Check this article out.....the fastest Bonnie to date! and some history on its namesake.
AutoWorld.com - David Lee
Pontiac, the excitement division of General Motors, is making a pilgrimage to the namesake of the Pontiac Bonneville by attempting to set a Stock Class land-speed record of 210-mph during Speedweeks at the famed Bonneville Salt Flats just outside Salt Lake City, Utah.
"We're excited to mark Bonneville'* nearly half-century of driving excitement by returning to the salt flats this year," said Jim Murray, Pontiac Bonneville brand manager, of the August 12-18 Bonneville Speedweeks event. "The history of the vehicle at the flats has defined Pontiac as a performance brand, which we have continued to demonstrate with other products. We have the same confidence in the 2000 Bonneville."
One of an expected 300 entries, the Bonneville will be driven by 30-year race veteran Mike Cook, a member of the Bonneville 200 mph club. Cook has set records at El Mirage and Muroc, and is confident in the Bonneville'* ability to meet the challenge of breaking the existing land-speed record of 209.21 mph, set in 1998 by John Raines in a 1998 Pontiac Firebird.
"Under normal driving conditions, the 3.8 V-6 engine can go from 0 to 60 mph in seven seconds," said Cook of the popular sedan. "We're starting off with a great product, which minimizes modifications. Because of the exceptional engineering that already exists in the Bonneville, we feel that our goal of reaching 210 mph is realistic."
The Bonneville is undergoing its transformation from a family sedan to a high-speed performance machine at Cook Motorsports in Norco, Calif. Pontiac has assembled a team of engineers, expert mechanics and artists including Cook, Richard Lee, Jerry Magnuson and Doug Thorley to make the modifications. Some of the modifications being made to the Spruce Green Bonneville include the addition of:
A six-corner roll bar attached to the roof line and chassis, creating a roll cage to provide additional roof crush resistance for the driver in the event of a crash
Jaz Products aluminum racing seats and covers in place of Bonneville'* traditional bucket seats
Deist competition seat belts replace standard lap-shoulder belts
Custom-built "Intro" wheels, body lowered four-inches, and full belly pan to reduce drag and lift
A comprehensive fire protection and extinguisher system by Deist
A Deist parachute at the rear of the vehicle
Customized graphics created by Chip Foose and painted by Pete Santini to reflect Pontiac'* participation in the Bonneville event and for added flair
The Bonneville'* supercharged 3.8 liter V-6 engine, which uses an Eaton-Magnuson supercharger, is being re-worked by Richard Lee Performance Products and produces in excess of 455 hp@6000 rpm. Ported and polished cylinder heads have been re-worked by Morgan Engineering to substantially increase the power potential of the cylinder head. Special crank and rod preparations with balancing was performed by Evans Speed Equipment. Doug'* Headers fabricated the custom exhaust system with thermal barrier coating applied by Engineered Applications. A fabricated intercooler will be added to the vehicle to pass cooler air to the supercharger to the engine. The 4T65E GM Powertrain transaxle is also being enhanced by Hydramatic Motorsports to run over 200 mph and the final drive ratio is changed to 2.56 from 2.93.
The Pontiac Motor Division was established as a performance division largely in part because of its participation in runs at the Bonneville Salt Flats. In June of 1956, 73-year-old race car driver Ab Jenkins and his son Marvin co-drove a Pontiac Series 860 two-door sedan for a run that broke all existing American unlimited and Class C stock car records for a 24-hour world speed record of 118.375 mph. To commemorate the achievement, Pontiac named the Series 860 after the Bonneville Salt Flats.
Since that time, Pontiac'* image has focused on performance, fielding entries in the NASCAR Winston Cup and Busch series, the National Hot Rod Association and the American Speed Association.
The Bonneville Salt Flats' racing legacy began at the turn of the century when publisher William Randolph Hearst hired William Rishel to attempt crossing the salt flats on a bicycle as a publicity stunt. Despite the fact that Rishel completed his run in 22 hours, early attempts to promote the area as a raceway failed until Jenkins raced and beat a special excursion train by 10 minutes in a Studebaker. Since that time, the salt flats has been the site for numerous land-speed records.