Forty years after the debut of the original,
Pontiac introduced the GTO coupe -- a modern day incarnation of
classic street performance -- last year. Initially introduced in
1964 as a high-performance option on the otherwise pedestrian
Pontiac Tempest, the current coupe stands alone as a separate
model and body style.
Based on the Australian-built Holden Monaro
CV8, the rear-drive GTO receives more power and torque for 2005
-- a new LS2 6.0L V-8 replaces last year's LS1 5.7L engine. The
result of more displacement is 50 more horses with 30 additional
lbs.-ft. of torque. This year's GTO is also equipped with larger
brake rotors and larger red painted calipers with the GTO logo
on the front calipers. Other changes include a revised rear
fascia that incorporates outlets for the new split exhaust
system, polished exhaust outlet tips and a driver foot rest.
Buyers can choose between a six-speed close-ratio manual gearbox
or a robust four-speed automatic transmission.
Pontiac considers the flowing, rounded
exterior body shell a contemporary interpretation of the classic
Pontiac sports coupe. The distinctive, tautly stretched
exterior, aggressive lowered stance and sleek, simple form
reflect the new clean, athletic styling direction of the
nameplate. The aerodynamic lines and cab forward placement of
the cockpit places most of the length of the coupe behind the
driver. The rear spoiler adds to the overall exterior attitude
of the GTO.
At the heart of the GTO is a unitized steel
body frame, with one- and two-sided galvanized steel. To this
stout platform a four-wheel independent suspension is attached,
consisting of MacPherson struts and progressive-rate springs in
front and a semi-trailing control-link setup with gas pressure
dampers at the rear. A vehicle weight distribution of 55/45
works to keep balance in most situations.
The passenger compartment is arranged in a 2+2
configuration -- with a decidedly import flavor. The instrument
cluster features white graphics on a mustard background with a
steering wheel that both tilts and telescopes for just the right
driving position. Displays and controls are no-nonsense --
minimalist (for Pontiac) yet useful. It��s all about the driving
The center stack is ideal for the upscale
Blaupunkt audio system and climate controls, with the power
window switches located in the center console. The trip computer
is a digital affair that provides driver information in three
places in the instrument cluster.
Wheelbase: 109.8�� ; overall length: 189.8��;
width: 72.5��; height: 54.9��
Engine: LS2 6.0L V-8 - 400 hp at 5,200 rpm and
395 lbs-ft of torque at 4,000 rpm.
Transmission: Tremec T56 six-speed manual,
Hydra-Matic 4L60-E four-speed electronic automatic.
Cargo capacity: 9.0 cubic feet.
EPA Fuel Economy: City: 16 �V 17 Highway: 21 �V
29 (from cars.com)
Starting MSRP $32,295 (from cars.com)