The Pontiac Automobile Archive

What’s in the Pontiac Archive

The Pontiac Automobile Archive contains a compendium of model information, illustrations, specifications and factoids. Significant in the archive will be the increasing development of Car Models Fact Sheets for each model and year – a one-stop shop of all the critical information on that brand’s year and model. The Car Models Fact Sheets are a single page for each model where we gather all the information on that vehicle that is available. It will not be a static page, but rather a living document that we will add to as information comes to light.

Please click the Tabs below and select any available model and year to see what we have collected to date.

About The Pontiac Brand

This 1928 Pontiac Six outshone its parent the Oakland and was the top-selling six in the U.S.

The Pontiac was named after the famous Ottawa chief, who had also given his name to the city of Pontiac, Michigan, where the car was produced. In 1926 the Pontiac Series 6-27 was introduced as a junior brand to the Oakland Brand. It featured a six-cylinder engine. Within months of its introduction, Pontiac was outselling Oakland. (The Series 6-27 sold 39,000 units within six months of its appearance, hitting 76,742 at 12 months. As such, it became its own GM division when Oakland was canceled in 1931. Pontiac’s popularity came about because it was essentially a Chevrolet with a six-cylinder engine.

In 1928, it became the top-selling six in the U.S., ranking seventh in overall sales. 1932 was the first year for the Pontiac Series 302 V8, displacing 251 CID and 85 HP. Unusually, Pontiac switched to an I-8 for 1933 that was used until it was replaced in 1954. Pontiac was considered to be producing the least expensive cars available with straight-eight engines. This was done by using many components from the six-cylinder Chevrolet Master. Pontiac installed a large chrome strip on the top and center of the hood that Pontiac called the “Silver Streak”. Only eight-cylinder engines were offered in 1933 and 1934. Thereafter, Pontiac offered I-6 six and 8-cylinder engines.

A 1946 Pontiac Torpedo Convertible.

In 1941 the Pontiac Streamliner appeared. And on February 2, 1942, the last civilian Pontiac automobile was manufactured in the United States, as all automobile factories converted to military production. From 1946 to 1948, all Pontiac models were essentially 1942 models with minor changes. The Hydra-Matic automatic transmission was introduced in 1948.

The first all-new Pontiac models appeared in 1949. In this year, the Chieftain line was introduced to replace the Torpedo. In 1950, the Catalina hardtop coupe was introduced. Completely new bodies and chassis were introduced in 1955. At this time, the 173 HP overhead-valve Strato-Streak V8 engine was introduced. With the introduction of this V8, all six-cylinder engines were discontinued. The first Bonneville — a limited-edition Star Chief convertible with a fuel-injected engine.

This 1958 Pontiac Bonneville Coupe marked the first year for the model – offered as both a hardtop coupe & convertible.

In 1958, the Bonneville became its own line. Motor Trend picked the entire Pontiac line as the 1959 Car of the Year. The 1960 models had a complete reskinning. The 1961 models had the split grille returned and smaller body sizes. The Tempest, mid-sized car was introduced. Pontiac introduced the Grand Prix, in 1962. For 1964, the Tempest and LeMans were redesigned, and from these came the GTO. The entire Pontiac lineup was honored as Motor Trend’s Car of the Year for 1965.

1966 saw the introduction an overhead camshaft 6-cylinder engine in the Tempest. The 1967 model year saw the introduction for the Pontiac Firebird. 1968 introduced the Endura “rubber” front bumper on the GTO. For 1969, Pontiac moved the Grand Prix from the full-sized lineup into a model of its own, the GTO saw the addition of the “Judge” performance/appearance package, and the Firebird also received the “Trans Am” package.

The 1968 Pontiac GTO had the first integral “Endura” front grille/bumper .


In mid-1971 Pontiac introduced the compact, budget-priced Ventura II. For 1973, Pontiac introduced the Grand Am as part of the LeMans line. For 1975, Pontiac introduced the new sub-compact Astre, a version of the Chevrolet Vega. The 1976 Sunbird joined the line. In mid-year 1977, Pontiac introduced the Phoenix, an upscale version of the Ventura which replaced the Ventura entirely after the end of the 1977 model year.

The Firebird was available with Formula and Trans Am packages, plus a Pontiac first- a turbocharged V8, for the 1980 and 1981 model years. Also in 1981, the full-size Bonneville was discontinued. The wedge-shaped Firebird was introduced in 1982. The 1984 Fiero introduced a two-seat, mid-engined coupe. Beginning in 1988 all Pontiacs, with the exception of the Firebird, switched to front-wheel drive platforms.

The 1990 model year saw the launch of Pontiac’s first minivan and light truck, the Trans Sport. In addition, the Grand Prix line added its first-ever 4-door model, offered in LE and STE trims. In 1992, a brand-new Bonneville was introduced. An all-new Firebird was introduced in 1993. For 1996 the Bonneville received updated front and rear fascias along with several other enhancements. In 1998 the Firebird was updated.

The 2001 Pontiac Aztek was controversial.


In 2001 Pontiac introduced the polarizing proto-crossover Aztek. In 2002, both the Firebird/Trans Am and Camaro were discontinued as a result of declining sales and a saturated sports market. 2004 saw the reintroduction of the Pontiac GTO based on the Australian-developed Holden Monaro. The redesigned Grand Prix made its appearance and featured a GT and GTP trim level. The Grand Am was replaced with the mid-size G6 in 2005. The Bonneville ended production in 2005 after nearly 50 years of production.

The Solstice concept shown in 2002 was approved for production as a roadster for 2006-2009. The controversial and slow-selling Aztek was finally phased out and replaced by the Torrent, which was identical to the Chevrolet Equinox.

Considered the last great Pontiac, the 2004 GTO was really a Australian Holden Monaro.


In 2005 the Sunfire was discontinued and replaced by the new Pontiac Pursuit (later named G5 for the American market). In 2008, the Grand Prix ended production and the launch of the Australian-built RWD G8 commenced.

On April 27, 2009, GM announced that Pontiac would be dropped and that all of its remaining models would be phased out by the end of 2010. The last Pontiac, a white 2010 model year G6 4-door sedan, was built on January 2010.