and speculation have been building for the better part of a year,
fueled by the uncensored comments
of 'Maximum' Bob Lutz and our sources. Several times the program
was closer to the trash can than the driveway. Now, '–amino'
fans, celebrate! You've
waited twenty years for this moment to arrive. General
Motors is bringing the new 2010 Pontiac G8 sport truck to the 2008
New York Auto Show two decades after deep-sixing the 1988 Chevrolet
El Camino, the last of the great American coupe utilities.
For US car-truck
enthusiasts who bided their time patiently, this is like receiving
a bike, puppy, and Red Ryder BB Gun on Christmas morning. Make sure
you send a thank you note to Papa
Get To Name It
readers will note 'sport truck' isn't capitalized
above. That's because when this car-truck arrives in showrooms
its name will have been influenced from entries submitted
online by -amino lovers, like you.
The G8 sport
truck was originally going
to be named the G8 ST. As late as
three weeks ago, when the show car was getting ready for its press
photos, it still wore upper case ST badging on the tailgate. But the
19th and 20th letters of the alphabet have been removed to make way
for the TBD nameplate. If you want to participate in the naming, you
can submit your entries at http://www.pontiac.com/namethiscar.
truck is a good descriptor but it doesn't really
do the vehicle justice. We want our customer to help us name the vehicle.
The only criteria we'll have is that G8 has to be in front of it,"
says Pontiac spokesperson Jim Hopson.
Pontiac would ask for help naming the 'sport truck' using
a URL that says "namethiscar". But the coupe utility (or 'ute'
for short) is the original segment-blurring vehicle. It's been
around since way before 'crossover' was coined
to describe car-based sport utility vehicles and pickups, like the Honda
Ridgeline. The ute dates back to the 1934
Ford V8 Model 302 Ute, first
sold in Australia. The Model 302 was joined shortly afterwards by
the Holden GM-H, assembled by GM's
Aussie subsidiary. Two decades later, in the late fifties, the car-truck
concept took off in the US when Ford introduced the Ranchero and GM responded
with the Chevrolet El Camino.
came and went in the US, they continued to evolve in Australia. Last
year Holden introduced its latest car-truck, the
unibody VE Ute, based on GM's
new 'Zeta' global rear-wheel-drive
platform. Zeta underpins a set of new vehicles, including the Holden
Commodore and Pontiac G8 sedans and upcoming 2010 Chevy Camaro. And it
opened the door to the return of a US ute.
to call this reinvented vehicle and the unique segment-blurring niche
it occupies? We'll humbly make a couple of recommendations.
We think Pontiac should maintain the tradition that American
car-trucks have a Spanish identifier. Since popular sentiment online
is calling for the return of the Chevy El Camino, why not transplant
that name from Chevy to Pontiac? Diehard El Camino fans will surely
find a way to graft the front clip from a Middle Eastern, Zeta-based
Chevy Lumina on the front of the G8 sport truck. Or carry over the
old Caballero name from GMC. Or maybe resurrect one of the Caballero's
trim package names, like Diablo – sans flaming devil head on
the hood. Wait, how about the 21st century counterpart to the Diablo?
Call it the Pontiac G8 Chupacabra, Spanish for demonic goat sucker.
Put one of those on your hood!
sure to be lots of suggestions and Pontiac is prepping to
receive several cargo box loads of names. So how will they determine
on the number and quality of the names we receive, it's possible
we could go to a second round and give people the chance to vote on
the name," says Mr. Hopson.