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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, everybody--
I've just joined this fourm as I begin my (second) search for my own muscle car. The first search happened ten years ago only to end with me not being able to afford the Z28 I wanted; then, Chevy stopped making the Camaro, so I figured my muscle car dream would have to wait.

Now I've discovered the GTO.....

But I'm curious. I keep reading about how this is an Australian car sent to the U.S. to be sold, but I can't find anything that details why this decision was made or why it was called GTO or anything. Can anybody provide that history? It's not a deal killer, don't misunderstand, I'm just trying to learn as much as I can.

Also, another mystery I must solve.... I sell cars for a Saturn dealership but nobody there knows if my GM discount would cover the GTO, or only a Saturn. If anybody has any info on that, I would greatly appreciate it; otherwise, I need to track it down. --Brian
 

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Saw this on the net............
With the safety and emissions laws of the late 1960s and early 1970s, the Pontiac GTO, like all other muscle cars, took some major hits to performance. By the time it was dropped in 1973, it was a cosmetic shadow of its former self. Although rumors about a new GTO occasionally surfaced, they were merely rumors. Ten years ago, at the full-line press launch for 1994 models, Pontiac brought an experimental prototype out for members of the press to drive around Heartland Park Raceway. Just about the first question asked was ``Is this the new GTO?'' ``No!'' was the answer, and for good reason. The little beast was, if my memory is working, a Grand Am with a seriously-boosted turbo Quad4 engine driving the front wheels. It was quick, it was nasty, but even then Pontiac realized that a GTO should be a rear-wheel drive, V8-powered car. Let other manufacturers besmirch once-revered names by bring them back in an incorrect manner.
Meanwhile thousands of miles away in Australia.... American manufacturers have had Australian operations for many years, and in many ways the two countries are similar. Only in Australia and the U.S. are vast distances routinely covered between towns, and in the Australian Outback distances are longer than even in the American West, and population densities lower. Big V8 engines were popular in Australia, as they were lightly-stressed and reliable. And the Aussies took to muscle cars just like Americans, with examples from both GM (sold under the Holden name) and Ford surviving long after they disappeared from America. As safety and emissions regulations converged worldwide, it became easier for manufacturers to use the same chassis and engines platforms worldwide. So it was only a matter of time before someone in a position of power at GM took a look down under and realized that there were cars that American enthusiasts could love. In particular, for a two-door coupe with the classic front-engine, rear-wheel drive layout and with a V8 engine and fully-independent suspension as bonuses, there was the Holden Monaro. If it could be made to comply with American safety and emissions regulations, it could work in America.

The Monaro (and the related Commodore sedan and some very interesting other vehicles) already used the local version of the aluminum LS-1 V8 found in the Corvette (and previously in the Firebird and Camaro) so a US-legal powertrain was no problem. Structural modifications to meet safety requirements could be done. But Australians, like the British, drive on the left side of the road, with the steering wheel on the right side of the car. Fortunately there were no structural barriers to left-hand drive conversion, and so, with a few cosmetic changes the Monaro comes to America as the latest Pontiac GTO.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Hey, thanks for the replies! That story is great! In fact, I saw the Grand Am version the other night at a Chevy dealer, where I went looking at Corvettes and thought I had stumbled upon a used GTO (the snouts gave it away). But on the side, it said "Grand Am Ram Air V6" or something similar.

There's a Pontiac dealership across the street from the dealer I work at; maybe I'll leave early this afternoon and see if I can check out a GTO. --Brian
 

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colt45shooter said:
Hey, thanks for the replies! That story is great! In fact, I saw the Grand Am version the other night at a Chevy dealer, where I went looking at Corvettes and thought I had stumbled upon a used GTO (the snouts gave it away). But on the side, it said "Grand Am Ram Air V6" or something similar.

There's a Pontiac dealership across the street from the dealer I work at; maybe I'll leave early this afternoon and see if I can check out a GTO. --Brian
Not every dealer has them in stock. I know a few dealers in my area that only have a handful. Good luck.
 

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It was a way Bob Lutz could quickly get a "real" sport car to the Pontiac Line Up.

From rumor mill around here I heard the deal was sealed when GM offered the LS2 to them.

Of course 18000 were originally slated from Holden they were only able to do around 15000 the first year, 13000 last year and probably less than that this year.

This will be the last year of this generation of the GTO. After this only speculation to a Zetta platform GTO. But with the revival of the camaro we might see a firechicken running around the fleet in liue of a Goat. Hope not, but you never know.

What area of the country are you in?
 

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colt45shooter said:
Hi... I'm in California, the Bay Area.
I'm from the Bay Area Also, a bit of advice, avoid Michael Stead Dealerships (check out my previous post about them, do a search on "Michael Stead"), I have gotten the worst buying experience in my life there, I do recommend you check out Colma Pontiac in Colma and ask for Steven Liu, tell them Tommy with the blue GTO sent you, last I checked, they have 4 GTO's in stock, Red 05 used, Silver 05 new, black 06 new, and one more I can't remember. Good Luck with your purchase, hope the info helps, Tommy................
 
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