|Compact car; Built in USA|
|Good condition price range: $4,000 – $9,500*|
2003 Pontiac Vibe
2004 Pontiac Vibe
2005 Pontiac Vibe
Pontiac Vibe interior
Any example of this Pontiac/Toyota crossover is a good alternative to a small wagon or compact SUV. High utility, good road manners, Toyota-reliable engineering, and available AWD are assets. On the down side, there’s no surplus of power from the engines, which are needlessly noisy. GTs are harsher and high-strung in nature.
Pontiac’s new crossover compact wagon shared its basic design with Toyota’s 2003 Matrix. Vibes were built in California rather than Canada and differed in styling and features, but they used the same Toyota-sourced platform and 1.8-liter four-cylinder engines.
Vibes came in base trim with front-wheel or all-wheel drive, and in sportier GT form with front-drive only. Front-drive base models had 130 horsepower and either a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission. Engines in AWD models produced 123 horsepower, driving only an automatic transmission. Vibe GTs held a 180-horsepower engine and a six-speed manual gearbox. Unlike the similar Matrix XRS, Vibe GTs were not available with an automatic transmission.
AWD Vibes were not intended for off-roading, and had the same ride height as their 2WD counterparts. Antilock braking was standard on AWD and GT models, and optional for the base 2WD Vibe. GTs included rear disc brakes rather than drums. Front side airbags were optional; curtain side airbags were not offered.
All Vibes had a separate-opening window in a swing-up tailgate, standard 16-inch wheels, fog lamps, tilt steering wheel, CD player, and air conditioning. A household-type two-prong power outlet sat in the dashboard. GTs added alloy wheels, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, and special trim.
Front-drive Vibes could be equipped with optional 17-inch wheels. A power window/mirror/lock package, with keyless entry, also was optional. So were antitheft and navigation systems, a sunroof, and in-dash CD changer. Vibes competed against vehicles as disparate as the Chrysler PT Cruiser, Ford Focus wagon, Subaru Forester, and Volkswagen Jetta wagon.
Vibes entered their second season with a line of dealer-installed appearance and performance accessories available. One of them was a supercharger for 2WD base models, which boosted horsepower to 175. During 2004, output of the GT’s engine dipped from 180 to 170.
A tire-pressure monitor joined the standard-equipment list for AWD and GT Vibes. Front and rear styling was freshened for 2005. Leather upholstery and GM’s OnStar communication system now were available.
No 2006 changes of significance for the Vibe.
Vibe lost its all-wheel-drive and sporty models for 2007. Vibe now came only in base trim with front-wheel drive and 126 hp. Gone is the AWD version and the sporty, 164-hp GT model.
The 2008 Pontiac Vibe carried over with no major changes.