The History of Pontiac

Pontiac is a division of General Motors Corporation that existed from 1926 to 2009. Initially, Pontiac was created as a 'companion brand' to Oakland, an older brand that occupied an intermediate position in the GM hierarchy between Chevrolet and Buick. The new car turned out to be so popular that it soon completely ousted Oakland from the market. During the Great Depression, Pontiac and Chevrolet production lines were merged, and since then their models shared many common components. Until the mid-'50s, Pontiac's whole image was built around Indian themes, and the company's products were quite conservative, aimed at older people. With the arrival of the new director Simon Knudsen in 1956, Pontiac severed ties with the past and was reoriented to the youth segment of the market. Performance was at the heart of the marketing strategy, and by the beginning of the next decade, Pontiac full-size wide-track cars ('Wide-Track') and powerful V8 engines were dominating NASCAR racing.

In the '60s, Pete Estes and John DeLorean continued Knudsen's legacy. They propelled Pontiac to third place in the industry rankings, which the brand held from 1962 to 1969. Cars created during this period included the compact Pontiac Tempest (1961), the first American muscle car Pontiac GTO (1964), the Pontiac Firebird 'pony car' (1967), and the mid-size Pontiac Grand Prix luxury coupe (1969). The fuel crisis of the early '70s put an end to the high-speed cars, although the mighty Firebird Trans Am was produced until 1981. The rest of the line shifted the emphasis from power to luxury, and Pontiac began to lose its individuality. In the '80s and '90s, all of its models, with the exception of the center-engine sports car Pontiac Fiero, had twins in other GM divisions. At the turn of the millennium, the management of the corporation tried to return the brand to its youth status, reviving the Pontiac GTO (Australian assembly) and including other cars with V8 engines into the lineup. The economic crisis of 2008, which led to the bankruptcy of General Motors and the liquidation of the brand, put an end to Pontiac's history. Do not forget to use Pontiac VIN decoder in order to avoid potential problems when buying a used car.

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