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Pontiac Sunbird


Produced: 1988-1994
Types: Convertible
Station Wagon
1988 Pontiac Sunbird LE
The Sunbird was redesigned in 1988 as a 1988.5 model. Production under the Sunbird name was continued until 1994. The trim levels on both the sedan and coupe were base, SE and GT. The Sunbird SE coupe, SE sedan and the GT coupe and convertible had hidden retractable headlamps where the base model initially had the 1984-87 front fascia with exposed sealed beam headlamps. The engines were both the carryover 2.0L 96 hp (72 kW) I4 and the turbocharged 165 horsepower 2.0L four.

1989-1994 Pontiac Sunbird LE coupeIn 1989, the base model received a smoother, more aerodynamic front fascia and the model was renamed "LE". An LE coupe joined the lineup also, with the same features as the LE sedan, but for a slightly lower price. The SE sedan was discontinued. In all models, however, a new dashboard was added. It somewhat resembled that of the Pontiac Grand Prix, redesigned for 1988. The most notable change from the previous dashboard is the placement of the stereo. A redesigned AM/FM stereo unit was placed high in the dash. If a cassette player or compact disc player (new for 1989) were ordered, they were relocated at the bottom of the dash. The Safari wagon was dropped. 

For 1990, the GT and SE coupes received a smoother front fascia with hidden headlamps. The GT covertible is discontinued, replaced by a turbocharged LE convertible, which also retains the GT suspension and steering. In all models, GM's passive seatbelt system was introduced. The seatbelts were mounted on the doors and would stretch out when latched. 

The rough and noisy turbo four was deleted for 1991, replaced by the Cavalier's 3.1L V6. With Multi-Port Fuel Injection, it produced 140 hp (100 kW) at 5200 rpm, and 185 lb·ft (251 N·m) of torque at 4800 rpm. Although there was less horsepower under the hood, power came much quicker and smoother than the Turbo, with about the same fuel economy. The V6 engine could be ordered in any model, save the new-for 1991 base value model. The SE coupe received the LE coupe front fascia, but the GT's fascia could still be ordered with a sport package exclusive to SE coupes. 

The largest change for the '92 model year was a revision of the base engine. The 2.0L four traded in its throttle body injection for multi-point injection, resulting in a fuel economy increase and power increase. Power was increased from96 hp (72 kW) to 110 hp (82 kW) and torque increased from 118 to 124 lb·ft (168 N·m). An SE sedan was once again available, and the base models were dropped and the convertible moved from LE to SE. A glass rear window with optional defroster was added to the convertibles. 

The only change for 1993 was the addition of a supercharged v6 engine with a high horse power of 210 and 225 lbs of torque,but only 350 model was produced in that year. 

As the Sunbird came to a close, the trims were pared down. The SE sedan, SE convertible and GT coupe were dropped for 1994. The LE sedan, LE coupe and LE convertible (moved from SE to LE), and SE coupe stood pat for one more year. The SE coupe was essentially the '93 GT coupe with a lower price.

Most Sunbirds were built in Lordstown, Ohio and Ramos Arizpe, Mexico.

The Sunbird was replaced by the Pontiac Sunfire in 1995. 

Source: Wikipedia
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