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Pontiac Vibe 2009+

moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,842
2009 Vibe timetable pulled forward at NUMMI-

quote Wards- 2009 Vibe
General Motors Corp. will accelerate production of its redesigned ’09 Pontiac Vibe by at least two months, a move meant to satisfy an advanced timetable for the ’09 Toyota Matrix and growing consumer demand for choices in the upper-small car segment.

The 6-year-old Vibe and Matrix share a common platform. The Vibe is built at New United Motor Mfg. Inc., a Fremont, CA-based facility operated jointly by GM and Toyota Motor Corp. The Matrix is produced at Toyota’s Cambridge, ON, Canada, plant.

Toyota wants to update the Matrix because it has attracted families, rather than younger buyers the auto maker originally sought.

“The styling does not have the sense of motion about it,” says Mike O’Brien, head of product planning for Toyota Motor Co. USA, during a recent industry event in Michigan. “It’s a bit boxy. And it just does not have the appeal to young people that we had hoped for.”

In speeding the Matrix redo, production of the ’09 Vibe now will begin in first-quarter 2008, ahead of a typical NUMMI production turnover in mid-second quarter.

“They are sister vehicles, so the timing that would affect one vehicle would affect the other,” a GM spokesman tells Ward’s.

In GM’s case, the earlier the redesigned hatchback arrives the better. More fresh choices in its fuel-sipping small-car portfolio could help diversify its mix.
-end
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Comments

  • So when does this mean the 2009 would be available?
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,842
    Perhaps earlier.
  • Has anyone been able to tell from pictures or other sources if the rear liftgate will still have the separate liftglass? It isn't clear from the photos I've seen, but it doesn't appear to be there.
  • Terrible video. Why in the world did they think we needed to see the same uninformative views of what is essentially the same car three times? Anyway, at least you can see what the roof-rack situation will be.
  • I think I can answer my own question: no liftglass. Pontiac's website has a preview of the '09 Vibe and clearly shows the inside of the hatchback with no hinges or struts on the rear window.
  • cars.com has put up a great photo gallery - interior and exterior - of the 2009 Vibe. They also have photos and info about the 09 Matrix and Corolla. On the homepage, click where it says "production cars" under the heading "Los Angeles Auto Show." These are the best photos I've seen so far.
  • bobw1bobw1 Posts: 19
    If the 2009 Vibe is coming out so early, will the 2008 model still be made til summer or will they stop it when they start the 2009.
  • wtd44wtd44 Posts: 1,211
    Check the February 2008 issue for a very short piece that says the availability will be "in the spring."
  • nelfinnelfin Posts: 2
    Just had e-mail exchange with Dutton Motors in Riverside, CA. They say they expect 2009 Vibes late March or early April 2008.
  • Thanks for the update nelfin. I plan to contact several dealers in the coming weeks and will post if I find out anything.
  • kowellkowell Posts: 1
    I talked to my local dealer in Quebec, Canada last week and he told me the exact same thing, late march or early april... So much for the "mid-february" release date advertised in the fall.
  • jstant1jstant1 Posts: 14
    I saw the 2009 Vibe at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit yesterday. They wouldn't let you sit in the car (or the Matrix either) because they were "prototypes" - even though it is the actual production model as opposed to a concept.

    Pontiac gave me a free poster that said "Available in dealerships end of January, 2008" on the bottom. The guy I talked to who was handing them out and talking about the Vibe said it would be in dealerships by early February. I guess we'll wait and see what happens!
  • wtd44wtd44 Posts: 1,211
    I wonder if the AWD version will be available from the start. I am not interested in the 2WD version.
  • Jstant1, did you get the impression the guy you talked to was knowledgeable about the timing (February '08 availability) of the 2009 Vibe? I've visited Pontiac's website each day hoping for updates--nothing. I have e-mailed at least three dealers in my area regarding when they expect to have them--and was told by one that GM is now talking Summer for release. Tell me it ain't so! I really like this car.
  • The 2.4L engine is the Camry motor, I would guess. Same motor as Scion TC and xB. Ok, from where is the 5 speed Automatic transmission sourced? The Matrix doesn't get the extra gear in any Trim w/auto tranny. Seems odd.
    Any info? Thanks.
  • The '09 Corolla XRS has the 2.4 w/5spd Auto. Never mind.........
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    So essentially with the 2.4 you're getting a base Camry for the drivetrain. Double-win in my book. :)

    It looks very nice I might add. Just a bit smoother and less chunky. I hope they have some way to store the headrests and cargo cover though. That was the #1 complaint of the old one that I had. A little reworking of the plastic and it would be simple.

    Oh - and if anyone from Toyota/GM is reading this...
    GIVE US LEATHER AS AN OPTION.

    My mother is holding off on a new car purchase right now until the Vibe comes out but leather is a big selling point for her. She wants it to have at least a little bit of luxury feel to it - without having to get the GT model.
  • I don't need a vehicle. Drive an '06 Sienna CE with 29,000 miles. I've passed 3,500 rpm's maybe twice. Dropped it off today for the 30,000 mile service. Got an '08 Corolla S for a free loaner. 1,450 miles. You can drive it with one eye closed and a couple fingers on the wheel. Not sure it's worth the $20,000 msrp on the Sticker, which is folded and put in the glove box. It does a have a sunroof, which I have never had on a vehicle. If I'm going to jump in when I don't really need a car, a sunroof is now something I got to have. Makes sightseeing more rewarding. Leather would be nice, too. Classy in a vehicle that's kinda compact. Would be a nice package. The 2.4, 5spd auto, sunroof, 30 mpg, sounds good. I will definately stop by and at least sit in one when they arrive.
  • No, unfortunately I think the guy at the auto show was probably just a paid, talking head. He was pretty young, seemed like more of a media-type than a true car enthusiast. So, I wouldn't take him at his word.

    However, the poster they gave me definitely says at the bottom, "Available in dealerships, end of January, '08" Of course, it's just a poster, and was probably printed months ago.

    I haven't seen or heard anything yet either. Par for the course with GM product launches.
  • Pontiac has informed me that production started on January 22nd and that delivery to their dealers will be six to eight weeks later....
  • This would be about right per the latest e-mail I received from a local dealer, who tells me he has three Vibes in the production schedule, plus he has located one at another dealership that he could get for me if there was an interest. I'm figuring you won't see them in a big way much before the first week of March--at least it's not too far away.
  • My local dealership's website (Sawyers Pontiac in Lansing, Michigan) shows that he has one in stock. However, when I tried to view the window sticker, a message said that the "VIN # was not currently in the dealer's inventory." I'm going to stop by there tonight to see, but I'm thinking it's probably one he has on order that isn't actually there yet.
  • Well, I guess I was wrong about my guess on dealer inventory. My dealer did have a 2009 Vibe available, and I test drove it last night. It was a fully loaded GT model. Here are my first impressions (note - I didn't get to drive it for long as there were 2 other people waiting to drive it also).

    1. The 2.4 liter motor is much quieter and smoother than my 2005's 1.8 liter. It was more peppy, but still not "race car" by any means. The car had the 5-speed automatic, which shifted smoothly. My 2005 is a manual, so I can't compare the difference in the 5-speed auto from the current 4-speed.

    2. As many on several blogs and posts I have seen have mentioned, the gauge cluster seems kind of weird. It's quite similar in terms of color and appearance to the current cluster, but of course there is that "odd" rectangular thing housing the fuel and temp gauges now. Personally, I think they should have just left it as three circles, but that's just my opinion.

    3. I was not impressed with the radio controls. The radio (premium on this car) had great sound, but the radio itself reminded me of the late model Chrysler's that were all silver buttons with illumination forming the "words" rather than paint or white on black. Not my thing.

    4. The front seat was very roomy and the seats were more comfortable than the current Vibe. This car had black leather with "GT" stiched in the seatback. It was very soft and very premium in appearance.

    5. The back seat was NOT as roomy or comfortable as the current Vibe. The roof was much lower, and sloped down in the rear. As you face the front, the roof visibly dips behind the center light toward the back seat. I wasn't uncomfortable, but I definitely felt more cramped than I do in my current Vibe. The back seat also seemed lower and I didn't feel like I was sitting up as high as I do in my Vibe.

    6. The cargo area was a little bit smaller, but not noticeably so. There are no "lock-down" tracks like there are in the current Vibe. Where those are, there are rubber "grip strips" instead. Also, the rear window no longer opens on it's own. The hatch opening is not as wide either.

    7. The GT model has very cool ground effects, but they make the car run very low to the ground. For someone in a snowy state like me, that could be an issue. The back end of the car actually seems to sit higher than the current Vibe.

    8. In terms of driving impressions - like I said, I didn't get a chance to actually drive it for very long, and didn't have time to take it out on the freeway. It seemed quieter, and the ride seemed rather firm, which may be because it was the GT model.

    Let me know if you have any questions about anything in particular that I missed or overlooked. The dealer said they had the car for about a week, but weren't selling it because it's the only one they have currently. He said 7 more were supposed to arrive next week, including some all-wheel drive models.

    If you live in Michigan, it's at Sawyer's Pontiac on Michigan Avenue in Lansing. He said as far as he knew, it was the only 2009 Vibe that had been delivered to Michigan so far. Of course, he may have just wanted me to think that! :-)

    Overall, a very nice car, and a very nice upgrade. I might consider it later down the road, but I'll keep my 2005 until it's at least paid for!
  • Nice job on the review, and thx for posting the feedback! At least you got a chance to test drive it. Still waiting for a dealer in my area to receive one, though I could possibly have a look come Saturday if I'm willing to drive closer to Chicago where there is one for sure (confirmed it this morning with a salesman). By the way, going by your information, I did the Google thing and found another dealer (also in Michigan) that not only has an '09 Vibe, but has pictures of the actual car. I'm posting a link should anyone want to see it. I know 'Wagon' is a dirty word in the U. S. (can't understand why--I love 'em), but I sure like the looks of the Wagon in the link and can't wait to see one up close. Wanted a minivan for increased practicality/flexibility, but the Vibe now has my interest completely. (The Matrix twin is fugly, IMO.) Anyways, here's the link:

    http://autos.mlive.com/Autos?tp=TR_mlive&category=search&temp_type=detail&tl=3&l- isting_id=150328232&dealer_id=487372&from=more_inventory

    Say, what was the price on the test vehicle?
  • The sticker was $21,645. I believe it was fully loaded, except for a navigation system, if that's available. Seems to me I read the new Vibe would have that option.
  • cmhj2000cmhj2000 Posts: 194
    Thanks for the pictures. Looks like it'll make a nice mate to my 05.
  • pks222pks222 Posts: 12
    I know this may be the wrong forum, but it is the only one that seems to generate interest. In light of the 09's coming out, some car lots are potentially going to have 3 model years (07s 08s 09s) on the lot. What do think GM will have to do to rectify the situation?
  • The dealer where I test drove the '09 told me that GM is currently running a $3000 rebate on the '08's. He didn't say anything about '07's, but this particular dealer moves cars pretty quickly, so it wouldn't surprise me if they didn't have any '07's on the lot.

    GM has reduced the starting price on the '09's, so even with the $3000 rebate, the '09's may potentially still be less than an '08, depending of course on model choice and options. That could cause quite a problem also.

    I wonder if they are still making 2008's, or if the production run has ended completely? NUMMI is a big plant, but I'm assuming since it's the only place that Vibes are made that once the transition is made, they can't manufacture both. That would mean quite a limited number of 2008's, depending on when they went on sale in 2007.

    Model years can be so confusing. They should just do away with them completely and sell the cars. Keep track of the selling date to know how "old" a car is, instead of going by model years that are really pretty useless in determining a car's age. I had a 2000 Ford Contour that I bought in August of 2001 - brand new. Helped a lot on the resale value because the miles seemed "low" for a 2000 model, even though it didn't start acquiring miles until late in 2001.
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