1996 Pontiac Bonneville Review

Used Bonneville for sale
List Price Estimate:$1,162 - $2,708
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Pontiac Bonneville model years
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Edmunds' Expert Review

Vehicle overview

If ever there was an American sedan that combined traditional full-size accouterments with European style and class, it is this edition of the Bonneville. Introduced in 1992, the Bonny competes with near-luxury offerings such as the Lexus ES300 and BMW 3-Series, but kills the competition with seating for six, dramatic styling and amazing performance capabilities for a big, front-drive four-door.

The Bonneville benefits from a powerful base engine; a Series II 3.8-liter V6 that pumps out 205 horsepower and gets an amazing 30 miles per gallon on the highway.. New for 1996 is an optional 240-horsepower supercharged variant of the base V6, which replaces the old 225-horsepower supercharged 3.8-liter previously available. And, if you must have the supercharged engine but don't want all the goofy aero add-ons and tacky gold trim that come standard on the SSEi, you can get the blown motor in the base model. One stipulation exists, though; you've got to order the SLE package, which gives you some of the goodies that come with the SSE. Confused? Let's clarify the Bonneville roster.

Base model is the SE, and this is the only trim level to consider. Next up is the SSE, which is basically a sporty version of the SE. The SSEi is a package available on the SSE that includes the supercharged engine and flashy exterior trim. Since everything you need to build a competent sport sedan is optional on the SE, we recommend you start there.

For example, an SE with the SLE package, performance suspension, CD player with premium sound, power moonroof, traction control and 16-inch alloy wheels runs just about $27,000 and includes stuff like leather seats, antilock brakes, power everything and an anti-theft system. The Bonneville makes good economic sense, and doesn't punish you for spending less.

Styling revisions differentiate the 1996 Bonneville from previous models. New alloy wheel designs complement the fresh appearance, and daytime running lights have been added. Twilight Sentinel, an automatic headlamp control system, is standard this year and switches the DRL's to regular intensity low beams as the sun sets. GM's Magnasteer variable effort steering gives the Bonneville improved feel and response. Power lock and remote entry systems gain new features, and a rear window defogger is now standard equipment. SSE models get standard automatic climate controls, and new interior/exterior colors are available across the Bonneville lineup.

The Bonneville continues to provide excellent value for your full-size car dollars. If the Chevrolet Impala SS is a bit too brash for your tastes, the Euro-chic Bonneville SE should meet your requirements for a large, stylish and speedy sedan.

1996 Highlights

The Series II V6 has been supercharged for 1996, pumping out 240 horsepower. Styling front and rear has been tweaked, and daytime running lights debut.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 1996 Pontiac Bonneville.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

4.88 out of 5 stars
Very reliable
SLE 4dr Sedan
Love the styling, bought new, have had only 1 mechanical problem w/a water pump going at about 60,000 miles. Has been a great car.
4.75 out of 5 stars
Almost 300,000 miles and still reliable
12 yrs of a great ca,01/17/2009
SE 4dr Sedan
Great car! My husband thought it was incredible when the odometer was turning over to 250,000. Now it has 299,210 miles and our Pontiac is still running with very few problems. We did put in a new starter a while back but what can you expect after nearly 300,000 miles. We had a few problems with the oxygen sensor many miles back but nothing expensive. We wonder how many more miles we will get out of our Bonny. The check engine light has been blinking for about 20,000 miles but we decided after having it looked at that we would just drive it until it died. It has nine lives!
4.88 out of 5 stars
The BEST car!
Speed Demon2488,02/09/2009
SE 4dr Sedan
This car is my first car and it is far better than the cars I was looking at. It is so much fun driving in the snow. The ride is smooth and sharp. I have put over 1,000 miles on it. I have experience driving all kinds of cars and the Bonneville has the best ride of them all. This car can move! I just wish people would stop calling it an old persons car. I enjoy taking it on the interstate just so I can see it move. The trunk is massive!
4.5 out of 5 stars
Great Car
Great Car!,08/12/2008
SE 4dr Sedan
I bought this car brand new and have had very few problems. It drives and looks almost brand new. Love the looks and it's engine, great interior, auto air, auto lights, and comfort and room.


NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger3 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    DriverNot Rated
    PassengerNot Rated
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    RolloverNot Rated
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 1996 Pontiac Bonneville

Used 1996 Pontiac Bonneville Overview

The Used 1996 Pontiac Bonneville is offered in the following submodels: Bonneville Sedan. Available styles include SE 4dr Sedan w/Supercharger, SSE 4dr Sedan w/Supercharger, SE 4dr Sedan, SSE 4dr Sedan, and SLE 4dr Sedan. Pre-owned Pontiac Bonneville models are available with a 3.8 L-liter gas engine, with output up to 240 hp, depending on engine type. The Used 1996 Pontiac Bonneville comes with front wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 4-speed automatic.

What's a good price on a Used 1996 Pontiac Bonneville?

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which used 1996 Pontiac Bonnevilles are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 1996 Pontiac Bonneville for sale near. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 1996 Pontiac Bonneville.

Can't find a used 1996 Pontiac Bonnevilles you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Pontiac Bonneville for sale - 12 great deals out of 14 listings starting at $8,068.

Find a used Pontiac for sale - 5 great deals out of 16 listings starting at $23,157.

Find a used certified pre-owned Pontiac Bonneville for sale - 8 great deals out of 11 listings starting at $22,874.

Find a used certified pre-owned Pontiac for sale - 9 great deals out of 21 listings starting at $17,319.

Should I lease or buy a 1996 Pontiac Bonneville?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out Pontiac lease specials
Check out Pontiac Bonneville lease specials