The 1996 Pontiac Trans Sport is a minivan manufactured by General Motors that has two other siblings: the Oldsmobile Silhouette and the Chevrolet Lumina APV. All three minivans shared most of their attributes with each other.
The 1996 Pontiac Trans Sport was first introduced in late 1989 along with its siblings. It quickly became popular for its radical styling, which was actually based on the Trans Sport concept car that was introduced in 1986.
Body Styles: minivan
Engines: 3.4-liter V-6
Transmissions: four-speed automatic
Models: Pontiac Trans Sport SE
The 1996 Pontiac Trans Sport is only available with a 3.4-liter, V-6 engine, which replaces the weaker base engine along with the optional, 3.8-liter, V-6 engine. The new engine also comes with only one transmission, and air-conditioning is now a standard feature.
The 1996 Pontiac Trans Sport carries forward the same futuristic but sometimes controversial exterior styling from previous model years. This includes the sleek and aerodynamic exterior, the large and swooping windshield, and the high-gloss black painted roof panels.
The 1996 Pontiac Trans is based on the U platform, which uses galvanized steel space frame covered by composite plastic panels that are resistant to minor dings, dents, and rust.
The 1996 Pontiac Trans Sport is quite roomy. The front bucket seats are removable and thankfully only weigh just 36 pounds, making them easy to carry. One of the plus points is its power sliding door, which can be opened or closed with a remote entry key fob or a button inside. The overall quality of the interior is quite good and well fitted with features like the sturdy cup holders on the center console.
The 1996 Pontiac Trans Sport's long sloping nose can give a disconcerting view up front for some drivers, but visibility towards the side and rear is good. The front view can be uncomfortable at first, but it doesn't take much time to get used to it.
Although the driver’s position is a little different than that of most minivans, the seating itself is quite comfortable if the low seatback is ignored. The gauges up front are large and sport-oriented, which is typical of any Pontiac. It can seat five passengers as standard, but a seven-passenger arrangement is also available as an option.
Performance & Handling
The 1996 Pontiac Trans Sport is powered by a 3.4-liter, V-6 engine that delivers 225 lb-ft of torque at 3200 rpm and 170 horsepower. The restyling in 1994 has made the performance a lot more car-like. The 3.4-liter engine provides the power from the 3800 engine in previous models and the fuel economy of the first 3.1-liter engine.
The 1996 Pontiac Trans Sport comes with four-wheel anti-lock brakes along with a driver’s airbag as standard safety features. Not surprisingly, it gets a full five-star rating for driver safety, but it also gets a mediocre three-star rating for passenger safety during frontal impact tests conducted by the NHTSA.
EPA Fuel Economy
Pontiac Trans Sport: 19/26 mpg city/highway
- Good performance
- Lots of space inside
- Removable and light front seats
You Won't Like
- Poor front visibility
- Exterior design may not appeal to some
Not many options available.
If You Like This Vehicle
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