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1996 Pontiac Grand Prix Review
A solid pick with a few flaws.
Reviewed by Automotive on
The 1996 Pontiac Grand Prix is a car manufactured by General Motors (GM) and was introduced as a full-sized car in 1962. Since then, it continued production for five generations. It marks the end of the fifth generation. GM took 10 years to prefect the Grand Prix’s platform. Since the fifth generation of the Grand Prix debuted in 1988, the Grand Prix has been a source of losses for GM.
Engines: 3.1-liter V-6, 3.4-liter V-6
Transmissions: four-speed automatic
Models: Pontiac Grand Prix SE, Pontiac Grand Prix GT, Pontiac Grand Prix GTP
The 1996 Pontiac Grand Prix comes with some minor powertrain and trim improvements. One of the more significant improvements was made on the 3.4-liter, V-6 engine, which churns out five more horsepower than last year’s version.
The 1996 Pontiac Grand Prix uses a front-wheel-drive, W-body platform and looks a lot like the 1989 model that started the fifth generation, which means that it looks quite outdated. It has a wheelbase of 107.5 inches, and the length varies according to the body style. The sedan has a length of 195.7 inches, while the coupe has a length of the 194.8 inches. The height of the sedan is 56.3 inches, while the height of the coupe is 54.6 inches.
The 1996 Pontiac Grand Prix uses some elements in order to imitate the flair of a BMW, like the use of backlit red gauge clusters. However, it's not able to succeed in doing so and lacks the interior maturity or purposefulness that is present in the German carmaker’s products.
The 1996 Pontiac Grand Prix was introduced with some big interior problems, but the revision in 1994 took care of some of them. For example, the new controls on the dash are now easier to reach and simpler to understand. The confusing and small switches and sliders are replaced by a much simpler system of large and soft-touch rotary dials. The interior is spacious enough to fit four adults with relative comfort; however, the rear bench is a set too low and lacks comfort.
Performance & Handling
The 1996 Pontiac Grand Prix is available with two engine options. The base engine is a 3.1-liter V-6 that delivers 160 horsepower and 185 lb-ft of torque. The optional engine is a 3.4-liter V-6 that delivers 215 horsepower and 215 lb-ft of torque.
The 1996 Pontiac Grand Prix provides ample acceleration in the base engine and is relatively quiet and smooth when compared to the straight-four engines that were used in previous years’ models. Nevertheless, the 3.4-liter V-6 is the best engine choice in this case, offering better performance, but its fuel economy is slightly lower than that of the 3.1-liter engine.
The 1996 Pontiac Grand Prix gets a suspension that's a little better than the Regal, Lumina, and Cutlass Supreme. This means that it is relatively smoother and more composed than these cars. The cornering ability is quite impressive, too.
The 1996 Pontiac Grand Prix doesn’t have any crash test information available.
EPA Fuel Economy
- Powerful engine
- Smooth ride
- Good steering and handling
You Won't Like
- Lack of rear seat comfort
- Noisy engine
A solid pick with a few flaws.
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