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Pontiac Bonneville Owners: Meet the Members

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    smfransmfran Member Posts: 432
    Its always good to hear from another multiple Bonnie owner. I've had a similar experience to yours but with five; an '88, '91, '94, '97, and '00. I've heard that the Bonneville has the highest percentage of repeat buyers of all vehicles. This is not to say that the sales figures are high, but that those that have owned one often buy another.
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    evandroevandro Member Posts: 1,108
    I've had my 1st Bonnie, an '02 SLE, for about 6 weeks now. Have I been enjoying it! It's the collection of everything I like in a car: comfort, handling, looks and reliability, not necessarily in this order. ;^)

    Commuting with it is so entertaining that I've found myself looking forward to both the morning and evening rush hours! :^)
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    tpkentpken Member Posts: 1,108
    You're obviously a man of great taste!!! It's great to hear from you. Please join us regularly and let us know about All Things Pontiac!!!

    Ken (2000 SE 38K miles)
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    xavier64xavier64 Member Posts: 76
    Just would like to welcome Chuck to Bonneville, USA . From what you said, we should all enjoy many years of driving excitement.

    I purchased my Red Maple 2001 Bonneville SE back in July and I have enjoyed driving it very much.

    All the best,

    Steve
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    pontiacmanpontiacman Member Posts: 2
    I just got a 2002 Bonneville SSEi and I just freakin love it. I used to own and drive Gran Prix GTP's and GT's, and long before that, the 6000 STE, but the SSEi is by far the best package I've driven from Pontiac. Not to mention it up and hauls butt!

    I'm interested in any other SSEi owners in the Pacific Northwest who have detailed info, good or bad, on their experience with their SSEi (no whinners please..:) Lastly if there are any car clubs or groups of SSEi owners that meet and get together I'd like to find out about them.

    Pontiac Man
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    boosted1boosted1 Member Posts: 90
    Congratulations on your new ride.

    We love our SSEi just as much as the day we brought it home. (just hit 7,000 miles)

    We have not had any major problems with the car.

    What color is your car?

    Enjoy the ride.
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    pontiacmanpontiacman Member Posts: 2
    is the color I went with. What about your Bonnie, what color did you choose? I'm only on mile post 850 or so. It was hard not pushing it for the first 500 as per the owners manual.

    What State are you in boosted1?
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    tpkentpken Member Posts: 1,108
    Welcome to the club in that magnificent new SSE pontiacman! It's great to have you here.

    I have a 2000 SE model without all the toys and power you enjoy so much but am still in love with the car.

    Best wishes for many happy years and miles of driving.

    Ken
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    boosted1boosted1 Member Posts: 90
    We have a Dark Bronzemist metallic SSEi.


    Please check it out...


    http://www.geocities.com/boosted_bonne/

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    fantascpfantascp Member Posts: 175
    Great Pictures!!!!- congrats and all the best for many happy driving experiences ETC

    Hey Ken- maybe someday- a move-up from our SE'S
    to the BEST is in the future???

    Happy Holidays to all

    Chuck
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    tpkentpken Member Posts: 1,108
    When I go outside in the morning - I look at the fog lights - just to see if they've slid closer together overnight!

    Ken
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    fantascpfantascp Member Posts: 175
    Just purchased a 1998 Bonneville SSE- traded in the 91 Buick Skylark- the car is loaded with all the extra's not in my 2000 SE- has everthing except i went with the same engine(205 HP)not the Supercharged Engine- In my situation- i travel too far each day- i need to get a little better gas milage and not use Premium Gas although I was tempted to do it anyway- but logic prevailed THIS TIME.
    Paid 11K- got 1K for the Buick- totaled out at 10K even!!!- finally i don't have to wait till Sat or Sun for the Bonneville (LOL)
    * Went for a 1998- based on excellent reviews from Consumer Guide- "BEST BUY"
    Smart Money Magazine- "Best Buy"
    Strategic Vision Total Quality Award
    J.D. Power & Associates APEAL Award
    Available with 2 of WARD'S Auto World Magazine- "10 Best Engines"
    Ken- got the best of both world's now!

    Chuck
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    smfransmfran Member Posts: 432
    I had a '97 SSE. It's virtually the same as your '98. It's a great vehicle; you'll love it!
    Regards, Stephen
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    tpkentpken Member Posts: 1,108
    You lucky guy - TWO Bonnevilles in the dooryard now! How many miles on the 98 and what color and options? I can imagine how delighted you must be to drive to and from work now! You probably have the bucket seats too I would imagine - with the nice console and floor shifter in his one??

    Best wishes for seeing double!!

    Ken
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    fantascpfantascp Member Posts: 175
    Ken, car has 57,000K- color is Dark Cherry
    has Bucket Seats, all leather interior, 9 way power seats- driver and passenger,ac-auto mode etc, Sun Roof,
    HUD,(which is great),console-shifter off the floor
    air compressor unit in truck etc- I'm sure i probably forgot a couple of things- i know its only a few days, but so far the car rides and handles great. I'm clocking the gas mileage and i'll let you know what that comes to as a comparison also to the 2000SE.
    I hope that you can also have those FOG LIGHTS
    move INSIDE soon!

    Regards,

    Chuck
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    tpkentpken Member Posts: 1,108
    I bet you are really enjoying those power seats!!

    Have fun

    Ken
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    xavier64xavier64 Member Posts: 76
    Chuck,

    Congratz on the 98 Bonnie. How is the HUD when you are driving during the day or at night.

    Also, does the sun roof take away too much head room or do you have enough room.

    Sounds like you are doing well.

    Happened to be watching a video tape from a few years ago and saw the Bonneville commerical where the man is asked if he drives a luxury sports car and states "You bet your ascot I do!"

    Pontiac should update the commerical and run them again.

    All the best,

    Steve
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    smfransmfran Member Posts: 432
    You basically described my '97. From the Dark Cherry Metalic to the options. However, I did not get the sunroof as I've had them before and missed the head room it took away. Loved the HUD which is one of the reasons I stay with Bonneville. I always averaged around 22 MPG in the '97; same as my 2000.
    Drive Safely,
    Stephen
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    fantascpfantascp Member Posts: 175
    Steve: I personally like the HUD at night much better than daytime- it really looks great against the windshield at night.
    Steve and Stephen- I'm not having any problem with the Sun Roof- i have plenty of headroom- maybe its the positioning of my bucket seat- i'm average height- 6 foot even -maybe its a problem
    with taller people.
    Info: just went 367 miles- car took 16.3 gallons to fill- approx 22.45 MPG- around the same as my 2000SE- like Stephen's.- this was in stop and go- highway/ combined etc traffic- believe it or not, i didn't do much better with the 91 Skylark with a Tech4 cyl. engine- i got around 24 to 25 MPG.-
    Question for the members- Has anyone purchased the TORNADO gas saver as seen on the Infomercial-
    Does it really work? or don't waste your money?

    Chuck
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    tpkentpken Member Posts: 1,108
    Chuck - I don't remember exactly where, but somewhere here in Town Hall there was a guy who said he had purchased the unit and was disappointed. Perhaps a search would turn up some postings. Good luck. I've wondered about it myself.

    Ken
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    fantascpfantascp Member Posts: 175
    Thanks Ken- I found the posts- its in aftermarket and accessories- #19- Oct 01 and #32- Jan 17th, 2002. Save your money- it did nothing at all to help gas mileage!


    Chuck
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    pontiacrickpontiacrick Member Posts: 26
    Just to say hi from central Indiana. I've had my 2002 SLE for just over one month. Like the car a lot! Only a small annoying rattle in the dashboard (when it's cold outside). Other than that so far so good. The car is smooth and quiet and goes down the road real fine. I think GM could do better with the color choices on this car. I opted for the Dark Blue Met., chrome wheels and taupe interior. Love the dash layout. Had been considering an SUV, but coming from a pickup, wanted better mileage and a classier look. The SLE is both and was less than a typical SUV. Just wished more folks would go back to cars! Like reading all the member posts!!
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    tpkentpken Member Posts: 1,108
    Rick - welcome to Bonneville Land!

    Best wishes to you for many years and miles of enjoyment from that great SLE. We look forward to hearing from you regarding your experiences and opinions on all things Pontiac.

    BTW - the dealer should definitely fix your dash rattle. There's got to be something loose in there someplace. Mine is firm and quiet - and I think all the others in here can say the same.

    Ken (2000 SE)
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    pontiacrickpontiacrick Member Posts: 26
    Thanks for the welcome Ken. The dash rattle I have is not so much a rattle, but more of a "creaking" sound. And that only happens when it's cold outside. Last weekend here it was in the teen's and the "creaking" was prevalent. This week it's been in the 40's - 50's and no creaking. Interior is very quiet. So it has to be temperature related...probably some little plastic piece somewhere. Otherwise the car has been great.
    Just wondering if you have heard if anyone has ever had their exhaust pipes "chromed". The cast aluminum is ok, but I think a chrome exhaust would enhance the look. Looking forward to chatting again.

    Rick.
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    tpkentpken Member Posts: 1,108
    Check over in the mods forum here in Bonnieland - I don't remember if anyone has done that or not. Sounds great though.

    Ken
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    boosted1boosted1 Member Posts: 90
    PONTIACRICK-Welcome to the wonderful world of Bonneville ownership. Good luck with the car. We are closing in on our first anniversary with our SSEi and we love it as much as the day we picked it up.

    I have been thinking about doing something with my exhaust tips also. I plan on polishing them to a chrome like finish and then clear coating for protection. I have been waiting for the weather to warm up a bit.

    I will try to post before and after pictures . (unless I botch it up)
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    smfransmfran Member Posts: 432
    I spray painted the insides black and the trim chrome/silver. It looked great at first but needs to be done again after about 6 months.
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    xavier64xavier64 Member Posts: 76
    Just would like to welcome Pontiacrick to the family.

    I am sure you will enjoy your car and that you will have many miles of great driving...

    Steve (2001 SE)
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    thill381thill381 Member Posts: 64
    I am happy to find a sight of enthusiastic Bonnevile owners. People who enjoy, and take pride in their cars (w/o going import owner overboard). I just got my wife a pre-owned (new for us)2000 SSEi w/ 15K miles. Being in the car business I had been looking all over Chicago, and Wisconsin for SSEi's w/ no luck. There where a few out there but dealers had had them for 6-8 weeks and had to much money in them. The market really fell out on these cars (all late model domestic cars) in the last 4 weeks or so and there where a few cars that had gone through the sales priced very reasonably.

    A budy of mine finally called Friday and said that he had just traded for an Arctic White 2000 SSEi with (agghhh!) Camel interior. I told him no way will my wife drive a car with baby poop brown colored interior. Well he gave me the numbers, and we picked it up Saturday. It was just to good a deal, and you know that interior kind of grows on you :-)

    It is a plain jane, i.e. no chrome wheels, roof or heat seats. I am taking it to get an ASC roof put in it tomorrow, and maybe I'll get her heated seats for Christmas next year. Albeit a kind of boring ext. color with weird int. color we got a heck of a deal and the car is absolutely spotless. I will post some pictures after the roof is done. Look forward to contributing to the boards.

    Tim
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    tpkentpken Member Posts: 1,108
    Welcome to the land of Bonneville, Tim - You have found your new HOME!!!

    Congrats on the SSEi. Best wishes for years and many miles of enjoyable driving. We look forward to hearing from you here about your driving and ownership experiences.

    BTW - care to give us some comparisons to your 300M??

    Ken
    2000 SE
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    xavier64xavier64 Member Posts: 76
    Congratz Tim on your new Bonnie. Wish you all the best and I am sure it will be good to you...

    Steve (2001 SE)
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    thill381thill381 Member Posts: 64
    Ken your scaring me. I see you read my profile (thanks, reminded me to update it from the 300M) I was wondering how you knew we had a 300M. The 300 is the car we replaced with the SSEi, and there is really not much of a comparison when it comes to the ride of the two vehicles. The SSEi feels more sure footed and solid than the Chrysler did. The Bonneville is also quieter in terms of road noise. The 300 was a very stylish car, lets face it DC has had one of the hottest domestic design studios for the past 7 years, however now Mr. Lutz has come to GM so we'll see what happens. The 300 was a more elegant car, but at the same time it felt fragile, not as solid as the Bonneville.

    I was torn between the 300 and the Bonneville when I bought the 300 last March, but there where not as many pre-owned SLE's or SSEi's at that time as there where 300's. All in all it was a nice car but not something I would want to drive for more than a year, and doing 98% of my business with GM and carrying a GM business card it was too much of a conflict for me to be driving a DC product.

    Once again thanks for the welcome and I look forward to sharing any insight I can on the boards.

    Tim
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    tpkentpken Member Posts: 1,108
    Yes - I have to admit that I am really not clairvoyant (however my spies are everywhere!!) - I did pick up on the profile to see about your 300M. Speaking of which - I see you do biz with several OEs and have reason to work with MB, BMW and others.

    I'm curious from the service perspective - how do you see GM dealers responding to customer issues at these various brands? Do MB and BMW give their customers that much better attention and care than a good GM shop?

    Ken
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    thill381thill381 Member Posts: 64
    To answer your question Ken, yes and no. A high line import service center is obviously dealing with a different demographic than say a Chevrolet store. I would compare most MB and BMW centers to a stand alone Cadillac store in terms of customer service. It seems that all of these franchises are willing and able to assist with there customers problems no matter what they are as long as the customer is reasonable with the franchise.

    As far as service for your Bonneville I would recommend finding a Pontiac store that is a GSP facility, (Goodwrench Service Plus). These are dealers who have committed to GM's higher standards of service and customer satisfaction. They will be the dealers with the most up to date service equipment an most lienieant SPOM's, (Service Parts Operations Manager). GM has an acronym for everything, for instance I work for GMDE, General Motors Dealer Equipment and Services.

    So in short Ken there are good service centers and there are better service centers, just try to go to a GSP dealer whenever you can.

    Tim
    2000 SSEi
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    mfahey1mfahey1 Member Posts: 419
    Tim, if you happen to see a light bronzemist 2000 SSEi with a Notre Dame sticker in the back window, that's me. We live in Morris and I was just through Oswego this afternoon.
    Small world.
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    thill381thill381 Member Posts: 64
    That is the color I wanted, but the only one I found was at a Dealer I know in Merriville, IN and he had to much money in it.

    You probably past my subdivision driving through, we live in Mill Race Creek, the one with the ponds and water falls out front on Rt43 across from the new Home Depot.
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    smfransmfran Member Posts: 432
    Great thoughts, I agree with most of them. I wish you would post in a more reader friendly style.
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    tpkentpken Member Posts: 1,108
    Hope to hear more soon from you about your experiences!!

    Ken

    P.S. Punctuation is our FRIEND!
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    mccgmccg Member Posts: 2
    Hi! I'm Glenn and the proud new owner of a 2002 SSEi. Maple red w/taupe interior. First time I ever bought a car for personal reasons and not those darned "practical" reasons! I'm sure I will love it.
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    smfransmfran Member Posts: 432
    You'll find the Bonneville practical as well. Make sure you subscribe to the other Bonneville boards under Bonneville Owners Club. There are a lot of good guys there.
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    tpkentpken Member Posts: 1,108
    Welcome to the club. We hope to hear lots from you here about your experiences and ownership thoughts.

    What equipment do you have on your SSEi?

    What other cars did you consider before buying it and what factors influenced your decision?

    Ken

    ('00 SE)
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    xavier64xavier64 Member Posts: 76
    Nice to have a new owner join the "family".

    Next July will be my 1st year Anniversary and I have enjoyed driving the Bonnie very much.

    I also have the Red Maple color for my 2001 SE Bonneville and enjoy the way the car handles and its performance (FYI: my last car was a faithful 1989 Escort LX with a 5 spd).

    Enjoy your car and keep in touch...

    Steve
    (01 SE)
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    mccgmccg Member Posts: 2
    Ken...the only two options it doesn't have is the higher performance rear end and the high $$ wheels. Other than that, all the goodies. They're aren't that many in the Atlanta area and only found this one in the color and base options(sunroof) I wanted.

    I considered the Chrysler 300 and the Mitsubishi Diamante. The 300 was nice, but just doesn't fit the bill. The Diamante was OK, but seemed cheap, thin, lightweight, and not well built. The Bonneville, specifically the SSEi, really did it (wouldn't have settled for SE or SLE). In its class, this is by far the best American made (Canadian built) car.

    So far it's by far the best thing I've ever owned. Always been practical in the past...Jeep Cherokee for the camping and Boy Scout stuff (Scout Leader). Pickup for general hauling and homeowner things...never a fun car for me. I guess this is my mid-life crisis. The Bonneveille suits the 4-door career criteria and the rest is pleasure.

    OK...question. The OnStar is really nice, but is there anyway to take advantage of the built-in cellular equipment the car has with another carrier? The dealer claims not, but I would think there's a thid party out there that can help. I recognize you can get OnStar personal service, but that's yet another cell service, phone number, etc. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.

    Glenn
    (newness hasn't worn off yet!)
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    rjs200240rjs200240 Member Posts: 1,277
    The Bonneville is built in the Lake Orion plant in Michigan, not Canada.
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    thill381thill381 Member Posts: 64
    Glenn,

    There is no way to utilize the on star hands free system with a third party cellular service. I use a nokia hands free kit with external antenna, and thought for sure I could utilize the existing antenna, microphone, and speakers of the On Star system. Not the case. No one makes any adapters to do this and on Star makes you purchase their personal calling packages.
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    bonnevillemanbonnevilleman Member Posts: 22
    Welcome to the family of Bonneville Owners. If you have a problem with the car the Problems board is VERY VERY helpful. Great guys everywhere here. Hope you have a pleasant experience with your car and keep us posted on your many adventures with it.

    Preston
    95 SSEi
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    bonnevillemanbonnevilleman Member Posts: 22
    I see you are involved with the Service Centers from your profile and previous posts. What recourse do I have if a dealership failed to fix a problem under warranty and told me "it was nothing to worry about" yet has gotten worse.

    Just curious. However I would love to have a really good reputable service center take a look at, pull the codes on, and just generall diagnose what's going on with my engine. Know of any in the Toledo area?

    Preston
    95 SSEi
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    mfahey1mfahey1 Member Posts: 419
    Is this now an option with the 2002s? If so, considering it wasn't available in 2000(and I tried), maybe this means that GM is indeed listening to its owners.
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    thill381thill381 Member Posts: 64
    The best recourse you have is to create a good relationship with the service manager/director to help you understand your frustration. I don't what kind of problem they could have told you not to worry about, that then got worse. Is it a drivability issue, i.e. squeak or rattle?

    As far as finding a reputable service center, make sure you are going to a Goodwrench Service Plus facility. These are centers who have committed themselves to GM for service excellence. If you would like "codes" to be checked on your vehicle you should ask the dealer if there are any diagnostic they can perform using a Tech 1 (Tech 2 on 96 and newer cars) to help your problems. A Tech 1 and 2 are hand held diagnostic units that can diagnose vehicles problem through the OBDII system. (On Board Diagnostics 2nd gen.)

    I hope that this little bit of information helps.
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    bonnevillemanbonnevilleman Member Posts: 22
    Well this was the Service Chevrolet Dealer in Ada, Oklahoma that when I had it into them, told me the TCC Sylenoid was giving a code that it was failing but not to worry about it. It has sense failed to lock on numerous occasions and the valve body needs some work. I'll see if I can locate Goodwrench Service Plus dealer in my new area of Toledo Ohio. Thanks again for the advise Thill

    Preston
    95 SSEi
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