Pontiac GTO

1934auburn1934auburn Member Posts: 3
edited August 2014 in Pontiac
Pontiac is on the right track with going retro (but it's not as if it's a new idea either). However, the 2004 GTO (an import rebadged for the American market) is definitely NOT what they should have done to a car that truly has become an icon of American Muscle Car culture.

I would jump at the chance to own an original 1970 "Goat," and I'd also jump at the chance to own a 2004 GTO that had more than just the name in common with its predecesor.

This thing looks like a late 1980's Ford Probe or a 1999 Acura Integra.

Pontiac needs to look to Chrysler (PT Cruiser, Prowler) or Ford (Mustang) for inspiration for an homage to a former high point.

I don't care how well it handles or how fast it is - the 2004 Pontiac GTO may be the most boring looking vehicle on the road when it comes out!


  • b4zb4z Member Posts: 3,372
    To those who don't like the styling of the GTO.

    Would you rather it have the muscular look of the Mercury Marauder without the muscle to back it up?

    The Marauder is not exactly slow once they get broken in , but a little more low end would be nice.

    I would prefer a car that is a little more low key and has a lot of engine.

    The GTO fits.
  • rqcrqc Member Posts: 95
    1. Will never do an after-the-fact sunroof.
    2. Don't want to mod the car and I just don't love the looks. It's not bad; it just doesn't excite me.
    3. You're right, at the new price, it's a great deal. When I was looking, it was just coming out and they wante MSRP or more.
  • argentargent Member Posts: 176
    Ah, clearly you've not seen the photos of the new Malibu, then. The neo GTO just looks like a next-generation Grand Prix, mostly...not bad, per se, but pretty typical modern Pontiac.

    Let's not kid ourselves, though, the original Goats were just slightly glitzier Tempests with big engines. If GM wanted to take the cheap approach to reviving the GTO they'd have dropped a supercharged 3800 engine out of the Bonneville/Grand Prix GTP into a Grand Am, which would be the closest modern equivalent. the original GTO formula (big car engine in intermediate car). They've certainly considered it (I remember a previous-generation Grand Am running around in the early 90s with a hotted-up 3.4L OHV minivan V-6 and ugly orange paint...), so we may at least be grateful that the 2004 GTO is a V-8 powered rear-driver.
  • jemillerjemiller Member Posts: 183
    Uh...have to disagree.

    Without getting into the relative merits of Mustang, PT Cruiser, and Prowler (IMO the PT Cruiser's only merit is that it's cheap, the Prowler has no merits) the current track record of trendy shapes is troublesome.

    BMW Z3 sales dropped off fairly precipitously after a couple years and the coupe (as wonderful as the M Coupe - the Flying Florsheim - was to drive) never sold. New Beetle sales have gone through the floor. Don't know how the PT Cruiser is doing, it's a cheap Neon wagon so maybe there's some fleet buyers. The Thunderbird has nose-dived (deservedly so, it's boring as hell.) And so forth.

    Having been in and around Monaros, all I can say is that it looks better than a 3-series Bimmer, far better than anything that GM has put out in the US in the past ten-plus years excepting MAYBE the C5. It's got the right proportions, unlike the old long-nose F-body and any of the FWD junk. It's a clean shape, one that will hold up well over time, unlike oddities like the CTS. And the only US GM product that can top it for assembly and material quality would be the DTS.

    Most importantly for me, it's a real car. It's got the drive wheels in back, and the front wheels pushed out to the corners for decent weight distribution. The suspension is very good - okay, it's a late-'80s Opel chassis with some updates, so it's not quite at E-class Benz level, but it's still leagues better than anything GM does in the US short of the C5 and CTS. It's got a real engine, a real drivetrain, real tires. The seats (at least what it gets in Australia) fit six-foot-plus drivers nicely.

    I'd just as soon see it sold as a Holden Monaro, because Pontiac's spent most of the past thirty years trashing its own brand, but in any real measure of performance, stock-to-stock, it'd beat any old GTO ever built. Take a '64 GTO in *real* factory trim (not Wangers-tweaked magazine-test trim) on *stock* tires (not "cheater" slicks) with *stock* shocks (not air shocks with the right-rear pumped up) and you were looking at maybe a low-fifteens quarter, never mind ever trying to stop or turn.
  • carguy147carguy147 Member Posts: 2

    I write for a national business publication and I'm writing a story about Pontiac. I'd like to get some of your views on the GTO and Pontiac. I would interview you by telephone and you would have to be willing to be quoted by name. I'll tell you who I am and which publication. You'll recognize the publication. If you can help, I'd be grateful. Send me an email with your contact info to [email protected]

    -- Car Guy
  • 1badsidekick1badsidekick Member Posts: 135
    Okay, heres my two cents. I agree that the GTO, which is based on the Holden Monaro that is sold in Australia, looks like a slightly updated 2 door Grand Prix. My dad has a '98 GP GT 2 dr, and that is one heck of a car, even with just the 3.8 200 horse V6, it has get up and go. I can only imagine that with the GTO being along the same lines as that GP, with the LS1 in it, it would definetly fly. I do like the styling, although they could have gone elsewhere with it. One more thing, if Pontiac is going to sell this car in the US with the single side double tipped exhaust, get ready for the complaints. If you're going to make a sports car, put the dual exhaust, with either double tips or a single 2" minimum pipe on each side. The Trans Am came out a couple of years ago with a single pipe on one side. It looked rediculous on such an awesome car. My dad (before his GP) had an '84 Mustang GT, with the same problem: dual tips on one side. Everyone was always asking him "where'd the other side of the exhaust go?" They put dual exhaust on just about everything now, like the Nissan Murano SUV. Okay, I'm done now.
  • aviatormanaviatorman Member Posts: 44
    My input on the new GTO is good. I like the styling, although it resembles the GP. What I like more is that it is going to be based on a Holden product. The power train sounds good, too. I hav4e heard that the production car will have 360 horsepower, better than the projected 350. Also has anyone heard a possible release of the Goat.
  • baylyjohn21baylyjohn21 Member Posts: 1
    this pontiac gto a rebadged imported holden monaro from australia may not be the flashiest looking car you have seen but then thats not what cars were designed for.in australia cars are designed to get you from point a to b as quickly and safely as possible on some of the worst goat tracks (called highways) you've ever driven on.it is available in 2 forms in australia supercharged 3.8lt v6 4 sp auto and the 5.7lt v8 with 6sp manual or 4sp auto.if your interested it runs 1/4 in under 14 sec standard and has been selling for 6 mnths .it has 4 wheel disc brakes,traction control and already had a change to the exhaust system,has 11 mtr turning circle at 2.4 turns lock to lock.the car handles magnificently stops abruptly and is easy to drive.the car is definitely made to drive in australia not for wide 3 lane virtually straight highways of the usa but then it does require some skill to drive a car around curves and hilly winding roads not straight lines and ovals.so all in all the car does what it was designed for...to drive not pose
  • joey2brixjoey2brix Member Posts: 463
    Lutz is doing a great job trying to turn an old rusted battleship like GM around. With such a large international collection of divisions, it shocked me that GM never reused platforms and engines for domestic use. The Camaro and Firebird died a slow death. This great demand for a "muscle car" does not exist in enough numbers to justify a production line. I'm sure the Vette is a money looser for GM in the quantity its produced. The Murano was an excellent low volume choice to fill a need for a proven 2 door /rear drive V8 sport coupe. It has enough modern styling, power, options and hopefully quality to apeal to a broad spectrum of customers. It's not a BMW killer, but will give the Mustang a run for it's money.
  • ruskiruski Member Posts: 1,566
  • 1badsidekick1badsidekick Member Posts: 135
    I think joey2brix meant to say "Monaro," the Holden version car that GM has based the GTO on, to market it in America.
  • regfootballregfootball Member Posts: 2,166
    murano and monaro.....yes, pretty close.
  • 14871487 Member Posts: 2,407
    I dont know why people are so negative about the GTO. If this car wasnt from GM people would be praising it constantly. It is not the best looking car on the market but its better looking than the CL-S and the mustang. The 330 coupe looks a little better but I would tak 340hp over 225 any day. I watched a show about the old GTOs and I have to say I wasnt impressed with the styling. I'm sure those cars were attractive in the late 60s but its time to move on. Pontiac has slipped up in the last 25 years or so but the new GP, the GTO and the upcoming Bonneville GXP are steps in the right direction. They are never going to have a completely RWD lineup but that doesnt bother me. Acura, Honda, and Nissan are all making high powered FWD cars and no one is complaining. FWD '04 GP would run circles around any 60s RWD musclecar anyway.
  • argentargent Member Posts: 176
    Well, in terms of handling and braking, a 2003 _Corolla_ would run rings around any of the storied 60s muscle cars or pony cars. Not so the GP and some of the nastier muscle cars (Hemis, Buick 455, some of the Ram Air GTOs), at least on modern rubber with limited-slip differentials.

    I don't feel especially _negative_ about the neo-GTO (it's certainly a vastly better effort than the Mercury Marauder, or the pale latter-day 442s), although it doesn't strike me as the second coming in terms of style or image, which I get the feeling is what GM was hoping.
  • regfootballregfootball Member Posts: 2,166
    the Monaro / GTO is behind the style curve. It was a stunner when it hit the market in AU but now its dated. Its too rounded for today's trends. It doesn't have the fender bulges and creases that are vogue right now.

    That said, I like the looks of it. But where it really is a nice step up is that it has an interior you actually want to be in. When was the last time you could say that about any Pontiac?
  • justin31justin31 Member Posts: 1
    I pesonally do not like the looks of the new gto. Sure it has enough power to get from point a to point b in big hurry (fun). But the looks are to plain for the legacy of the goat. They need to go back to the shop and redesign the body but the can stay the same.
  • jemillerjemiller Member Posts: 183
    Interesting how sometimes people remember the past as something it never was.

    Go look at a 1964 GTO. It was a plain old notchback Tempest with a big engine. It stayed that way pretty much to the end - it was always just a tarted-up version of the standard Pontiac intermediate. Of course, by the end the rouge and lipstick got pretty thick, but it was still the same basic Tempest/Le Mans/whatever two-door. It also looked a lot like the Olds 442, the Malibu SS, the Buick GS/GSX etc. because they all had the same basic body anyway.

    Except, of course, for the mid '70s when they briefly stuck a GTO badge on a fat-bumpered Ventura compact.

    As for the current one, okay, the shape is mid '90s. I, for one, consider that a whole lot better than the silly prison-guard-tower CTS, the slice-and-dice BMW Z4 and pushmi-pullyu 7-series, etc.

    There's a *lot* of really bad car shapes out there right now, and the GTO/Monaro may not be great but it's at least good, and there's *nothing* else in production at GM (except the Opel Speedster and Corvette) that's *as* good. There isn't, in fact, anything from any of the other Detroit brands that's as good.
  • cougar67cougar67 Member Posts: 11
    I agree with jemiller; the Monaro/GTO shape is pretty good as-is. I am not a fan, either, of the new "creased" styling direction. I would, though, prefer the "clean" back-end of the Monaro, and hope the spoiler is at least a "delete" option on the GTO. Otherwise, I think it looks very good.

    Now, if it accelerates the way its power (est. 340) vs. weight (per Monaro specs) suggest it should (eg: about equal to the late TransAm), I'll be in the market. If it doesn't perform that well, then it will likely be another disappointment, like the Mercury Marauder.
  • cougar67cougar67 Member Posts: 11
    As an aside, does anyone have any updated real info regarding the expected price of the GTO? The Monaro's current price in Australia translates to about $34,000 to $35,000 US, I believe.
  • jemillerjemiller Member Posts: 183
    I think GM's target was $35K, I haven't checked what exchange rates are like right now but when the GTO was announced I think a well-dressed Monaro CV8 was about the equivalent of US$32K. The sedan (Commodore SS) was somewhat cheaper - around $28K.
  • montanafanmontanafan Member Posts: 945
    From what I hear, Pontiac will be releasing info to dealers who might want to take early orders in the July time frame. Pricing will be much closer to the cars actual arrival in "November".
  • regfootballregfootball Member Posts: 2,166
    not sure how anything could be slower than the Marauder.

    The Aussies have taken care of it for us!
  • aviatormanaviatorman Member Posts: 44
    The dealer info. that montanafan was talking about is at this eogld.ecomm.gm.com/NASApp/domestic/brandsel.jsp?regionD=1
  • montanafanmontanafan Member Posts: 945
    Thanks for the link. No GTO (Grand Prix or Vibe) info there. Will keep it for the future. Quick look through the Pontiac models, looks like "Cassette" is dead.
  • aviatormanaviatorman Member Posts: 44
    Just two days ago I was on the website and they had info. on the GTO and Vibe (2004)
  • aviatormanaviatorman Member Posts: 44
    This Information is from the web site I had in #23 that I printed a few days ago.
    I can also confirm that there will be I model to the GTO. The Isa or 2VX37 model.
    Impulse Blue
    Barbados Blue
    Yellow Jacket
    Torrid Red
    Phantom Black
    Cosmo Purple (WHAT!!)
    There will also be matching interior colors for the interior, gauge, and stiching. Sound System= 6-disk CD changer in-dash, ETR AM/FM stereo with auto-tone control, 200Watt Blaupunkt stereo.
    If you wish to have more Info. about the GTO or other pontiac models click on my username in blue. I have about 275 pages of info on 2004 Pontiacs.
  • garnesgarnes Member Posts: 950
    I doubt many of us have seen the new GTO other than pictures. A past post mentioned dated styling - lack of bulging fenders. Well, if you look at the various photos available on the internet, you might notice that the light/reflection breaks quite hard (dips down)around the fenders. I believe the car is quite curvey with flared fenders (just my guess), but a photo doesn't always catch that stuff so well. Anyway, it's a pretty cleanly styled car. I wouldn't say it's dated.

    MHO - most cars (sedans, coups) with an angled roof line are horribly dated. Don't know why - I just hate that.
  • cougar67cougar67 Member Posts: 11
    Aviatorman, that site seems to have the GTO stuff now removed. When you had access to it, did you find anything about a sunroof/moonroof being optional? On the Holden site, I do not see this option for the Monaro. Thanks.
  • cougar67cougar67 Member Posts: 11
    Aviatorman, looks like those 7 colours are about the same as available on the Monaro (per the Holden site), except for a second blue being substituted for "hothouse green" (thank Goodness).
  • aviatormanaviatorman Member Posts: 44
    There will be an optional moonroof.
  • montanafanmontanafan Member Posts: 945
    Moonroof? Good if there, but everything I have read said the only choices for the car were color and transmission. Thanks for the info.
  • aviatormanaviatorman Member Posts: 44
    When I wrote that post I didn't have the info. with me. I checked and it DOESNT have a moonroof.

  • montanafanmontanafan Member Posts: 945
    Bummer, nothing like letting the fresh air in. In spring mans thoughts turn to sunroofs.
  • obiwanobiwan Member Posts: 57
    A sunroof wouldn't be a bad option. But only if it was the kind that slid under the roof instead of sticking up and out like so many cars these days. There's just something wrong with a big plate of glass hanging off the back of the roof.

    But when I'm really in the mood to enjoy the spring days, I take the old Jeep for a ride. No top or doors. I can even fold down the windshield when I'm off road. That's hard to beat.
  • montanafanmontanafan Member Posts: 945
    Thanks. Will make the ride home in the mini-van so much more fun. As far as roof go, the above roof types are anywhere from 20% to 30% less then the in roof type and aren't the headroom robbers. I am sure there are also engineering and assembly issue involved too.
  • aviatormanaviatorman Member Posts: 44
    Here are the dimensions to the GTO:

    Wheelbase 109.80
    Overall lenght 189.80
    Overall hieght 55.06
    Body Width 79.26
  • cougar67cougar67 Member Posts: 11
    Aviatorman, that width sounds too large. Could it be that it includes the mirrors? Most (but not all) width measurements in brochures do not include the mirrors, but this one must. Otherwise, it would be as wide as a Marauder! Thanks.
  • vcjumpervcjumper Member Posts: 1,110
    Does sound too wide if it is basically a coupe catera chasis
  • aviatormanaviatorman Member Posts: 44
    I double checked and it is 79.26.
  • jemillerjemiller Member Posts: 183
    That must be an over-the-mirrors dimension.

    Everything I can find on the Commodore and Monaro says 72.5in.
  • truspeedtruspeed Member Posts: 4
    I saw a GTO at the Chicago Auto Show and was somewhat unimpressed, I admit I am not a pontiac fan at all but the GTO has a powerful name and drew my attention, I was expecting something more agressive and ballsy looking like the old ones, this one looks rather tame though, I dont think i would give it a second glance on the road not realizing what it was. I heard also that they will be made in very limited numbers, dont know if thats true, but anyway, it was the best looking pontiac I have ever seen(and that aint sayin much)
  • ruskiruski Member Posts: 1,566
    I think it will accelerate quite well. After all the Monaro (with Lingenfelter engine) has been giving M5 a run for its money.
  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,025
    Both Autoweek and Automotive News reported that Pontiac partisans are up in arms about the bland styling of the new GTO. Lutz issued a statement that was along the lines of "Hey we got you a new Goat with real performance in a short time. Give us time and you'll get the styling." (paraphrase, not exact quote).

    One Pontiac fan website went so far as to remove the picture of the new Goat from it's home page and replace it with a new <gasp> Mustang.

    Like most of you I have yet to see the GTO but I am disappointed in the photos I've seen thus far which make the car seem like a larger Cavalier.

    Like the complainers I think there ought to be more GTO identifiers. on the car--twin hood scoops, dual splitter exhausts etc. At least the did get the engine badges on the flanks (I miss those!)

    I'll give you my further opinions on the styling after I've seen it @ the NYIAS in three weeks.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • obiwanobiwan Member Posts: 57
    There are a lot of whiners out there. But how many of them will pony up and buy a real performance car from Pontiac? People can cry all they want but only those who buy the cars will ultimately affect what happens.

    If you look at the GTO in 1964, you could barely tell it apart from the rest of the box-on-a-box style cars of the day. In '68 when they did the flowing c-pillar design, you'd have to have an eye for detail to tell it apart from cars like the LeMans, Chevelle, Cutlass, and other GM cars.

    The GTO was always about dropping a hot motor in an average midsize coupe. Sure it may have had a couple different paint colors. Or maybe a few distinctive stripes. But it was nothing more than a midsize with a big engine.

    Consider the alternatives coming from GM. Would you rather have the outdated, obese, mullet-mobile look of the F-body? Or see the GTO covered in gaudy plastic? GM has come a long way since Lutz took over. And it's only getting better.

    The show car right now has true dual exhaust but because of the gas tank in the aussie version, they both exited to one side. Now that the tank is moved for the USA, expect to see the exhaust rerouted.

    Besides, if you're really hung up on style, just wait and buy the SLP products when they come out. They'll be producing a hood with scoops, etc. That is, if you're actually going to step up and buy one.
  • jemillerjemiller Member Posts: 183
    obiwan's got it exactly right. Like I said before, *what* ballsy old GTOs? They were base-model junk Tempest coupes. Some people are off in dreamland.

    The last thing I want is another piece-of-crap Plastiac like the old Firebird/Trans Am. The new GTO is a step toward real cars, and away from the snap-together scoop-laden Transformer junk that's been Pontiac's standard operating procedure for the past twenty years.

    The cheap-tacky-over-the-top Pontiac image is the biggest weakness to the GTO/Monaro. I'd have preferred that GM just sell it as a Holden. Better a nameplate with no image than a nameplate with a bad image.
  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,025
    Of the original GTO, at least thru '68 was that it so closely resembled an ordinary LeMans and was thus something of a sleeper. The styling changes were subtle, nothing like the outrageous
    boy-racerness of late model trans-Ams and GPs.

    The LeMans was quite a good looking car for it's day, tho it looks today like a family sedan. You had to look carefully to see the GTO styling cues. IMO it should be that way on the new ones, personally I'd skip the wing.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • d2000one1d2000one1 Member Posts: 47
    People, please... get a grip. If you want retro styling, go buy a Ford. It seems like the only hits they can have is with cars with retro styling. I think the GTO is hot!!!
  • funkcityfunkcity Member Posts: 100

    I saw at the LA Auto Show.
    I had been following the story... Lutz get hot car from the Aussies with Detroit Powertrain etc...

    But the GTO has heritage and the auto companies seem to forget about that ALL THE TIME!

    They could have let their designers... Under-utilized well-talented designers have at it and develop a killer body.... and they could have done it in record time.

    But for some reason there just ain't no soul in the Motor City coming from GM!!

    The GTO is a classic. It deserves at least SOME styling cues from the past.
    64,65,68,69,70 just take a look.
    Look at the split grill of the 66,67. Look at the grill inserts.Look at the hood scoop for godsakes! Look at the special horizontal tail lights. Look at the dual exhausts!

    Oh BTW, you have to by an Acura TL to get dual exhausts!
    Puleeze are there no car nuts left at GM at all???... Or has corporate beurocracy killed the new GTO?

    Lets see what the hi-po CTS V-series sedan (although extremely fugly) will bring.
    Bob will have to do a lot of work to undo a lot of years of GM's "Not Getting It"! But it just might not be enough soon enough.... He had better get his former PTCruiser design crew on the stick and quick!
  • funkcityfunkcity Member Posts: 100
    John DeLorean made a lot of mistakes.

    His GTO was NOT one of them.

    A far out thought:
    Maybe Lutz could hire Delorean as a consultant.
    Yeah just one more consultant, or....

    Shelby Cobra, Mustang GT, GT-40
    Duntov Corvette
    DeLorean GTO....It just plain fits.

    Ha....just dreamin!!
  • andys120andys120 Member Posts: 23,025
    I'll bet the new Mustang outsells the "Goat" by a huge margin, and not just on price.

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

This discussion has been closed.