Used 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix
Pros & Cons
- Strong V8, easy-to-use controls, big trunk, comfortable ride, solid handling and ride balance.
- Excessive torque steer on GXP model, no more supercharged V6, numb steering, below-average build and materials quality, tight backseat, noisy base V6, limited in-cabin storage.
Edmunds' Expert Review
With the elimination of the GT trim level, we would avoid the 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix. The competition and Pontiac's own new G8 are more refined and better all-around performers.
A lame duck is an aging or otherwise impaired water fowl that has trouble keeping up with the flock and is an easy target for predators. It's also a politician who's biding his time in office until his elected successor takes over. As far as metaphors go, the 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix nails both lame duck criteria, as an aging midsize sedan out of step with its formidable competition that's about to be replaced by an all-new model. While the two vehicles will overlap for at least one year, the new Australian-made Pontiac G8 is for all intents and purposes the Grand Prix's eventual replacement. For now though, the Grand Prix limps on with even less feathers on its wings for 2008.
The supercharged 260-horsepower V6 that used to reside in the Grand Prix GT is no longer available, leaving the underpowered 200-hp V6 and torque-steer-happy 303-hp V8 as the only choices. It's like Goldilocks discovering that Baby Bear's "just right" chair is out for refinishing. Against midsize family sedans like the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord, the base model falls short in refinement, build quality and interior space. Against V8-powered sedans like the rear-drive Dodge Charger and Pontiac's own G8, the Grand Prix GXP also fails to keep up with the flock.
We suspect that Pontiac dealers will be keen to deal on the Grand Prix. As such, it might make for a decent choice for someone just wanting an inexpensive daily commuter with enough sportiness to entertain on weekends. But given its many shortcomings, however, it's probably evident that the Grand Prix isn't at the top of our "must buy" list. We suggest checking out its many competitors or its spiritual replacement, the G8.
Pontiac Grand Prix models
The 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix is a four-door sedan available in two trim levels: base and GXP. The base model comes with 16-inch alloy wheels, full power accessories, keyless entry, cruise control, OnStar and a CD player. The GXP features a sport-tuned suspension, 18-inch alloy wheels with performance tires, an upgraded stereo system, heated front seats, leather upholstery, dual-zone automatic climate control and a head-up display. Most of these features are options on the base model, while both trim levels are available with a Sun and Sound package that adds a sunroof and a nine-speaker Monsoon stereo with in-dash six-disc CD player. Other individual options include a navigation system and satellite radio.
Performance & mpg
There are now only two engines available on the Grand Prix. The base model features a 3.8-liter V6 that produces 200 horsepower and 230 pound-feet of torque. Revised EPA ratings for 2008 indicate it gets 18 mpg city and 28 highway. The Grand Prix GXP represents a huge upgrade, with a 5.3-liter V8 that pumps out 303 hp and 323 lb-ft of torque. Both models are front-drive and come with a four-speed automatic, with the GXP featuring a manual-shift mode. Pontiac claims the GXP will run from zero to 60 mph in 5.9 seconds, but in our testing we measured 6.7 seconds.
Antilock brakes and traction control are optional on the base model and come standard on the GXP. A tire-pressure monitor is standard on both trims. The GXP also has a stability control system. Full-length side curtain airbags are optional on both models. In NHTSA crash testing, the 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix earned five stars (out of five) for its protection of the driver in head-on collisions. The front passenger position earned a four-star rating. In NHTSA's side-impact tests, the Grand Prix scored three out of five stars (for front and rear occupants), but the car tested did not have the side curtain airbags. In IIHS frontal offset testing, the Grand Prix earned a "Good" rating, the highest out of four, while that agency's side-impact testing (with side curtain airbags) resulted in a "Marginal" rating, the second lowest.
On twistier thoroughfares, the 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix feels larger than most of its competitors, which is perhaps not much of a surprise when you consider that it's almost 10 inches longer than the Toyota Camry. In its favor, though, the Grand Prix is still fairly tight and tossable for a front-wheel-drive car. The base V6 is noisier than those in more refined competitors and fuel economy is less than average. The GXP is also not very composed, as the heavy V8 in its nose blunts the ability of the car to turn in crisply and make quick transitions. It's also rather thirsty and is prone to torque steer (the tendency of a powerful front-driver to pull to one side under hard acceleration). We used to recommend the supercharged V6 model, but alas, it is no longer available.
The Grand Prix features the last generation of GM build quality and materials, which not only puts it a few steps behind the competition, but behind GM's newer vehicles as well. The stereo panel is particularly out of date, while the surrounding pebbled plastics look and feel cheap.
A quick inspection of interior dimensions may seemingly reveal that the Grand Prix has comparable accommodations to other midsize sedans, but as Stephen Colbert might say, "facts can be deceiving." The rear bench is hard and situated low on the floor, causing a splayed, knees-to-the-ears seating position. This design is to counteract the sloping roofline, which still manages to chew into headroom. At least the back doors open up to 90 degrees, making access to the backseat more pleasant than actually sitting in it. The trunk does have a respectable 16 cubic feet of luggage-swallowing space, plus the rear seat and front passenger seat fold flat to allow a 10-foot Persian rug to ride shotgun.
|Overall||undefined / 5|
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Trending topics in reviews
- handling & steering
- fuel efficiency
- driving experience
- sound system
- wheels & tires
- ride quality
- climate control
- emission system
- infotainment system
- maintenance & parts
- reliability & manufacturing quality
- road noise
- steering wheel
Most helpful consumer reviews
Just an update on my 2008 GXP. I have 55,000 miles on it now and still running like new. It's hard to believe that most car mags blasted this car. This car will run with most sports sedans and knock the hell out of the rest. If you can find one thats been maintained, oil changes and the like, BUY IT. I'm 6' 3"" tall and 230 lbs and the leather seats are still in great shape. Why Pontiac was killed is a shame. Bring it back, somebody.
Have had this car for a year now, the only repair we have had was a flat tire. They best car we have owned! For someone who is big, comfort is excellent. Power is enough too put down most cars. Why they axed Pontiac is a crime.
After owning the car for about a year, I have gone through all 4 seasons. Spring, good. Summer, alright with the exception of the tranny running hot. Fall, good. Winte... now getting 2 feet of snow in a week, icy roads and a v8. I was nervous, but with stability control, abs, and traction control I found myself more relaxed through the winter then I thought I would be. This car has truly surprised me with it winter capabilities. I snowboard and so I need room for my gear, and also need to get up the mountain. This car has proved itself worthy. Now fuel economy for me is about 22 mpg, I drive 60 miles a day just for work and plus all of my running around is in this car. For a v8 and me having a heavy foot sometimes, I can't complain. Which brings me to my next point. This car is quiet, but if you open her up she has a growl that is just beautiful. Not to much and not to little. The interior is... Well the hud is nice, I love the seats, butt warmers, dual auto climate control, and dic. However the plastics rattle Alot. It is in my opinion the biggest down side to the car. I am aproaching 120k miles, and do regular maintenance, along with preventative maintenance, and have had no major issues yet. The value had gone down to much, so if you wanted one now is the time for 4 or 5 grand. I am happy with this car so far after putting almost 50k miles on it and hope it keeps me that way.
I have had my red GXP for 3 1/2 yrs now. She got 48,000 miles on her and no problems, here that Consumers Report, Car & Driver and rest of critics. The car preforms day in and day out. Fast, comfortable and reliable. I am 6'2" and there's plenty of room Interior is standing up better than expected.
Features & Specs
3.8L 6cyl 4A
|MPG||18 city / 28 hwy|
|200 hp @ 5200 rpm|
|GXP 4dr Sedan|
5.3L 8cyl 4A
|MPG||16 city / 25 hwy|
|4-speed shiftable automatic|
|303 hp @ 5600 rpm|
NHTSA Overall Rating
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
|Frontal Barrier Crash Rating||Rating|
|Driver||5 / 5|
|Passenger||4 / 5|
|Side Crash Rating||Rating|
|Side Barrier Rating||Rating|
|Driver||3 / 5|
|Passenger||3 / 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|
|IIHS Small Overlap Front Test||Not Tested|
|Moderate Overlap Front Test|
Is the Pontiac Grand Prix a good car?
Is the Pontiac Grand Prix reliable?
Is the 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix a good car?
How much should I pay for a 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix?
The least-expensive 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix is the 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix 4dr Sedan (3.8L 6cyl 4A). Including destination charge, it arrives with a Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of about $22,210.
Other versions include:
- 4dr Sedan (3.8L 6cyl 4A) which starts at $22,210
- GXP 4dr Sedan (5.3L 8cyl 4A) which starts at $29,325
What are the different models of Pontiac Grand Prix?
More about the 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix
Used 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix Overview
The Used 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix is offered in the following submodels: Grand Prix GXP, Grand Prix Sedan. Available styles include 4dr Sedan (3.8L 6cyl 4A), and GXP 4dr Sedan (5.3L 8cyl 4A).
What do people think of the 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix?
Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2008 Grand Prix 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 2008 Grand Prix.
Edmunds Expert Reviews
Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix and all model years in our database. Our rich content includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2008 Grand Prix 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 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix?
Which 2008 Pontiac Grand Prixes are available in my area?
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Should I lease or buy a 2008 Pontiac Grand Prix?
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