Pontiac LeMans

At first, the LeMans was offered as a 3-door hatchback and as a 4-door sedan. By 1989 more models were released that included a sportier LeMans GSE that was based on the Opel Kadett GSi 16V. The GSE version was offered in a monochromatic paint scheme in red, white or silver with 14" alloy wheels, fog lights and a rear spoiler making it quite a looker. The GSE also contained the Recaro-style seats of the European Opel Kadett. The Pontiac LeMans model name was applied to compact and intermediate-sized cars offered by the Pontiac division of General Motors from 1962 to 1981 in total. The LeMans was later replaced by the downsized Pontiac Bonneville by the 1982 model year. The LeMans was really just a rebadged version of the Opel Kadett and was in fact built by Daewoo of South Korea between 1988 and 1994. This was a replacement for Pontiac's T1000 and Acadian, which was sold in Canada. As it turned out, the model looked good on paper, but poor build quality hurt sales and the LeMans was discontinued after 1994 with no replacement. This is a prime example of what happens when the company does not consider the mechanical integrity of the vehicle. Once the word goes around that the model is a lemon, there is no coming back. However, the same cannot be said about the model turning up in popular culture. For example, in the movie The French Connection, Gene Hackman drives a 1970 LeMans during the famous chase scene. Also, in the movie Smokey and the Bandit, Jackie Gleason's character, Sheriff Buford T. Justice, drives a 1977 Pontiac LeMans. And lastly, in the 1968 film Night of the Living Dead, the opening shots of the movie shows a 1967 Pontiac LeMans being driven to a cemetery, which is oddly appropriate.