On This Day In Automotive History General Motors (GM) begins to discontinue its production of Pontiac.
In its humble beginning in Pontiac, Michigan, “Pontiac” began as the Pontiac Buggy Company in 1893 by founder Edward Murphy.
Murphy began producing automobiles by the 1900s through the name Oakland Motor Car Company. After GM bought a piece of his figurative pie, Pontiac debut a five-passenger car at the New York Auto Show in 1926.
The car priced at $845 and GM sold over 76,000 that year.
In 1935 Pontiac began adding its now signature chrome trimmings to its automobiles. The “Silver Streak” was born.
This chrome trend last about 20 years before its revamp in the 60s.
In 1964 Pontiac debuted the GTO, which is remembered as the world’s first muscle car. Big blocks were packed tight into smaller framed automobiles and made the car faster and more powerful.
The bad boy of the 60s, John DeLorean crafted the legendary GTO which paved the way for a whole new era of “muscle” cars.
Next came the Firebird, the Fiero and the Trans Am.
The Pontiac division withing GM was booming through the 1980s, but experts claimed GM cut its success short with its money-saving strategy by having Pontiac share its platform with other GM divisions.
And then … out came the Pontiac Aztec in 2002 and the Vibe in 2006, neither models could save the Pontiac division [or GM for that matter] and on this day in 2009, GM announced Pontiac would be discontinued by 2010.
A month later GM filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection – fourth largest in United States history!