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Not-So-Shocking Survey: Pontiac Is Most-Favored Forlorn General Motors Brand

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1964 Pontiac GTO

1964 Pontiac GTO

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Life is full of senseless tasks: making the bed, for example, or sweeping the sidewalk. The latest we've seen: an online survey of nearly 1,700 auto consumers, which reveals that out of General Motors four nixed brands, Pontiac is the one that'll be missed the most. (To quote one of our nieces, "Well, duh.")

That's not to say that the survey was meritless. In fact, it may have helped debunk the myth of widespread Saturn fandom: only 9% of those surveyed wanted Saturn to stick around. Dang. Can't Mr. Penske get a little love?

Want the full details? There's a partial press release posted below.


Consumers want their Hummers…? Pontiac and Hummer take top spots on list of GM brands
auto consumers want to survive.

CarGurus survey finds almost half (44%) of respondents want Pontiac to survive GM’s downsizing, and a quarter want Hummer. Few consumers care about Saab or Saturn.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., June 15, 2009 -- CarGurus® (, a leading online automotive community, today announced the results of its latest survey of 1,693 online automotive consumers worldwide. When asked which of the four GM brands they want to survive planned elimination, forty-four percent of respondents selected Pontiac, and 27% chose Hummer. Saab was chosen by 20% of respondents, and Saturn by only 9%.

“Pontiac has a trailblazing heritage – the 1964 Pontiac GTO is widely credited with starting the muscle-car craze – and its current G6 is the 20th best-selling car in the U.S., so I’m not surprised to see consumers vote to save this historic brand,” said Langley Steinert, CEO of CarGurus. “What did surprise me, however, was the relative popularity of the Hummer brand over that of Saab and Saturn. The Saturn Vue, for instance, is a top-50 best-selling car in the United States, while Hummer’s best-selling model – the H3 – ranks 153rd. I would have expected Saturn to be the other brand consumers wanted to see survive GM’s reorganization.”

Survey Results

Across the CarGurus Network, 1,693 respondents answered the question:

Which of the brands GM plans to get rid of would you most like to see survive? (Total Votes = 1,693)

  • Pontiac – 44%
  • Hummer – 27%
  • Saab – 20%
  • Saturn – 9%
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Comments (3)
  1. Wait a minute! Lately there has been nothing about Pontiac vehicles to distinguish them except for the Australian G8. Back in 1967, while I was a Chevy engineer, I bought my family a Pontiac catalina wagon. It has a distinct engine 421 CID, Hydramatic, a different frame, wheels, brakes, suspension, front and rear sheetmetal -- none of which looked like a warmed over Chevy except for the basic B-body platform.
    Get real guys. When GM has to source a vehicle from Australia to get a real car, you should know that the Pontiac of old is not coming back.
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  2. Aside from the Pontiac G8, the other worthwhile Pontiacs are also not really Pontiacs. The Vibe is a Toyota Matrix rebadged, and the other neat open top car may survive as an Open/Saturn by another name. Stop whimpering and get over it. GM really screwed up the Pontiac/Buick lines pretty bad with their nickle nursing.
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  3. Regardless of their current status, this survey just tells me that Pontiac and Hummer are worthwhile brands that should still have value going forward. The Hummer purchase by the Chinese is the real wildcard. Even 5 years ago I don't think the Chinese would have been up to this task, since there are so many ways to go wrong here. But maybe they'll pleasantly surprise.
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