Front Exterior View - 2006 Pontiac GTO 2-door CoupeEnlarge Photo
Everybody who visits Sports Car Monitor wouldn’t mind owning a 2010 Camaro SS. It has rear-wheel-drive handling, a big V-8 and comes with an optional six speed manual transmission. Not to mention stellar performance.
However, with a $30K starting price, the Camaro isn’t exactly cheap. People with muscle car tastes, but hatchback budgets, might want to check out the 2004-2006 Pontiac GTO.
The 2004 Pontiac GTO debuted to mixed results. The car was built in Australia based off of the Holden Monaro platform. The 5.7l LS1 producing 350 horsepower and 365 ft-lbs. of torque propelled the car from 0-60 in 5.3 seconds and to a top speed of 162 mph. It also handled; performing 0.85 g’s on the skidpad. Braking was good too, with 60-0 in 125 feet. Last but not least, the GTO could pull of an amazing 29 mpg on the highway.
However, most people felt that the car looked “too plain” to be a GTO (They forgot that the original 1964 GTO just looked a lot like the plain Tempest.) Mid-year, Pontiac added an appearance package which included a new grill, hood scoops, and an aggressive spoiler. Another complaint was lack of trunk space.
In 2005, the GTO’s engine became the new 6.0l LS2, producing a very round 400hp and 400 ft. lbs of torque. This gave the car a 0-60 time of 4.8 Seconds and top speed of 175 mph. Other specs remained pretty much the same except mileage on the highway dropped to 28 mpg. The 2006, when production stopped, the model stayed pretty much the same.
A total of 40,808 Pontiac GTOs were built.
Good, low-mileage examples can be found for decent prices. This 2006 GTO on eBay has an Buy-it-now price of $19,000. The Brazen Orange, Texas car has the 6 speed manual transmission and 25,000 miles on the clock. That’s a lot of performance and near-new condition for under $20K.
So if you can’t wait for the used 2010 Camaro prices to come down to reasonable levels, why not have a look the 2004-2006 Pontiac GTO?