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2008 Pontiac G8

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  • Karen_CMKaren_CM Posts: 5,026

    Community Manager If you have any questions or concerns about the Forums, send me an email, karen@edmunds.com, or click on my screen name to send a personal message.

  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,554
    First – a sincere “Thank You” to those who have posted useful information here over the past several months, as I considered a G8 GT purchase. I appreciate you taking the time to post and specifically for answering several of my questions.

    Executive summary:

    This is as close to a ( reasonably priced ) 4-door Corvette as I see available today. With just over 2 years and just over 32,000 miles in a current generation Corvette, this is exactly what I was looking for. Having driven her just over 100 miles, I am quite please & satisfied!

    A few details & impressions.

    Car: Silver 2009 G8 GT with red & black seats, Premium, Sport & Sunroof.
    Interesting ( to me ) that the VIN happens to end in: 888

    With quite a lot of ‘seat time’ in a car with a very similar drivetrain ( 6L80 trans. and LS2 V8 ) I was looking for improvements in the trans. behavior & hoping that GM \ Pontiac \ Holden had addressed several concerns I ( and others with the 6-speed automatic trans. in their Corvettes ) had regarding shift speed and some other specific behaviors.

    This trans works very well, for me. The delay between shift request & beginning of shift execution is improved compared to my ‘Vette. The actual shift events, up & down, are quicker than in my Corvette and a couple of 2008 G8 GTs I test drove, & they are very smooth – and the ‘rev match on downshift’ feature ( at least in mine ) actually works quite well, indeed! Good job, GM. [ Though listed in the Corvette brochure, no pre-2008 Corvette with 6L80 automatic actually does this at all . . . ]

    The drivetrain make this rather large & fairly heavy sedan feel quick & smooth – and the acceleration feels seamless & effortless. I prefer this trans behavior & the programming selected ( by far ) to the 3 & 5 series BMWs I have driven - even with their latest 6-speed ZF automatic trans. Kudos!

    The absolute maximum acceleration rate is clearly not quite what I am used to, in the Corvette - obviously. Mid- to high 13s in the quarter mile is quick enough for me, however, in this class car. The acceleration is very smooth – and I expect that it will prove to be ‘sufficient’. Saying quite a lot, coming from someone who has been driving a [ roughly ] 3200 pound ‘Vette for over 30,000 miles, I think. I have so far found the G8 GT to exhibit what I’d call ‘a satisfying level of quickness’.

    Overall, the experience in the G8 GT is rather dramatically less ‘intense’ than the Corvette – yet the feeling is remarkably similar, to me. The ride is quieter and much less firm, ( the Corvette has run flat tires – a big contributor here ) yet I find the steering feel of the G8 GT to be excellent and the body motions remain largely well controlled. The high speed handling, feeling of security & directional stability seem quite good. And the ride is really excellent on smooth but slightly undulating highway surfaces – again, very well controlled – and it certainly is quiet. On surface streets, the ride is very well damped, impact harshness is well muted ( over RR X-ings, for example ) and handling is very good, up to any cornering lateral Gs I’d use in normal street any driving. The ride & handling compromise results in a level of refinement I find rewarding – and pleasantly surprising in a $30K sedan. The various systems seem to work well together, resulting in a sense of a very well integrated machine that generally gives the impression it is responding as a whole – rather than a bunch of separate parts.

    The interior ( with a couple of exceptions, listed below ) provides very comfortable & supportive seating and a well-finished appearance, with most amenities I care about. I find the tilt & telescope steering wheel to be particularly well done.

    I knew that I would miss my HUD – had one in the Corvette – and a couple of Grand Prix sedans – back all the way to 1997. I still just find it weird that none is offered on any G8. I am still adapting to the display of ‘Gear Selected’ in the DIC – so low on the dash – compared to right below my line-of-sight out the windshield. I am old & slow to adapt, sometimes – but I expect that this will be OK, eventually.

    I miss the paddle shifters that I had in my Corvette – and in a 2005 Grand Prix. Another odd option omission, seems to me. And no surprise.

    I do ** NOT ** miss having to be [ oh, so very ] careful when approaching any significant dip or severe upward angle in the road, and even some ‘speed bumps’, due to the extremely low ground clearance of the ‘Vette. I scraped the front spoiler nearly every time I backed out of my garage & onto my street – not to mention a few hundred other times. And now I can actually see most overhead traffic signals without poking my head forward in front of the steering wheel. I find the visibility good. The ergonomics are generally very good. Nothing fancy here – but very functional & convenient.

    I am still working to find the perfect sunroof position – but I do really appreciate again having the option of an opening roof – since the Corvette’s removable panel was really useless ( noise & wind buffeting ) at highway speeds, and could not be removed while driving, nor set \ adjusted in any way. And having the convenient option of the sunshade open \ partially open \ fully closed at any time is appreciated as well.

    Anyway – so far, I am well pleased with her.

    And at an actual transaction price near $30K – well it is the best alternative I see to a BMW 550i. And I actually like several aspects ( the looks, inside & out, the trans. behavior ) a lot better on the Pontiac!

    Cheers,
    - Ray
    G8 GT 09 driver . . .

    Notes:
    I waited for the 2009 for 3 primary reasons:
    1 = A [ model ] year of US production. In case there were any significant issues.
    2 = XM.
    3 = A color I really wanted = Silver.
    Also: All comments above re: the trans. behavior refer only to Sport \ Manual mode.

    You have by now all likely seen one, but here are a few quick pics:

    http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v298/rayainsw/new%20G8%20GT%202009/P1320363cro- pnewG8GT2009.jpg

    http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v298/rayainsw/new%20G8%20GT%202009/P1320370cro- pnewG8GT2009.jpg

    http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v298/rayainsw/new%20G8%20GT%202009/P1320423new- G8GT2009.jpg

    http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v298/rayainsw/new%20G8%20GT%202009/P1320430cro- pnewG8GT2009.jpg

    Sticker of an identical one:

    http://www.gmbuypower.com/ws/nvlWindowSticker.vs?gmMilitary=&makeId=002&model=G8- %20Sedan&makeDescrip=Pontiac&partnerID=900001&nameplateids=004^002^012^&sellingS- ource=16&year=2009&preferredColor=&userType=GMBP&optionCode=&typeDescrip=%20%20%- 20&searchType=0&modelId=085&VIN=6G2EC57Y19L199732&zip=28779&styleDescrip=GT%20Se- dan&pvc=208&make=pg&subModelId=251&iPi=5&preferredOptions=&subModel=&mmc=2EC69&b- rand=G8%20Sedan&styleId=GT%20Sedan&style=GT%20Sedan&fPi=5&vehicleModel=/images/g- mbp/16002/vehicle/2009/med/2009251.gif&type=%20%20%20&&dealerName=JOHNNY%27
  • You bet it helps the economy. Just like when we send a check to Japan every time we purchase a Camry. GM gets a check every time they sell a Holden vehicle.
    GM pays out just as much on health insurance for working employees as it does for non workers Legacy packages for UAW is choking the US companies. We are all going to be buying American regardless if GM goes under or stays afloat. Some

    That said, the 2009 is an improvement. They got rid of the stupid OIL/Temp gauges and put a nonsticky surface on the lip so now it can bes used for cell phones, etc. They definitely reprogrammed the transmission which shifts a little cleaner in auto normal and sport mode. Manual mode is still useless which I have found in other makes including Toyota.

    I have done some serious driving in the G8 now. Funning, I really miss the HUD too. One of my daily drivers is a C5 vette with HUD, selectable suspension.

    Prior to purchasing the G8 I drove just about all the crap out there in this price range (both for my purchase and a cousin's). I can't believe Pontiac is not selling more of these cars.

    I drive from Mass to Manhattan NY quite often and to tell you the truth, I have never driven a better car than the G8 for handling the washboard twisties once you start getting close to the city. Everyone wants to race and the G8 put all the competition to shame. The rear end keeps its composure in tight corners regardless how broken the pavement. My cousin owns a new mid size Mercedes and it handles these rodes nicely too. But I will say the Pontiac seams to handle the potholes better. I am not saying the G8 can out handle my Vette, but I am saying driving the G8 fast in this these types of situations is brainless. Never any hops or surprises. Very easy to negotiate.

    The car has a big interior toboot. There is not much sacrifice (I traded my wifes town car for the G8, so I miss the 24CF trunk) to use this vehicle primarily as a family car. My kids are older and complain like hell when the back seat is tight.

    So far I have test drove a 08 or 09 CTS, STS, Avalon, Camry Fusion, MKZ, last gen Maxima, Altima, Focus, Mercedes, BMW 3 series. I did like the STS and CTS too. The CTS is too tight in the interior. The STS is nice but a lot more money. The FWD vehicles from Japan could not hold a candle to this car. Especially the Avalon and Camry. You instantly notice the balance and lower center of gravity in the G8 when piloting the car. One of the other great features is the bite you get during takeoff. It barely lays any rubber due to the weight transfer you get to the drive tires when accelerating in a RWD car. Great for deleting a Maxima at a stop light.

    My only real complaint is positioning of some of the buttons, no power recline & lumbar.

    Good luck with your new car. Being a car buff, I have purchased many new vehicles in my day. The G8 is an excellent daily driver in my opinion offering a great compromise.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Just test drove an 09 G8GT. Very impressed.

    Narrowing down my next car purchase....

    09 G8 GT
    09 G8 GXP 6MT
    10 LGT 6MT
    10 Genesis Coupe 6MT

    -mike
    Subaru Guru and Track Instructor
  • Hello folks,

    GM dropped of a 2009 G8 for me to review. Unfortunately, I can't copy and paste all the pictures and text here, but if you like you can check out the post here:

    http://allcarsallthetime.blogspot.com/2008/11/one-week-2009-pontiac-g8-gt-test-d- rive.html
  • I would love to buy a G8 GT but I commute 60+ miles a day. Anyone have a good idea on highway miles with a steady foot.
  • purchased a 99 grand prix with 147k and drove it from north carolina to new york, 600 miles, allegedly with either a loose or broken flywheel and/or a loose torque converter. Could either one of these things destroy my tranny anytime soon and is it just a miracle that i was able to drive the 600 miles without killing myself?
  • purchased a 99 grand prix with 147k and drove it from north carolina to new york, 600 miles, allegedly with either a loose or broken flywheel and/or a loose torque converter. Could either one of these things destroy my tranny anytime soon and is it just a miracle that i was able to drive the 600 miles without killing myself?
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,554
    "I would love to buy a G8 GT but I commute 60+ miles a day. Anyone have a good idea on highway miles with a steady foot."

    I expect to be driving over 700 miles this coming long weekend.
    Mostly highway.
    I will post results next week.
    - Ray
    Looking forward to a 'road trip'...
  • I like the car but I don't want to be spending my salary on fuel.
  • eliaselias Posts: 1,938
    murph, gas is $1.80 per gallon.
    if saving $ is your goal, maximizing mpg is probably not the best strategy currently.
  • tayl0rdtayl0rd Posts: 1,938
    Yes, either one of those could (and probably will) destroy your tranny if you don't get it fixed soon. A loose flywheel could probably destroy your engine, too, since it's connected directly to the crankshaft. The excess vibration/imbalance could potentially crack/snap the crankshaft.
  • 4) 300 mile trips maximum MPG is 25.5 @ ~ 65MPH - 68MPH highway. The MPG does drop quite a bit in city driving but strictly highway is excellent.
  • gas is mos likely not staying at $1.80, in fact where I live it is still at leat $2.00.

    Thanks fo the info.
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,554
    ** SPECULATION MODE ON **

    We know that my Corvette was rated at 15 \ 25.
    [ Under the current rating scheme – not the one, in effect in 2007 ]

    And the G8 GT is rated [ under the same scheme ] as 15 \ 24.

    ** BUT ** that G8 GT highway rating is achieved with use of AFM.
    [ a.k.a. DoD ] The Corvette’s LS2 does not have AFM.
    [ Edit: My understanding is that AFM will not engage
    when in Sport \ Manual mode - ever. ]

    What I expect is that instead of achieving only 1 less MPG in ** MY ** typical ex-urban highway cruising, I will see a drop of 2 or 3 or 4 MPG. When (semi-)legal I typically cruise at 70 to 75 \ 78. What I have read leads me to believe that at those speeds, AFM will rarely, if ever, activate. Though at 60 or 65 it will, assuming no headwind or upslope. My Corvette would return 27 or 28 or even a bit more, on long highway runs at those speeds, as a point of reference.

    I am driving this weekend to visit friends who live on the Florida Panhandle – and there are stretches of dead level ( just above sea level ) roads, straight for miles, with little traffic ( typically ) where I hope to experiment under near ideal & controlled conditions.

    Again – I will report the results when I return – next Tuesday or Wednesday, if all goes according to plan.

    Clearly, the G8 is much heavier than my ‘Vette. At highway speeds, it has a much larger frontal area & is less aerodynamic. That, plus higher RPM lead me to the speculation \ guesses above.

    - Ray
    Cautiously optimistic.
  • paopao Posts: 1,867
    I see gas going lower.....1.50 in parts of VA right now....1.90 around the DC area and falling daily...if you are concerned about fueling the car...then its not for you IMHO.....if you want to maximize MPG....get one of the 4 bangers or the 6 Cyl VVT engines out in various models these days...
  • not really interested in the "4 bangers".....I want a confortable highway cruiser that I can put the 3 kids in the back when needed. My concern is if gas heads back up to $3 or higher I don't want to be stuck with a car that gets poor mileage.
  • rayainswrayainsw Posts: 2,554
    What is your definition of
    "poor mileage" ????
  • circlewcirclew Posts: 8,389
    Have a safe and satisfying drive ans a Happy Thanksgiving! Best of luck with your new ride! It sounds fantastic!

    Regards,
    OW
  • i would like to at least get 25 mpg. I have a smaller car now but want something larger...spend a bit of time each week on the road. The GT is very tempting.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    My guess is that if you are concerned about $3.00 gas that you should probably not be looking at anyV8 engined cars. If your budget is so tight that a change in gas prices to $3.00 will seriously impact you, really a less expensive car taht gets better milage should be at the front of your shopping list.

    Not trying to be mean, but trying to be realistic.

    -mike
    Subaru Guru and Track Instructor
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Also Ray, don't forget your car is new, so you won't see max MPG until you hit about 9k-10k miles on it. Modern cars take that long to get to max MPG.

    -mike
    Subaru Guru and Track Instructor
  • white6white6 Posts: 588
    FWIW, my 08 GMC Sierra SLT shows AFM engaged when cruising at 70-75 mph on anything other than uphill terrain (or driving into a stiff headwind). I'm sure it weighs quite a bit more than a G8 GT and is significantly less aerodynamic to boot (plus heavy 20-inch wheels/tires). The AFM also kicks in at speeds as low as 38 mph. Of course, all this could be affected by final drive ratio; my GMC has a 3.73 rear gear (but only a 4-speed auto). Could be a situation where driving 73 instead of, say, 76 could make a noticeable difference.
  • The cylinder shutdown makes a big difference. In general it won't be activated at 70+ MPH except during slight downgrades. I really helps when active. I have put a total of 12 k miles on two G8s (an 08 and a 09). The 25MPG figure is fairly accurate and it is hard to get better at a reasonable speed.

    Funny thing, I can coax 33-34MPG easy out of my C5 vette 6 speed Manual. It is even easy to coax good city mileage out of the vette by letting it lug in a gear too high. Nobody believes these numbers but I have proved it several times. I bettered a Toyota Matrix on HW MPG once after the owner challenged me.
  • circlewcirclew Posts: 8,389
    That's what less wind resistance and weight will do and the M/T driven right is just icing on the cake! Everyone should drive a 'vette!

    Regards,
    OW
  • eliaselias Posts: 1,938
    mrpushrod is heroic to me and I give him bonus credit for hypermiling his vette - destroying an entire set of gatorbacks at 44 psi just to save 46 cents on fuel to dust that gas hog Matrix.
    (if you intentionally overinflate&use the inflato-spare, and drive on the painted line on side of
    road, that saves another .00014 mpg.)
    just sayin.
    seriously i would be drivin a vette but gotta have the back
    seat so i be driving the goat-naro 05 gto, which will NEVER see 30 mpg.
    (i hypermiled it and it got 24.1 instead of 23.9.)
    but it can turn in a solid 21 along with considerable vettelike characteristics.
    i wanna try me a G8 V8 with stick.
    I'd even try a V6 G8 with stick.
    At this rate it seems like the only way that will happen is if that jet-leasing GM president Lyle Waggoner flies me to australia to take a test drive down under.
  • circlewcirclew Posts: 8,389
    Anyone who owns a 'vette is my hero. It's the only GM left I would buy.

    Regards,
    OW
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Is the vette even back in production? :)

    Top Gear actually did a test of a GT3 v. Prius. Where they drove the Prius on the track at petty much track speeds as fast as the Prius could do the circuit. Then they ran the GT3 at the same lap times/speeds as the Prius, which was considerably less than flat out. The GT3 turned a significantly BETTER milage than the Prius.

    -mike
    Subaru Guru and Track Instructor
  • Ok, tires slightly overinflated but it is really easy to achieve 32-33MPG in the vette and better when trying hard. Personal record of 38.5MPG on a 150 mile trip (requires a truck though if you get my drift). The G8 would be a guzzler if not for the deactivation feature. We traded a town car (had lowest rear end ratio and dual exhaust) for the G8 and it did better than the G8 in our real world. But if your are a highway commuter averaging 65-70MPH believe my G8 number. It rarely fluctuates too.

    As far as GM goes, that is not true. I owned a 94 impala that I really liked that. I enjoy the G8. I test drove the CTS and STS, both nice cars. The STS was much better than I anticipated, especially for a family hauler. The CTS provides a nice ride/handling balance. I bet the V is a hoot but never got the pleasure. I have never been disappointed with a Northstar V8. DTS not my cup of tea though. My vette has about 30k miles on it, bought it new. It has a few rattles (removable roof and all) but it always puts a smile on my face. I rather the fun of a RWD than the steadiness of 4WD. Torque and RWD is essential for my dose of adrenalin. I drift the rear end on just about every spin I take it on. What other cars have a HUD???

    GM has made some good cars and trucks, they haven't been all bad. If they go under, there goes half the cars out there that still have gut wrenching torque.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Well with Pontiac going the way of Oldsmobile, looks like we should be able get these G8s at a phenominal price. :)

    Yippie.

    -mike
    Subaru Guru and Track Instructor
This discussion has been closed.