1997 Pontiac Grand Prix

By November 10, 1999
1997 Pontiac Grand Prix

Here's a safe prediction: Pontiac's all-new Grand Prix will be one of the hits of the 1997 model year. It's got looks, performance, roominess, comfort, handling features–and it's in a price range that won't clobber a budget.

In several ways, the new Grand Prix rises above the mainstream of the competition. Most obvious is the styling, which has a sleekly muscular, competent and aggressive look.

From front to rear, it's a pretty dynamic design job. One key element that adds to the sleekness is that it was designed first as a coupe, then the sedan was derived from that. The coupe and sedan actually share the same roof panel and rear window–an extreme rarity in automobile design and manufacturing, and it gives the coupe sedan-like room, the sedan coupe-like grace.

Another important aspect of the Grand Prix is that it marks a return to Wide Trackin' at Pontiac. Com-pared to other mid-size sedans, particularly its General Motor's cousins, the Grand Prix has a significantly wider track and the fenders have been noticeably flared to cover the tires. The wide track improves stability, and the flared fenders add to the aggressive look.