2006 Pontiac Grand Prix GXP Review | Edmunds.com

2006 Pontiac Grand Prix GXP

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Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
Pontiac Grand Prix Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 5.3 L V 8-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 4-speed Automatic
  • Horse Power 303 hp @ 5600 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 16/25 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats Yes

Review of the 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix

  • It may be fast in GT and GXP form, but the 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix is too rough around the edges to compete with more refined and better-performing cars like the Charger and Altima.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Strong V8 and supercharged V6, easy-to-use controls, big trunk, comfortable ride.

  • Cons

    Excessive torque steer on GXP model, numb steering, below-average build and materials quality, tight backseat, noisy V6s, not enough storage or cupholders.

  • What's New for 2006

    New for 2006 is a Special Edition package, which features ground effects, body-color grille, bright exhaust tips and new 17-inch alloys. Inside this Pontiac car, the center console and various trim pieces have been revised. Last year's GTP is now the GT.

Full 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix Review

What's New for 2006

New for 2006 is a Special Edition package, which features ground effects, body-color grille, bright exhaust tips and new 17-inch alloys. Inside this Pontiac car, the center console and various trim pieces have been revised. Last year's GTP is now the GT.


Although the Accord and Camry are the obvious choices when it's time to buy a midpriced sedan, not every shopper wants one with an import label. Until recently, choosing a domestic sedan often meant giving up the high levels of refinement and overall quality upon which the Japanese brands have built their reputation. But recent success stories like the Chrysler 300, Dodge Charger and Ford Fusion have proven that American manufacturers can step up to the plate in this regard. Pontiac targets would-be import buyers with its Grand Prix as well, and indeed the current generation of this midsize sedan provides a great deal more refinement than ever before. Redesigned for '04, the front-wheel-drive Pontiac Grand Prix benefited from stronger, more refined engines; fine-tuned ride and handling characteristics; and a friendlier cockpit design with large gauges and, for the most part, simple controls. Unfortunately, the quality of the materials and craftsmanship still leaves room for improvement.

A pair of powerful V6s and one V8 engine are offered in the Pontiac Grand Prix, offering 200 (base), 260 horsepower (GT) or 303 hp (GXP). Certainly the Grand Prix GT and GXP have enough power to make everyday driving entertaining but only so long as you limit your bursts of speed to straight-line acceleration. With a V8 weighing down its front end, the GXP model is anything but nimble around turns and exhibits torque steer when accelerating heavily from a standstill.. The GT is better balanced, but compared to competitors its steering is numb. To add insult to injury, the 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix isn't especially well suited for family use, either. It has a smooth highway ride, but its backseat is cramped and there's just no place to put family-oriented detritus like juice boxes or toys. While the Grand Prix's aggressive styling may appeal to buyers looking for an edgier alternative to the mild-mannered Accord, we think most people will find the similarly priced, rear-drive Charger much more satisfying. If front-wheel drive is a must, then the Altima SE-R is worth a look.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The Pontiac Grand Prix is available as a four-door sedan in one of three trim levels -- Base, GT and GXP. The base model comes with 16-inch alloy wheels, OnStar, a CD player, cruise control, air conditioning, keyless entry and power windows and mirrors. The GT adds 17-inch alloy wheels, foglamps, a remote vehicle starter and a trip computer. A Special Edition package, which features ground effects, body color grille, bright exhaust tips and unique 17-inch alloys, is optional. The GXP includes firmer suspension tuning, performance tires, an enthusiast-oriented stability control system, upgraded steering, a head-up display, unique trim and 18-inch alloys. A Premium Package, with leather seating and automatic dual-zone climate control, is also available on the Pontiac car.

Powertrains and Performance

A pair of 3.8-liter V6s and a 5.3-liter V8 serves duty in the front-wheel-drive Grand Prix. In the base model, the standard 3800 Series III V6 makes 200 horsepower and 230 pound-feet of torque. The GT has a supercharged version rated for 260 ponies and 280 lb-ft of torque. Finally, the 5.3-liter V8 in the GXP makes a healthy 303 hp and 323 lb-ft of torque. All engines come with a four-speed automatic transmission; the GXP's has an automanual mode.


Antilock brakes and traction control are optional on the base and standard on the GT and GXP. Stability control, dubbed StabiliTrak Sport, is standard on the GXP. Front and rear side curtain airbags are optional on all models. In government crash tests, the Pontiac Grand Prix earned three out of five stars for side impacts (front and rear), but the car tested did not have side curtain airbags. Frontal crash tests resulted in a three-star rating for driver protection and four stars for the passenger. In IIHS frontal-offset testing, the Grand Prix was named a "Best Pick."

Interior Design and Special Features

Inside the Grand Prix, there's a definite cockpit theme, as the center stack curves to meet the driver and the gauges and displays are all in red. Control layouts are simple and intuitive, even the trip computer. The front seats are broad and comfortable, though taller adults may find headroom limited. The backseat is cramped, with a low bench and tight foot room making it a last resort for adults. At least there's plenty of cargo space, thanks to a 16-cubic-foot trunk.

Driving Impressions

Even the base engine furnishes brisk response at low- and midrange speeds, while the supercharged GT keeps up with V6 versions of the Accord and Altima. Although we certainly enjoy the rush of the stout V8 in the GXP, the front wheels have a hard time of handling its power. Torque steer is noticeable and the car feels nose-heavy during spirited cornering. Daily driving in the 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix is just fine but it's not really that much fun to drive in a sporting manner due to its plain-Jane four-speed automatic and numb steering feel.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

Extreme oil consumption

by on
Vehicle: 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix GXP 4dr Sedan (5.3L 8cyl 4A)

I was so excited when I purchased this car. It was everything I wanted and still do. However, around 54,000 miles in (I purchased it when it only had 100 miles) I took my car in for a oil change. No problem, then less than a 1000 miles my check oil light came on. I took it back to the shop that changed my oil and was told that there was NO oil in there. I am now at 73,000 and continue to have problems and Pontiac has been "working on it" for this entire time. Going in for service every other month is time consuming. I drive less than 15 miles to work per day and am using a quart of oil every 1000 miles. Hoping for a solution because I sure love the care otherwise.

Vroom vroom

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Vehicle: 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix GXP 4dr Sedan (5.3L 8cyl 4A)

I just bought an '06 Grand Prix GXP and this car is not only gorgeous to look at, but it's a blast to drive. I've had quick vehicles in the past, but the acceleration and power or this car is amazing. I bought a red one with 35,000 miles so it's just broken in. I love to small details that make it unique, the red brakes, the mini fog lights, the Monsoon sound system, and the remote start. What a great car!

4th pontiac grand prix

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Vehicle: 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix GXP 4dr Sedan (5.3L 8cyl 4A)

This is the 4th Grand Prix that I have had. I love these cars & hate the fact that GMC has stopped making them. I recently rented a 2010 Lacrosse for a road trip, & missed my car a lot. Grand Prix's are reliable from my experience, & will take the best care possible of this one. Drives like a dream, comfortable, enjoy everything about it. I just put new rims on it and have had several compliments already. I am very protective over this car, & know that I will get years of enjoyment with it. Nothing negative to say, I have been Blessed.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

Wonderful pontiac

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Vehicle: 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix GXP 4dr Sedan (5.3L 8cyl 4A)

2 1/2 half years experience, 31500 miles. Replaced the battery this week, no other issues. Changed Bridgestones for Goodyear Eagle F1 A/S - 10,000 miles on the Goodyears, just do it. Upgrades - K&N Series 63 intake system, Magnaflow muffers (yeah they sound mean), upgraded floor mats and piano black dash trim kit. Adding LED taillights soon. White exterior/sand ultra lux leather interior. No Nav or optional paint. A+ build quality. Have some fun? Disconnect the battery overnight - drive the GXP hard the next day over several drive cycles. Becomes a REAL hot rod (I promise). Rare model - turns heads. Almost 20 mpg town w/27 highway. Wanna race?

Pontiac got outclassed...by itself

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Vehicle: 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix GXP 4dr Sedan (5.3L 8cyl 4A)

I got a lease and I just recently turned it in and got a new lease on a Pontiac G8. And man, everything the GP does right, the G8 does so much better and all the flaws from the GP vanish. But this is for the GP, though. The Grand Prix is a great car just to push the the limits. But when it comes down to business, it did terribly. I bumped my head in the back, causing the sunroof to get dislodged. I had a headache and a car repair bill. I was so mad. Also annoyances include archaic stereo system that looks like my old 1998 Grand Am. It's ugly inside and out. I was not satisfied at all.

Great car, the best i've

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Vehicle: 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix GXP 4dr Sedan (5.3L 8cyl 4A)

I am totally amazed by the review and the specs given on this website being that they are showing the lowest numbers yet by any other website. Seems that "Dan" the editor must have had a rough day or just doesn't like Pontiacs. Anyways, I've had my share of Fords, Dodges, and VW's etc. and to date this is the best car for the money I've driven. No squeaks rattles or odd engine problems, just perfect.

Talk About The 2006 Grand Prix

2006 Pontiac Grand Prix Discussions See all Started By

I have a 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix GXP and when driving, the car the engine sometimes pauses for about 1 second causing lights to flicker and the check engine light goes on then off. After that the car...


Hi everyone, my 2002 grand prix had an engine compartment fire on March 11, 2006 and after much research by searching the web it become clear that the fire was caused the defective MOP intake manifold...

Gas Mileage


  • 16
  • cty
  • 25
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs
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