The 2002 Pontiac Aztek debuted in 2001 to a poor reception. It classifies as a sport recreational vehicle that tries to incorporate aspects of both a minivan and an SUV. All this comes packaged into a very distinctive-looking auto, and whether or not it succeeds remains debatable.
The exterior styling looks extremely eye-catching, with a very aggressive look. If you like driving a head-turner but need the versatility offered by a minivan, then the Aztek may be worth a look, but it certainly doesn't have the ability for any serious off-roading duties. This may make it the perfect choice for a soccer mom who gets bored by the idea of driving a run-of-the-mill minivan.
Body Styles: sport recreational vehicle
Engines: 3.4-liter V-6
Transmissions: four-speed automatic
Models: Pontiac Aztek
After the Pontiac Aztek’s introduction in 2001, Pontiac decided to make over the Aztek for 2002. New modifications for this year include a rear spoiler, and the previously two-tone exterior now uses only one color. A number of features that were optional on the previous year’s model come standard, and the Aztek has 16-inch wheels which help balance the exterior styling.
The exterior of the 2002 Pontiac Aztek looks like something that you either love or hate. No one confuses it with the other SUVs on the market, and it appeals to younger buyers as many people simply consider the styling to be too avant-garde or, even worse, ugly.
The Aztek has four doors, and the grille identifies it as a Pontiac. A large glass rear window flips up, and the rear of the Aztek appears steeply sloped. The tailgate beneath the rear glass window folds down. The Aztek sits on a 108.3-inch wheelbase, and its overall length totals 182 inches, which makes it shorter than Pontiac's Montana minivan. The Aztek uses either front drive or all-wheel drive and comes fitted with three-spoke, 16-inch, aluminum wheels standard, while 17-inch tires remain available as an optional extra with all-wheel drive.
The Aztek comfortably seats five people, with two in the front and three in the back. Standard seating in the 2002 Pontiac Aztek includes two front bucket seats and a rear seat for three people. Optional features include two captain’s chairs instead of the rear bench. These seats can be folded down to create extra cargo space or even removed completely. With the rear seats removed the cargo capacity increases to a very respectable 93 cubic feet.
Pontiac offers a couple of storage systems for the Aztek which include a cargo tray that pulls out, which can hold up to 400 pounds of cargo, as well as cargo nets capable of holding up to 200 pounds, which are secured using configurable floor-mounted anchors. Another useful standard feature, the removable insulated cooler, latches in between the two front seats and holds up to 12 beverage cans.
Other standard equipment includes a CD stereo and radio. If you choose a model with leather seating, then you get heated front bucket seats, and Azteks with the upgraded six-disc CD changer come with a steering wheel wrapped in leather, complete with audio controls. Other optional equipment includes a head-up display which projects the Aztek’s speed, a low-fuel warning, turn signals, and the current radio station onto the windshield.
Performance & Handling
The 2002 Pontiac Aztek contains a 3.4-liter V-6 that produces 185 horsepower, which seems a little weak for a vehicle of this size. It offers a surprisingly nice drive and feels very solid on the road with responsive steering. Driving on the highway and maneuvering around the city prove equally satisfactory. Its performance seems just as good as other SUVs in this class.
Safety features include child seat anchors, an assisted braking system, dual front side-mounted airbags, fog lamps, headlamps that automatically turn on at dusk, and front and rear headrests.
EPA Fuel Economy
Pontiac Aztec Base: 17/24 mpg city/highway
- Versatile seating arrangement
- Well-appointed interior
- Innovative exterior styling
You Won't Like
- Strange exterior styling
- Lack of engine power
You'll either love or hate the look.
If You Like This Vehicle
- Ford Explorer
- Jeep Grand Cherokee
- Buick Rendezvous