Pontiac

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Pontiac was an automobile manufacturer that was established in 1926 as a division of General Motors. Although Pontiac motor vehicles were first produced in 1907, the company was quickly merged into Oakland Motor Company, and began to produce motor vehicles branded Pontiac as a companion brand in 1926. Pontiac was sold in the United States, Canada, and Mexico by General Motors (GM). Pontiac has been marketed as the performance division of General Motors for many years, specializing in mainstream performance vehicles.

On April 27, 2009, amid ongoing financial problems and restructuring efforts, GM announced it would discontinue the Pontiac brand by the end of 2010 and focus on four core brands in North America: Chevrolet, Cadillac, Buick, and GMC.

Contents

History

1899–1926

The Pontiac Spring and Wagon Works was incorporated in July 1899 by Albert G. North and Harry G. Hamilton. By 1905 they had taken over the manufacturing of the Rapid Truck (from the Rapid Motor Vehicle Co.) that had been introduced two years earlier. In 1907 they decided to produce an automobile.

The first Pontiac automobile was introduced that fall by the Pontiac Spring & Wagon Works. It was a highwheeler weighing 1,000 pounds (450 kg) and powered by a two-cylinder water-cooled 12 hp (8.9 kW) engine. The prototype was displayed in October 1907 at an exhibition sponsored by the Carriage Dealers' Association in New York City's Grand Central Palace. In December of the same year several of the new Pontiacs were exhibited at the Chicago Automobile Show. Well received by the press, the car featured final drive by double chain and a friction transmission. The wheelbase was 70 inches (1,800 mm), front wheels 38, with 4Os in the rear, and solid tires all-around. The first deliveries were probably made in early 1908.

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