The 2008 Pontiac G8 is a full-size four-door sedan with serious muscle car ambitions. The new V-8 engine, aggressive interior, refined interior, and the superb handling performance and ride-ability make the Pontiac G8 a great choice for those maybe wanting a BMW but not able to afford the sticker price.
Body Styles: four-door large sedan
Engines: 3.6-liter V-6, 6.0-liter V-8 engine
Transmissions: five-speed automatic with manual shift option, six-speed automatic
Models: Pontiac G8 Base, Pontiac G8 GT
The 2008 Pontiac G8 is a brand new performance oriented full-size sedan this year.
The 2008 Pontiac G8 is a four-door, full-size performance sedan. To reflect the big engine inside the unit, the G8 has an aggressive appearance. Both the Base and the GT models have a hood with air intake slits that look like little nostrils. The grille is split into two sections, with the Pontiac logo in between the two. The Base model has a spoiler and 18-inch alloy wheels. The G8 GT adds performance-oriented tires and a rear split differential. A sunroof is available as a stand-alone option. A Sport package is available for the GT and it adds 19-inch wheels. Other standard features include power mirrors, fog lights, daytime running lights, dusk sensing lamps, and a tire-pressure monitoring system.
The 2008 Pontiac G8 is the closest Pontiac gets to a high-grade interior. Cheapo pieces of plastic are absent throughout the interior. The center console has a great construction and feels like it will last a lifetime. The traditional Pontiac red lighting that illuminates the instruments is intact. The seats feel pleasant to sit on and are of a sturdy construction. They’re bolstered to keep occupants from rocking too hard back and forth during fast turns. The rear seats are also built nicely, although they do not fold down as consumers may hope. There is a ski pass-through for longer items, though. Altogether, there are 17.5 cubic feet of storage space.
There are a few design and feature mistakes. Notably absent is a navigation system for the G8. It isn’t even available as a stand-alone option. Also, the sensors are a huge throwback to a different era and look very much dated. However, the interior on the G8 is still a major improvement over other Pontiac vehicles on the market. Standard interior features on the Base model include air-conditioning, four-way power driver seating, a tilt/telescoping steering wheel, and a seven-speaker audio system with auxiliary jack. The GT adds to those standard features dual automatic climate control, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, and an upgraded Blaupunkt sound system with a six-CD changer.
Performance & Handling
The 2008 Pontiac G8 comes with one of two engines. The 3.6-liter, V-6 engine has an output of 256 horsepower with 248 lb-ft of torque. It is rear drive and controlled by a five-speed automatic with manual shift controls. The GT model has a six-liter, V-8 engine that produces 361 horsepower with 385 lb-ft of torque. The engine is wed to a six-speed automatic transmission. The GT is able to go zero to 60 mph in 5.3 seconds. The engine would suggest a car that feels like a muscle car more than a sedan. Indeed, the G8 is capable of doing some rather amazing trips around the track, and the tires will smoke with the traction control turned off. However, drivers also get the handling and performance of a sedan along with all that muscle. The vehicle seems to be comfortable in windy turns and on straightaways. The construction is precise, responsive, and if it weren’t for the soft braking, almost perfect. Given the price of the G8, this is a great alternative to a BMW.
The 2008 Pontiac G8 has a lot of extra safety features. Standard on all G8 models are front seat airbags, full-length curtain airbags, four-wheel ABS, brake assist, stability control, and traction control. OnStar is also standard on all G8 models. A pre-collision system detects when a collision is about to occur and engages the brake assist system and tensions the seatbelts to prevent injury in a crash. The OnStar system will also send out an emergency signal when a collision occurs.
EPA Fuel Economy
Pontiac G8 Sedan Base: 17/25 mpg city/highway
Pontiac G8 Sedan GT: 15/24 mpg city/highway
- Powerful engine
- Great handling
- Well-balanced interior
You Won't Like
- Brake power
- Muffled exhaust sound on V-8
Another example of why newer Pontiac vehicles are worth a shot.
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