Pontiac Phoenix
Vehicle Make/Model Specifications:
Make: Pontiac
Model: Phoenix
Pontiac Phoenix

The Pontiac Phoenix was a compact car sold from 1977 to 1984 by the Pontiac division of General Motors. It was later sold by the Chevrolet brand of American automaker General Motors starting in 1980 and lasting until 1985. It turns out that the first name that was proposed, and mistakenly not selected was the "Condor". The Phoenix became the first compact front wheel drive vehicle sold by GM. General Motors recognized that consumers were looking for smaller cars, and for this reason, they switched from V8 engines to smaller, more economical V6 and 4-cylinder engines. The Phoenix was some 800 lbs lighter than the rear-drive compacts it replaced. Motor Trend magazine even awarded the Phoenix Car of the Year for 1980. As it turns out consumers loved the 1980 model and because sales came in so fast General Motors was unable to meet the demand. Consequently, consumers had to wait, some even as long as nine months. The reparation and development for the Phoenix look six years. The first samples were created in mid-summer 1976. This car was actually quite a bargain, coming in at just under $6,000. Things went from bad to worse, as the X-body cars were the target of an unsuccessful lawsuit by NHTSA, which cited a propensity to lose control when the brakes were strongly applied. This was not the only problem though that the car faced. The model was continuously recalled which certainly doesn’t instill consumer confidence and the obvious consequence was that sales fell year after year. GM even tried to pull a fast one and rebadge the 1984 and 1985 models as the Citation II, which they thought, would convince consumers that the problems had been solved. Turns out a bad reputation is not that easy to overcome. Needless to say, the end was in sight for the Phoenix, Citation and Citation II clones.

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