at the risk of starting some kind of inter-forum war (there is a post with the same title at the corvette forum0, i've been wondering how many people feel that fieros were purposely under powered to appease the corvette faction.
i've heard this a few times and wonder if it is a general belief of more fiero owners than i think or if it is a small group who also are sure of other conspirasy theories.
Bwahhahahahaha.... I just don't think there was room for another hard-core sports car. GM already had the Camaro, Firebird, Vette, and other stuff I'm probably missing(Monte Carlo SS?) But it's over and done with, and the fact remains that our Fiero's are still respectable and unique sports cars. So... yeah
Yes, the Fiero was underpowered to make the 'Vette look good. So were Firebirds and Camaros. Why do you think that you couldn't get a 350 with a 5 speed in a 82-92. (Yes, the 5 speeds will take the power.) It's also the reason the 67 Firebird wasn't a 2 seater like Pontiac originally wanted. They were made to be a sporty commuter car like the Mustang. They made Grand Nationals because those cars were more of a straight line racer than a sports car. F-bodys only got the Corvette motors after Chevy was done using them in the Corvette. And still, they weren't made as good as the 'Vette motors
Terryk, you better stop all those people with 3.4s, 3.8s, 4.3, and V8s and tell them, that even though they aren't having problems, Fieros can't handle the power that those engines are putting out.
The Fiero would have been a sports car in the beginning if Pontiac would have had it's way.
Even LS1 Corvettes are underpowered to make ZR1's look good.
[This message has been edited by Pontiaddict (edited 07-29-2000).]
GT Bastard Member
Posts: 2243 From: Rapid City, SD Registered: Sep 1999
There were many factors contributing to the demise of the Fiero. One was they never could shake the bad press of the few engine fires of the 84's and the resulting recall. We still hear people call them firetraps even today. This also led to less cars being sold than GM wanted. So, I personally believe it was mainly economics. Yes, there are persistant rumors about the Corvette division complaining about sales being stolen from them and that might of actually had some bearing on the situation too, but that was not the primary reason GM killed the Fiero. It was mainly the all mightly profit margin, as usual.
In reference to the title of the post, someone must be a Collective Soul fan.
[This message has been edited by batboy (edited 07-29-2000).]
I too read somewhere that the Corvette had a lot to do with the Fiero's demise. I don't think that was the reason they were underpowered however. The Fiero started as a "sporty commuter" and not a sportscar. They wanted reliability instead of speed. Too bad they failed miserably on that point with the first model...
If I remember correctly, there were some heavy budget-cuts and they had to make a decision fast where to save money. And that's when the Fiero was scrapped.
Then again - I could be completely wrong.
Posts: 465 From: Waco/San Marcos, Tx (USA) Registered: Jan 2000
All business's have to look at the bottom line.Automakers always set up their factories to assemble more than one model of their vehicles.The uniqueness of the Fiero contributed to it's demise.It was the only car that could be built at it's plants,and it simply wasn't cost effective.
Posts: 6136 From: louisville,ky. usa Registered: Feb 2000
From what the parts guy at Pontiac says, both Hugh and Batboy are right. As the Fiero progressed from a econo/commuter to a sports car, it got the attention of the big chiefs at GM. As development on the Quad Four continued in the mid/late 80's, it was destined to replace the Duke as the standard power plant, with the 3.1 HO as the optional engine. When sales began to slip, GM basically told the Fiero teams that either something else would have to be built in the plant with the Fiero, or Fiero production would have to be moved to share facilities with another product. Because of the unique construction of the Fiero, neither choice was applicable, so production was ended to save Pontiac from a possible loss of income. BTW- the Fiero was one of the only Pontiac cars that made money every year of production, even with the low sales of the 88's.
Jul 30th, 2000
Posts: 1685 From: Ottumwa, Iowa USA Registered: Nov 1999
I smell a script for an Oliver Stone conspiracy movie here...
$13,500 for an 88 GT, $2k less for a Formula, or twice that for an 88 Vette. Same reason Ford killed the 97 SVT/Cobra T-bird (rumored to be under $30k) for the sake of the $40k plus Lincoln Mark 8 (already having sales problems). Same 32 valve engine, 10 grand less. Inter-family competition.
Didn't GM use the Fiero endoskeleton concept and body tooling machines for the Lumina APV and Pontiac Transports, and for the Saturns, too?
[This message has been edited by 2birds (edited 07-30-2000).]
OK, here is my two cents, My Brother in law is an engineer for GM. He was involved in the Fiero Project, when I mentioned getting a Fiero, he said "get a V6, when I was on the project, we had a V6 on the test track, and It out performed the Vette, Fiero was supposed to be a poor mans sports car, It was decided that GM could not have their cheaper sports car out performing their top of the line sports car, so the V6 Fiero was purposely DE-TUNED." I asked him how it was DE-TUNED, and he said "electronically and some suspension parts, he was not specific. I have never know him to be dishonest, and have no reason to doubt him in this matter. Just my two cents worth.
A lot of good points have been raised. I agree that the Corvette division was placing pressure on the "power that be" to limit the performance of the little two seater. I was shopping for (read.. dreaming) a Fiero back in 85-86. The rumors then was that Pontiac was developing a factory turbo version and that that car would have near the performance of the Corvette for 1/2 the price. As the flagship for GM performance, the Corvette division was raising quite a stink.
If you recall, even the Corvette division was having to justify themselves to the stock holders. Profit margins for Corvettes were (and probably still are) below the line. Rumors abounded that the big two seater may be on the way out. I think that the turmoil inside GM, combined with the estimate that both Corvette and the Fiero would bring in profits below the acceptible margin is what killed the Fiero.
An interesting note is that the tooling and technology used to manufacture the Fiero went directly to the Saturn plant. Spaceframe technlogy (read safety) and composit body panels (no door dings) are the biggest selling point the Saturn has. Economics... GM figured by closing the Fiero plant and opening the Saturn plant, they could kill two birds with one stone. make the Corvette people happy and develope a more profitable new car line.
End of message, Roy
Posts: 2740 From: Merritt Island, FL USA Registered: Jun 99
I heard that the staff at the Corvette Plant met the staff at the Fiero Plant for a inter-company softball game. Some VPs got drunk and decided to make some ludicrous bets on the game. To make a long story short, the Corvette Guys won the game, and the Fiero got cancelled.....
------------------ Dillon - Titusville, FL Black '87 SE V6 "Matched Perfect and Staggered Special"
The reason the Fiero started out as a Sporty Commuter is that Pontiac was trying to pull a fast one on GM, like they did with the GTO. A Le Mans was a family car. Drop a big engine in it and BAM!, you have yourself a musclecar. (Of course they were slower than 421 Catalinas, and the Tempest had to lose it's rear transaxle and near 50/50 weight distribution to do it.) So you take a claimed "commuter car" and put a bigger engine in it. -- Oops, GM caught on, sorry, not this time. Instead of a near 300hp aluminum v6, (depending on who you ask) you get a 140hp cast iron "commuter car" engine.
I'm not flaming anyone. I just want to share my conspiracy theory.
BTW -- It was you who went (goes) back in time and killed (kills) Kennedy.