Small Car Czar
Pontiac Solstice not approved, but spy shots suggest it may be close
By BOB GRITZINGER
DESPITE THIS FULL-COLOR evidence to the contrary, Pontiac officials still say General Motors product planners have yet to give the green light to the Solstice roadster. “We still don’t have an approved program,” says a spokesperson.
Since unveiling the highly acclaimed Solstice concept at the 2002 Detroit show, GM has been struggling with ways to make a competitive yet affordable front-engine, rear-wheel-drive two-seat sports car. Those efforts gained momentum in May when GM’s British subsidiary Vauxhall revealed its VX Lightning roadster concept (AW, May 26), a production-ready showpiece that sources said would also provide the underpinnings for the next Opel Speedster as well as the Solstice.
Power for the sports car will likely come from a supercharged 240-hp version of GM’s 2.2-liter Ecotec inline four-cylinder engine.
Nobody is saying it, but considering the road-readiness of the Pontiac sports car shown here, we anticipate GM is gearing up for a production announcement at the Detroit show in January.