Pontiac Grand Prix Review

Posted on 17. Sep, 2007 by in Auto News

I sometimes sentimental the Good Old Days, a bygone era when gas was cheap (and the good stuff was called ethyl), rear seats were the ticket for romance and tailfins an award, but as bad taste. Back in the day, was the coolest metal Detroit born and raised, wearing real name badges, paid homage to the fast animals and distant places, and car races, not alphanumeric Jumbles of IRS tax forms inspired. It was during one of these recent waves of nostalgia that I look forward to spending some time flogging one of the last remaining American full-size touring sedans, found the Grand Prix. That is, until I drove one.

True to its legacy as a highway cruiser, is the Grand Prix, well, big. At 198 inches, the grande dame consumes so much curb space than 7-series BMW. Unlike his original 1962 namesake, sees the current Pontiac uninteresting and poorly proportioned. The mild harmless profile is disturbed by a bright boy-racer spoiler and a bulbous, overly ridged tail, which has the charm of a plumber hindquarters. It is quite sporty looking, provided you limit your choices of sport Roller Derby and Championship Wrestling.

In this lame duck cabin and welcome to another edition of GM-sponsored "Bad Designers Gone Wild." The Grand Prix 'Dashboard is an unfortunate mishmash of strange angles and mismatched plastic, coupled with striking cheap aluminum trim, which again missed the beverage can factory. The keys are lower than rent an apartment overlooking Chicago L and cumbersome than on the fly as the Psion Organiser manipulate (from the same period).

The pressure gauges are large intrusive more pie plates on geriatric reading rooms as an inspired driver's car. The steering wheel is the size trumps all about. The transport-sized interface eliminates the possibility of serious switchbacks games, if only because the metal cladding is ideally trained to every sporting driver, cut to place his or her hands at the 9 and 3 positions clock.

The Grand Prix cloth buckets are sufficient for extended cruising. However, they lack lumbar and lateral support, I never managed to maneuver the six-way adjustments in a position that was slightly better than Cars compliant. But the interior is abundant, and the spacious trunk please even the most ambitious of Costco shoppers.

Although most reviewers test the lively 5.3-liter supercharged V8 or 3.8-liter editions of this car, "my" Ye Olde Grand Prix stamped with "3800" V6. It is the naturally aspirated version, 200PS found transversely mounted rod in most Grand Prix that trudge along U.S. highways. It is an engine in name only: mechanical perfect motivation to discourage all accelerating efforts.

Fire it up, and the 3800 uses the familiar whirring note in a motor that all the sonic sensibility (and none of the precision) seeping from a Cuisinart. Coupled with a drive-by gas-and four-speed automatic transmission, push the not-so-powerful mill the Pontiac to 60mph in just over eight seconds. For those who aspire to look deep into the rear lights of the Toyota Avalon, it is the stuff of which dreams are made.

The Grand Prix 'anemic engine makes it as far as material from highway dirt bike. But at a sluggish pace, the Grand Prix goes without trial or tribulation. The Pontiac stalwarts "110" wheelbase and independent suspension for smooth ride without excessive floaty boatiness typical of most of the old school GM automobiles. Toss some good old fashioned American expansion joints and potholes on his way, and neither driver nor passengers are worse for wear.

In keeping with tradition, the Grand Prix 'over-boosted steering is vague and disconnected as stoned surfer, this novocaine numbness, Detroit front driver makes the final choice for enjoying the ride. Just as long as you do not harbor any passion whatsoever piston head, you can get along just fine, and Grand Prix.

The Grand Prix may deliver shares the name and most of the length of his throaty four runs ancestors, but it fails miserably on its promise of sports sedanitude. This Pontiac is in fact a charm-free appliance-one that inspires little confidence. With just under 500 miles on the clock, my tester was already beginning to creak and groan. Owners should not be surprised if her joy in Lunesta-like driving dynamics with an early visit or two with Mr. Goodwrench is interrupted.

This party will end soon. Next year will put the Pontiac Grand Prix to the pasture that has been waiting for him for a very long time. All hail "world car" and automotive alphanumeric characters! Pontiac dealers will soon start peddling the G8, a rear-driver on the world-famous-in-Australia Holden Commodore-based and sport (hopefully) a 3.6-liter DOHC 261hp V6 and a five-speed autobox.

Meanwhile, on the threshold of this glorious transition, you can pick up a new, fully loaded Pontiac Grand Prix for a song. Not.