All American Automotive shared This Day in Automotive History's post.
General Motors made a fateful announcement on this day in 2009 when it declared plans to phase out the Pontiac brand. The Pontiac brand predates the name nearly 20 years from when it first appeared on a car in 1926. Oakland Motorcars was founded in 1909 in Pontiac, Michigan, which lays within Oakland County. Two years later it was bought by General Motors. Oakland was an expensive automobile and GM put out the first Pontiac as a companion make. The success of the Pontiac brand led to the dropping of the Oakland name by General Motors in 1932.
Sales for Pontiac remained high through the onset of World War II. Bonus fact: A Pontiac Torpedo was the last civilian vehicle produced in the US during WWII, production ceased on February 2, 1942.
Pontiac has been home of some of the most iconic cars built in the United States, including the GTO, the Trans-Am, the Grand Am and the Fiero. Alright, maybe not the Fiero, but come on, you know exactly what it is!
As the recession set in during the 2000s many automakers began to struggle. The fight was very real at General Motors. In order to secure government funding for a bail out they needed to completely redesign their sales model, which included offloading several brands. At first it was believed that Hummer, Saturn, SAAB and GMC trucks would be sent to the wayside.
By April 2009 several automotive publications were reporting that GM was doing a study suggesting it might eliminate the Pontiac brand altogether. On April 23 a report was published saying the company would drop the Pontiac brand and preserve the GMC truck line, along with Chevrolet, Cadillac, and Buick brands. The decision to eliminate Pontiac was made primarily due to the increasing threat of a bankruptcy filing.] On April 27, 2009, GM announced that Pontiac would be dropped and that all of its remaining models would be phased out by the end of 2010. The last Pontiac was a G6, built at the Orion Township Assembly Line in January, 2010.
Pictures include a Pontiac G6, similar the last vehicle produced by Pontiac.
A 1985 Pontiac Trans-Am y Xraydeltaone at the English language Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0,
A 1926 Pontiac Advertisement
A 1966 Pontiac GTO