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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited by Moderator)
NewAgeGTO.com Previews the 2005 GTO!

NewAgeGTO was invited to the 2005 GTO preview event at Bob Bondurant Racing School. There our Rep Jason Feuerberg was allows to drive the 05 GTO along with recieving racing instruction at the world class racing school.

ALSO-This is not meant to bash the 04. The 05 is a new car with many improvements over the 04. Please realize that many people are excited about this.

Below are his impressions-

The 2005 GTO is it better than the 2004? In one word yes it is! As a point of reference, I have owned two 2004 GTOs and have loved them both. With that in mind, I have no problem proclaiming the updated 2005 version as a definate step forward. So what’s improved? For starters there is the 400 HP LS2 straight from the Corvette. Then add to that braking and chassis upgrades, hood scoops, dual tailpipes exiting the way Delorean intended, and you get an idea of the serious intentions GM has for the 2005 GTO.

The devil is in the details, and the 2005 GTO has many detail changes. The improvements to the 2005 GTO include a new brake system featuring enlarged the front disc brakes and rear vented discs. The new brake calipers have the letters “GTO” on them, and are now painted red as in the Bonneville GXP and Grand Prix Comp G. As everyone knows, there is a new engine in the 2005 GTO and it is the LS2 straight out of the Corvette. It is nice to see the Corvette loosening it’s grip on GM’s highest performing engine (temporarily) for the GTO. The engineers told me that the car has 400 hp and 400 lb/tq and I have no reason to doubt that. One noticeable improvement in this area is that the engine now has electronic throttle control like the Corvette instead of the cable control that is in the 2004. The difference between the two is that in the 2005 the throttle is seamless as well as the traction control system which is much less abrasive when active. The traction control system last year had a very aggressive throttle relaxer which would have kicked your foot off the accelerator. In the new 05 it just feels like you have lost a little power while the computer works it’s magic to right your course.

While the power improvements are great, it is the GTO’s new exterior details that really grab you. Now as a no cost option, the hood comes with dual scoops in the style of GTOs past. This makes me wonder how many people would actually pass up the new hood, and how difficult it will be to do so? The hood also is not a true Ram Air type hood but is functional in the way that it breathes cool air on the mighty LS2. The rear end is different with the dual exhaust exiting both sides with a single 31/4 inch tip on each side. This change alone will eliminate one of the GTO’s most glaring original flaws. Also in the rear, “GTO” is embossed in between the two pipes with the name Pontiac taking the place of GTO on the trunk lid. There are two new colors Cyclone Gray and Midnight Blue replacing Cosmos Purple and Barbados Blue. These colors are a great addition to the already nice palette of colors that the GTO already enjoys. The Autocross package which was supposed to be a factory option is now going to be a dealer installed option which will retail for $2995. It will come painted in Silver, Red, and Black and also can come primered if there was another color that you wanted to spray it. The option is only coming for 2005 models and unfortunately will not retrofit for the 2004s. It includes: the grille inserts, a new spoiler, side sills, front clip and new rear fascia. The 18” wheels that came on the GTO show car will be available sometime in the Spring of 2005 according to GM executives. The wheels will come painted silver and not polished like the wheels that were on the Autocross car at SEMA this year.

Now to the driving! As soon as you sit in the driver’s seat you sense something is different because of the change in script on the instrument cluster and a bump in the rev limiter on the tachometer from 6000 RPM to 6500 RPM. Then you turn the GTO over and it loudly suggests something is different from 2004. The 2004 had a very distinct exhaust note, but the 2005 kicks it up a notch with a deeper and louder sound than the 2004. While most of it may be due to the new exhaust system, one can also suspect that the LS2 was throatier than the LS1 by design. The clutch is the same on the 6 speed manual as the 2004 so the transmission on the 2005 is the same as the 2004. The automatic on the other hand is now the 4L65-E instead of last years 4L60-E. This new transmission is an evolution of last years with beefed up internals to handle the 400HP LS2. The driveshaft, differential and CV joints have all been beefed up to handle the extra torque and horsepower of the LS2. It will be interesting to see if the quells some of the wheel hop complaints GTO owners had in the 2005.

After driving both, my honest opinion is that both the manual and the automatic seem to have the exact same seat of the pants acceleration. The engineers said that the automatic runs 0-60 in 4.6 seconds while the 6 speed runs 0-60 in 4.7 seconds while the ¼ mile for automatic is 13.0 seconds and the ¼ mile for the 6 speed is 13.1 seconds. The engine is just awesome! There is better low end torque on the LS2 than the LS1. The best way to describe it is that the LS2 fells like a LS1 that has been eating it’s Wheeties. We obviously did not test the GTO with gas mileage in mind, so I have no numbers to report. Since the LS2 is a technological evolution of the LS1, I would expect similar if not better gas mileage. Other than the LS2 the greatest improvement are the brakes which were simply awesome. I just kept slamming on them lap after lap and they would not fade. I can not say the same for the 2004 brake setup.

In conclusion, the 2005 GTO simply outperforms the 2004 GTO (or any older GTO for that matter) in power and braking. The looks have gotten more in line with enthusiast’s expectation with the new hood and dual exiting pipes. For those who find the stock look still bland, now you can pony up the extra dollars for the Autocross package and the 18” wheels. Speaking of price, though an 05 will cost you a few more dollars, for the improvements you get, it is easy to justify. Matter of fact, 2005 GTO worth every penny and then some! To sum it up, for 2005 Pontiac has taken Holden’s already solid engineering, injected a bit of brash American gusto in the power and style department, and created a car as worthy of the name as any GTO to rumble down the street.

That being said, is the 2004 also a great car in its own right? Yes. But the 2005 GTO is a good evolution of a car that will be with Pontiac for many years to come. If Pontiac wants to win the hearts of enthusiasts with it's new Goat, this is definatly a step in the right direction!

2005 GTO Pricing

A4 Base MSRP = $32,295
+ $700 Destination
+ $1,300 Gas Guzzler Tax
=$34,295

M6 Base MSRP = $32,295
+ $700 Destination
+ $695 6-speed Transmission
=$33,690


Jason who is Z06J in the forums will also be glad to share with you guys his experiences as far as racing and meeting people at Bondurant, so feel free to ask him any questions you may have!

http://www.newagegto.com/forum/index.php?act=ST&f=2&t=3233
 

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yeah but you know what....you can do all of the performance up grades on your own with out buying the 05 and paying out the ace for it. it'll be cheaper, and probably faster too
 

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lambertgoat said:
yeah but you know what....you can do all of the performance up grades on your own with out buying the 05 and paying out the ace for it. it'll be cheaper, and probably faster too
Please don't take this as a personal attack, but your statements are so typical for someone who bought a first-year model and then find out the next year's is a step up. You make it sound like you HAVE to rationalize your older model to those who are eagerly awaiting the newer one. You don't have to rationalize to me, you bought your car for you and you only. No one else's opinion matters. Be proud of your purchase.

And by the way, you could add all sorts of upgrades to the 2005 to make it faster/better than the similar upgrades on a 2004 you mentioned. Just the nature of the beast of car manufacturing. Whoever said "They don't make 'em like they used to" is 100% right. They don't make them like that anymore, they make them BETTER!!!
:cheers
 

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Sweeeeet!
Now that's what I'm talking about.
As A former GTO owner '67 & '68, I just couldn't buy the new one because of some silly things like no hood scoop and the duals being on the same side. I know that sounds dumb but there is this purist thing in me that certain things have to be. Don't get me wrong, I think the '04 GTO is a great car but I just thought it needed that scoop & exhaust the way I thought they should be.

Maybe they heard my thoughts. It seems the '05 will be that way.

Kind of like Ford did with the '05 Stang. Modernized but still had the traits of what made it such a great car. ;)
 

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SDMF Jon said:
Please don't take this as a personal attack, but your statements are so typical for someone who bought a first-year model and then find out the next year's is a step up. You make it sound like you HAVE to rationalize your older model to those who are eagerly awaiting the newer one. You don't have to rationalize to me, you bought your car for you and you only. No one else's opinion matters. Be proud of your purchase.

And by the way, you could add all sorts of upgrades to the 2005 to make it faster/better than the similar upgrades on a 2004 you mentioned. Just the nature of the beast of car manufacturing. Whoever said "They don't make 'em like they used to" is 100% right. They don't make them like that anymore, they make them BETTER!!!
:cheers
......but they don't make them purple.
 
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