Pontiac G8 GT show car
Click image for high-res photo gallery

Finally. We have been begging GM to bring us a version of Holden's new VE Commodore ever since the Aussie sedan launched in July. And now, at the 2007 Chicago Auto Show, we're about to be granted our wish. Introducing the front-engined, rear-wheel-drive 2008 Pontiac G8. The car depicted above and in the attached gallery is the slightly gussied-up "show car" version, but fret not, because 99 percent of what you see is what you're gonna get.

Pontiac G8 interiorThe G8 GT show car is essentially a Holden Commodore SS-V sporting a new Pontiac front clip and hood. The 6.0L V8 with 362 horsepower lurking under its hood is the standard engine that will be found in the G8 GT production car. At launch, it'll be connected to a six-speed automatic, but if you want to row through those gears yourself, a six-speed manual will follow shortly thereafter (all together now...."YEAH!"). Pontiac says that the lowered ride height, 20" wheels, performance brake rotors, custom interior trim color and exterior paint color are all show-car-only parts. The same goes for the revised Pontiac arrowhead, which is there to gauge reaction from the public. If it's favorable, we expect to see it on the production car when it arrives in showrooms in early 2008.

While Pontiac states that the wheels and suspension are exclusive to the show car, we must point out that the rolling stock is taken directly from Holden's high-performance HSV GTS model, and we're willing to bet that the suspension is also HSV-sourced. That means both are readily available, so never say never.

Follow the jump for more info, the official press release, and the G8's full technical specifications.

[Source: Pontiac]
Related Gallery2008 Pontiac G8



The engine in the G8 base car is the 3.6L VVT V, which will deliver 261 horses and is mated to a five-speed auto with a manual shift mode. All cars get 18" wheels standard (19-inchers are part of an optional sport package), along with the usual array of features such as stability control, a bevy of airbags, OnStar, available XM, and the like. The interior is straightforward, with a well-arranged instrument cluster and center stack. The standard seats are cloth, and heated leather (including two-tone leather on some G8 GTs) is available as an option. (You can look at what the Aussie-market production car's interior looks like here)

Official information in detail follows below, and you can expect detailed impressions from the team on the show floor in Chicago. For now, lets just say that we're really, really happy to see this. And because we're all about getting ahead of ourselves, we wouldn't be averse to seeing an HSV-sourced G8 GXP in, say, 2009...

PRESS RELEASES:

ALL-NEW G8 ACCELERATES NEW ERA OF REAR-WHEEL-DRIVE PERFORMANCE AT PONTIAC

CHICAGO
– Confirming its commitment to style and performance, Pontiac introduced a show car version of an all-new, rear-wheel-drive performance sedan at the Chicago Auto Show. The 2008 Pontiac G8 will be available in dealerships early next year.

"With the balance of rear-wheel drive and the availability of V-8 power, the G8 represents another step in Pontiac 's commitment to its performance DNA," said John Larson, Pontiac general manager. "Added to the Solstice and the recently announced additions of the G6 and Torrent to the GXP series, the G8 demonstrates that Pontiac has never been more serious about the business of performance – and we expect this vehicle to be very competitive in the segment, even against cars that cost far more."

The G8 is the first North American application of GM's new global rear-wheel-drive architecture developed by Holden, GM's Australian subsidiary.

G8 GT show car details

The G8 show car unveiled at the Chicago Auto Show is representative of the production GT model, including use of the 362-horsepower (270 kW) 6.0L V-8 engine and optional six-speed manual transmission. The show car also features some unique items not found on the production model, including:

* Twenty-inch "shadow chrome" wheels and performance tires
* Ride height lowered approximately half-inch
* High-performance brake rotors with painted brake calipers
* Custom interior trim color, including a leather-wrapped dash
* Exclusive exterior paint color: Phantom Grey
* Concept of "modernized" Pontiac badge, to gauge public opinion.

Production model details

The 2008 Pontiac G8 lineup will offer two models: G8 and G8 GT. Each will come with a host of standard performance, convenience and safety features, including:
  • Four-wheel independent suspension
  • Four-wheel disc brakes with ABS and traction control
  • Electronic stability control
  • 18-inch aluminum wheels (19-inch wheels available with sport package)
  • Seat-mounted thorax air bags and dual-stage frontal air bags for front passengers, with automatic passenger sensing system
  • Roof rail side-impact air bags for both seating rows
  • OnStar
  • XM Satellite Radio
  • Power-adjustable front seats
  • Fog lamps
  • Chrome exhaust tips
  • Rear lip spoiler
A sport package will be available for both models and adds features such as specific wheels – including 19-inch aluminum wheels and performance tires on GT – a rear wing spoiler, leather shift knob, leather-wrapped steering wheel and alloy pedals.

Design

The G8 has a progressive styling package highlighted by strong Pontiac design cues, such as a dual-port grille, fog lamps, bold wheels and a confident, wheels-at-the-corners stance. The design accents the car's performance lineage, with fenders that flare over the wheels, seemingly hugging the wide tires and enhancing the sporting stance.

Distinctive elements include hood scoops and front fender vents, as well as projector-beam headlamps housed in crystal-clear lenses. At the rear, jewel-like taillamps also are mounted in housings and feature bright detail work surrounding the red lighting elements. G8 models have red taillamp lenses and twin chrome exhaust outlets, while G8 GT models feature clear taillamp lenses and quad chrome exhaust tips. All models have an antenna mounted at the rear of the roof.

Powertrain

The base G8 model receives a 3.6L DOHC V-6 with variable valve timing, rated at 261 horsepower (194 kW). It is paired with a five-speed automatic transmission with manual shift mode.

The G8 GT is powered by a uniquely configured 6.0L small-block V-8, rated at 362 horsepower (270 kW) and 391 lb.-ft. of torque (530 Nm). A six-speed automatic transmission with manual shift mode is standard and features the fuel-saving Active Fuel Management system, which enhances fuel economy by alternating between eight- and four-cylinder power. An optional six-speed manual transmission will be available soon after launch.

A limited-slip rear differential is standard with GT models.

Suspension system

A 114.8-inch (2915 mm) wheelbase, wide front ( 62.7 inches / 1592 mm) and rear ( 63.3 inches / 1608 mm) tracks, and a fully adjustable, four-wheel independent suspension system combine to give the G8 a confident, sharp driving experience.

The four-wheel independent suspension system employs a MacPherson strut design in the front and a four-link coil-over-shock design in the rear. Tuning is specific between the base and GT models, but both models use a direct-acting front stabilizer bar, decoupled rear stabilizer bar and lateral ball joints on the rear suspension. This system delivers increased lateral stiffness for enhanced handling.

The front suspension features fully adjustable caster, camber and toe; the rear suspension has fully adjustable camber and toe, which enables more precise, tailored suspension tuning.

Brake system

A four-wheel disc brake system includes standard anti-lock and traction control features and is partnered with a standard electronic stability control system. Both the base and GT models feature vented front and rear disc rotors, with twin-piston alloy calipers in front; the rear brakes feature alloy calipers with single-piston actuation. The brakes are approximately one-inch larger on the higher-performance GT model.

Interior

Designed to meld form and function with world-class fit and finish, the G8's interior delivers both comfort and convenience, packaged in a level of sophistication not often found in its price range. A driver-oriented instrument cluster positions the gauges for easy, direct line of sight; an electronic driver information center is located between the large, round tachometer and speedometer.

Attention to detail includes jewel-like instruments, selective use of satin and chrome trim and rich-feeling, grained textures throughout. The instrument cluster glows with crisp, white light on the primary instruments and Pontiac 's signature red lighting illuminates the rest of the instrument panel cluster.

The seats offer firm support to hold occupants in place during aggressive cornering; all seats were designed to deliver excellent comfort during long drives. Cloth seating surfaces are standard, with heated leather seating available. G8 GT models will also offer an optional two-tone cloth or leather combination that pairs black with either red or blue inserts and color-matched instrument faces on certain exterior color combinations.

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NEW GLOBAL REAR-DRIVE ARCHITECTURE IS THE FOUNDATION FOR THE ALL-NEW PONTIAC G8

CHICAGO – The 2008 Pontiac G8 performance sedan is built on GM's new, global rear-wheel-drive architecture. With the input of Pontiac and GM North America, the G8 was developed in Australia, under the direction of Holden's engineering department.

Taking advantage of GM's global centers of engineering expertise, a series of vehicle architectures are being developed that can be easily adapted to the unique vehicle requirements of various regions. For example, global truck architectures are being developed in North America while midsize vehicle architectures are created in Europe .

"The rear-wheel drive engineering team has put together a simply spectacular car that captures the essence of Pontiac," said John Larson, Pontiac general manager. "We believe that the Pontiac G8 will rival competitors costing far more."

The Holden-engineered global rear-wheel drive architecture was designed to deliver world-class levels of strength and refinement, along with crisp driving dynamics, while serving as the foundation for vehicles sold in a wide variety of climates and road conditions around the world – from the desert-like desolation of Australia 's Outback to the frost-heaved highways of North America 's cold regions.

"We set out to lift the bar on what could be achieved with quality and refinement," said Tony Hyde, Holden executive director of engineering. "We have gone over this car time and time again to reduce gaps and margins, ensuring that every fit is crisp and tight."

For North American customers, the result is a tautly-designed rear-wheel-drive performance sedan that is ideally suited for Pontiac customers.

"We spent many hours refining the chassis to create that unique blend of steering precision, vehicle balance and handling that we believe driving enthusiasts will love," said Doug Houlihan, G8 chief engineer.

Global, balanced architecture

The new global rear-wheel-drive architecture used for the G8 was designed to accommodate production for both left-hand drive and right-hand drive markets around the world. To ensure durability for the vast array of driving conditions and climates, the new architecture was designed with a robust, protected electrical system, superior climate control system and noise/vibration-isolating suspension systems.

Among the new architecture's design attributes is a layout that promotes a nearly 50/50 front-to-rear weight balance ratio, thanks to design features that include a steering rack mounted ahead of the front axle, engines mounted low and rearward in the front chassis cradle and a rear-mounted battery.

Stiff structure

GM's new rear-drive architecture has an exceptionally strong unitized chassis/body structure, including advanced-strength steel used in more than 80 percent of its construction. This strong foundation enables several factors than benefit the G8's driving experience, including smoother, more solid ride characteristics and more precise suspension tuning, as the stiffer structure allows engineers to tune the suspension without having to account for chassis flex.

The stiff structure also enhances safety, as it helps absorb crash energy through a multiple load path strategy that includes optimized front-end and rear-end deformation zones. (See safety section below.)

Chassis and suspension

A unique, four-wheel independent suspension system is integrated with the G8's structure, and is the result of eight years of development. It uses the strength of the body structure to enhance the driving experience through optimized steering, handling and driving control.

The G8 rides on a long, 114.8-inch (2,915 mm) wheelbase, with the wheels set wide on 62.7-inch (1,592 mm) front and 63.3-inch (1,608 mm) rear tracks. The front suspension features a multi-link, strut-type design that incorporates a direct-acting stabilizer bar, while the rear suspension uses a four-link independent design, with coil springs over shocks and a decoupled stabilizer bar.

The front suspension uses a hydraulically damped bushing on the forward end of the tension link for improved ride isolation. The lateral link feature a rubber spherical joint that enhances lateral stiffness. Camber, caster and toe are fully adjustable.

With the rear suspension, a high degree of lateral stiffness is achieved with the use of two lateral ball joints per side. A rubber-damped suspension frame further isolates the body structure from noise, vibration and road harshness.

Steering and braking

The steering rack is mounted forward of the front axle centerline – with dual lower links and individual ball joints at the outer ends – which enhances the balanced feel of the car while also contributing to a more direct steering feel. Steering rates are tuned specifically for the V-6-powered base and V-8-powered GT models.

Matching the vehicle's handling and steering agility is a carefully tailored brake system that uses four-wheel discs sized to match each model's performance. The higher-performance capability of the V-8-powered GT, for example, has larger brakes than the V-6 base model. The brakes are integrated with a standard electronic stability control system.

The basic brake design for all models includes twin-piston front alloy calipers and vented disc rotors, and single-piston, alloy rear calipers with vented disc rotors. ABS is standard.

Safety

Safety was one of the foremost goals in the design of the G8's architecture. It combines a sturdy, crash-absorbing body structure and state-of-the-art passenger protection technology. Examples of these elements include:

  • Efficient, energy-absorbing front structure and a strong occupant safety cage
  • Six standard air bags, including dual-stage frontal air bags, thorax air bags for front-seat passengers and roof rail-mounted head curtain air bags for both seating rows
  • Multiple air bag sensors: two electronic front sensors and two side-impact sensors, all connected to a sensing diagnostic module
  • Front safety belts with load limiters and dual pretensioners
  • Ride-down steering column and breakaway pedal system
  • Four-wheel disc brakes with ABS.
An electronic stability control system is standard on all models, as is full-function traction control. These features bolster driver control during certain driving conditions, which can help avoid a crash.

Safety development included tests that represented occupants ranging in size from a six-month-old baby to a 95 th percentile adult male. Sixty-one physical vehicle safety tests were performed with the variety of test dummies, which helped optimize the structure's front and rear crush zones.

Validation

GM's global rear-wheel-drive architecture underwent some of the longest and most stringent testing and validation procedures undertaken by General Motors, which helped ensure its strength, safety and reliability in markets around the world. These procedures included:
  • More than 2.1 million miles (3.4 million km) of equivalent road evaluation
  • Approximately 5,000 hours of virtual safety tests
  • Seventy-nine physical safety tests
  • Approximately 41,000 hours of electrical system tests
  • Approximately 11,000 subsystem validation tests and activities
Additional details

The G8's new rear-drive architecture also incorporates a host of design and technology details that bolster comfort, convenience and quality. They include:
  • A new electrical system that supports OnStar and XM Satellite Radio
  • A rear-mounted battery that offers increased protection from the elements and improves vehicle weight distribution
  • A contemporary "down and forward" instrument panel design that enhances outward visibility and provides a roomier, airy cabin environment
  • An all-new climate control system with multiple heating/cooling ducts, up to 20 fan speeds in the base configuration, and infinite speed settings in the optional dual zone climate system
  • A new family of premium radio systems with available color screen display
  • A unique four-bar deck lid hinge design reduces trunk space intrusion for increased cargo capacity.
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2008 PONTIAC G8 PRELIMINARY SPECIFICATIONS

Overview

Models:

Pontiac G8 and G8 GT

Body style / driveline:

5-passenger, front-engine, rear-drive sedan

Construction:

unitized body frame, 1- and 2-sided galvanized steel

EPA vehicle class:

midsize sedan

Manufacturing location:

Adelaide, Australia

Key competitors:

Nissan Maxima, Dodge Charger

Engines

3.6L V-6 (LY7)

6.0L V-8 (L76)

Application:

G8

G8 GT

Type:

3.6L V-6

6.0L V-8

Displacement (cu in / cc):

217 / 3564

364 / 5967

Bore & stroke (in / mm):

3.70 x 3.37 / 94 x 85.6

3.99 x 3.62 / 101.3 x 92

Block material:

cast aluminum w/ cast-in-place iron bore liners

cast aluminum w/ cast-in-place iron bore liners

Cylinder head material:

aluminum

aluminum

Valvetrain:

dual overhead camshafts, 4 valves per cylinder, continuously variable valve timing

valve-in-head; 2 valves per cylinder; roller lifters

Ignition system:

electronic individual coil-on-plug; individual cylinder knock control and extended-life platinum-tipped spark plugs

high-energy distributorless ignition; solid state direct-fire ignition w/ coil near plug and integrated ignition

Fuel delivery:

returnless, multi-port fuel injection

returnless, multi-port fuel injection

Compression ratio:

10.2:1

10.4:1

Horsepower (hp / kW @ rpm):

261 / 194 @ 6300 rpm*

362 / 270 @ 5700*

Torque (lb-ft / Nm @ rpm):

250 / 340 @ 3200 rpm*

391 / 530 @ 4400*

Recommended fuel:

regular unleaded

regular unleaded

Maximum engine speed (rpm):

6900

6000

Emissions controls:

evaporative system, single close-coupled catalytic converter, equal-length exhaust, single underfloor catalytic converter, positive crankcase ventilation, intake and exhaust cam phasers, electronic throttle control

evaporative system, close-coupled catalytic converters, positive crankcase ventilation, electronic throttle control

Estimated fuel economy:

TBD

TBD

Transmission

Type:

Hydra-Matic 5L40 5-spd automatic

Hydra-Matic 6L80 6-speed automatic

TR6060- six-speed manual

Gear ratios (:1):

First:

3.42

4.03

3.01

Second:

2.21

2.36

2.07

Third:

1.60

1.53

1.43

Fourth:

1.00

1.15

1.00

Fifth:

0.75

0.85

0.84

Sixth:

--

0.67

0.57

Reverse:

3.02

TBD

TBD

Final drive ratio:

2.92

2.92

3.27

Chassis/Suspension

Front:

multi-link MacPherson strut; direct-acting stabilizer bar; progressive-rate coil springs; fully adjustable camber, caster and toe

Rear:

four-link independent; progressive-rate coil springs over shocks; stabilizer bar; fully adjustable camber and toe

Steering type:

variable-ratio rack-and-pinion

Steering ratio:

46-53 mm per revolution

Steering wheel turns, lock-to-lock:

2.8

Turning circle, curb-to-curb (ft / m):

37.4 / 11.4

Brakes

Type:

four-wheel disc w/ ABS; ventilated front and rear rotors; twin-piston front calipers; single piston alloy rear calipers

Rotor diameter (in / mm):

G8 front: 11.73 / 298
G8 rear: 11.89 / 302
G8 GT front: 12.64 / 321
G8 GT rear: 12.76 / 324

Wheels/Tires

G8

G8 GT

Wheel size and type:

18 x 8-inch painted aluminum

18 x 8-inch painted aluminum (std); 19 x 8-inch painted aluminum (opt)

Tires:

P245/45R18

P245/45R18 (std); P245/40R19 (opt)

Dimensions
Exterior

Wheelbase (in / mm):

114.8 / 2915

Overall length (in / mm):

196.1 / 4982

Overall width (in / mm):

74.8 / 1899

Overall height (in / mm):

57.7 / 1465

Track (in / mm):

front: 62.7 / 1592
rear: 63.3 / 1608

Curb weight (lb / kg):

Base: 3885 / 1762
GT: 3995 / 1812

Interior

Seating capacity (front / rear):

2 / 3

Headroom (in / mm):

front: 38.7 / 989
rear: 38 / 965

Legroom (in / mm):

front: 42.2 / 1071
rear: 39.4 / 1001

Shoulder room (in / mm):

front: 59.1 / 1501
rear: 59.1 / 1500

Hip room (in / mm):

front: 56.7 / 1439
rear: 58 / 1472

Capacities

EPA interior volume (cu ft / L):

124.5 / 3528

Cargo volume (cu ft / L):

17.5 / 496

Trailer towing maximum (lb / kg):

1000 / 454

Fuel tank (gal / L):

19.2 / 72.6

Engine oil (qt / L):

3.6L: 7.6 / 7.2
6.0L: 8.9 / 8.5

Cooling system (qt / L):

3.6L: 10.8 / 10.2
6.0L: 11.4 / 10.8

*Pending SAE certification.