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FHummel
February 24th, 2009, 09:16
Well, I guess it's time to start this thread. I just traded my '05 GTO off for a Solstice GXP Roadster (Agressive Red w/Black top). I've wanted a convertible for some time now and the Solstice model in particular. I enjoyed the GTO for nearly three years and would recommend it to anyone who wants a thoroughly exhilarating ride. But, it was time for me to move on - I'm not getting any younger and besides I still have the '70 GTO, 455 HO, 4 speed car. Oh, it too is for sale.
The Solstice is a different experience (all positive, at least for me). The 5 speed Aisin manual is crisp and short throws and the turbo spools up very quickly - it seems to do so as soon as you give it throttle, and the 260 lb. ft. of torque range is quite extensive - 2500 to 5250 rpm. This places it very much in the desired area where you will shift for maximum performance which will get you 0-60 in just under 5.5 seconds and 99 mph in the 1/4 mile. Not bad for a little 2.0 litre (122 cu. in.) 260 hp! engine propelling 2976 lbs.of car w/155 lbs. of me behind the wheel. Highway cruising will get you 30+ mpg to boot.
The new 2009 coupe should really be dandy (it looks as though it wll be produced).
I hope we get some more Solstice owners here on the POCI BB. Maybe even start a club of our own (within POCI, of course).
Frank Hummel

POCIadmin
February 24th, 2009, 10:05
Great idea Frank - I think a POCI specialty chapter for Solstice owners is overdue, I will offer to help on the charter paperwork / organization side of things, just let me know!

Paul Bergstrom

FHummel
February 24th, 2009, 17:40
Great idea Frank - I think a POCI specialty chapter for Solstice owners is overdue, I will offer to help on the charter paperwork / organization side of things, just let me know!

Paul Bergstrom

Paul,
Let's see how many responses we get on the BB before we head off in the 'Specialty Chapter' direction. I agree we should have one, but also don't have much of a feel for the depth of interest. I think they are great cars and I'm gratified to see that Pontiac seems set on retaining the model as one of the four recently named to continue the marque. What a shame it would be to lose it after all these years, like happened to the Oldsmobile.
Just an old man's opinion. By the way my first car was a 1940 LaSalle 4 door sedan - that name only lasted from 1927 through 1940. They did resurrect it briefly in 1956 as a two seat sport concept car with a V6 (the Solstice reminded me of that). You see, I have been around for a good bit of car history.
Frank

PMDJIM
March 11th, 2009, 14:38
I'll chime in. '07 Deep. Soon to have GM Performance Upgrade kit installed.
Have you guys checked out the Solstice forums yet?

http://www.solsticeforum.com/forum/

FHummel
March 28th, 2009, 07:01
I'll chime in. '07 Deep. Soon to have GM Performance Upgrade kit installed.
Have you guys checked out the Solstice forums yet?

http://www.solsticeforum.com/forum/

Yes, I have been frequenting the forum. Lots of good info there. I have installed an additional horn (the Hi-Note) and it has made quite a difference - it 'speaks' with authority now. Also have added the side-marker-to-blinker mod using the relay method. I like the results of that setup rather than the 'simple' hookup performed by one of the other respondents.
I, too, am adding the stage II turbo upgrade in the near future - 15% more hp and 30% more torque (with the 5 speed manual trans) with the surprising addition of more mpg.
I also have added (changed out) my floor mats (Kobalt originals) for some red ones to go with the Aggressive Red paint - it brightens up the interior nicely.
I simply enjoy this 'little' car - it is a great performer just as it is and a couple of tweeks make it just that much better.
I hope more Pontiac folks will chime in on this web site. I think the Solstice addition to the Pontiac line is most appropriate.
PMDJIM - tell us about your car!.

TININDN
March 28th, 2009, 15:53
As a 2009 HHR SS blue flash owner - I know it's not a Pontiac - these upgrades sound interesting!

FHummel
March 28th, 2009, 18:25
As a 2009 HHR SS blue flash owner - I know it's not a Pontiac - these upgrades sound interesting!

Dave,
I can give you the info if you desire to do these mods. I know at least one will work on the HHR if you have the 2.0 litre turbo as does the Solstice GXP. GMPP has the turbo stage II upgrade kit (only for the 2.0 turbo). They list for $650.00 but you should be able to get it for about $550.00 plus the ECM reflash by the GM dealer - about $150.00 labor - so $700.00 total.
If your HHR has only one horn then you can get the other horn/kit from your Chevy dealer (about $65.00) and the if the side markers on the HHR do not blink I can give you the info to perform that mod; using two automotive relays and some wire splices, etc. (relays cost $10-$20 depending on where you get them.) Just let me know. email me direct at: fghjr@bellsouth.net
Frank

FHummel
April 7th, 2009, 11:41
:)I am (not so patiently) awaiting the arrival of the turbo upgrade kit for my new toy. The kit is produced and warranted by GM (warranty goes right along with the original) and really provides an honest boost to the already great performance. As most of you probably know the GXP 2.0 ltr. turbo puts out 260 HP and 260 lb ft of torque in stock form. An amazing aspect of the torque is the wide range it is available: according to the factory test graph the torque is a nearly flat 260 lb ft from about 1500 rpm to more than 5300 rpm! The kit adds another 30 HP (15%) and a 'modest' 80 lb ft (30%) of torque and increases the redline to 6500 rpm from the stock 6200 rpm giving extended use of 1st and 2nd gears where it is needed. This is real seat-of-the-pant's power gain! Prices vary with the dealers, but generally is in the $670.00 to $750.00 price range. Most dealers will sell the kit for $550.00 (MSRP is $650.00) and install it for the hourly shop rate - generally takes about 1.5 hours.
Reviews by other fortunate owners are very good to great!

TININDN
April 8th, 2009, 16:23
Got my kit today -

Hope to have it installed tomorrow -

TININDN
April 9th, 2009, 18:53
Wow!!!!!!!

Breaks the front tires (HHR SS) loose from a 30 mph roll!!!!

The kit is a real seat of the pants performance increase - dash monitor shows just short of 300 HP!!

FHummel
April 17th, 2009, 05:23
As TININDN stated about his HHR - this is a REAL seat-of-the-pants upgrade. WOW! Third gear in my Solstice GXP is absolutely astounding. And, as an added bonus, gas mileage has taken a decided step forward (how can you beat this?) - average now is hovering around the 35+ mpg mark for highway cruising (up from 32 mpg on a route I've traveled often, so the results are quite accurate) and average mpg is at the 32 mpg mark just 'bopping' around using conservative driving techniques. Of course, putting your foot into it gives a different result, but it's nice to know that the power is there waiting for that occasional 'rush', or merging into traffic on the interstates. This is no wimpy 4 cylinder engine (it wasn't before the upgrade), it pulls like a very healthy V8. GM got it right!! I can tell you that this little engine is giving performance that rivals that of the '05 GTO I traded in on it.
Have fun and be safe!
Frank

FHummel
April 27th, 2009, 07:25
It appears from the latest news items that Pontiac as a brand (niche or otherwise) will be no more! How sad. But, save your Pontiac parts, because they will only become more in demand.
I am hoping that a couple of the models (at least) will be rebadged as Chevrolets - maybe the G8 and the Solstice - because of their desirability in the specialty market. Chevrolet has no comparable models and those two would round out the line so there would be something for everybody in an affordable range of prices. Here's hoping!
Of course I'm biased regarding the two Pontiacs I've cited because of my past and present experience with Pontiacs over the past 50 plus years of driving, having owned a number of the performance models (I still own a '70 GTO, 455 HO, 4 speed) and presently the 2007 Solstice GXP (great little roadster!!).
I'm glad I was able to get the turbo upgrade installed, although it is the same as those used in the HHR, but they may have become more difficult to obtain. The irony is that the upgrade not only makes the car more powerful it also makes it more efficient, so that may serve as the major justification for its continued availability rather than the performance increase. I've experienced about a 10% increase in MPG with the upgrade - best of both worlds!
I just had to 'sound-off' a bit. Thanks for 'listening'.
Frank

TININDN
April 29th, 2009, 17:13
Hey Frank-

I'm putting the HHR on the wheel dyno Saturday -

I'll keep you posted on the results -

How many Solstice hardtops do they plan on producing?

FHummel
April 30th, 2009, 05:39
Hey Frank-

I'm putting the HHR on the wheel dyno Saturday -

I'll keep you posted on the results -

How many Solstice hardtops do they plan on producing?

Dave,
Hard to say now, but I had read the production target was 10,000 units per year. Now, who knows? Anyone lucky enough to get one should have an instant classic, collector car. I had intended to buy one myself, but the cost was too great compared to the deal I got on my '07 GXP. I also read that the dealers were adding to the MSRP (no discounts on the coupes), but that may change. There was one case where I read the buyer was going to pay a $10,700.00 premium!! I hope that did not happen because it would set a bad precedent and I believe that GM should not allow that type of gouging.
Yes, let me know how the dyno comes out on your HHR.
Thanks,
Frank

POCIClubOffice
April 30th, 2009, 08:59
On a conference call earlier this week, Jim Hopson estimated production for the 2009 Solstice coupes at 800, and about 2,000-2,500 G8 GXPs

TININDN
May 2nd, 2009, 19:48
Frank:

Here's the numbers at the front wheels -

Equates to about 300 HP at the flywheel and based on curb weight (3150) + driver weight (225) should run 14.00 seconds in the quarter +/- 2 tenths.

No bad for 2 liters - almost 2 HP per cubic inch at the wheels and 35 MPG on the highway (25 MPG overall) to boot!!!!!

FHummel
May 4th, 2009, 04:54
Dave,
Thanks for the numbers and chart. Is your HHR an automatic? If so then the torque numbers would be lower than for a manual trans car. Not sure quite why that is , but that's what Pontiac says about the upgrade specs for the Solstice. I also noted on your chart that the curves fell off somewhat before the 6500 redline figure (up from 6200) that the kit installed in the Solstice provides. Per my tach, that is exactly what shows as max rpm before the engine management begins to limit it - the engine wants to keep going and would probably blow itself up if allowed to do so.
Thanks again for the info. I don't have easy access to a wheel dyno or I'd have mine tested also - just out of curiosity.
My lowest overall mileage to date has been 28mpg+ when I'm just 'fooling around' with the car. Great technology, in my opinion.
I think someone ought to produce a split exhaust manifold to let the engine breathe a little easier as well as allow a true dual exhaust system. Not sure how it would fit under the car, but it would give it a definite exhaust signature. I suspect these engines would be 'Indy' material if really exploited to their true potential. The factory engineers have produced some awesome numbers in the 1200hp range with the ECOTEC 4-banger.
Frank

TININDN
May 5th, 2009, 21:05
Frank:

I think the "tune-up" is a little different in an HHR - the FWD auto trans probably isn't as rugged as the Solstice trans.

Now they need to offer a Stage 3 kit to make 400 HP -

FHummel
May 6th, 2009, 06:50
Dave,
I think that is a great idea! But doubt we get that.
As to the manual trans in the Solstice (you may already know this) it is the same as used in the H3 Hummer and the rear is the one used in the Cadillac CTS and STS models, so the drivetrain is plenty stout. There are some other mods out there to increase the performance, but are not as cost effective for what increases you get. I doubt I'll do anymore to my GXP other than maybe minor cosmetics. It's just a fun ride and I want to enjoy it.
So far there are no disappointments!
Frank:)

PMDJIM
June 10th, 2009, 07:53
Sorry, I don't visit here often. I ordered my GXP in June of '07. It arrived at the dealership December '07. It was delayed when prodution was stopped on GXP's for an intercooler problem. It was difficult to see this car sit in a garage all winter. I have since installed hood vents from an early '90's tubo Grand Prix, Magnaflow cat back and GMPP tune. This car is unbelievable.

FHummel
June 12th, 2009, 05:50
Well, I've added a 'cosmetic' mod that you can't readily see since it is under the car. It is also more than cosmetic since it stiffens the chassis. The mod is a DDM Works backbone that installs where GM used a stamped sheetmetal pan that covers the driveshaft. It really does provde additional stiffening of the chassis so the suspension is more reponsive since the backbone greatly reduces body twisting (common to all convertibles). I used the 'race' version which is 3/8" thick aluminum plate - a perfect fit - with a red powder coat finish.
Let's hear from some more Solstice owners.
Frank