What Changed for 2008:
- XM satellite radio (3 months free)
- OnStar standard on GT
- New head curtain side air bags standard
- Optional heated front seats
- Optional leather seats
- Optional all-speed traction control
- Stability enhancement system (standard on GT, optional on base)
The Pontiac G5 for 2008 is a carryover model from 2007, with minimal changes except for the addition of standard head curtain side air bags and XM satellite radio (3 months free). The subcompact 2-door, 5-passenger entry-level coupe is available in one body style and two trim levels (base and GT), with standard 5-speed manual transmission and 4-speed automatic optional. The G5 shares the same platform as the Chevy Cobalt. Competition for the G5 includes the Volkswagen Rabbit, Scion tC, Honda Civic and Saturn Astra.
The 2008 Pontiac G5 is available in a base or GT model. Standard equipment on both includes power windows and door locks; air conditioning; tire-pressure-monitoring system; and a body-color spoiler on the rear decklid (trunk). The GT includes OnStar, 17-inch wheels, anti-lock brakes (ABS), leather-trimmed interior, chrome exhaust tip, and a firmer-riding suspension.
Six option packages are available on the base G5 model, and one is available on the GT; Personal Audio Link (PAL) is optional on both. Packages available only on the base model include Preferred (cruise control, cargo net, body-color body-side moldings, 4-wheel anti-lock front disc/rear drum brakes, and 16-inch custom spoke wheels); Premium (leather seats, heated front seats, Pioneer premium 7-speaker system); Sun & Sound (power sunroof and premium Pioneer speakers); Sport (leather-wrapped steering wheel and controls, 16-inch machined-faced aluminum wheels, fog lamps, and chrome-tipped stainless steel exhaust); and Appearance (stripe graphics, 16-inch machine-faced aluminum wheels, 4-wheel ABS, and chrome exhaust tips).
Key stand-alone options on the 2008 Pontiac G5 include cruise control, leather seats, heated front seats, remote vehicle start, upgraded audio system, power sunroof, and all-speed traction control.
Standard in the base model 2008 Pontiac G5 is a 2.2-liter, 16-valve, dual overhead cam (DOHC) 4-cylinder engine with sequential fuel injection (SFI), producing 148 hp at 5600 rpm and 152 lb.-ft. of torque at 4200 rpm. The G5 GT's power comes from the 2.4-liter, DOHC, 4-cylinder variable valve timing (VVT) engine with SFI, which delivers 171 hp at 5800 rpm and 167 lb.-ft. of torque at 4500 rpm. Both engines come standard with a 5-speed manual transmission, with a 4-speed automatic with overdrive optional. EPA fuel-economy estimates for the 2.2-liter engine are 22 mpg city/31 mpg highway (automatic) and 24 mpg city/33 mpg highway (manual). The 2.4-liter engine gets an EPA-estimated 22 mpg city/31 mpg highway (automatic) and 22 mpg city/32 mpg highway (manual). All-speed traction control, stability enhancement system, 4-wheel ABS, sport suspension and tire-pressure-monitoring system are standard or available, depending on model.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the Pontiac G5 receives a 4-star rating for the driver in frontal crash testing, and a 5-star rating for the front passenger. In NHTSA side-impact tests, the G5 receives a 4-star rating for front and rear occupants. In rollover testing, the G5 receives a 4-star rating.
Safety features of the 2008 Pontiac G5 include standard dual-stage frontal, driver and right-front passenger air bags; head curtain side air bags; 3-point safety belts for all positions; and daytime running lamps. A theft-deterrent system works with the vehicle's engine immobilizer to prohibit vehicle start-up from keys that are incorrectly coded, Pontiac explains. A vehicle stability control system, all-speed traction control and tire-pressure-monitoring system are standard or optional, along with OnStar (on GT).
A power glass tilt-and-slide sunroof, remote vehicle start, and AM/FM radio with 6-disc CD changer are available options on the 2008 Pontiac G5. XM satellite radio is free for three months, and OnStar is included with the GT. Remote vehicle start is also available as an option on both base and GT. An AM/FM stereo with single CD-player and MP3 playback, theft-lock, and auxiliary input jack for iPod and MP3 players is standard, while a 6-disc in-dash system is optional.