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The cost of a car isn’t just the purchase price. Whether you’re buying a new car or something used, the money needed for potential maintenance in the future should always be a factor in the shopping process. The Pontiac brand went defunct over a decade ago, but their vehicles still tend to be less expensive to maintain than many of their counterparts. Even at the high end, Pontiac models are comparatively affordable to keep running at full capacity. 

A Pontiac Le Mans driving in a parking lot.
Pontiac Le Mans | Dünzlullstein bild via Getty Images

Pontiac cars generally cost less to repair than other brands

After collecting information from 19 Pontiac vehicles, RepairPal found that the annual average maintenance costs for the brand’s cars are $460. This price is much lower than many other automakers. Of the 48 automakers listed on the site, Pontiac’s average repairs are the sixth lowest on record. Outside factors such as the car’s age and model year, its mileage, and the shop fixing your ride. 

Pontiac vehicles collectively have 388 reported problems, with issues stemming from the electric power steering system causing the most frustration for drivers. The most expensive replacement part is a new head gasket for the Pontiac Grand Prix, which costs between $1,860 and $2,065. 

Pontiac vehicles have been involved in 179 total recalls, the biggest reason being that the ignition lock cylinder could malfunction and unintentionally turn off the engine. 

For whatever reason, RepairPal doesn’t have a reliability rating for Pontiac, but user reviews gave the brand 3.9 stars out of five derived from 303 total ratings. 

Maintenance on the G8 is higher than the average 

The G8’s production was cut short after two years due to General Motors’ Chapter 11 bankruptcy case in 2009. The lack of supply for the sedan may be one of the reasons that the cost of repairs for the G8 is higher than most other Pontiacs. 

The annual average maintenance price for the vehicle is $577. It is the only Pontiac model with repair costs over $500. The most expensive replacement parts are the radiator (between $1,303 and $1,346), thermostat ($540 and $556), and the air conditioning refrigerant pressure switch ($185 and $194). 

Drivers have only reported one problem with the sedan. G8s with certain V6 engines may illuminate the Check Engine Light with at least one of the following codes: P0011, P0014, P0021, P0024, P0341, P0346, P0336, or P0391. Some of the cars may require a PCM (powertrain control module) software update to correct this issue. Others may be experiencing excess camshaft end play on the cylinder heads, which is fixed with special procedures dictated by GM. 

The G8 was involved in four official recalls, mainly for the ignition key cylinder issue. 

The Le Mans is the least expensive model to keep running

The name LeMans lives as the French city where the world’s oldest active endurance sports car race takes place, but the last generation of Pontiac cars that used that moniker came out in 1993. Despite their old age, the LeMans does not require a lot of money to keep in top shape. 

The annual maintenance cost for a Pontiac LeMans is $204, making it the least expensive model from the former brand. This isn’t the only way that the car stands out. It is also one of the few vehicles on RepairPal that has zero reported problems. 

The LeMans was involved in two recalls during its lifespan. The first one, which only affected the 1990 and 1991 models, was to replace safety belt buckles that may not latch or release as expected because of a malfunctioning red release push button.

The second one was for a sluggish restraint system that was a consequence of insufficient lubrication on the guide track rail. The issue was seen in models from 1990 through 1993. 


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