Originally Posted by BishopTx
You're making my argument more than you know.
Saying it has no peer has little relevance when you so narrowly define the requirements. If you're trying to draw a comaprisson to the M3 then I'm confused - because you're build quality requirement is null & void then.
I don't think wanting a V8 RWD manually shifted coupe should be such a hard order to fill. To me this is a basic need for a good GT coupe. It's not crazy and it shouldn't be unusual. A lot of people like V8's and it's one of the three most common engine arrangements sold today. The GTO should not be the only everyday car with this drivetrain, but it is. Well the Mustang too. My M3 comparison is with looks. BMW makes handsome coupes, the GTO is a handsome coupe.
It's a decent drag car, but it is too heavy with its sub par styling. The car is hurt in its overall appeal. And it's not a good track car - with sub par skid pad, slalom and road course times. It looses the stlying, handling and performance comapre to the 350Z, M3 and S2000 (combo of 0-60, 1/4 mile, track, slalom, skid pad; and it's not as fast in a straight line as the Cobra.)
But it's a better overall car than any of those because for those who want a V8 engine the only competition it has is the Cobra and one day in that car and you will be crying for some build quality. I mean face it, an all aluminum, high output, tough sounding V8 motor is far cooler than any Japanese V6 engine will ever hope to be. You can feel it when you drive it. I considered the G35 coupe when I purchased my GTO and if the Infinity came with adrenalin injections I might have considered. The G35 and 350Z are a couple of the best cars made today as long as you can live with a complete lack of excitement when driving. They don't even sound good when you get on it. The GTO build quality and structural integrity is as good or better than any of those cars you mentioned and that's probably due to the fact that it's not an American car. (Don't get down on me for dissing American cars either because I notice you don't mention a lot of them either.)
I agree there would be a better reception of the car were it to not have the Pontiac or GTO name. I still think the car LOOKS like an Accord-Grand Am Mix, and I'm not alone in that opinion. That is a problem for the car. Now that's not saying I believe the car should be riced out, have ground effects all over it, scoops and a big whale tail on the back -- ick!
You can say any car looks like any other car but they are realistically so far apart in styling that you would never, even on the last day you had sight from a deteriorating eye disease, mistake the two. I think it looks more like a BMW coupe than any of those myself. It's a very handsome and understated design. Period. It is a tasteful car for people who appreciate a fine and simple line that isn't overly complex just for the sake of it. And most experts that I've read do agree that it's an attractive design. It's just how I like cars to be and I'll tell you something else, I had a 1998 C5 in 1997 when NOBODY had a C5 on the road yet. Far, far more people come up to talk with me on my GTO than ever did with my C5. All positive. It is the warmest reception I've had from any car I've owned. People love to talk about it and are very interested in it. This caught me totally by surprise. Some don't like it, sure. But a lot of people do like it when they see it. I do give credit for a lot of this with the car being yellow, I'm sure silver or black would not have the same experience.
A more aggressive style that matches it intended audience however, would be make the car more appealing. And so would a $5-8K drop in the price tag. Given it's performance vs styling, that's the price range I see the car doing well -- similar how it did what it did with the original GTO.
That's why this car shouldn't be called the GTO. Everybody wants a price drop. I don't, it's priced great and I wouldn't want to give up $8,000 worth of goodness in this excellent car. You want a cheap car then buy one but don't wish a great car was lessened just so it doesn't cost as much. If anything I would like to see a sunroof, navigation and a few other things with a $2000 price gain to cover it. Some people just want something for nothing, great cars like this aren't cheap. (By the way, it's obvious that you haven't spent any real time with the GTO because you clearly don't understand what kind of car it is. I don't mean this as an insult but you would be singing a different tune if you could spend a week with one.)
Putting the LS2 engine in the 2005 version and taking it to 395hp (rumor) will only frustrate the current problem IMO -- that assumes a price increase will come with it. Now if GM/Pontiac are willing to bump the hp to 395 with the LS2 engine and not raise the price, well that would create something called value, which the GTO needs.
Supposedly the price is going up only minutely but time will tell. We will need to wait and see what the situation is with pricing on the 2005 model. But I'm not the type of person to expect improvements with no added cost. If a car gets better then it should cost more. Like I keep saying, this car has no peer in it's price range, I can't think of a car this good that costs less than $50,000 off the top of my head. Lots of little engine cars seat four people but they don't feel or drive like this one.
The current formula isn't working...and to blame the general public for that is somewhat narrow minded don't you think?
Not at all, they are an important part of the car buying circle. When quality products don't sell who do you blame? Marketing? The dealer network? The customer? They all share in the responsibility. A knowledgeable car buyer with this type of car in mind should have the GTO on a very short list of cars to drive. As I stated earlier, this is a quality car and worth every penny they ask and then some, it is the one element of the whole circle I am absolutely certain is not to blame. I don't blame just the public, the stupid dealers with their $10,000 mark ups totally hold some of the responsibility. Pontiac for creating its image has some of the burden. But the car itself is an excellent one and I've owned a lot of excellent cars. I do know what I'm talking about, I don't believe the naysayers do and are judging only on the few cars they looked at the outside of and have some perceived notion that it's a Pontiac and it has some GTO name on it even though this car is nothing like a GTO. (It's better in every regard.)