DETROIT – With enough smoke machines and colored lights for a Kiss concert, Pontiac unveiled the 2009 Vibe with the Vibe Slam event today in downtown Detroit.
The vehicle will arrive in dealer showrooms in early 2008.
The Vibe is for people who demand cool styling and the capability to do whatever comes next, Jim Hunter, GMs Vibe marketing manager, said at the press event.
The 2009 Vibe comes with a standard 1.8-liter DOHC four-cylinder engine producing 132-horsepower and 128 pound-feet of torque for the base model Vibe. An optional 2.4L DOHC engine producing 150 horsepower and 162 pound-feet of torque is offered for the base model. The 2.4-liter engine comes standard on the Vibe GT and all-wheel-drive models.
The Vibes beefed-up power plant has a fuel efficiency rating of 26 miles per gallon in the city and 32 on the highway for the base model 1.8-liter with a 5-speed manual transmission. The 2.4-liter all-wheel-drive model has the lowest fuel economy in the 2009 Vibe lineup, getting 20 miles per gallon in the city and 26 on the highway based on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ratings.
The Vibe has been built at GMs New United Motor Manufacturing Inc. joint-venture with Toyota Motor Corp. in Fremont, Calif., on a shared platform with the Toyota Matrix. Both vehicles first hit showrooms in 2002.
Sales of the Vibe were up in October by 21.5 percent over October 2006, according to the Automotive News data center. But through the first 10 months of 2007, sales have dropped by 23.8 percent to 30,697 vehicles compared with the same period last year.
Hunter says he expects sales to pick up once the new Vibe goes on sale in early February, adding he expects GM to sell about 300,000 units over the 2009 Vibes five-and-a-half year lifecycle.
Pontiac says it will announce pricing for the 2009 Vibe in December.