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2008 Pontiac Vibe

Overview
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2008 Pontiac Vibe Review

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A joint venture between General Motors and Toyota, the 2008 Pontiac Vibe shares most of its parts with the Toyota Matrix. The Vibe offers customers a sporty small wagon wrapped in distinctive Pontiac sheetmetal at a price that fits just about any budget. The front-wheel drive Vibe compares favorably with newer competitors, offering the same economy and versatility as the MAZDA3 and Volkswagen Rabbit but with a higher seating position and a more durable cargo area.

You'll Like This Car If...

The 2008 Pontiac Vibe is stylish, affordable and roomy. It uses the same basic chassis as the Toyota Matrix, but its design is more mainstream. The Vibe's hard plastic cargo floor and 115-volt outlet make it perfect for those with active lifestyles.

You May Not Like This Car If...

The 1.8-liter engine does not have much low-end torque, meaning off-the line acceleration is somewhat tepid, even when coupled to the five-speed manual transmission.

What's New for 2008

A tire pressure monitoring system joins the Vibe's list of standard equipment.

Driving the Vibe

Driving Impressions On the road, the 2008 Pontiac Vibe rides and handles like a small sports car. The steering response is direct and linear, with no trace of torque steer. The Vibe...

is tightly sprung, so it does not lean, roll or pitch like a tall wagon, yet somehow it returns a pleasantly smooth ride. When equipped with bigger wheels and tires, the ride is somewhat diminished, but is still well within the comfortable zone.

Console-Mounted 115-Volt Outlet
The Vibe's console-mounted 115-volt outlet allows you to plug in accessories without the need for a 12-volt adaptor.

Rear Track Tie-Downs
Rear track tie-downs help keep cargo in place.

2008 Pontiac Vibe Details
Interior

Inside, the Vibe is loaded with visual eye-candy, from the pod-mounted center shifter to the stylish aluminum dash trim and glowing orange instrumentation. The driver's seat height is adjustable, as is the steering wheel, making it easy for drivers of all shapes and sizes to find a comfortable perch. The Vibe's long rear doors make it possible to exit and enter without bumping into the doorframe, and there is a good deal of real useable space behind the second row seat. One really nice feature is the flush-folding passenger seat that can serve as a level workspace, a place to lay out your lunch or just make room for your surfboard.

Exterior

The racy 2008 Pontiac Vibe looks more like a sporty coupe than a mini-SUV. Its tall doors are hidden by the upswept beltline and tapered roof that come together at the rear hatch to form a squat pillar. A built-in roof rack provides additional storage for bikes or skis. Pontiac has often been praised for its wheel designs, and the Vibe's optional 17-inch alloys are no exception.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2008 Pontiac Vibe has a five-speed manual transmission, air conditioning, rear defroster, illuminated entry, fog lights, automatic headlamp control, dual power mirrors, 115-volt outlet, AM/FM stereo with CD, tilt wheel, tachometer, full wheel covers and a rear wiper/washer.

Optional Equipment

Options include a four-speed automatic transmission, StabiliTrak, front head-curtain airbags, leather seats, power windows, power locks, keyless entry, cruise control, power glass sunroof, front side-impact airbags, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes (ABS), six-disc CD changer, XM Satellite Radio, OnStar, Monsoon 7 premium sound and 17-inch alloy wheels.

Under the Hood

Unfortunately, the 2008 Pontiac Vibe's 1.8-liter engine is not terribly quick, with only 126 horsepower on tap and not an abundance of torque. Fuel economy, on the other hand, is among the best in class, rated at 33 mpg on the highway when equipped with the five-speed manual.


1.8-liter in-line 4
126 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
122 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 26/33 (manual), 25/31 (automatic)

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2008 Pontiac Vibe Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.1
Out of 10

Based on 745 Ratings for the 2003 - 2008 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.3/10
    Quality
    9.2/10
  • Reliability
    9.5/10
    Performance
    8.9/10
  • Comfort
    8.9/10
    Styling
    9.0/10

Best Reliability. Just won't quit!

By on Monday, July 27, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 111,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "A great car."

Cons: "None"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I purchased my 2003 Pontiac Vibe when they became first available from GM, with 6 miles on it. Now it has 111,000 miles and still looks like new. The only required service have been oil changes, brakes and tires! This car is a reliable tank. We have driven it across country several times because it is so comfortable and great on gas even though we own other luxury cars. We cannot part with it because it hauls so much stuff with the seats reclined. This truly was a great purchase decision. I'd buy another one in a heartbeat. These cars are indestructible if cared for properly."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

I love this car and wish Pontiac had not faded out

By on Monday, July 13, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 156,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Very zippy, great in MI winters with snow tires."

Cons: "They don't make them anymore!!!"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"The review summary says it all. I would buy another one if they were still being made. Cannot buy a foreign car, so will have to find another option. Plan to drive her until her final days."

Loved my vibe, may it RIP

By on Saturday, July 04, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 212,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Top-notch engine, great handling & cargo capacity"

Cons: "Don't let the NYPD get hold of your AWD Vibe!"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"My 2006 Vibe was driving so well at 212,000 miles that I fully expected to make it to 300,000. It's Toyota engine was as peppy as when it was new. I would still be driving this car if the NYPD hadn't disregarded the fact that an all-wheel drive vehicle has to be towed with a flatbed tow truck. Instead, they hooked it when I mistakenly parked in a no-parking spot, destroyed the rear differential, and caused other serious damage amounting to about $5,000. Fortunately, my insurance company came through and they are pursuing a claim with the NYPD to recoup their losses (and my $500 deductible). I am very sorry to have to part with my Vibe, which was the best car I've owned (and I've owned several great Hondas that also got 200,000 or more. Wish they still made the Vibe or at least a Matrix."

3 people out of 5 found this review helpful

Most reliable small wagon I've owned

By on Friday, June 26, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 90,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Cheap, reliable commuter car that can haul things"

Cons: "Clear coat finish looked bad after 6 years"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I'm a dying breed -- someone who likes small wagons and has driven them since 1977. This is by far the best one I've owned. Excellent reliability - can't say that I've had a repair that was unusual or unexpected in 90,000 miles. Enough acceleration to zoom onto interstates where locals often drive at 80 mph. Enough space to haul a diverse load. Great mpg -- about 28 around town to as high as 35 mpg if I keep it at 60 mph. The only criticisms are the comfort for a long trip and the outside clear coat like finish that has chipped and looks bad. That's the only reason I will trade this car shortly. Wished they kept making them. Better still, I wish someone would make a luxury small wagon without being a hybrid, or having an all wheel drive."

6 people out of 10 found this review helpful

Very reliable car, gets great gas mileage

By on Monday, June 15, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 242,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Great reliability, good gas mileage"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought this 2005 from a friend and it had 190,000 miles on it. It now has 242,000 miles on original engine and tranny and runs great! Doesn't leak a thing and I'm getting 30mpg. The paint is thin on the hood and the recirc button went out but the a/c still blows cold and everything else works perfect. Great quality on these. Toyota engine and transmission."

10 people out of 12 found this review helpful

Relaible, Comfortable, Fun Drive

By on Wednesday, June 03, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 118,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "Fun Drive, Easy on the Wallet at the Pump"

Cons: "Some minor rattles"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This Pontiac Vibe has been one of the most pleasant cars I've ever owned. Very low maintenance costs. I just drove across country with loaded car & 3 surfboards, my highway mpg was 31.9 mpg. This car has always been very well maintained. Comes with the top of the fleet "Moons & Tunes" premier Vibe options. I've also upgraded to an after-market "Parrot" brand iPod/Bluetooth phone system add-on. Has been running with all synthetic oil for 40K miles. Has upgrade K&H air filter"

3 people out of 6 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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