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04-06 General Tech/Discussion 2004-2006 GTO General Tech and discussion.

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Old 09-22-2013, 01:07 PM
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Default pontiac GTO test run video from 2004

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in the spring of 2004 Pontiac asked "Fear Factor" director Rupert Thompson and stunt coordinator Chuck Picerni to assemble a team of four of Hollywood's hottest stunt drivers and introduced them to four of Pontiac's best performing cars: Vibe GT, Grand Prix Comp G, Bonneville GXP and GTO.

Each stunt driver was assigned a car and took a Pontiac engineer along for a test run.

in the Vibe GT, stunt driver Cindy Daniels took along GM Vibe Engineer Jim Hunter (see post - https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v...83602103294861 )

in the Grand Prix Comp G, stunt driver Keii Johnston took along GM GTO & Comp G engineer Kris Heberling (see post - https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v...96272985805887 )

in the Bonneville GXP, stunt driver Jalil Jay Lynch took along GM GXP engineer Kurt Fischer (see post - https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v...31692039761758 )

in the GTO, stunt driver Corey Eubanks took along GM GTO & Comp G engineer Kris Heberling
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Old 09-22-2013, 02:53 PM
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Keith Seymore Keith Seymore is offline
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Mike -

I went to GMI with Kris 'Beerling'.

His dad was the Asst Staff Engineer for the Engineering/Liasion group for the Corvette program and drove one of the two '69 ZL1 Corvettes as his company vehicle.

I've done a few ride-alongs like those, only with the truck programs. I usually ended up getting motion sickness (that's a story for a different day).

K
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My Pontiac Story: http://forums.maxperformanceinc.com/...d.php?t=560524
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Old 09-23-2013, 07:14 PM
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hi Keith,
you sure know and work with some interesting people.

any videos of your ride-alongs available? I'm sure those would be fun to watch.

maybe some day Kris can tell us why GM decided not to certify the late model GTO in Canada (yes, all Canadians remain bitter to this day), my understanding is that Canada has no ability to test cars, so we don't ask for any cars to test, all a manufacturer has to do is submit the appropriate paperwork that says the manufacturer promises that the car meets Canadian requirements, and then we'll allow the car to be sold here (we're very trusting).

But GM wouldn't even do that, so no GTO's at dealerships and couldn't even import them until rule was changed long after production ended. I'm sure many Pontiac dealerships up here were very unhappy and at that point started looking to add complimentary makes or give up on Pontiac (which I guess in hind sight might have actually put them in a better position considering what eventually happened).

Not saying that Canada could have been for Pontiac what China is for Buick, but every little bit could have helped. Now we just have to import them every chance we get.
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Old 09-23-2013, 07:49 PM
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Keith Seymore Keith Seymore is offline
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No videos, but I do have some photos (and the aforementioned story, if I may) -

This one has to do with the Long Lead Press show for the GMT820D (the 800 version of the Denali) introduction.

The show was held in Santa Barbara California (we stayed at the hotel where JFK and Jackie Kennedy honeymooned) and there was a media ride as part of the show. We (Engineering) were supposed to ride along with these media folks and give some commentary about the trucks and answer any questions they might have.

Well, there is one thing you should know about me: In one of life's little ironies, I (...the consummate car guy...) get car sick. Cars, airplanes, boats - you name it - I've actually made myself queasy wheeling around in my desk chair. It's just one of those things you learn to live with.

This trip was no different. After about two hours of riding with this guy I got really bad. Not "...hey, I think I need a little break..." sick, but "...pulling over to the side of the road to throw up NOW..." (I'll bet he was impressed). It was pretty bad. But not entirely unexpected, either.

When we got to our next stop, which was the lunch stop () I talked to the trip captain. I told him of my plight and said "...I really don't think I can go on. I'd like to go back to the hotel."

He said "well, that would be fine. These two (a guy photographer and a lady, who was to be his driver) are heading back and you can ride with them - but - they have to stop and shoot some photos on the way. Is that ok?".

I thought that would be ok and waited for them to finish their lunch (I didn't care for any). When they were done we headed over to this green Denali and I asked, delicately, "...do you suppose I could drive? I usually feel better driving than riding". Neither had any problem with that so I hopped up into the seat and off we went.

We drove for a little while, through the southern California countryside, when we came to this little "two lane" road. I say "two lane", but really it was so narrow it didn't have a centerline stripe or any markings. There was a kind of a sweeping lefthand turn, over a little rise, and then a switch back the other way. The photographer explained what he wanted his lady driver to do - but - she balked, saying she didn't feel comfortable doing that. In desperation he turned to me and said "...can you drive?". By then I was feeling pretty normal and, excited at the proposition, I said "sure!".

So, the deal was that I was supposed to get a run at the hill, beep the horn just before entering the rise (so he would know I was coming) and then he'd snap the pictures as I went rolling by. We did our first pass, and I thought it went pretty well, and he said "...think you can go faster?". I said sure and picked up the pace a bit for the next round. He said "...think you can go faster yet?". I said sure (heh heh) and tried again. By the end of the session I was wide open throttle over this little hill and through the turns. It felt gooooood and, after about twenty shots he thought he had some satisfactory material captured.

We left that location and headed to the next spot, which was a straight section of roadway up a slight grade. There was a truck lane and we wanted me to drive steadily up the hill, about 50 mph in the right lane, and he would shoot from across the road. We did a couple and then he asked "how fast were you going on that last one?" I replied it was probably about 55. He sternly said "I said 50! (I was surprised he could tell). We did this one about twenty times as well, and then headed back to the hotel.

As we parted company he thanked me and commented that these would be used for display around the buildings and in the conference rooms. He said that if any turned out such that you could tell it was me driving that he would send me one.

Well - they did and he did. A couple weeks later I was delighted to find these two photos in my mailbox. I never did see them on display anywhere except for where they are proudly displayed in my barn.






The guys in my group thought it was pretty funny. They said "...Seymore - you can't even sneak off without getting caught!".
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'63 LeMans Convertible
'63 Grand Prix
'65 GTO - original, unrestored, Dad was original owner, 5000 original mile Royal Pontiac factory racer
'74 Chevelle - original owner, 9.85 @ 136 mph besthttp://www.superchevy.com/features/s...hevy-chevelle/
My Pontiac Story: http://forums.maxperformanceinc.com/...d.php?t=560524
"Intro from an old Assembly Plant Guy":http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=342926

Last edited by Keith Seymore; 09-23-2013 at 07:56 PM.
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Old 09-23-2013, 08:00 PM
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By they way, his final instructions before turning me loose for the shoot was "...hands at 10:00 and 2:00, and DON'T STICK YOUR TONGUE OUT!"

Apparently he wasted a whole day of shots one time because the driver was sticking his tongue out during this period of intense concentration.

K
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'63 LeMans Convertible
'63 Grand Prix
'65 GTO - original, unrestored, Dad was original owner, 5000 original mile Royal Pontiac factory racer
'74 Chevelle - original owner, 9.85 @ 136 mph besthttp://www.superchevy.com/features/s...hevy-chevelle/
My Pontiac Story: http://forums.maxperformanceinc.com/...d.php?t=560524
"Intro from an old Assembly Plant Guy":http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=342926
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Old 09-26-2013, 01:45 PM
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hi Keith,
enjoyed the story very much and the photos are great. There’s just something more exciting about a photo of a vehicle in motion, I understand the photographer was static for these shots, I especially like it when photo taken from another moving vehicle. Makes me realize that when I flip thru the current issues of the mainstream automotive magazines the photos just don’t appeal to me, it seems they look almost fake, like they’re using too much Photoshop or something after the fact, instead of putting the effort and creativity into the actual taking of the original photo. Maybe automotive photography is a dying art form?

Your challenges with motion sickness made me laugh (sorry, if you can’t laugh at the minor misery of others, what can you laugh at) which I certainly also suffered as a child, many a gravol before long car rides. We have a highway (and I think that’s being generous with the word) in south western BC called “the duffy” - http://ftwcanada.blogspot.ca/2010/01...lake-road.html - about 100 miles of elevation changes, switch backs and great scenery, took my son and friend on it once in the Bonneville and they were sick and won’t do it again.

Your comment re long lead press preview makes me curious. There is a particular Pontiac long lead preview that I’m very interested in due to introduction of redesigned Bonneville, which was summer of 1991 at Big Sky Montana. I recently came across an old magazine article which mentions that GMC held its 1991 long lead preview at Big Sky as well, presumably at the same time as Pontiac to share costs and leverage media presence. Were you or anyone you know at Big Sky for the model year 1992 previews?

Random thought, have you ever been responsible for suspension engineering on any of the truck platforms, if so would your issue with motion sickness have any conscious or sub-conscious influence, probably for the better, on any engineering choices you made?
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Old 10-01-2013, 12:25 AM
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Keith Seymore Keith Seymore is offline
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No; I was not at Big Sky in '91. I was in the Truck development group at the DPG in 1991 so that one would have been fair game but was not on my agenda for whatever reason.

I have been responsible for suspension, ride, handling, noise and vibration, driveline, brake and overall vehicle development for GM Full Size Truck on and off across a 35 year period. I'm not sure my "condition" has affected my decision making only because it is usually not a factor when I am driving. I don't ride as a passenger very often and on those occasions where I was "wiped out" like the story above I'm afraid my decision making ability was not very "robust".

(lol)

K
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'63 LeMans Convertible
'63 Grand Prix
'65 GTO - original, unrestored, Dad was original owner, 5000 original mile Royal Pontiac factory racer
'74 Chevelle - original owner, 9.85 @ 136 mph besthttp://www.superchevy.com/features/s...hevy-chevelle/
My Pontiac Story: http://forums.maxperformanceinc.com/...d.php?t=560524
"Intro from an old Assembly Plant Guy":http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=342926
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Old 10-09-2013, 01:05 AM
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As aways very good story Keith. Thank you Randy.
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