Pontiac has closed its doors – officially going out of business on October 31.
The auto brand’s demise closes out an 84-year old history, which peaked in the 60s and 70s as its muscle cars captured the imaginations of America’s youth.
Pontiac was formed in 1926, and almost was shut down in the 1950’s due to slow sales, until the brand was revived by its connection to racing. In the 60’s, Pontiac struck gold with models like the GTO – and later the Firebird, which starred with Burt Reynolds in ‘Smokey and the Bandit’. Pontiac’s best year was in 1968, when they sold a million autos. They were prized for their powerful engines – and equally powerful image.
The brand attempted to go mainstream in the 1980s, and Pontiac lost its edge – and audience. After decades of steady decline – due to poor management decisions and lesser quality products – General Motors decided last year to kill the brand as it struggled through bankruptcy.