The Pontiac brand was introduced by General Motors in 1926 as the companion marque to GM’s Oakland division, and shared the GM A platform. It was named after the famous Ottawa chief who had also given his name to the city of Pontiac, Michigan where the car was produced. Within months of its introduction, Pontiac was outselling Oakland, which was essentially a 1920s Chevrolet with a six-cylinder engine installed. Body styles offered included a sedan with both two and four doors, Landau Coupe, with the Sport Phaeton, Sport Landau Sedan, Sport Cabriolet and Sport Roadster. As a result of Pontiac’s rising sales, versus Oakland’s declining sales, Pontiac became the only companion marque to survive its parent, with Oakland ceasing production in 1932. It was also manufactured from knock-down kits at GM’s short-lived Japanese factory at Osaka Assembly in Osaka, Japan from 1927-1941.
The Pontiac brand was pulled after the 2009 model year in Mexico and the brand was renamed Matiz, selling only one vehicle, the Matiz G2 (Matiz’s logo is similar to Pontiac’s). The last Pontiac, a 2010 model year G6, was built at the Orion Township Assembly Line in January, 2010.
Pontiac became the second brand General Motors had eliminated in six years. Oldsmobile met the same fate in 2004 after being more slowly phased out over four years. Pontiac also became the ninth North American automobile brand since 1987 to be phased out, after Merkur, Mercury, Passport, Asüna, Geo, Plymouth, American Motors (AMC) (renamed Eagle in 1988, and phased out in 1999), and Oldsmobile.