2008 Pontiac Vibe

2008 Pontiac Vibe Review

Note: This review was created when the 2008 Pontiac Vibe was new.

The Vibe offers a striking exterior design, a long list of standard convenience features and cargo space that's both abundant and versatile. But its sluggish and noisy powertrain, combined with generally uncomfortable seats, detract from its overall appeal.




Critics' Rating: 8.7
Performance: 6.1
Interior: 7.6
Safety: 8.5
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Pros & Cons

  • Impressive standard features and interior finish
  • Abundant and versatile cargo room
  • Eye-catching exterior design
  • Inclusion of many reliable Toyota components
  • Anti-lock brakes don’t come standard
  • Powertrain provides sluggish acceleration
  • Seats are generally uncomfortable
  • Side air bags don't come standard

2008 Pontiac Vibe Overview

The 2008 Vibe has a unique exterior/interior design, a lengthy list of standard convenience features and large and flexible cargo room. But significant powertrain and comfort woes are enough to hurt the Vibe's overall ranking among small cars and hatches. Specifically, the Vibe's suffers from a sluggish and loud four-cylinder engine and only a standard five-speed manual transmission. Regardless of misgivings about the engine, the Vibe does offer a distinctive cabin. Plus it provides a long list of standard convenience features and quality fit and finish. "We like the Vibe's interior, with its simple, easy-to-follow center stack and instrument panel," says Automobile Magazine.

The Vibe, which rides on the same platform as the Toyota Matrix and the Toyota Corolla, is mostly unchanged from 2007. A redesigned Vibe is expected for the 2009 model year.

  • "A conveniently sized compact crossover vehicle that offers sporty styling, lots of room for its size and driving fun." -- Chicago Sun-Times
  • "Pleasant and comfortable to drive and offers versatility when it's time to haul something." -- Automotive.com
  • "An economical, extremely practical, yet very stylish 5-door hatchback." -- About.com
  • In contrast, Car and Driver writes, "Its utility index is relatively high, but fun is conspicuous by its absence, particularly with the deletion of the 170-hp engine option last year." -- Car and Driver

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