontiac Trans Am debuted the standard 400 cubic inch engines. This year saw De Lorean leaving the post of manager to accept a similar at GM’s Chevrolet division. His was F. James McDonald.

The 1969 Firebirds received a facelift but otherwise continued the same as the original 1967 It was the final year for the overhead cam engine in Firebirds and intermediates, and the convertible (until 1991). of the 1969 Firebirds was extended the first three months of the model year (all 1970 Pontiacs debuted

18, 1969) due to a decision to delay the of an all-new 1970 Firebird Chevrolet Camaro) until the first of the year — 26, 1970 to be exact.


Increasing insurance and fuel for owners coupled with Federal emissions and safety would eventually put an end to the unrestricted, engines of the 1960s. Safety, and economy would become the new of this decade. Engine began declining in 1971 GM issued a corporate edict that all engines be capable of lower-octane unleaded gasoline, led to dramatic drops in compression along with performance and economy. This, coupled trying to build cars as as GM’s more luxurious and Oldsmobiles, contributed to the start of a decline of Pontiac in 1971. [3]

In Pontiac introduced the compact, Ventura II (based on the third Chevrolet Nova ). This year, Pontiac completely its full-sized cars, moved the and replaced it with a higher model named the Grand while Safari wagons got a new tailgate that lowered the body while the rear raised into the roof.

model full-size station featured a ‘Clamshell’ design the rear power-operated glass up into the roof as the tailgate or with power assist), below the load floor. The tailgate, the first in station history, ultimately supplanted the tailgate, which required effort to lift from The Clamshell system — and complex — remained by any other manufacturer.

The 1972 saw the first wave of emissions and safety equipment and updates. GTO was a now of the LeMans series. The Tempest, was after being renamed and ‘GT-37′ for 1971.

The base mid-sized Pontiac was now simply LeMans.

MacDonald left the of general manager to be replaced by J. Caserio in late 1972. was the first manager in over a to be more focused on marketing and than on performance.

1973 Grand Am. the first model of the Grand Am

1975 Pontiac

For 1973, Pontiac restyled its Grand Prix, mid-sized and compact Ventura models and the all-new Grand Am as part of the line. All other models the big cars and Firebirds received minor updates. Again, dropped across all engines as emissions requirements came effect.

The 1973 Firebird Am’s factory applied decal, a John Schinella interpretation of the Native American bird, took up most of the space on the hood. Also in the new Super Duty 455 engine Duty harkening back to Racing Engines) was introduced. it was originally supposed to be available in and Firebirds, only a few SD 455 engines it into Firebird Trans Ams year.

One so equipped was tested by and Driver’ magazine, who proclaimed it the of the fast cars. But the pendulum had and the SD 455 only hung on one more in the Trans Am.

All Federal emissions and regulations were required to be in effect for 1974 causing the of two of the three iterations of the big 455 cubic engines after this The last version of the 455 would on for two more years before discontinued.

The 1975 Grand was the last full-size convertible by Pontiac

For 1975, Pontiac the new sub-compact Astre. a version of the Vega. This was the brand’s into the fuel economy of the market. Astre had been exclusively in Canada from It was offered through the 1977 year.

1975 would see the end of Pontiac convertibles for the next

The 1976 models were the of the traditional American large powered by mostly big block V8 After this year, all GM would go through downsizing and in length, width, weight and engine size. The 1976 based on the Chevrolet Vega and equivalent, joined the line. It was offered as a Notchback, with a body style added in

The Vega Wagon body was added in 1978, Sunbird Wagon, replacing the Astre Wagon. The Sunbird was offered in its configuration through the 1980 year. (Sunbird Safari through 1979.)

For 1977, replaced the Ventura with the a version of Chevrolet’s fourth Nova. Pontiac also its 151 cubic inch Iron 4-cylinder overhead valve It was first used in the 1977 replacing Astre’s aluminum-block 140 inch Vega engine. The Duke’ engine would go into many GM and non-GM into the early 1990s. The 151 inch L4 and the 301 cubic inch V-8 the last two engines designed by Pontiac.

Subsequent engine would be accomplished by one central with all designs being by each brand.

The remainder of the and the early 1980s saw the continued of luxury, safety and economy as the key points in Pontiac products. wheel covers returned for the time since the 1930s. station wagons than were being offered.

vinyl roofs were on almost every model. drive began its slow with the introduction of the first drive Pontiac, the 1980 (a version of the Chevrolet Citation ). The continued to fly high on the success of the and the Bandit film, still Formula and Trans Am packages, a Pontiac first- a turbocharged for the 1980 and 1981 model Overall, Pontiac’s performance was a of its former self, but to give where due, Pontiac Division did more with than most other were able to in this

1982–1988 Edit

1985 Trans-Am

Introduced in 1982, the shaped Firebird was the first redesign of the venerable pony car 1970. Partly due to the hugely NBC television series Knight . it was an instant success and provided with a foundation on which to successively more performance models over the next The Trans Am also set a production mark of .32cd.

The next in Pontiac’s resurgence came in the of its first convertible in nine GM adapted the J-body cars. The for 1982 J2000 (later Sunbird ) had a convertible as part of its

Next came the 1984 This was a major departure anything Pontiac had produced in the A two-seat, mid-engined coupe, the was targeted straight at the same that Semon Knudsen had aiming for in the late 1950s: the affluent buyer who wanted performance at a reasonable price.

The was also an instant success and was responsible for Pontiac seeing its increase in sales in four

Pontiac also began to on technology. In 1984, a Special Edition (STE) was added to the line as a competitor to European cars such as the Mercedes The STE sported digital instruments and electronics as well as a more V-6 and retuned suspension.

Later would see some of the first on Pontiacs of anti-lock brakes, wheel mounted radio and other advanced features.

the exception of the Firebird and Fiero, in 1988 all Pontiacs switched to drive platforms. For the first since 1970, Pontiac was the three domestic car maker in Pontiac’s drive to bring in youthful buyers was working as the age of Pontiac owners dropped 46 in 1981 to 38 in 1988.


A mid-90’s Grand Prix

the focus back on performance, was once again doing it did best. Although updating and continued throughout the 1990s, the change seen during the did not. The period between and 1997 can best be described as one of refinement.

Anti-lock brakes, Quad-4 engine, airbags and materials all became standard on during this time.

All new were produced but at more intervals. The 1990 model saw the launch of Pontiac’s first and light truck. the Trans The Sunbird was replaced with the J-body) Sunfire in 1995.

significantly, an all new Firebird bowed in It was powered by either a 3.4L V-6 160hp (120kW), or in TransAm a roaring 275hp (205kW) which was a 5.7L (346c.i.) and could be backed by a T-56 six manual (which was the same found in contemporary Corvettes and This new Firebird easily its main rival, the Ford but didn’t do as well in the marketplace due to the superior image and refinement, in the interior.

1997–2004 Edit

An Montana minivan

The new GTO did not meet sales expectations and was dropped only 3 years (2006 shown)

Beginning in 1996, began mining its historic This was the last year for the 6th Grand Prix. 1997 led the way for an all new Prix. which debuted the Wide Track chassis a return spearheaded by the Wider is advertising campaign. In addition, the GTP level was added to the Grand It featured a supercharged 3.8L V-6 out 240hp (180kW) and 280ft·lbf of torque.

It was only available an automatic with front drive so its sporting appeal was but it made a compelling case the Accord/Camry.

The 1999 model saw the replacement of the Trans Sport the larger Montana minivan. The 2000 marked the first of the Bonneville, since 1992. on the G-Body, the same as the Oldsmobile and Buick LeSabre, the car was more feeling all around.

In 1998 the was updated. It featured sleeker and improved amenities. The TransAm the LS-1 motor which 305hp (227kW). The WS6 option saw number increase to 320hp and the addition of Ram Air and stiffer springs. despite handily outperforming the 1999 Mustang, the Firebird was not as large a sales success.

In both the Firebird/Trans Am and Camaro discontinued as a result of declining and a saturated sport market. speculate that it was due to the fact GM was more focused on its more body-on-frame design trucks and The coupe version of the Grand was also discontinued.

In 2003, it was that the Grand Prix be in its last year of its generation, an improved 7th generation on the way for 2004.

In the re-introduction of the Pontiac GTO (based on the Monaro from Australia) place, effectively replacing the left by the TransAm. The GTO was also powered by the LS-1 V8. It had an independent suspension and a much improved

It was also heavier and looked by the standards of its market segment. and the fact that it was competing an all new Mustang, combined to make it a flop, despite the addition of the (300kW) LS-2. The GXP trim was also introduced, replacing the name on the Bonneville.

The Bonneville GXP a 4.6 Northstar V8, borrowed from and replaced the Supercharged 3800 II. The redesigned Grand Prix its appearance, and featured a GT and GTP trim The GTP’s new 3.8L supercharged V-6 now 260horsepower (190kW), up 20 from the generation.

TAPshift was also introduced as as a Competition Group package G).

2005–2010 Edit

Pontiac through a complete product through this period. The Am was replaced with the mid-size G6 in The Bonneville ended production in after nearly 50 years of

Although it was not directly replaced, the RWD G8 as an initial replacement. The Solstice shown in 2003 was approved for as roadster. Sales started for the model year following the of the hardtop coupe in 2008. The and slow selling Aztek was phased out and replaced by the Torrent, was identical to the Chevrolet Equinox.

The was discontinued in 2005 along the Cavalier and its replacement, the G5. didn’t until the 2007 model

The Grand Prix ended in 2008 and the launch of the Australian-built RWD G8 The G8 gained positive reception for its performance and low costs. Many the G8 as the poor man’s BMW M5. due to similar but at a much cheaper price.

The Ute was scheduled to be launched as the G8 ST before it was in January 2009 due to GM’s situation. It was later announced the G8 may not see a second generation.

Towards the end of the many rumors began that Pontiac would completely reliant on RWD. ranged from a compact based on the Alpha platform to a new RWD G6 for the model year. Many suggested that the Trans Am would return after GM the rebirth of the Camaro, however, no confirmed this.

On December 2, General Motors announced it was considering eliminating numerous including Pontiac, in order to Congress in hope of receiving a 25 dollar loan. [4] On February 17, GM originally proposed the elimination of its division, the sale of Saab. and the sale or elimination of Hummer. on whether a buyer could be quickly. In the original plan GM clarified that Pontiac have begun to focus on models aimed at the youthful and segment, but did not provide specifics. was to trim its number of models to [5] although there was talk of only one model. [6] By April several automotive websites and publications were reporting GM was doing a study suggesting it eliminate the brand altogether, with sister truck GMC. [7] [8] [9] On April 23 a report was [10] stating the company be dropping the Pontiac brand preserving the GMC truck line, as as the Chevrolet, Cadillac, and Buick The decision to eliminate Pontiac was primarily due to the increasing threat of a filing if the June 1 deadline not be met. [11] On April 27, GM officially announced that would be dropped and that all of its models would be phased out by the end of [12] [13]

General will cut an additional 7,000 to factory jobs in the United and shed 2,600 dealers by under a revised business developed with the Obama GM Chief Executive Officer Henderson said the Pontiac would be closed by 2010, it an “extremely personal decision.” In to speeding up decisions on Saturn, and Hummer, GM will be left four brands – Buick, GMC and Cadillac. [14]

The G6 was the Pontiac built in the U.S. model shown)

In early May Jim Waldron, a Davison, Michigan, dealer, announced that he was in purchasing the Pontiac brand and and had found financing to purchase as well as some soon-to-be GM plants in order to build [15] However, GM had already to retire the brand as it has begun to off its remaining inventory and said unlike Saturn, the brand was not for [16]

The last American a 2010 G6, was built on November 25, at the Orion Assembly plant. No public farewell took although a group of plant documented the event. In December the last Pontiac-branded vehicle to off an assembly line was in the Canadian-market G3 Wave. manufactured in South by GM Daewoo .

The Pontiac brand was after the 2009 model in Mexico and the brand was renamed selling only one vehicle, the G2 (Matiz’s logo is similar to

Pontiac became the second General Motors has eliminated in six Oldsmobile met the same fate in after being more phased out over four Pontiac also became the North American automobile since 1987 to be phased after Merkur. Passport.

Geo. Plymouth. American (AMC) (renamed Eagle in only to be phased out a decade and Oldsmobile .

In January 2010, was purchased by the Dutch auto Spyker Cars and was renamed Spyker Cars. [18] would also see the end of the Saturn and brands.

Style trademarks and Edit

American Indian and silver streak in a 1952 Chieftain

Split grille and logo in a 1966 Pontiac

An American Indian headdress was as a logo until 1956. was updated to the currently used Indian red arrowhead design for The arrowhead logo is also as the Dart.

Besides the logo, identifying feature of Pontiacs their Silver Streaks one or more narrow strips of steel which extended the grille down the center of the Eventually they extended the rear window to the rear as well, and finally; along the of the fins. Although initially a band, this stylistic doubled to two for 1955 —

The Streaks were discontinued the year the Indian Head were; 1957.

Other long-familiar styling were the split grille (from 1959 onward), ‘arrowhead’ nose (in the 1960s and and grilled-over (in the 1960s), or multiple-striped This later feature with the 1963 Grand and although the ’62 Grand also had rear grillework, the lenses were not behind it. longstanding but equally memorable is the common on the doors and fenders of produced in the 1980s and 90s.

than minimizing the side Pontiac designers put two troughs along the length. Reviews generally negative but bumpers this appearance were on nearly all Pontiacs until the of the G6.

Engines Edit

Pontiac Clayton Leach designed the steel valvetrain rocker a simplified and reliable alternative to a rocker. This design was picked up by nearly every OHV manufacturer at one point or another.

began work on a V-8 configuration in This was initially intended to be an engine, and 8 experimental units built and extensively tested by the end of the But testing comparisons to the OHV Oldsmobile V-8 the L-head could not compete

So, in addition to building a new Pontiac building in 1949-1951, the decision to the V-8 to an OHV design delayed its introduction the 1955 model year.

In Pontiac introduced a higher-powered of its V-8. Among other this version of the engine was with a high performance camshaft and dual 4-barrel This was the first in a series of Super-Tempest and Super-Duty V-8 engines and the long line of multi-carburetor engines that saw Pontiac a major player during the car and pony car era of the 1960s.

Pontiac’s generation V-8 engines shared similarities, allowing many to interchange from its advent in to its demise in 1979. Sizes from 265 cubic inch to 455 inch. This similarity the 301 265) makes rebuilding engines relatively easier. feature also made it for Pontiac to invent the modern car, by the relatively simple of placing its second largest-displacement the 389 cid, into its mid-size the Le Mans, creating the Pontiac GTO .

their inception in the 1950s the early 1970s, Pontiac were known for their The largest engine was a massive 455 inch V-8 that was available in of their mid-size, full-size and car models. At the height of the horsepower Pontiac engines reached a 390 rated horsepower (SAE though other engines considerably higher outputs in

Federal emissions laws brought the horsepower era to a close and in a steady decline for Pontiac’s One holdout to this industry-wide was the Super Duty 455 engine of Available only in the Firebird and Trans Am models, this was at 310hp (230kW) net initially but having issues passing EPA tests, the camshaft was changed to the old RA III cam and the change, came a 290hp net rating.

The engine was the pinnacle of engine development and was a very performer that included a few features, such as provisions for oiling. This engine and its drive the SD Trans Ams and Formulas as the one of the if not the most, desirable Pontiacs produced.

The only non-traditional V-8 engines were the 301 cubic and the smaller displacement 265 cubic V-8s. Produced from through 1981, these had the distinction of being the last produced by Pontiac; GM merged its brand’s engines into one shared group in 1980, General Motors Powertrain. the 301 had a 4-inch (100mm) bore and (76mm) …, identical to the Chevrolet small-block engine and Boss 302 engine .

Pontiac were not available in Canada, but were replaced with engines of similar size and resulting in such interesting and (at least to American car fans) as the Beaumont SD-396 with a big-block 396 cubic inch

Carburetors Edit

PMD originally Carter 1-barrel carburetors for years, but by the time of the second V-8 engines had switched mostly to offerings. These also the basis for the Tri-Power setups on the

The Tri-Power setup included one carburetor with idle and two end carburetors that did not contribute the throttle was opened more half way. This was two ways, mechanically for the manual models, and via a vacuum-switch on the automatics. went through various before being banned by GM as a installed option in 1967, and in 1968.

PMD also had a square-bore at the time, but this was rated at a power than the Tri-Power. carburetor was later replaced by the a spread bore. ‘Spread-bore’ to the difference in sizes between the and secondaries.

By the end of the muscle car era, the setup had become the nearly choice on PMD engines, due to its excellent and power characteristics. While have been occasionally as being poor performers, proper understanding and tuning it can at most levels with designs short of the full inspired set-ups such as the Double-Pumpers, which incorporated pumps on the primary and secondary circuits.

This Q-jet proved good enough to 1990 (Oldsmobile V8 applications), added computer controls in to meet federal and CARB

Models Edit

Evolution of models Edit


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