The Pontiac Torrent is a crossover SUV that has been in production since the summer of 2005 (as a 2006 model). Due to GM's attempt to strengthen Pontiac's image as a performance-oriented brand, the vehicle will be discontinued after the 2009 model year. The GMC Terrain is considered to be the SUV's successor. As a mid-size SUV, the Torrent directly competes with vehicles such as the Hyundai Santa Fe, Honda Pilot and GMC Acadia.

The Pontiac Torrent is a badge-engineered clone of the Chevrolet Equinox. Both vehicles are built on the GM Theta platform (along with the Saturn VUE and Suzuki XL-7) and feature nearly identical designs. Dimensions that include a length of 188.8 inches, width of 71.4 inches and height of 69.3 inches provide ample interior room. Two rows of seats comfortably accommodate up to five passengers with plenty of legroom and headroom. A 60/40 rear seat slides eight inches forward or backward for storage or comfort flexibility. Maximum cargo volume is 68.6 cubic feet.

Pontiac Torrent Trim Levels

The Torrent is available is two trim levels – base and GXP. The base model comes with a healthy dose of comfort and convenience features that include air conditioning, cruise control, OnStar assistance, height adjustable driver's seat, fold-flat rear seat, power accessories, remote keyless entry, stereo system with CD/MP3 player, satellite radio, rear defogger and automatic headlights. The GXP model adds a leather-wrapped steering wheel with radio controls, remote engine start, 6-way power driver's seat, heated front seats, floormats and automatic day/night rearview mirror. Both models are available in 2WD or AWD.

Popular optional equipment available for both the base model and GXP include leather upholstery, power sunroof, high-performance stereo with 6-disc CD changer, DVD entertainment system and GPS navigation.

Pontiac Torrent Performance

The standard engine for the base Pontiac Torrent is a 3.4-liter V6 that delivers 185 horsepower and 210 lb-ft. of torque. The sporty GXP offers more power in the form of a 3.6-liter V6, which musters 264 horsepower and 250 lb-ft. of torque. The base model features a 5-speed automatic transmission, while the GXP boasts a 6-speed automatic. Other notable performance features available for the Torrent include fog lights and a sport-tuned suspension.

Pontiac Torrent Safety

A variety of safety features are available on the base Pontiac Torrent, including dual front airbags, side curtain airbags, antilock 4-wheel disc brakes, traction control, an antiskid system and daytime running lights. No safety upgrades are available for the GXP. In NHTSA crash tests, the Torrent posted respectable scores, achieving a perfect 5 stars in the driver and passenger front impact categories. For 4WD rollover and rollover resistance, the Pontiac Torrent received 4 stars.

Pontiac Torrent Popularity

The Pontiac Torrent was a modest success for GM. Year-to-year units sold for the SUV are as follows:

  • 2005 – 10,303 vehicles
  • 2006 – 43,174 vehicles
  • 2007 – 32,644 vehicles
  • 2008 – 17,712 vehicles (through July 2008)

The 2009 Pontiac Torrent has a few new exterior options as well as a few new interior features. The exterior paint colors have changed with the colors Granite Gray Metallic, Liquid Silver Metallic, Sedona Beige Metallic and Teal Blue Metallic no longer offered on the Torrent. There are instead three new colors that will take their places: Quicksilver, Gold Mist and Cyber Gray. Inside, there is now an option to add Bluetooth to all Torrent models. New standard features on all models include a compass, satellite radio and side curtain airbags.

There are two trim levels available for the Torrent- the base model and the GXP. The base model Torrent has a 3.4 liter, V6 engine with 185 horsepower and a five-speed automatic transmission. The GXP has a 3.6 liter, V6 engine with 264 horsepower, a sport-tuned suspension and a six-speed automatic transmission. Both all-wheel drive and front-wheel drive are available for both trim levels.

The 2009 Torrent comes standard with power windows, OnStar satellite service, fog lamps, air conditioning, remote entry, 16-inch aluminum wheels, roof rails, six speakers, automatic door locks, daytime running lights, an AM/FM/CD player and a rear window wiper. Standard safety features on the Torrent include StabiliTrak stability control, a tire-pressure monitor, ABS, four-wheel-disc brakes, a latch system for rear child seats and front airbags. Torrents that have front-wheel drive also come with traction control standard.

There are a number of options packages available, including the Preferred Package, the Security Package and the Sun and Sound Package. There are also many stand-alone features that can be purchased as potions. These options include an engine block heater, a luggage rack, cruise control, a multi-function cargo panel, 17-inch aluminum wheels that are left as-is or plated in chrome, heated front seats and the vehicle prep for a remote starter.