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Click image for 2 more photos of the ceremony

The Pontiac G8 inched closer to American showrooms today as Holden held a ceremony to commemorate the production of the first engineering prototypes. Full production is scheduled to kick off at Holden Vehicle Operations' Elizabeth plant later this year at rate of 620 cars max per day. The G8 will arrive at Pontiac dealers equipped with either a 3.6L V6 or a 6.0L V8, and Pontiac has told us that the 8-cylinder G8 GT will have a starting price well under $35,000. Holden's full press release is pasted after the jump, and you can read more about the G8 here.

Thanks for the heads-up, Samantha!

[Source: GM Holden]

First Pontiac G8 Prototypes Roll Off The Line

GM Holden celebrated today as the first Pontiac G8 engineering prototypes to be produced at Holden Vehicle Operations in Elizabeth rolled off the line.

The G8 will be available in Pontiac dealerships in the United States in early 2008 to take its place among General Motors' flagship high performance vehicles.

The Pontiac G8 performance sedan will be the first North American product to be based on GM's new global rear wheel drive architecture, developed by the global team based here in Australia.

Production of the Pontiac G8 is scheduled to commence at the Holden plant in late 2007, bringing the production line to a maximum capacity rate of 620 cars per day.

Announcing this production milestone was Holden Executive Director of Manufacturing, Rod Keane.

He was joined at the media event at the Elizabeth plant by government and industry officials including The Hon Ian Macfarlane MP, Federal Minister for Industry, Tourism and Resources and the Hon Kevin Foley MP, Deputy Premier of South Australia and Minister for Industry.

Mr Keane said, " The Pontiac G8 highlights GM Holden's rear-wheel drive expertise. It shows that international borders pose no limits on the creativity and expertise demonstrated by a global team based here in Australia.

"General Motors is drawing on Holden's recognised leadership in rear-wheel drive cars to be able to deliver uniquely tailored vehicles for markets in Australia, the United States, the Middle East and South Africa.

"With exports integral to GM Holden's future business strategy, the flexibility we have here at the Elizabeth plant is central to achieving that. When full production of the Pontiac G8 gets underway we will be building cars here at Elizabeth for every continent except Antarctica."

The export program will expand the model range at Holden's Elizabeth plant to 18 domestic and 15 export vehicle lines.

Holden has Australia's longest running and largest automotive export program which has delivered more than 772,000 vehicles over the last 50 years.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      The blue guy with Chevrolet logo is the Commodore / G8 to Saudi Arabia, Chevy Lumina and Chevrolet Omega to sell in brazilian market in the end of 2007.

      The golden one will be the Chevrolet Royale / Statesman to Midle East, based on Holden Caprice/Statesman.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I don't really like American cars 95% of the time, but this is really nice looking. Why do they always need to cooperate with the rest of the world to get good cars?

      Still, 6.0L V8 is ridiculous. I'm all for fun with cars, but come on now. Isn't earth dying or something? I hope they TAX IT TO DEATH.
        • 8 Years Ago
        The 6 liter is probably more fuel efficient than any engine in any import truck/suv, while being far more powerful. The LS2 got almost 30 mpg, and 400 hp, 6 liters of detroit muscle.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I think this is what GM should have done long ago (well 3years ago, but glad they are changing their ways and making not just Caddy a brand you'd want but Pontiac as well

      i'll still take a few years to get used to a $35k Pontiac, but alas it does deliver,

      considering how you could load up a Camry/Accord to $30k easily this is not a bad deal at all
      • 8 Years Ago
      WTF? Am I missing something here? Look at the photos again. That dark blue car to the left of the G8 CLEARLY has a gold CHEVY BOWTIE on the front! I can't get a good look at the gold car in these photos though.

      Is the blue one the next Impala? Or is it just a Chevy version bound for an Asian or Europeeeon market?
        • 8 Years Ago
        I thought of Saudi Arabia when I saw the Chevy as well, but the only problem with that is as far as I know, their cars are RHD, while this blue Chevy is LHD.
        • 8 Years Ago
        It is Commodore for the Middle East badged as a Chevy Lumina. The Caprice (long wheelbase version) is also made by Holden and exported as well.

        Holden like to tout its export successes here in Oz, hence its appearance in press photos.
      • 8 Years Ago
      If you Yanks are wetting yourselves over the G8, try taking a look at the Holden Special Vehicles range of modified Commodores. Complete with factory warranty.


      The Clubsport R8 would have to offer the best bang for buck, although the Grange would make a great interstate cruiser.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Kinda bummed that Pontiac went back to the old logo, as is evident here. I was kinda diggin' on the "new" Pontiac logo on the car that made the rounds at the North American auto shows. Oh well. I ain't complainin'. Just bring it, GM, and stop teasing us.
        • 8 Years Ago
        I was just thinking the same thing. It does look like the tweaked it ever so slightly to give it more of a metallic shine/flair, but I agree - I would have to see that new logo signal a new era for Pontiac. That's OK though - I like the old one just fine even if I prefer the new one, but really - it's the car that going to bring Pontiac up to date.
      • 8 Years Ago
      620 max per day? That's it? I wonder how many shifts there are....I would hope 1 then, because if it's 2, thats a dismal 38 cars per hour for 2 shifts.
        • 8 Years Ago

        keep in mind that the plant also produces the Commodores for the Aussie market and the other export versions (like the Chevys pictured with the G8). Something's gotta give, after all.
        • 8 Years Ago
        No telling how many lines are running and what else they need to run (ie normal commodores, luminas or whatever).

        620 is plenty. At 3k cars a week (only assuming running 5 days), you're looking at a potential volume of well north of 100k cars per year. Compare this to the retired GTO which was what 18k a year?

        To use an example, the honda pilot seems to be on a schedule of around 3k cars per week, and should sell 120-150k units this year.

      • 8 Years Ago
      That is a beautiful car! I wonder if the will offer a Panoramic type sunroof on this as well.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I believe they are going to sell this same car in the middle east as a chevy.
        • 8 Years Ago
        HotRod, the blue/black car is a Holden Caprice headed for Saudi Arabia, the beige car is a Holden Statesman headed to China if it has a Buick badge. The Caprice is the top-spec long-wheelbase version of the Commodore, the Statesman is the lower-spec version simply because it doesn't have stuff like the V8, rear-seat DVD, massive sound system, etc as standard like the Caprice does. Neither will be going to America because they'd make Cadillac look pretty pathetic which would be highly embarrassing for GM.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I just looked again, and thanks to the beige interior you can see that the Chevy is left hand drive, which means it definitely isn't something for Aussie use.

      And what IS that gold car? It has almost a Buick look to the front end. Could the black bar in the grill be holding a triple-crest in the middle? And if it is a Buick will it actually make it to the U.S. or will those morons only send it to China? Now THERE'S a Buick my 65 year old father would buy to replace the Honda.
        • 8 Years Ago
        you "study" these cars so carefully, and yet you REALLY can't tell that the blue and the beige cars are the same? you must be blind....
          • 8 Years Ago
          No, look again at the picture (click for the big one) where they are across the hood. The beige car on the right clearly has a different shaped grill and the opening in the bumper does not have chrome where the blue one does. The top corners of the blue car's grill are a sharp point, they are rounded on the beige car.
          • 8 Years Ago
          Are you insane? You really are blind aren't you. You get confused by different lighting, and body coulour, thinking it makes the grill looks "slightly" different. Well EVEN if it was, a slightly different grill does not a different car make.....IT'S THE SAME BLOODY CAR!
      • 8 Years Ago
      there has been a club sport commodore seen testing in detroit as of recently. Can you say G8 GXP???
      • 8 Years Ago
      This car is going to be a total flop, did they not learn anything from the GTO, we simply do not need another carline in a struggling GM...........remember buy your Toyota and receive perfect service and excellent resale..........in a few years there will not be a North American car company anyway.
        • 8 Years Ago
        There will ALWAYS be American car companies, always. They may be smaller and play a lesser role but they will be here. If Mitsubishi and Subaru and SAAB can still hang around in the U.S. market then I am quite sure there will be a place of American automakers. Get real.
        • 8 Years Ago
        Please excuse me while i laugh in your face. Perfect service at a Toyota dealership? You must have been on of those who has never been there. While you sit and count your resale value in your camry don't be scared when by blow past you in my G8.
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