Drive Type: Auto
Warranty: Vehicle does NOT have an existing warranty
Lagrange, Wyoming, United States
The repairs needed for the faulty airbag inflators supplied by Takata continue to expand. Toyota initially announced a recall of 766,300 vehicles equipped with the bad part on June 11 as a followup to a campaign from 2013. Soon after, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration opened a preliminary evaluation into five automakers who also used the component in their models. Now, NHTSA has released the official announcement of the latest Toyota recall listing 844,277 affected cars, including the newly added 2003-2004 Pontiac Vibe.
While NHTSA's document didn't include a model-by-model breakdown, General Motors spokesperson Alan Adler estimated to Autoblog that roughly 85,000 Vibes in the US would be covered under the latest recall. Like the rest of the affected models, the airbag inflator could rupture in a crash causing the bag not to work correctly, possibly spraying metal fragments at the occupant.
Toyota spokesperson Cindy Knight told Autoblog that the reason for the disparity between the earlier press release and NHTSA document was that Toyota was continuing to comb through VINs to create a list of affected vehicles. The original number was an estimate of that process at the time. Scroll down to the recall report from NHTSA.
Every few a decades, the folks running General Motors lose their minds briefly try to market a car that public doesn't see coming and often aren't ready for. In the '60s there was the rear-engine, air-cooled Chevrolet Corvair, then the mid-engine Pontiac Fiero in the '80s and the completely bizarre Chevy SSR in the 2000s. What all of these had in common was that they bucked the trend for American models of their era, for better or worse. The latest episode of Generation Gap tasked the hosts with finding two cult classic vehicles to choose between; they came come up with two of these quirky products from The General.
On the classic side, there's a 1967 Chevy Corvair Monza convertible. Being from later in the production run, it wears slightly more aerodynamic styling than the earlier, boxier examples. Hanging out back is an air-cooled, 2.7-liter flat-six pumping out a robust 95 horsepower. In the other corner is the somewhat more modern 1986 Pontiac Fiero SE with a mid-mounted, 2.5-liter "Iron Duke" four-cylinder, an engine nearly ubiquitous in GM cars of the '80s.
Judging by when they were new, the Corvair was far more successful than the Fiero with over 1.8 million sold. Of course, Ralph Nader's book Unsafe at Any Speed kind of poisoned the well, even if the poor safety reputation wasn't entirely deserved. The Fiero on the other hand only lasted for a few model years before shuffling off, but it eventually got its own performance boost with the V6 version and rather attractive GT models. Check them both out in the video and tell us in Comments which you want in your garage.
The Pontiac GTO was perhaps the most iconic muscle car of the '60s and early '70s. With its beefy V8 and color palette screaming for attention, it summarized in a single vehicle everything that made the era so appealing to many young people. Pontiac tried to collect just a few drops of that aura again in the 2000s with a revived GTO, but with decidedly mixed results. The performance was still there with its big V8, but the looks never quite lived up to the powertrain. Now, Generation Gap wants to know which of these Goats is the one to own.
Things are skewed immediately because the 2006 GTO here is a real ringer. It comes from famous tuner Ken Lingenfelter's collection, and it's a one-off example partially fettled by GM Performance boasting a twin-turbocharged LS2 V8 with a claimed 750 horsepower and a wide-body kit. This Goat definitely isn't what you're going to find just browsing for one to buy in the newspaper. Still, dip the throttle just a little, and this GTO pulls like a freight train. It's enough to turn the two hosts into giggling schoolboys behind the wheel.
The '69 GTO Judge here is also out of Lingenfelter's collection, but this one is all stock with a 400-cubic-inch (6.6-liter) V8 and a Ram Air hood for a claimed 366 hp. It might not have the unbelievable power of the turbo '06, but it makes up for it with style to spare.