Vehicle Overview from Kelley Blue Book
KBB.com 2009 Pontiac G6 Overview
The 2009 Pontiac G6 is a midsize sedan built from a proven chassis developed in partnership with GM's European subsidiary, Opel. With the G6, Pontiac seeks to impart its trademark styling onto a vehicle providing the ride and handling characteristics so important to younger buyers. In order to lure buyers away from Volkswagen and Mazda, however, a manual transmission option should be made available on both four- and six-cylinder models, while pricing and content must remain competitive with domestic rivals such as the Dodge Avenger and Ford Fusion.
If you're in the market for a sporty domestic midsize sedan that gets good gas mileage, the 2009 Pontiac G6 is right in line with the current offerings from Ford and Dodge.
While the G6 offers decent handling to back up its sporty looks, the base and GT models are not terribly quick and feature a slow-shifting four-speed automatic transmission. Oddly, the base model can be equipped with a much improved six-speed automatic, but the V6-powered GT cannot. Interior plastics are not up to the standards set by Mazda, Volkswagen and Honda.
The base 2.4-liter engine can be teamed with a new six-speed automatic transmission producing better performance and fuel economy. XM Satellite Radio is made standard on the base model, while remote start is added to the GT trim.
If you settle into the GT's driver's seat expecting the performance of a sport sedan, you might be somewhat disappointed by a 219-horsepower pushrod V6 and four-speed automatic transmission, with performance that is decidedly underwhelming. The G6 handles well enough and we appreciated the substantial side bolsters of the front seats. Electric power steering delivers minimal feedback on base cars, but the hydraulic system available on the GT and GXP definitely improves matters. The G6 feels most athletic in GXP form, thanks to its 3.6-liter V6 and six-speed automatic transmission. Unfortunately, a manual transmission is not available, sapping much of the driving character from an otherwise excellent package.
We hope the G6's clean, attractive exterior styling cues carry over to future Pontiacs.
Front and Rear-seat Room
The long wheelbase of the G6 results in lots of legroom and big doors that open wide for rear-seat passengers. Front seats have surprisingly long travel, a bonus for long-legged drivers.
If the exterior styling is a giant leap forward for Pontiac, the interior styling is at least a step in that direction. The chrome gauge surrounds are a little much, and some of the controls appear designed for a more rugged application, but those few rough spots speak volumes for the improvements. While front passengers are treated to comfortable seats with excellent legroom and nicely-styled appointments, the rear-seat passengers are the big winners, with surprisingly generous legroom and big rear doors (both benefits thanks to the long wheelbase) and windows that open all the way down.
Take away the Pontiac badging and grille and it would be almost impossible to identify the G6 as a Pontiac – or as a GM or a domestic car, for that matter. Some of us think the G6, especially in GXP trim, is one of the most attractive cars the domestic manufacturers have ever delivered. Wheels pushed out to the corners underline a strong stance. Front, side and back, both the G6 Coupe and Sedan look great.
Standard equipment on the base G6 includes a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine, four-speed automatic transmission, auxiliary input jack, air conditioning, power windows, power door locks, power mirrors, tilt and telescopic steering wheel, OnStar, head-curtain airbags, front-seat side-impact airbags, traction control, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes (ABS), 16-inch covered steel wheels and automatic headlamps. The GT has a 3.5-liter V6, cruise control, XM Satellite Radio, Monsoon sound system, fog lamps, keyless entry and 17-inch wheels. The GXP adds revised front and rear fascias, 18-inch wheels, StabiliTrak stability control, power driver's seat, chrome exhaust tips, six-speed automatic transmission and a 3.6-liter V6.
Options include leather seating, remote start (base), premium six-disc in-dash CD/MP3 player, power driver's seat, power-adjustable pedals, sunroof, steering wheel-mounted audio controls, fog lamps, rear spoiler and choices of 17- and 18-inch aluminum wheels. The Sport Package 1 on the base G6 adds StabiliTrak stability control and a six-speed automatic transmission, while the Sun and Sound Package adds a six-disc CD changer, power sunroof and auto-dimming rearview mirror with compass.
The ECOTEC four-cylinder engine is all about economy, not performance. Why GM didn't offer a five-speed manual on this model is a mystery, but without it the G6 has little chance of living up to its sporty image. The 3.5-liter V6 has more pulling power but lacks quickness. If you're purchasing the G6 to perform, you have to go with the GXP's new 3.6-liter V6. With its variable valve timing and relatively flat torque curve, this engine has the power and response that driving enthusiasts demand.
2.4-liter in-line 4
164 horsepower @ 6400 rpm
156 lb.-ft. of torque @ 5000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 22/30 (four-speed auto), 22/33 (six-speed auto)
3.5-liter V6 (Bin-4 and PZEV emissions)
219 horsepower @ 5800 rpm
220 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/29 (base), 17/26 (GT)
252 horsepower @ 6300 rpm
251 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/26
The 2009 G6 Sedan's Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) starts around $20,000, while the GT and GXP models have MSRPs closer to $24,000 and $28,000 respectively. That's in line with the entry-level sedans from Hyundai and Kia, but a bit pricier than the V6-powered models from Dodge, Honda and Nissan. To get the best deal on your G6, be sure to check the New Car Blue Book Value, which shows the typical transaction price paid for a G6 in your area. The 2009 Pontiac G6 is projected to hold only average residual values, on par with the Ford Fusion and Dodge Avenger, but far below the marks set by the Honda Accord, Volkswagen Jetta and Nissan Altima.