• Feb 21st 2006 at 3:30PM
  • 105

Due to slower-than-expected sales and the expense of recertifying the vehicle for 2007 emissions and safety standards, GM has told dealers that this year will be the last for the Pontiac GTO, with the last vehicles hitting US shores in September. Having sold 13,500 units in '04 and 11,600 last year, the GTO never quite lived up to expectations.

In this case, I feel a bit sorry for GM. It did exactly what its fans wanted it to - bring over one of the magnificent rear-wheel-drive Holden products from Australia. Pontiac never quite figured out the marketing, though; it was too expensive and sophisticated for the muscle-car crowd, too GM-ish to attract buyers away from other $35K coupes, and of course its bland styling was glaringly apparent to anyone who ever laid eyes on an '05 Mustang. Let's not forget the nasty price-gouging that occurred early on, either.

The power was there (400 HP - I mean, come on - that's serious), the interior was terrific, the chassis was excellent - had this product launched in the late 90s when the buzz about Holden began, I think it could have made a major impact. Launching a full lineup including a sedan and maybe a droptop would have certainly helped as well, and maybe this was more of a Chevrolet all along. Feel free to do a bit of Monday-morning quarterbacking in the comments. 

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 9 Years Ago
      here is the problem. most of the folks are grumbling because they can't afford it. I own a 2006 GTO and let me tell you.... No G35, BMW, or STI will touch it. By the way I am also a BMW mechanic and owner. A friend has a high performance G35. Blew it of the line! STI, not even close to being on the same vicinity. I don't know what you all are grumbling about, get over it! This car is more bang for the buck, than any foreign manufac. can even come close too! I am proud to buy American!!
      • 9 Years Ago
      When they first came out, I saw three truck loads of the new GTOs parked near my home. Until I took a closer look,I thought they were the replacement for the Cavalier (Cobalt). That is why they did not sell at over $32,000-and a sunroof was not even available.
      Great interior,awful exterior.AWFUL price.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Taylor York wrote:

      >on the other hand, they could have made a great, new GOOD LOOKING vehical, and slapped on the GTO badge and it would have done well at this price.

      Sorry, I have to disagree. Cars like the GTO are pitched mainly at younger, power-hungry buyers with lots of money. Sure, a lot of people fit that description. But not many of them would consider a GM vehicle when they can get a BMW, Infiniti, Acura, Lexus etc. at the same price.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Face it: the era of the two-door muscle car ended a long time ago, for all sorts of reasons (price, insurance, impracticality, uncoolness in the eyes of many buyers, etc).

      Good riddance to the GTO. Next it'll be the Mustang's turn (retro cars get boring quickly). And if they are launched, I suspect the new Camaro and Challenger will flop as well.

      • 9 Years Ago
      Too expensive and too late. If the GTO was available for $25k in 2002 I would not have purchased my RSX.
      • 9 Years Ago
      Not really a big deal.

      Pontiac has the Solstice now for an image car - and as impressive as the GTO is to drive, it is too thirsty and nobody really bought them.

      The "F" body crowd complained when the Camaro went away but seriously - none of them were buying them either.

      GM needs to sell cars to make money - and the GTO did not sell.
      • 9 Years Ago
      A real shame. POWERFUL car, solid ride, nicely appointed inside...but a real DUD as far as styling! Looks about as powerful as a Cobalt! No attitude, at all! Why can't those grey-hairs making the decisions at GM get it? I just hope they don't screw-up the Camara prototype they showed at the Detroit Auto Show (but given past experience, I'm not going to hold my breath)!
      • 9 Years Ago
      about $5K overpriced... the competition in the low $30Ks is just too fierce - if it was under $30K with the "out the door" price of about $27K, I would get one right away (if any dealer wants to sell me one for that price feel free to leave your info in this blog, wink wink)...
      • 9 Years Ago
      Could it be that the redesign of the GTO for 2008 will finally clean up this damaged image. I look forward to seeing the redesign, and if it really looks GTO: then and only then, it will be MY NEXT NEW CAR.
      • 9 Years Ago
      I just bought one under the 72 hour sale. The dealer i purchased from was just as greedy as the others i visited. I just got tired of dealing with it. I love the car. It slides in between a Mustang and BMW 3 series. It's just too bad you guys didn't go drive one. They are 100 percent more refined than any Camaro or Firebird you've ever driven. They are awsome cars. With a little research online you can see what i mean.
      • 9 Years Ago
      If you go to gmarabia.com, you'll see that this very model (as well as a 4-door version) is sold in the Middle East as the Chevy Lumina, and it's been a very big hit for GM. I drove one back home (the UAE) for a week, and was blown away--although it was the mid-tier 4-door, the power was amazing, contstruction was solid, and performance was excellent. They really should've christened it the Malibu or even the Lumina here in the US, selling it at a max of maybe $25-26K.
      • 9 Years Ago
      I jus got an 06 GTO and that car is a damn dream car. It drives well, I whooped a chargers ass on the freeway, looks nice as hell to me (especially in black). The only thing that got me was the lack of options avaliable for it but other than that I'm in love with my new car.
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