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Consequences of a new Pony Car war
I'll start with a thought that I had about the Camaro, that I haven't seen anywhere else in automotive websites or blogs. Maybe being first to say it out loud means I'm missing something, like a few screws. But anyway, I'll start by making myself real popular:
The Chevy Camaro will kill Pontiac and is therefore a BAD IDEA.
I like the car, but it can't come into existence as the Camaro. It'll kill Pontiac!
GM's "sporty" brand should be built around a car like the Camaro. The brand's volume seller, its heart and soul, should be a pony car. I'll refer to it as the Firebird in this post, but I don't care what it's called.
That would give Pontiac meaning. But it would only be practical if GM had no other pony car for sale. The Camaro would probably kill the Firebird in sales just by virtue of being a Chevy, rendering the Firebird ineffective as a volume seller. Pontiac would have to base its sales on something more mundane, like a G5 or G6 - something you also buy at any other GM brand.
More importantly, the Camaro's existence would render Pontiac more pointless than ever. Between Chevy and Saturn, you can find everything that Pontiac has - and usually better. Chevy has a faster FWD sport compact, a faster V8 sedan, a faster V8 sports car, faster SUVs, and I bet the fastest version of the Camaro will be faster than the fastest Firebird.
Is this making any sense? Can Pontiac survive without being GM's pony car banner bearer? Can't Chevrolet survive just fine without the Camaro? It's nice to see GM get emotional about car development after decades, but I think they've lost sight of the big picture...