Shopping for a new Pontiac G8?
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FEATURES | 7 out of 10
OnStar “not for folks with privacy paranoia”
Car and Driver
“comprehensive array of power assists”
Kelley Blue Book
Option packages at “fairly reasonable prices”
Because of the G8’s Australian heritage, certain technological options expected in the U.S. market aren’t available. Otherwise, the G8 is a formidably equipped sedan.
Features on every G8 are substantial. Even standard models arrive from the factory with power front seats; a rear spoiler; 18-inch wheels; an AM/FM/CD audio system with an auxiliary jack for iPods and other MP3 players; and air conditioning. Performance tires come standard on V-8 versions, and Edmunds.com notes the use of a dual-zone climate control and a premium Blaupunkt audio system. Kelley Blue Book highlights the G8’s steering-wheel audio controls and trip computer, while Cars.com adds that options include a sunroof, leather seats, and other features in reasonably priced packages.
A navigation system is the most glaring omission from the options list, even though the center stack seems designed for it and the premium sound system comes with a 6.5-inch display. Instead, GM sells its “turn-by-turn” navigation service as a part of its OnStar system. With this system, you press a button to talk with an operator who sends recorded directions directly to your car. Jalopnik says this “more than makes up” for the lack of a built-in nav, but Car and Driver contends that the setup is “not for folks with privacy paranoia,” and recommends a trip to an aftermarket electronics shop. As users of a portable navigation system (a $300 bargain compared to the usual $2,000 navigation system prices charged by car companies), TheCarConnection.com’s editors agree wholeheartedly.
The 2009 Pontiac G8 lacks some of the features available on competing models.