Pontiac Aztek (1999)
We know Pontiac (unfortunately) built the Aztek, so conserve your keystrokes reminding us of this lamentable fact. But they didn’t build the Aztek they showed as a concept in 1999. The uglier than Rosie O’Donnell, slab-sided horror that debuted in 2001 shares little with the concept pictured here.
Putting the two side by side reveals that their proportions are completely different. Most visible, the angular roof design of the concept got totally screwed up on the path to production.
While there are ample arguments that Pontiac should have never, ever considered selling an SUV, the fact that they launched such a turd truly sullied the brand’s reputation. Had Pontiac built what they showed in 1999, the situation would have been far less bad. Perhaps they would have had a shot at their annual sales goal of 60,000 units. As the facts prove, first and second years sales never exceeded 10,000, and those sales were heavily incentivized.
The 1999 Aztek is currently in storage. Cold storage. Very cold.