Filed under: Car Buying, Etc., Pontiac
2009 Pontiac Solstice Coupe GXP - Click above for high-res image gallery
has been dead for some time now, at least from a manufacturing point of view. The Vibe
was the last vehicle
to roll of a Pontiac assembly line, marking the end of new car production for the brand in August of 2009. However, the former automaker has been stuttering and mumbling to itself while lying in its death bed. After all, new cars still needed homes and buyers eventually ponied up dough for the keys to the ghostly souls of a marque that once built the king of muscle cars: the GTO. Now, though, the very last new Pontiacs have been sold and the brand is completely, officially, no-doubt-about-it dead.
In an act of
mercy, retired police officer Ed Dieffenbach drove over 1,100 miles to trade in his Chevrolet Silverado
on one of the last Pontiac Solstice Coupes
left in the country. Driving from Miami to northern Florida, Mr. Dieffenbach helped put an end to the brand's suffering while also putting a somewhat stylish two-door in his driveway. We're sure he'll have years of fun with the Solstice, as long as he doesn't need to use the cup holder... or stow the roof... or look back.
Photos copyright (C)2010 Sam Abuelsamid / AOL
[Source: The New York Times
Finally Official: Pontiac is dead originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 01 Nov 2010 12:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Read
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A service bulletin outlining yet another fix for Toyota's unintended acceleration
problems (this time, the Pontiac Vibe) shows just how difficult re-engineering a car part is. Steps involving hacksaws and bubble wrap are both comical and a little unnerving. More »
Filed under: Wagon, Government/Legal, Recalls, Safety, Hatchback, Toyota
2009-2010 Toyota Matrix - click above for high-res image gallery
Back in February, The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration initiated an investigation of 749,685 2009 and 2010 model year Corolla
vehicles for a potential steering issue. And while we haven't heard much from the government agency regarding this issue, the Detroit Free Press
reports that Toyota
has indicated that the problem is not a safety defect and thus doesn't warrant a recall. Instead, the automaker will provide a free fix to customers who claim to have an issue.
NHTSA reportedly launched the investigation after 168 reports that Corolla and Matrix electric power steering units were prone to drifting or locking up, with the problem most notable when cruising at highway speeds. Toyota has reportedly told the Free Press
that it has collected a total of 437 reports, including 11 injuries and 18 crashes. Further, the automaker has been receiving complaints about this issue since 2008. Spokesperson Brian Lyons reportedly tells the Freep
that the majority of issues involve wandering from the dead-ahead steering position and that the company considers the problem a customer satisfaction issue, not a defect.
To address customer concerns, Toyota has sent a Technical Service Bulletin (TSB) to its dealers advising technicians to check tire pressure and alignment. If that doesn't fix the problem, the next step is to replace the computer that governs the electric power steering with a new unit that has been re-tuned with a different steering feel.
Not classifying the Corolla/Matrix issues as a safety defect figures to save the Japanese company a lot of cash that would be tied up in a recall. Toyota will also avoid having to update regulators, who were informed of its decision to forgo recall proceedings way back in May. NHTSA hasn't publicly said anything since the Toyota proclamation and the investigation is reportedly still ongoing. With 11 injuries, 18 crashes and hundreds of reported problems, we're very interested to see if NHTSA ultimately agrees with Toyota on this one, or if the situation will eventually result in another recall and additional bad publicity for the automaker. Likewise, with General Motors
having sold its own Matrix twin, the Pontiac Vibe
, it presumably faces the same sort of steering issue. If so, it will be interesting to see if the Detroit automaker chooses to address the issue in the same way.
[Source: Detroit Free Press
Report: Toyota says Corolla/Matrix steering issue not a defect, will offer fix to complainers originally appeared on Autoblog on Tue, 13 Jul 2010 11:29:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.Read
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