The Pontiac Solstice is a small sports car from the Pontiac division of General Motors. Introduced at the 2004 North American International Auto Show, the Solstice roadster began production in Wilmington, Delaware, starting in mid-2005 for the 2006 model year. The exterior styling of the production Solstice is similar to that of the 2002 Solstice concept  that preceded it. Production of the Solstice was to be running before summer 2005, but delays at the Wilmington plant pushed volume production to the fourth quarter. The new hardtop targa 2009 model was announced in mid 2008. The Solstice uses the GM Kappa platform, which also underpins the Saturn Sky, Opel GT, and Daewoo G2X.
The Solstice was nominated for the North American Car of the Year award and Design of the Year award from the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC) for 2006. It was a runaway hit for Pontiac, with 7,000 orders in the first 10 days of availability and 6,000 more orders before winter. Although first-year production was planned at 7,000, GM apologized to customers for delays and increased production, delivering 10,000 by March 1.
Production ended with the closure of the Wilmington Assembly plant in July 2009.
The GXP version of the Solstice debuted at the Los Angeles Auto Show in January 2006. It is powered by a new 2.0 L (121.9 cu in) I4 Ecotec engine equipped with a dual-scroll turbocharger. The engine's output is 260 hp (193 kW) and 260 ft·lbf (353 N·m). This is the highest specific output of any engine in the history of General Motors at 2.1 hp (1.6 kW) per cubic inch, and it is the first gasoline direct injection engine from an American automaker. According to pontiac.com, the GXP goes 0 to 60 mph in under 5.5 seconds.
Other GXP features include standard Stabilitrak traction control, a limited-slip differential, and anti-lock brakes. Summer tires on 18 inch wheels are standard.
A targa coupe version of the Solstice was unveiled at the 2008 New York Auto Show. Engine choices are the same as the convertible versions. The roof can be removed, but the hard roof cannot be fit into the trunk. An optional cloth top is available, which can be fit into the trunk.
The car went on sale in early 2009. There were a total of 1,266 Solstice Coupes manufactured before GM shut Pontiac down. 102 pre-production 2009 models, 1,152 sequentially-vin'd regular production 2009 models, and 12 pre-production 2010 models.
In the Formula Drift series, Gardella Racing currently fields the Mobil 1 Pontiac Solstice driven by Ryan Tuerck. Ryan Tuerck won the 2008 Formula Drift Driver of the Year award and finished 2nd in points for the 2009 season. The Pontiac Solstice Tuerck drives has over 500 hp and built off the stock LSJ engine found in the 2004-2007 Saturn Ion Redline and 2005-2007 Chevy Cobalt SS.
SCCA Club Racing 2006 National Championship Runoffs the Pontiac Solstice placed first place in Showroom Stock B (SS.
SCCA Club Racing 2007 National Championship Runoffs the Pontiac Solstice GXP placed 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place in Touring 2 (T2) and the Pontiac Solstice placed first place in Showroom Stock B (SS even after being penalized 200 lbs between the 2006 and 2007 seasons.
SCCA Club Racing 2008 National Championship the Pontiac Solstice GXP placed 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place in Touring 2 (T2)
SCCA Club Racing 2009 National Championship the Pontiac Solstice GXP placed 1st and 3rd place in Touring 2 (T2)
The sharing of technology and various components is a common practice among automakers, resulting in reduced parts costs. The Solstice shares major components with nearly every GM division:
The rear axle and differential are from the Sigma-based Cadillac CTS
The interior storage bin is from the Cadillac XLR
The passenger side's front airbag, steering column, and exterior and interior door handles are from the Chevrolet Cobalt
The backup lights are from the GMC Envoy
The heating, ventilating, and air conditioning modules are from the Hummer H3
The front fog lamp assembly is from the Pontiac Grand Prix
The steering wheel is also featured in the Pontiac Torrent, Pontiac G5, Chevrolet Corvette, Chevrolet Malibu
The 2.4 L Ecotec engine is shared with the Pontiac G6, Chevrolet Cobalt, Chevrolet Malibu, and Chevrolet HHR
The five-speed manual transmission is the same as in the Hummer H3, GMC Canyon, and Chevrolet Colorado
The five-speed automatic is identical to those of the Cadillac CTS, STS, and SRX
The side view mirrors and AC vents are from the Fiat Barchetta
The seat frames are from the previous generation Opel Corsa
In April 2009, after GM announced the discontinuation of the Pontiac brand by the end of 2010, CEO Fritz Henderson stated that the Solstice would not continue under another GM brand. Although they considered selling the Wilmington plant and the Solstice/Sky products to an outside business, the Wilmington assembly plant closed in July 2009. In October 2009, the new DeLorean Motor Company expressed interest in continuing production of the Solstice, but production has not resumed to date.
Manufacturer General Motors
Model years 2006–2009
Assembly Wilmington, Delaware, United States
Class Roadster, coupe
Body style 2-door convertible
Layout FR layout
Platform GM Kappa platform
Engine 2.4 L Ecotec LE5 I4
2.0 L Ecotec LNF I4
Turbocharged 260 hp (GXP)
Transmission 5-speed Aisin AR5 manual
5-speed 5L40-E automatic
Wheelbase 2416 mm (95.1 in)
Length 3993 mm (157.2 in)
Width 1811 mm (71.3 in)
Height 1273 mm (50.1 in)
Coupe: 50.9 in (1293 mm)
Curb weight 1305 kg (2877 lbs)
Related Saturn Sky
Designer Franz von Holzhausen, Vicki Vlachakis, and Wayne Cherry
Webmaster, The Solstice Registry
Pontiac Solstice Info
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