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Pontiac Bonneville Owners: Accessories & Modifications

Karen_SKaren_S Member Posts: 5,092
edited April 2014 in Pontiac
What modifications have you done to your Bonneville? And accessories? Please share!

Owner's Clubs


  • smfransmfran Member Posts: 432
    All I've done is add the K+N air filter and added a pin stripe. The car is powerful enough for me and I don't want to spend any more money!
  • refinerrefiner Member Posts: 59
    So far 180 degree thermostat, 3.5 pulley, Thrasher CAI, a pair of Vortex high flow mufflers, Saner rear sway bar and end links, Super Plasma head light bulbs, close as I could get to HID without spending $700.00.And composite throttle body spacer. I have on order stage 2 MAF and adjustable fuel pressure regulator from RAT.
  • snicklesnickle Member Posts: 147
    180 degree Thermo
    3.25" Pulley
    Flowmaster Mufflers
    Saner Rear bar and Endlinks
    Casper AFPR
    AutotransInterceptor Removed
    9" Cone-filter (Building CAI)
    Front sway bar on order.
    Shift Kit on order

    I think that is all :-)
  • kenbidwellkenbidwell Member Posts: 10
    180 degree thermostat
    3.4" stout snout
    RAT stage 2 MAF sensor
    K&N air filter (drop in)
    Magnacore plug wires
    RAT adjustable fuel pressure regulator
    transmission cooler
    heat wrap on exhaust crossover
    window tinting
    painted brake calipers red
    painted SSEi emblems gloss black
    Sylvania cool blue headlights
    Plasmablue Xenon fog lamp bulbs

    I am waiting for someone to experiment with the SAE computer modifications, I want one but don't want to be the first to try it. Also am thinking about a shift kit.

    Thats all for now!
  • theicemantheiceman Member Posts: 736
    I've got tons of questions on your lighting: I'd love to go HID because illumination is very important to me (I consider it a key safety feature and, besides, the Xenon blue tint looks sharp!).... What made you go with the Sylvania cool blue and had you considered a HID conversion? or did you consider, like me, that the cost was just too prohibitive? I've heard that the PIAA plasma super white bulb is good (better be at $85 US/pr.) but I didn't see Sylvanias at the local mod shop - are they any good (in your opinion)?

  • kenbidwellkenbidwell Member Posts: 10
    The Sylvania Cool Blue's were the only ones I could find at the time. I just replaced my fog light bulbs with Plasmablue 893's. I got them cheap from E-Bay. I also got a pair for my wife's Toyota Solara Convertable and they look better than my Cool Blues. I think you can search E-bay for plasmablue and find the seller. He has a web site but gets 69.00 a pair on his site. I got mine for 12.00 a pair by auction.
  • kzmkzm Member Posts: 55
    To those whose aspirations are to mod their Bonnie to the max, here's a web site that will aid you (us)in that direction:


    they provide custom A-pillar gauge mounts just as long as they get 20 or more advance orders. The prices seem pretty reasonable. Although I'd like to know what extra gauges would go on those pillars.



  • kzmkzm Member Posts: 55
    A few of you may find this interesting:


    1992-93 Bonneville Performance Kit
    Bolt on 35+HP
    Easy installation
    Performance Tuned Upgrade
    Systemized Approach
    Series 2 Power Levels for Series 1 Motors.

    Add 35+hp with the RAT free-flowing cone filter air intake system, supercharger pulley and billet aluminum adjustable fuel pressure regulator
  • jperdochjperdoch Member Posts: 2
    These 2 things seem like the hot setup for some better performance with minimal mods.

    Do you know if K&N makes an airfilter for a 2001 ? Also, are the flowmaster mufflers bolt-on or do they require adapters ?

    Any warrenty implications here ?

  • smfransmfran Member Posts: 432
    I have the K+N for a 2000 SSEi. I don't see any reason why it would not be the same one for a 2001.
  • rb8225rb8225 Member Posts: 33

    Regarding the K&N filter, I had seen in a previous post that the part to use was a K&N E-0940. I checked one out at the local Autozone store. It's a cone shaped filter. Now, when I look at the filter in my car, I don't see any way to get the K&N in there. I thought that maybe the existing square filter housing would just be removed & a short adapter put between the hose & filter, but then I noticed a good sized bundle of wires going into the air filter box. So, It doesn't look like the box can be tampered with.

    How did you fit the K&N on your car? Is the E-0940 cone filter the one to use?

    Inputs from anyone who has done this are appreciated. Pictures would be a bonus. Thanks!
  • rb8225rb8225 Member Posts: 33
    Now that I think about it, the bundle of wires heading into the air intake box is probably for the PCM, located there for cooling. Is this true?
  • smfransmfran Member Posts: 432
    The part # is MM33-2086 and is an easy rectangular drop in replacement; no modifications necessary.
  • homer2000sseihomer2000ssei Member Posts: 159
    thats what i went with , the dropin rectangle filter. What a pain in the [non-permissible content removed] that is too - to do it comfortably - you are required to remove the rubber air flow hose so you can back the cover off the air box far enough. D'OH. Until you do that - say goodbye to skin on your knuckles.

    I also thought about the cone - but am interested in what to do with those wires in the box?
  • loud_pontiacloud_pontiac Member Posts: 12
    I have a 1992 SE, with a K&N E-0940 cone filter installed. That bundle of wires is the temperature sensor, I believe. I removed the whole airbox and took the sensor out and attached it so it is right outside the cone. The cone, BTW, connects right to the tube. The tube pops right into the cone (take out the little metal tightening thingymajig first though) and you have a K&N. I have noticed a tad more power, remember mine is the base 170hp SE so it doesn't do a whole lot of difference. But 50-80 pull (2nd gear) has really improved. This summer I am going to make a ram-air setup, and take the intake tube out of a GTP (where the sensor goes directly into the tube).
  • rb8225rb8225 Member Posts: 33

      Thanks for the correct part number. Now, I just need to find it around here. I may have to buy it online.

      Dennis- Your right about the enclosure being tight. When I was checking it out to see if the cone would fit, I wondered how to even get the drop-in filter in there without messing it up.

      It's too bad Thrasher doesn't make a unit for the Bonneville like they do for the GTP. I wonder how close the GTP version would be to fitting into the Bonneville?


  • shinysseishinyssei Member Posts: 1
    I have a Jacobs coil pack with their plug wires and a K&N filter. I paid about $270 for the whole package from them http://www.jacobselectronics.com .

    My K&N is the rectangular drop in. I thought about the cone, but was afraid of degrading performance in summer from sucking hot engine compartment air.

    Please let me know how the GTP intake mod goes.

    Also, where do you get the pulleys for the supercharger?

  • rb8225rb8225 Member Posts: 33

       Thrasher also has a modified pulley and remover/installer tool. You can see it here: http://www.thrasher-ep.com/store_ham/store.shtm

      There is also a Magnuson Nose Drive kit; you can find it here:
    http://www.grandprixstore.com/ and they offer a choice of pulley sizes. Personally, I would love to do the pulley mod but am afraid of the warranty issues right now.
  • kzmkzm Member Posts: 55
    Here are my major Mods so far:

    My K&N Drop in filter:


    And my Jet PCM:


  • rb8225rb8225 Member Posts: 33
    I was thinking about the recent messages about changing pulley sizes, & I started to wonder how GM came up with the size of pulley (3.8 inch?) used on the stock supercharged engine. Probably the best mix of power, fuel economy and emissions, but I wonder what the deciding factor was. Anyone have any idea of the rational for that particular choice?
    Also, what are the downside effects of changing to a smaller pulley? Other than possible warranty issues? Does the gas mileage get real bad? Can't keep the car under the speed limit & the tickets start piling up? Failed the emissions test?
  • refinerrefiner Member Posts: 59
    Ordered the Other Guys headers last week. Also talked to ASE chips. Their running a special next week. Instead of $539.00 to reprogram the PCM its $399.00. Hopefully I can ship it out Tuesday and have it back on Friday. Bye Bye speed limiter. Time to start looking for some Z rated tires. They claim a 20 to 30% gain in horsepower.
  • snicklesnickle Member Posts: 147
    Intense and dmckeown(in his late bonnie) used the Thrahser CAI. Look back in the archives, there should be directions. I have been trying to build one myself custom fit. Just have not had the time.
  • swblumeswblume Member Posts: 4
    Does anyone know if there's any exhaust headers available for the series 1 3.8L S/C engine? The closest things I've seen were on Grand Prix sites, and I know that that's a different engine than the one in my car...
  • sixxersixxer Member Posts: 36
    I recently picked up a 2000 Bonneville SE loaded. It's pretty much an SSE actually considering what it has. Anyhow, to the point. I'm trying to find some aftermarket parts for it. The first things I plan on doing is tinting it (this Monday, suggestions for tint levels?), a CAI (eyeing the GP one from SLP, it might fit), add dual exhaust (any suggestions?), and I'd like to drop it an inch or two. Anyone seen anything to give me a hand? The CAI I might be able to rig up myself as I did on my last car, just have to figure out where to put the PCM so it is protected. Anyhow, if anyone has any suggestions or ideas as to where to start, let me know!

  • homer2000sseihomer2000ssei Member Posts: 159
    I can only offer a bit of help . . . because the car is "non-threatening" to the police, you can likely get away with a darker than legal tint. I have the rear window and two back windows done darker than the fronts - -i stayed legal.

    there is a guy I know from the grand prix club in Toronto who owns a tint detail shop and would likely do a good job. also , he loves the GP's and appreciates the Bonne's as well. he isnt the cheapest guy around - but he uses top quality stuff . . . if interested - i can send you his email and name . . . i think his shop is in the north end of the city, I havent been there, but thats what my memory says - ill check if you want.

    as for CAI, i belive thrasher makes a kit that fits our cars, but going custom is a pretty simple idea. im having mine out in this weekend (crosses fingers) and its pretty straight forward. The difference in mine is that the guy uses a 4" dia. truck exhaust pipe that is bent at the shop. It is heavy duty and easily painable, (ive done mine black). its is attached to 4X3 rubber coupling on one end, (home depot) and the sensor just plugs into a small hole drilled into it. cone on the other end. PCM will get wiretied outta the way. Im going to use some heat wrap on the exhaust crossover pipe to help reduce the amount of heat in that area, and change the tstat to a 180.

  • refinerrefiner Member Posts: 59
    You sure were right about the dipstick tube being in the way of the header connection. didn't break it but went ahead and ordered the Grand Prix tube. That will get it out of the way won't it?Thanks Matt
  • kzmkzm Member Posts: 55
    I have the JET PCM on my car along with a K&N drop-in! When I turn the JET on, the "service engine soon" light comes on. I had the code checked and it was "P0107 MAP/BARO Pressure Circuit Low Input" translated: MAP Sensor Circuit Low Voltage. Fortunately, when I turn it off, the light resets. Costs too much to remove and send back and then install again. So, as long as it's not causing any harm, I'll deal with it. I wish I could confirm the HP gains advertised by JET.
  • sixxersixxer Member Posts: 36
    G'day again!

    Thanks for the tinting place offer but I already have an appointment made for Monday here in town. I'll just stick with it.

    Will the PCM be ok just tied out of the way then? I was just concerned about water and such when driving in the rain. I figured it was put in the box to protect it from the weather. They can be pretty hardy though I know. The air intake could be quite simple for me to do then. I already have a large K&N cone, 3" copper pipe, and a 4x3 rubber reducer from my CAI on my last car :)

    Also, I just got back an e-mail from Superchips. They are making a Micro-Tuner that will work on the 3.8L Bonneville. They said to expect it in a couple of months!


  • homer2000sseihomer2000ssei Member Posts: 159
    Well, yea - -Im thinking you are not driving to T.O for tint . . .:)
    A little knowledge is a dangerous thing my friend, and I have so little I am practically a one man wrecking machine!

    I supose, if the pcm gets wet there, and Im not sure it would be bad, it could be wrapped in a plastic bag or similar..

    Ive got 2 winters under my hood, and havent noticed much in the way of dirt (I do clean it a lot though). My guess is the light assy keeps it protected.
  • rb8225rb8225 Member Posts: 33

    I've always had the understanding that the PCM is in the air intake for cooling purposes. Otherwise they could have put it many other places that were protected. The air intake location will get a lot of airflow over the PCM box. If it is out in the open it may not get enough airflow to cool it properly. I wish there were some GM powertrain engineers lurking here that could provide some insight.

  • theicemantheiceman Member Posts: 736
    Just found this link the other day (GM I4 & V6 Performance) while looking for some information on suspension mods. Rather comprehensive list of possible modifications - giving a good, if short, description of the benefits of each and identifying parts manufacturers. A bit of a teaser, I would have liked to have seen more detail - especially on what I was searching (suspension mods).
  • homer2000sseihomer2000ssei Member Posts: 159
    last weekend - I bit the bullet and had a smaller pulley (3.4) installed , as well as a K&N 7" cone filter on a 4" diameter metal pipe for more air. had the gatorback 71.5 " belt installed , thinking - what the heck, its already off, why not put another one.

    The improvement in power is , well - simply astounding and extremely noticeable. Below is my story at the track following the install.
    - - - - - - - - -
    Argh - too much power! I had previously posted my 2000 SSEi's times here, and they were excellent @ 14.78 stock.

    Had my 3.4 and cone installed Saturday, and hit Cayuga Dragway on Sunday. This track is legendary for not hooking up well (Im told) - and I hope its true.

    First run with the mods on, and I did my normal start. Took it to 1800rpm, and stomped it on 3rd yellow. sat there spinning for an eternity, and slowly started to move forward - rpm's got wayyy up there, and the tranny dropped into 2nd gear and slowly i pulled away. It ended up that my 60ft on that run was very close to 3.0 !!!!! The run ended in the mid 15's. This was going to require a new strategy.

    Feathered start on the next run, after an good cool down - and things got better. It was my best et for the day at 14.47, and the 60 was 2.26 - which has been a pretty consistent # for me in the last track visits with dumping it at the line.
    I did , after a couple of practise runs (without cooling down cause the lanes were open) get a better 60 of 2.17 - but top end sucked without cooling down and came out 14.82.

    Overall, I was very disappointed with my times - but it looks like I need more practice now to manage the improved performance.

    Thats it for now.....thanks for listening...I feel better :)


    p.s. Thanks to Scott for the information on the install. It went without a hitch ! The old pulley didnt even "pop" - it practically slid off after 59,000KM.
  • sixxersixxer Member Posts: 36
    Would anyone be able to tell me how the dual exhaust is run on the SSE and SSEi models? I have an SE and would like to upgrade it to dual like the others. Just wondering how it is piped on them. Does it go to the back and just branch off from a Y pipe? Or is it really a true dual? Just trying to get an idea of what my cost is going to be to do this. Any suggestions for mufflers? I want to give it a little more of a performance sound, but nothing too loud or droning at highway speeds.
  • homer2000sseihomer2000ssei Member Posts: 159
    Im going to have to go from memory here - mines in getting a paint problem fixed.

    It isnt a true dual, it does split at the back end off a wye. Then the mufflers and tips.

  • sixxersixxer Member Posts: 36
    That is what I figured it would be. I just haven't seen any with duals sitting around in a parking lot to go crawl under. I'm hoping I can adapt mine to that setup cheaply then just swap in whatever mufflers I like.

    Thanks for the info!
  • theicemantheiceman Member Posts: 736
    Is the bumper on yours configured to take 2 exhausts?
  • boosted1boosted1 Member Posts: 90
    I am interested to see the exhaust tips on the 2002 Bonneville. Maybe I can install them on my 2001 SSEi. I am disapointed in the look of the trapezoid shaped tips when they get a little dirty. After I have washed the car and scrub them clean they look great, but a few miles later they have black on one side only.

    Love this car though.
  • sixxersixxer Member Posts: 36
    Yes, the bumper has the raised areas already for the dual tips. I figure it should be pretty easily done.
  • smfransmfran Member Posts: 432
    I felt the same way as you about the exhaust tips. I painted the insides black with Hi-temp paint and the trim with aluminum. It looks great and I never have to scrub them.
  • theicemantheiceman Member Posts: 736
    This is what I'd like to do: grandprix.net: "Replacing your exhaust tips".
  • boosted1boosted1 Member Posts: 90
    smfran: Sounds like a good idea to paint the exhaust tips black on the inside. That might be a good weekend project before the winter comes.

    iceman: That was my first thought. Get the chrome duals from the Grand Prix special edition, or similar. However I compared the Bonneville exhaust to the Grand Prix and it doesn't look like an easy swap. The bonneville exits the muffler on an angle due to the muffler position, where the Grand Prix has a staight shot out of the muffler.
  • theicemantheiceman Member Posts: 736
    You're probably right but it might be worth it to have it done for me if something can be done to compensate. I think it'd be a nice look for the Bonnie.
  • homer2000sseihomer2000ssei Member Posts: 159
    I assume you cleaned them, but did you have to prime?

    What process (steps) did you follow, and has the paint helpup?

    Since mine is black - blacked out tips might be cool :)
  • boosted1boosted1 Member Posts: 90
    I agree with you 100%. It would be worth the $$ to have the great looks.

    I wonder if the dual muffler and tips from the Seville would fit our cars?

    Had my windows tinted and a remote starter installed today. I love the look, and hopefully it will keep interior temps down.
  • smfransmfran Member Posts: 432
    I made sure the insides were clean but did not prime them. First I used taped off the flange area and used Hi - Temp black spray paint on the insides. Then I removed the tape and used aluminum spray paint on the flange area while blocking off the newly painted insides with cardboard to avoid over spray. It's now about a year later and its held up well.
  • homer2000sseihomer2000ssei Member Posts: 159
    thinking pretty hard about doing it - just gotta make sure to drape drop cloths everywhere....

    i have lots of black hi-temp paint left from painting my intake pipe for the cone i installed.
  • sixxersixxer Member Posts: 36
    Has anyone removed the lower cushion of their back seat in the 2000+ Bonnie to gain access to the battery yet? I might be attempting to do this this weekend and I'm wondering if there are any tricks to it? I've decided that the factory stereo just doesn't have enough bass and I just so happen to have a 12" subwoofer and amp sitting here. Hmmmmm....

  • ezraponezrapon Member Posts: 348
    grab the bottom front and pull straight up. Forget the subs. The Bose system is one ohm and defies upgrading. Been to every stereo out let in st. louis. No one can (or will) mess with it. I hooked up new amps and speakers and it sounded horrible. Left the subs, but they sound like weak 6x9's. That's with 350 watt fosgate amp and 12 inch punch xlc speakers run off the front speakers (the woofers).... good luck!
  • sixxersixxer Member Posts: 36
    Oops, I forgot to mention that I have the mid level stereo, not the Bose system. I'm going to give the upgrade a shot anyhow since I already have the equipment handy to do so. Thanks for the info on the seat removal. Time to play soon. ;)

  • homer2000sseihomer2000ssei Member Posts: 159
    OMG - I have yet to be able to get mine out. Even the dealer tried and it wouldnt budge. Maybe he hasnt done it before - but no go.

    He printed out the directions from the computer for me, and I have tried their advice - which shows arrows and say to push back a bit and then lift up - Uh Uh! Hernia time.

    Maybe ill just try the "grab and lift" method. Sounds like ill need one of theose Russian weight lifters from the 80's doing the 'clean and jerk" on my seat.

    I really wanted it out for weight reduction at the track, and to disconnect my battery to reset the PCM after pulley and cone install.
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