- May 29th 2006 at 6:56PM
Pontiac's new identity: RWD?
It's no secret that General Motors' one-time "performance" brand has lost its way in recent years, to the point where product czar Bob Lutz singled out Pontiac as one of GM's "damaged brands" in a widely-quoted speech. Now rumors are circulating that GM may revive Pontiac's performance focus by dumping FWD models in favor of an exclusively RWD lineup.
Autoweek reports that a plan may be in the works to phase out the FWD models after the next round of model revisions already in the works. Also rumored to be on the way out are any truck models, with the Torrent SUV possibly destined to receive a GMC badge. A new RWD sedan would replace the Grand Prix.
This would be a big change for Pontiac, which currently carries only two RWD models, the Solstice and the soon to be discontinued GTO. Needless to say, the RWD plans would include the new GTO already making the rounds of the rumor circuit, but it seems unlikely that a new Firebird will join the pony car revival any time soon.
Look for a forthcoming Pontiac RWD concept car as a trial balloon for the new brand strategy.