Used 2009 Pontiac G5
Pros & Cons
- Favorable fuel economy, smooth and quiet ride.
- Lacks the interior fit and finish of its competitors, cramped rear seating, limited storage space, lethargic handling.
Edmunds' Expert Review
The entry-level 2009 Pontiac G5 and G5 GT deliver a decent amount of functionality and above-average economy, but not much else.
More than any other automaker, General Motors is a big fan of taking a model and rebadging it for another brand -- the automotive equivalent of re-gifting, you might say. Sometimes, this can work to a brand's advantage. Pontiac's well-received G8, for instance, actually hails from Australia as the Holden Commodore. The 2009 Pontiac G5 was also subjected to this process. But in the G5's case, the re-gifting process is about as successful as last year's fruitcake.
The G5 is virtually identical to Chevy's largely unloved Cobalt. This adaptation is unsuccessful at filtering out the less-than-desirable traits of the original and falls woefully short compared to its compact-sport-coupe competition. While the G5 is slightly more attractive than its relative, its styling still lacks the "excitement" that Pontiac strives for.
Furthering the G5's shortcomings is this year's discontinuation of the GT variant's more powerful 2.4-liter engine. Previously, this engine gave some needed spunk to the car. Instead, Pontiac has made the 2.2-liter engine standard across the board. A disappointment, to be sure, though there is a silver lining -- the 2.2-liter engine now has variable valve timing and this, in addition to a variety of other minor tweaks, has raised the G5's fuel economy by a few miles per gallon. You might be a bit surprised to learn that the G5 is just as fuel-efficient as a Honda Civic.
Even with better mpg, however, the 2009 Pontiac G5 is largely rental-fleet fodder. There are just too many faults, such as its lifeless handling, depressing interior and overall lack of sophistication. If you're looking for an inexpensive and sporty coupe, models such as the Honda Civic, Saturn Astra, Scion tC, VW Rabbit and even the turbocharged Cobalt SS would be better choices.
Pontiac G5 models
The 2009 Pontiac G5 compact sport coupe is offered in a base model as well as a slightly upgraded GT version. The base-model G5 comes standard with 15-inch wheels with plastic covers, air-conditioning, full power accessories, keyless entry, split-folding rear seats, OnStar and a CD/MP3 player with an auxiliary audio jack and satellite radio. The G5 GT goes a step further with standard 17-inch alloy wheels, a sport-tuned suspension, sport rocker moldings, a revised front airdam with foglamps, cruise control, Bluetooth, steering-wheel-mounted audio controls and a more powerful Pioneer speaker system. When equipped with the standard five-speed manual, the base G5 is known as an XFE.
Optional on the base model is the new My Link Package, which includes 16-inch alloy wheels, an upgraded stereo with an iPod-friendly USB port, Bluetooth, enhanced OnStar features, cruise control and steering-wheel-mounted audio controls. Base models can also be equipped with the Pioneer speaker system. Optional on both trims are remote vehicle start and a sunroof. For G5 GTs, Pontiac also offers the USB-port stereo and heated front seats with leather upholstery.
Performance & mpg
All Pontiac G5 models are propelled by a 2.2-liter inline-4 that produces a respectable 155 horsepower and 150 pound-feet of torque. For both variants, the front wheels are driven by a standard five-speed manual transmission with an option for a four-speed automatic.
As expected from any entry-level compact sport coupe, performance is far from inspiring -- but for that sacrifice, you get very good fuel economy. The base G5 XFE with the five-speed manual and 15-inch wheels achieves a best-in-class 25 mpg city/37 mpg highway and 30 mpg combined. Opting for larger wheels or the four-speed auto drops those numbers, particularly the highway figure, with an auto-equipped G5 GT with 17-inch wheels achieving 23 city/32 highway and 26 combined.
Four-wheel antilock disc brakes are available as an option for the base Pontiac G5 and come standard with the GT. Full-length side curtain airbags are standard on both models, and the addition of a passenger-sensing system for 2009 improves front airbag deployment. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration awarded the 2009 Pontiac G5 a four-star (out of five) crash rating for driver protection in head-on collisions. It earned five stars for front passenger protection. In side-impact testing, both front and rear passenger protection earned it four stars.
While the 2009 Pontiac G5 offers enough power for the average commuter, handling will most likely disappoint, particularly on the base model. An abundance of body roll and numb steering limit the driver's overall connection to the car -- but to the G5's credit, the ride is both smooth and quiet. In the sport-coupe segment, which leans towards driving enjoyment, the G5 trails far behind the competition.
The interior of the Pontiac G5 is simple and understated, with tasteful metal accents, but remains unimpressive -- due in no small part to its flimsy plastic surfaces. Unlike the class leaders, this cheap car has an interior that looks and feels the part of an inexpensive sport coupe. White-faced gauges are both easy to read and attractive, while the information gleaned from the trip computer (outside temperature, fuel range/consumption) proves useful. As reported by our editors, seat comfort is lacking -- even with the leather seats, and especially in the cramped rear quarters.
|Overall||undefined / 5|
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Trending topics in reviews
- fuel efficiency
- reliability & manufacturing quality
- driving experience
- handling & steering
- ride quality
- sound system
- wheels & tires
- electrical system
- maintenance & parts
- steering wheel
- road noise
- emission system
Most helpful consumer reviews
I bought the bright red Pontiac G5 GT 2 door coupe with automatic transmission new. It came with every available option, (IE: leather, sun roof, Pioneer XM stereo, heated seats, remote start, 17 inch tires). I drive a lot of highway miles to/from work and I wanted a car that got good highway gas mileage and looked sporty. Highway 32 mpg winter, 36 mpg summer. Mileage decreases at speeds over 65 mph. Original tires lasted to 98,000. Replaced rear brakes at 120,000, front brakes at 182,000. Now replacing second set of tires 3/23/16 at 185,500 miles. I change oil every 4,000 to 5,000 miles and have most routine maintenance performed. The front right strut has failed twice (weak design). Car is getting noisier with age (road noise). Handling in snow is not very good for this lightweight car. Comfort is not the best as expected with a smaller lightweight car, but for a go-to-work car, it exceeds my expectations. Not recommended for adult seating in the back as it is difficult to get in and out and head clearance isn't sufficient for over 6'-0" individuals. Other than this, it has been a relatively low cost maintenance car and very dependable. Replaced serpentine belt and second set of rear brakes around 215,000 miles, replaced battery at 223,000, all for reliability reasons. Still runs good averaging 35 mpg. Struts starting to rattle with age and will likely replace soon. Up to 237,000 miles now with only routine maintenance. 9/30/18 at 10 years old I have 245,000 miles now, averaged 35.4 MPG for the last year, replaced front struts as a new kit (rattled), transmission fluid (routine), and rear brakes (worn). Gave the car to my adult son to drive with 250,000 miles now, so this will be my last update. Still running. Required work on rusted brake cable at 270,000 miles.
In 2014, I purchased this car used from a reputable dealer in my area. Truth be told, I've always owned a foreign vehicle, but I was working with a limited budget, and understood I couldn't be picky. The dealer showed me this car, and I wasn't totally impressed initially, but after a test drive, I had a change of mind. This car gets it done. I've had it for about 18 months now, and as a commuter, who drives about 30,000 miles a year, my little silver bullet has proven solid through an extreme winter in Ohio, never given me any engine trouble, and is pretty comfy for a base model. I keep the oil changed, and I do regular maintenance as the manufacturer suggests. 6/17 update: Finally something went bad on this little car. In April, I learned the transmission was in need of replacement. I had it replaced for $1992, as a point of reference for anyone looking for costs. Still running. I now have 166,000 on this car.
Wow, whoever wrote a bad review is totally wrong and has no idea. It made me realize that a lot of people out there will never be pleased no matter what. The Pontiac G5 is the best car I've ever owned, and my previous car was a six cylinder Lexus ES300. The G5 is small for sure, but it packs a serious punch that I never expected out of a car with a 4 cylinder engine. It's faster than my Lexus was and is way more fun to drive. In my opinion it's the best economy car on the market. Seriously, the dudes (or dudettes) who wrote bad reviews need to get their heads checked because the G5 is amazing. Just wish they were still being made. I would get a new one without any type of reservation.
My dad purchased me this car because I was transferring to a university and I needed a reliable car and I absolutely love it! I have had no problems (other than the steering defect recall which GM is replacing). This car is very fun to drive, handles well, and gets great gas mileage. It doesn't have the greatest horsepower, but will get and go. When it was purchased it had about 23,000 miles and it now has around 26,700. Nothing has been replaced. I plan to keep this car until it won't go anymore. I would recommend this car for a teenager/college student or just anyone who loves a small reliable car! I wish Pontiac didn't go under!
Features & Specs
|GT 2dr Coupe|
2.2L 4cyl 5M
|MPG||25 city / 35 hwy|
|155 hp @ 6100 rpm|
2.2L 4cyl 5M
|MPG||25 city / 37 hwy|
|155 hp @ 6100 rpm|
NHTSA Overall Rating
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
|Frontal Barrier Crash Rating||Rating|
|Driver||4 / 5|
|Passenger||5 / 5|
|Side Crash Rating||Rating|
|Side Barrier Rating||Rating|
|Driver||4 / 5|
|Passenger||4 / 5|
|Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings||Rating|
|Front Seat||Not Rated|
|Back Seat||Not Rated|
|Rollover||4 / 5|
|Dynamic Test Result||No Tip|
|Risk Of Rollover||Not Rated|
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
|Side Impact Test|
|Roof Strength Test||Not Tested|
|Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint||Not Tested|
|IIHS Small Overlap Front Test||Not Tested|
|Moderate Overlap Front Test|
Is the Pontiac G5 a good car?
Is the Pontiac G5 reliable?
Is the 2009 Pontiac G5 a good car?
How much should I pay for a 2009 Pontiac G5?
The least-expensive 2009 Pontiac G5 is the 2009 Pontiac G5 2dr Coupe (2.2L 4cyl 5M). Including destination charge, it arrives with a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of about $16,980.
Other versions include:
- GT 2dr Coupe (2.2L 4cyl 5M) which starts at $20,280
- 2dr Coupe (2.2L 4cyl 5M) which starts at $16,980
What are the different models of Pontiac G5?
More about the 2009 Pontiac G5
Used 2009 Pontiac G5 Overview
The Used 2009 Pontiac G5 is offered in the following submodels: G5 Coupe. Available styles include GT 2dr Coupe (2.2L 4cyl 5M), and 2dr Coupe (2.2L 4cyl 5M).
What do people think of the 2009 Pontiac G5?
Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2009 Pontiac G5 and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2009 G5 4.5 on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2009 G5.
Edmunds Expert Reviews
Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2009 Pontiac G5 and all model years in our database. Our rich content includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2009 G5 featuring deep dives into trim levels and features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.
Our Review Process
This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.
We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.
What's a good price for a New 2009 Pontiac G5?
Which 2009 Pontiac G5s 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) 2009 Pontiac G5 for sale near. There are currently 1 new 2009 G5s listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $3,900 and mileage as low as 140533 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap 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 2009 Pontiac G5.
Can't find a new 2009 Pontiac G5s you want in your area? Consider a broader search.
Find a new Pontiac G5 for sale - 6 great deals out of 20 listings starting at $21,429.
Find a new Pontiac for sale - 5 great deals out of 19 listings starting at $14,682.
Why trust Edmunds?
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Should I lease or buy a 2009 Pontiac G5?
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