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I finally got to take a test drive of my dad's new GTO. I am not a detroit muscle guy, and I like manual transmissions over auto's(he has the 4 speed), but I must say the thing is a blast. It is a very powerful, yet refined car. I have never driven a car that I felt so comfortable with in a matter of seconds. Most cars take a while to adjust to, but I just felt very at ease driving it, and was comfortable putting it through it's paces. Only way I could sum it up is that the power and handling was unbeleivable and very "raw", yet I could see my mother driving it to the grocery store just the same. It really is a phenominal machine. The tranny is silky smooth, and the accelleration makes me feel like I am taking off in a small jet. Every time I puched the throttle I got a smile on my face. Also, despite the exterior plain styling, the interior is very nice, and even sitting in the back I was extremely comfortable...in fact more comfortable than most mercedes and BMW's. But I am a sucker for bucket seats, even in the back. Overall, I am very impressed with this car, and I would buy one in a heartbeat with an M6 if I could stand that kind of gas mileage :)

Anyhow, after driving it, I had two questions. I thought I read somewhere that there was a way to adjust the suspension on the fly, such as "touring" and "sport"...is there? My dad said he didn't think so. Also, when you put the car in park,the back end seems to raise up, and when you put it in drive the back drops back down. Why is this? Is this just something inherent in automatics?
 

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That's interesting about the back dropping down, or squatting, when you put it in drive. I have an M6 and I think I've noticed the same. Mostly when taking it out of reverse and into 1st. I thought it was my imagination. Anyone??
 

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How "raw" is the suspension feel? I would first and foremost check the tire pressures. The cars are shipped with 60psi from Aussie land, and some dealers forget to lower these pressures to the normal reading. (You can read more about this in a similar post a few weeks back, titled "TIRE PRESSURE WARNING" or something close)

Anyways, I think the car is very well suited for every day driving, and does not feel raw at all. Ofcourse, I'm the sort that enjoys a rough driving car if it produces great numbers on an autocross course.

AND, to put away another myth that I'm picking up on, the 6-speed gets way better gas mileage than the auto does. I'm sure some people on this site have seen 30mpg (we saw 32 the whole way driving out to Vegas and back this summer in our '99 Corvette). Basically the same motor, a little less aerodynamic, but still should linger around 30mpg on the highway.

Infact, if you check out the window sticker and compare the auto vs. the manual, you will see that the auto has a $1000 gas guzzler tax, whereas the 6-speed does not have this!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
The ride is not a concern really, I just thought I read something somewhere that you could adjust the suspension.

Hrm, I didn't know this car would get close to 30 on the highway with the M6. Changes my consideration.
 

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Best I can get in my M6 is 20mpg...but I climb a 4000' mountain every day in my Goat.

Oh, I also have a tungsten foot. :D
 

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Whiteshadow said:
I would first and foremost check the tire pressures. The cars are shipped with 60psi from Aussie land, and some dealers forget to lower these pressures to the normal reading. (You can read more about this in a similar post a few weeks back, titled "TIRE PRESSURE WARNING" or something close)

QUOTE]

Yes, I took delivery and drove the next night down a toll road to the Astros game last Saturday and thought, damn - this is stiffer than the SS Camaro was. Sunday a.m, check pressures - 55 psi - all the way around :mad:

lazy dealer - and I told 'em so.
 

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Whiteshadow said:
Infact, if you check out the window sticker and compare the auto vs. the manual, you will see that the auto has a $1000 gas guzzler tax, whereas the 6-speed does not have this!
The only reason the M6 doesn't have the gas guzzler tax is becuase of the skip shift (CAGS)...this is how GM/Chevy have gotten around a guzzler tax on all their V8 sports cars (Camaro/Firebird, Corvette, GTO, etc.)

They use it as a marketing tool: "...we have the only 400HP V8 that doesn't require a gas guzzler tax..." Truth is, it's the tranny that's saving you on a technicality.

There is a reason there is an easy fix for this too...customers. :)
 

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Doug said:
... Also, when you put the car in park,the back end seems to raise up, and when you put it in drive the back drops back down. Why is this? Is this just something inherent in automatics?
This is what Pontiac calls "Launch Mode". The sales guys are supposed to point it out to potential owners (as tho its something very cool). You can read all about it in the silver GTO coffee table book from Pontiac (a nice book!).

All it really is is the engive torque "pre-loading" up the drive train, hence an automatic thing only.

I've never seen any mention of the suspention being tunable.

---Larry
 

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I ordered that book last week right after I took delivery.

How long 'till it arrived ?
 

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About a week or 10 days as I recall, so you should be getting it real soon.

It is a REAL nice collectors item book.

---Larry
 
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