June 16, 2005
In a recent interview, Don Norman warns of the perils of design by committee:
You don't do good software design by committee. You do it best by having a dictator. From the user's point of view, you must have a coherent design philosophy, and I don't see how that could come about from open source software. The person who's done it best is Steve Jobs, and he's well-known for being a tyrant.
Nowhere are those perils illustrated better than in this cautionary tale from General Motors:
In the mid-1990s, then-General Motors Corp. Chairman John G. Smale decided to bring the world's biggest automaker a dose of the give-the-people-what-they-want ethic that had animated Smale's old company, Procter & Gamble Co. And what the people wanted was sexy, edgy and a bit off-key; in short, a head-turner. General Motors' culture took over from there. Design would be by committee, the focus groups extensive. And production would have to stick to a tight budget, with all that sex appeal packed onto an existing minivan platform. The result rolled off the assembly line in 2000: the Pontiac Aztek, considered by many to be one of the ugliest cars produced in decades and a flop from Day One.
What's worse, the Aztek was actually a good idea at the right time. It was killed by poor execution:
The Aztek represented all that is wrong with GM's design process, that official said. The concept car actually did something few GM designs do: arrive before a trend -- this time, the crossover SUV that combines the attributes of a truck and a passenger car. And GM had high hopes to sell 50,000 to 70,000 Azteks a year, establishing Pontiac on the cutting edge.
Then came production, the executive said. The penny-pinchers demanded that costs be kept low by putting the concept car on an existing minivan platform. That destroyed the original proportions and produced the vehicle's bizarre, pushed-up back end. But the designers kept telling themselves it was good enough. "By the time it was done, it came out as this horrible, least-common-denominator vehicle where everyone said, 'How could you put that on the road?'" the official said.
Sales never reached the 30,000 level needed to make money on the Aztek, so it abruptly went out of production last year. The tongue-in-cheek hosts of National Public Radio's "Car Talk" named it the ugliest car of 2005. "It looks the way Montezuma's revenge feels," one listener quipped.
The Pontiac Aztek is such an egregious case of compromised design that it is referenced multiple times in Steve McConnell's Code Complete 2:
Maybe you think the Pontiac Aztek was the greatest car ever made, belong to the Flat Earth Society, and make a pilgrimage to the alien landing site at Roswell, New Mexico, every four years. If you do, go ahead and believe that requirements won't change on your projects. (p.40)
If we didn't know about geometric shapes like circles, squares, and triangles, for example, we might come up with more unusual shapes like squash shape, rutabaga shape, and Pontiac Aztek shape. (p.152)
This technique is useful about as often as you find someone who would rather have a used Pontiac Aztek than a new Corvette. (p. 365)
I was intrigued by the number of times the Aztek was referenced in the book-- three times is not a coincidence. And at least one international reader was a little miffed since he had no idea what the Pontiac Aztek was:
Another thing I didn't appreciate is the use of a few American comparisons and references. I presume the book is written for an international audience, in which case such culture-specific idioms should be avoided. The Pontiac Aztek is featured quite prominently (never having seen one, nor being aware of its reputation, I have no idea whether the choice for that particular car has any meaning, be it positive or negative). I also remember at least one reference to some sports terminology which is obsure to most non-Americans, probably baseball-related. [..] Only four stars due to the superficial discussion of some interesting topics and the Pontiac Aztek references.
The Aztek is uniquely American. And too often, so is the least common denominator result of design by committee.
Posted by Jeff Atwood
Hey, I love my Aztek!
It's wide enough for 3 booster seats in the back, has decent storage and is distinctive enough to spot in the parking lot. I much prefer the split gate/window combination. The mileage is OK (22-24 of continuous highway), and it's got a peppy engine.
Oh, if you run a business, the back panel is great for a magnetic or vinyl sign.
Best of all, it drives like a car, not a truck. Believe it or not, I contrasted it to a Olds Silhouette (I know, it's a minivan) and just loved the Aztek's ride.
Actually, there's really only one thing I always hated about the Aztek: a really, really bad blindspot, necessitated by the back window design.
So, it's weird looking. So's the Mini Cooper, the PT Cruiser (for which I still don't get the attraction), the Prowler and an awful lot of cars these days.
Hey, I love my Aztek!
LOL, I was waiting for the first owner to offer an opinion. ;) It is an, uh, distinctive automobile!
I love my Aztek! Maybe the people offering negative comments are just to "level" headed! It has lots of space great interior and it is quite zippy! The blind spot does take some getting used to...
This is definetly a car for some one who thinks outside the box! I'm proud to be such a person!
I have a 2002 AWD and I love the car. It's peppy enough to keep me out of harm's way, tall enough to allow me to see "down the road", roomy enough to carry things I need, up to and indcluding 2 carseats. Yes, it's unusual looking at first but the plus's far outweight that. The blind spot is an issue but if you tilt the rear view mirror that goes away. Since all driving schools recommond turning your head and looking before changing lanes, it's not that big an issue.
A great car for all around use!
I like Aztek. Why many people say that Aztek is ugly? I think it looks pretty cool. I'm planning to purchase a used Aztek. Anyone can give me some advices? How about Aztek's performance? I really like it.
Love my Aztek. MPG, roomy, very comfy front seats, just enough power and a great discount. Like it so much even bought his "big sister", the Rendezvous, for my wife.
The blind spot issue seems to be dependent on driver height, seat adjustment and mirror positioning. Have always been able to "adjust out" for our drivers.
Best of all my girlfriend loves the camping package for our little "get togethers" in secluded areas as she calls it affectionately: "MY Aztek".
I must admit, the design at first was not so appealing, but it grew on me. I love my Aztek! It's got plenty of room for my girls and all of our "stuff". I don't have to worry about things not fitting in. If it's a little too long, no problem. Just shift the carseats over and take out a seat! It's perfect for the single mother who is repulsed by station-wagons and definitely not ready for a minivan (Can't stand the thought of being a typical soccer mom). Of course, the V6 engine helps me feel better when I'm accelerating past the little 3 and 4 cylinder cars up the mountains with the air conditioner on full blast! It doesn't hurt either that I can definitely spot it in a crowded parking lot. Over the last year since I got mine, I've noticed a lot more of them popping up in our area. Can't be all that bad if it is catching on.
I love my Aztek. I have had it since 2001 and have almost 90,000 miles racked up. My older son thinks it's ugly, but doesn't hesitate to borrow it to go skiing or camping! My 13 yr old is begging for it when he turns 16!
I love the Aztek, so much that I traded my 2002 for a brand new 2005. I am disappointed that they quit production. I don't know what I'll do next time. It loves the mountains and makes a great car or truck or SUV. And most people ask "what is it?" but once they have ridden in it think it's cool!
I have liked Azteks ever since they first came out, and always wanted one. I traded in our 1999 VW New Beetle on one just yesterday so I could own the final version of the car, the 2005 Aztek AWD in electric blue. With the sunroof open, this thing freaking rules. And I've never seen one in this color before, so when I saw it on the lot I just said "that one". Today I even had a guy in a Hummer H2 looking over at it appraisingly as we sat next to one another at a light. I call it my "Electric Blue Trash Truck Sport". I'm glad I was able to get a fully loaded new one before they became extinct.
No matter what you guys think, the aztek (aka asssuck) is, was, and always will be, one of the largest car design failures of all time. It was an absolute FAILURE based almost entirely upon how it looks. It was loaded with all the features people where looking for and very few people bought it. They took one look and said "OH MY GOD WHAT IS THAT HEINOUS MACHINE!!?" It looks like some immoral mass meat processing device or perhaps some satanic effigy of a long forgotten god.
For every ONE person who likes it, there are 100,000 who said they hate it. (You can't argue with the sales numbers).
For those who do like how it looks, I am of the belief that there MUST be something different/broken about your genetic code. The aztek gene is something to be studied intensively, and then systematically erradicated from the human race.
Look, I don't care what ya'll think about azteks, especially the previous comment made by TRUTH...LMAO
I think everybody deserves their opinion, And if we like the way AZTEKS look so what. I personally think they are fu*^ing tight. SWEET.
I don't think that there is another suv out there that comes close to the AZTEK.
I LOVE my aztek. I own a 2005 black fully loaded aztek and my wife drive a 2003 yellow aztek. THEY ARE THE BEST THING THAT EVER HAPPENED. I think its the slick design that drives everybody nuts..some people just don't want to admit it. but azteks rule.
Hey I love my Aztek. What's wrong with being different? Different is good. Why be all the same. I bought my Aztek because it's as different as I am. I've had no troubles with the car. I'd own a another after I retire this one.
What about all the problems with these things? I don't think I've ever seen so many reviews about so many problems - intake manifolds, wheel bearings, etc! Geez, I love the way the thing looks, but if I wanted to keep pumping money into something, I'd just keep my 11 year old Probe!
I've had my Aztek for 2 years and just have under 12,000 miles on it since I live near Boston, MA and take the T to work every day. So far, I've had no problems with my 2004 and I really like it too! I think it's cool looking, a bit ugly, but so is my Mastiff and she's awesome! I've been looking online today for them and see that the model has been replaced for 2006 so I guess it'll be a collectors' item some day?? At any rate, I'll be keeping it for about 10 more years until I get my money's worth or my milage worth out of it. Until then, I'll continue to wave at the others out there who are part of our "Aztek Family."
I love mine too! 2001 GT - 64,300 miles and no problems. People think they're ugly but have they looked at the Scions or the Elements????? Azteks are beauties up next to one of those. The thing with the Aztek is, you have to drive it to appreciate it.
My wife and I both love our 2001 Aztek ,Imust say
It is not the best looking car on the road ,tier are a few worse than it. the ride is very good and
it has geat versitility .it has some problems
but they are not restricted to Aztek only !
I would buy another one If one could !
I was one of those people who thought the Aztek was the biggest crime against humanity until I took a quick peek in one as I was leaving a used car lot. WOW! Was I surprised. I ended up buying a used 2002 black 'Darth Vader' Aztek (with the cool 'camo' interior). It's perfect! I sometimes cart a wheelchair around with me and being able to remove one of the back seats makes this an easy chore plus all the hooks and nets in the huge interior makes stashing stuff easy. My cat likes it too.
Probably not the greatest but sure will go down in history. Type of vehicle that you'll love to hate or hate because you love it.
Clearly the only people making comments here are poor misguided aesthetically challenged souls searching the net for ANYONE who even has the guts to comment on what is the most FUGLY of any vehicle made, by far, and a total lemon at that. Proof humans are a sad lot. Only odd thing is it took GM so long to put it out of their and those who hated those things misery.
Wow. I think we have amassed the compendium of people who actually like the Asstek. All 18 of them.
What's REALLY funny are the people to spend the energy to type out their complaints about the "ugliness" of the car and how it should be done away with. Either you guys are just so feeble minded that your eggs are all placed in your vanity baskets or you just come from a bad German bloodline.
Either way, I like things you have to look past the surface to see the beauty in. I presently drive a Ford Cobra but am looking for a 2005 Darth Vader of my own as we speak. Any leads (by the open minded only) would be greatly appreciated. Oh yeah, gotta have the moonroof.
All I can say is this - I LOVED the concept car, and never forgave GM for what they did to it. Anyone who has seen pics of what it SHOULD have looked like would understand how so many people found the resulting product as a sin against humanity, which it truly is - sorry, WAS.
For those that like'em, all the power to you - that doesn't make it any less sad. It was available for 5 model years, and sold less than 125,000 units. GM needed a minimum of 150,000 from '01-'05 just to break even. Those who like it are clearly in a small club.
You know, we like our Aztek. The bland spot did take some getting used to. Butthe other feature of the car and the nice ride make it a pretty cool. You know the design is funky but it does grow on you. Hey you guys can drive whatever you want. Some of you think that the Ford Probe was a "neat" car.
The Aztek is a great automobile. It's the only suv/minivan that both my husband and I could agree on. It's the best of several vehicles all in one. When I started reading about the Aztek after I bought one I was surprised to find that people thought it was unattractive. My first thought was cool finally something different.
The only complaint with it I can find is that when I do need to replace something parts typically have to be ordered but that's the same thing I love about it. It's not some mass produced clone.
well i feel in love with the aztek the first time i drove one.i gotta a 2 year old and one on the way.these cars are way better looking than them ugly ass scions or elements.they are funky and there are very few.they drive so smooth.and have tons of room.so to each his own.if you dont like it so be it.but i love mine@!
Yep...I too am an Aztek owner. You love em or you hate em. There is no middle ground. "Looks like a biga** roller skate", according to one guy. I would like to see a Grand Am get that kind of response driving down the highway. So what? I betchall have an ugly shirt or two - and we have to look at it when you wear it. So what? GM created a monster...or at least had a brain fart in the execution stage but let me tell you...we dressed our white vehicle up with some strategically placed bullet hole stickers...added some cruched fenders from running into trees and packed my kid's entire military kit into the back and we still have room for five adults and a stuffed curious george on the dash. My opinon...aztek owners are just completely comfortable with who they are and what they want in a vehicle....like those Element (shudder) people...
I just bought (TODAY) a 2004 Aztek. I REALLY LOVE the thing... I am a full-time law enforcement officer, and I have already added an LED package that mounts up beautifully with the back window (lower) and an LED selectable display that says "POLICE" and "CAUTION!!!" in switched red/blue/amber LEDs...
It carries my K9, her gear, my gear, a weapons locker, and anything else I need. The mileage is great (already went 500 plus miles today, going to N'Orleans) and anybody says the Aztek is ugly needs to look at the rolling toasters out there (Scion, Element... Euuwww) and then compare. My Aztek is 'Vader black, and it looks just cool.
Antin-Aztekkers... stay out of my jurisdiction. One laugh, one BIG ticket...
I love my 03 Aztek, has great power, room and comfort. People think they are ugly haven't seen the new infinity suv, talk about ugly, how about the scion. GM was just ahead of the time with the look of the Aztek, now every one is trying to see who can come up with an edgy car that will allow people to have thier own identity.
Maybe the people that think that the Aztek is ugly don't have an identity of their own, and are scared to be their own person.
I own a 2001 and I'm going on 200,000 miles, I do a lot of driving and the car hasn't let me down yet. Other than My caliper keeps locking up and I"m going thru an awful lot of brakes. I have also gone thru an amazingly a lot of tires. I've heard a lot of people making a lot of other complaints that they've had of there's at a lot less miles. For what it's worth I've got my money's worth out of mine and it's never left me stranded. Yes I'll admit I find it to be ugly but I love the way it drives and I love the inside of the car, I feel extremely comfortable in it. And yes the blind spot took some getting use too.
Personally, I couldn't care less what anyone thinks of the Aztek. I love them and it's the perfect vehicle for my family. I'm looking for another gently used one with low miles, close to Connecticut, for a reasonable price. Any leads or advice???
Thanks in advance.
In Love With An Aztek
I've had my Darth Vader black Aztek for a month now, It's an '03 and I really like it, I was really surprised at the ride quality and power.If the blind spot bothers you, do what I did and order a 13" convex rearview clip on from J.C.Whitney. You can see eveything no problem then.
People talking about the Aztec being ugly, as if ugly design is new to Pontiac.
Hello! ALL Pontiacs are horrendously ugly cars. Looking at the car from the back and the placement and shape of the tail lights and it looks like you are looking into the eyes of an ugly insect. From the front, Pontiacs look like a giant venomous fang.
No matter how you put it, Pontiacs in general are ugly cars.
i GOT A USED AZTEC ABOUT A MONTH AGO AND I ABSOLUTELY LOV IT FOR MY 40+ STATUS. IT'S A GREAT TRAVELING CAR, PLENTY OF ROOM, IT'S HEAVY AND I FEEL VERY SECURE WHEN TRAVELING. IT HAS THE STYLE, SEX APPEAL AND HAS ATTRACTED MANY ONLOOKERS WHO STATE THEY LOVE IT AS WELL, WANTING TO KNOW WHAT KIND OF CAR IT ACTUALLY IS! I'M SHOWING MY PONTIAC AZTEC AND MYSELF OFF AT THE SAME TIME. GOTTA LOVE IT.
SURE LOVE THE PONTIAC AZTEC... ITS A 2003 GREAT RIDE, SMOOTH AS GLASS AND LOOKS LIKE A MINI HUMMER ..... PEOPLE THAT THINK THEY ARE UGLY HAVE NOT SEEN THE NEW TOYOTA AND HONDA PRODUCTS YET...
I LOVE MY AZTEK! I have a 2001, and was totally bummed last year when they discontinued it. We are currently looking to buy a newer Aztek, just because I love mine so much. I wish they'd bring it back. The Rendevous has the same frame, but it's totally different. The Torrent was to take over for it, but yet it is nothing like it. I also love the split tailgate/rear window. I'm short, so it works well for me, plus it's handy for a picnic. I love the way it drives, the design of it, and I could just go on and on. Many comments do I get for the center console/cooler. I LOVE IT! Please, just bring it back. By the looks of reading other comments several others love it also.
I LOVE my 2003 Aztek! I don't think it's ugly at
all; actually I think it has it's own interesting
look. There are MANY ugly cars out on the road
these days that make the Aztek a cutie! Have you looked at the Scion?! My Aztek is just hitting 35,000 miles and she's a good runner. I
don't regret the purchase and want you all to know it's a good car!
Owner for 18 months of a nice red 'tek from the last model year (2005). Can you get a 4x8 sheet of plywood in your crossover? Didn't think so. Only regret was that I could not find a yellow one. Ten speaker factory sound rocks!
my mom just traded her 99 Sable for an 04 Aztek and i must say, what a great deal. it only has 22,000 miles, rally package, and all the works. it looks fugly, but it rides so smooth, and all the features make it a loveable vehicle. sucks they quit making it cause it's not a bad vehicle at all. much better than the explorer she was also looking at!!
hey i was looking for a car and a few people told me to get a pontiac aztek are they really that good of a ride and i think it is just the cutest car i have ever seen
I have a 2002 Azteck and I love it,the only thing that I dont like is where they put the spare tire I cant get to it I have bad health problems but,I would buy another one.
The best car on the world.!!!!
I have had my yellow 2002 AZTEC for just over 2 years now and I still love it! My husband is not a big fan but has come around to why it works for me. I'm short and a bigger gal, but I can set the seat far enough back to reach both the pedals and the steering wheel comfortably and still reach any and all controls. The split rear window is great for visibility as well. I'm diabetic so the cooler in the center console is a god-send for my medications. Not to mention that this vehicle can hold just about anything I throw at it! My only complaint is that the top of the rolling pull-out tray is a little slippery so anything put on it will slide around as you're driving. But I put a no-slip throw rug thingy on top of it and problem solved. I'm going to drive it until it dies.
I am looking into buying an Aztec and I when I saw this vehicle I absolutely loved it. It has so much room and I really like the design of it. The Aztec has so many features that you won't find in a car....(console cooler for example). Anyway, I am looking forward to being an Aztec owner and I am supporting everyone out there who already owns one. Who cares if there are people who feel that this is an ugly vehicle, their opinion isn't going to change my opinion of my future Aztec.
I'm looking at an '02 w/ 59k miles. Am interested in reading more from owners w/ high miles...
Heh heh, wife likes it. I have to say it's cute in a rather hideous way. We've been looking at used Aztek's vs Expeditions. I think I just wrote off the Expedition after reading about the mass of head gasket-blown engine issues.
Once I got past the 'funky' exterior I noticed the inside was actually a pretty good design, the cooler was definately innovative, seats supportive and rear cargo area very useful.
Maybe with some decent wheels and tires I might feel comfortable beening seen in it.
I LOVE OUR AZTEK!! MY WIFE LOVES IT, THE KIDS LOVE IT. I OWN A 2004 AWD MODEL HAVE HAD IT SINCE 2003. THIS IS BY FAR THE BEST ALL AROUND VEHICLE I HAVE EVER OWNED. I AM A MECHANIC BY TRADE I HAVE HAD NO PROBLEMS WITH THIS VEHICLE IT HAS ALMOST 65,000 MILES ON IT JUST REPLACED TIRES AT 60,000 STILL DOESNT NEED BRAKES HAD TO TURN 1 ROTOR FOR INSPECTION .IT IS GOOD ON GAS GETS ABOUT 27-29MPG HI-WAY 17-20 CITY. IT RIDES AND HANDELS EXCELLENT!DRIVES LIKE A SPORTS CAR WITH VERY LITTLE BODY ROLL . MINE HAS THE 16 INCH ALLOY WHEEL PACKAGE GREAT IN THE SNOW IT GOES LIKE A TANK AND IT STOPS GREAT .I ALSO HAVE A 19' BOAT I TOW THAT WEIGHS ABOUT 3600 POUNDS IT TOWS IT JUST FINE EVEN WITH 4 ADULTS IN IT.ANYONE WHO DOESNT OWN ONE DOESNT HAVE ANY ROOM TO CUT THIS FINE AUTOMOBILE DOWN. ASK SOMEONE WHO OWNS ONE.
Funny. for all of the Aztek owners, or perspective buyers, I have one two words...AMC Pacer. Another nice car
We just bought a 2004 Aztec and we love it. There is so much space in the back. The dealer said we could add a third row of seats. I haven't been able to find any info about it. Does anyone know about this?
I have owned three Pontiacs, ranging from a 1965
Tempest Custom, a 1968 LeMans Sprint to a 1973
LeMans Sedan.Pontiac has made some good vehicles
in the past (and some not-so-good ones) and NO
WAY would I own an Aztec. Beauty being only in
the eye of the beholder, I suppose there is no
accounting for taste.
Im considering purchasing a 2001 Aztek with 39k miles. Ive read on other forums about head gaskets and expensive engine repairs after 40k. Id like to hear from some high mileage owners and anyone who can confirm this. I can purchase an extended warranty, but cant affod to miss work for days or weeks at a time due to repair time. Any helpful insight out there? THanks.
I HATE IT AND WILL NEVER OWN ANOTHER PONTIAC. I WOULD RATHER TAKE A BUS!! I BOUGHT A 2001 PONTIAC 2 YEARS AGO AND AM AT THE POINT OF BURNING IT. I HAVE DONE NOTHING BUT REPAIR THE DAMN THING FROM THE DAY I BROUGHT IT HOME. THE HEAD GASKETS ARE SCREWED. THE KEY GETS STUCK DUE TO THE GEAR SHIFT. THE BCM SENSOR WENT OUT AND CAUSES ALL KIND OF ELECTRICAL PROBLEMS. THE FUEL PUMP WENT OUT DUE TO AN ELECTRICAL WIRING UNDER THE DRIVER SEAT. THE REAR LATCH DOESNT OPEN HALF THE TIME. THE HEAT TAKES FOREVER TO HEAT UP. THE AC LEAKS DUE TO A DRAINAGE PLUG DEFECT. THE SERVICE ENGINE LIGHTS COMES ON ALL THE TIME, EVEN AFTER IT GETS OUT OF THE SHOP. IT ROLLS AFTER YOU PUT IT IN PARK. ABS LIGHT COMES ON AND BRAKES LOCK UP IF U BRAKE WHILE YOU ARE TURNING. I HAVE ALL THE PROBLEMS YOU HEAR ABOUT ON SITES. ALL THE DEFECTS THAT CAN HAPPEN HAS HAPPENED TO MY CAR. I BOUGHT AN EXTENDED WARRANTY THROUGH THE DEALARSHIP THAT WAS SUPPOSE TO COVER EVERYTHING...GUESS WHAT...ONLY ONE OF THE PROBLEMS WAS COVER. THE FUEL PUMP, BUT IT COST ME 600 FOR THE WIRING AND LABOR TO REPLACE THE FUEL PUMP. GREAT WARRANTY HUH? I HAVE ONLY PUT 12,000 MILES ON IT IN THE LAST 2 YEARS CAUSE I DONT TRUST IT TO GO LONG DISTANCES. WHEN I BOUGHT IT, IT ONLY HAD 52,000 MILES ON IT. I FEEL GUILTY EVEN TRADING IT IN FOR SOME POOR SOUL TO HAVE TO BUY IT FROM THOSE LIEING, DECEIVING SALES MAN WILL SELL ANYTHING TO MAKE A SALE. I WOULDNT SUGGEST ANYONE TO BUY ONE. THE BAD OUT WEIGHS THE GOOD. I PROMISE!!
I love my 2003 Aztek. I just got it this year. It has so many features and is incredibly durable. I am the mother of 3 boys and this is the perfect SUV that has it all. If they ever make it again I will run out and buy a brand new one. It is a far better car than the ugly Element or the ugly Scion. Ugly is the new pimpin these days. I only wish I discovered this car sooner.
Ok so lots of opinions from those who dont even drive an Aztek. I love it. Yes its different, thats what I like about it. Who wants to be like everyone else. I moved my mother in it yesterday OMG the amount of stuff you can fit into it is amazing!! Not to mention kids and all their bags and sports gear!Its travel friendly. Even a cooler attached!! Mine is a loaded Maroon 2003 and I would buy another anytime. The next one will be yellow though!
I love my 2003 AZTEK!! I think it arrived before it's time, that's why "PEOPLE" can't or couldn't appreciate it! Hopefully GM will go back to the table with this (THE AZTEK)!!!
Anybody who doesn't like my Aztek can kiss my fucking ass, especially those yammering magpies at cartalk.
I own an Aztec and it is the biggest piece of crap ever!!! I would defintielynot recommend this car to anyone!! Nothing but problems since the day I bought it which was only 2 months ago! The transmission will fail on you, it did on my and my dad! So, don't buy one if you were actually thinking about it!
Good to see all the Azztek owners are so in love with their rides. Having such a recognizable car on the road makes it so much easier for all the other drivers to see and avoid people going through an identity crisis this way!
Love my big yellow 2002 Aztek. My friends call it the 'happy car'. Maybe ugly on the outside, but way cool on the inside. Everyone I take for a ride has an instant attitude adjustment once they're riding in it.
TRUTH, you sound frighteningly like Hitler, but you're a lousy speller, so no threat there, and a guy named 'SEYMOUR' is calling my car Fugly? If you guys are evocative of the mass majority, I am happy to be in any minority that doesn't include you knuckle draggers.
My ex-wife, a psychology major, told me about studies that were made with college students, putting them through this useless, frustrating test for several hours. It had not point to it other than to study their reactions. When quizzed about it afterwards, each participant talked about how they felt their experience was relevant and useful to the outcome of the research. The point? Their minds were not able to admit that they had blown a wad of time on an pointless endeavor, and had to come up with a rationalization for the experience (and for most Aztec users as well, apparently)
I have a 2004 Aztec and really love it, the only down fall I've had is the resale value is way low. I owe $16,000 but the top of the blue book only allows $10,000. But I love the design and the color "RED".
We've had two - 2001 and 2003. Like a lot of other people, we thought they were ugly - at first. Then we drove one and fell in love. The only critical comment I can make is about the blind spot, but if you took driver training and know how to drive, it is not a big problem. We bought it because it has the largest space cargo space of any vehicle for its' size - as in taking the kid to college. The sound system is the best, add the air compressor, camping kit, comfort and handling, good mileage, but most especially the cooler, air conditioning vents, which are the best in any vehicle made, and the red dashboard lights - a much better idea, especially for night driving. It is a great car for road trips. In my opinion, people don't like the looks because they are intimidated. The look of the front end, plus the dark windows, put people off - when you drive one, you can practically see other drivers look at it and then not pull out in front of you! It was a shame that they "threw the baby out with the bath water" when they discontinued the car - the inside is the best designed vehicle for comfort and convenience of any - ever. The new Torrent, by comparison is a piece of caca. All they had to do was keep the inside and then make it look like all the other cookie cutter vehicles on the road. For those who don't like the looks - tough.
What a vehicle! If you haven't driven one, you should. Fabulous. One of the best values for the money. I realize that those of you that bought a new Aztek my have taken a bit of a bath with the resale value, but, those who purchased a used Aztek are laughing all the way to the bank. I love my 2004 Aztek. Purchased it for $12,500 and worth every penny.
No buyer regrets here, having just bought my 2005 Aztek a month ago. I'm a realtor, and I didn't really want to spend a fortune on a new vehicle. I needed something with more room than most cars, but didn't want to go with a Mini Van. Add to that that my husband hates SUVs I had just bought a year old Ion3 in May of 06 that I ended up hating, I didn't want to make a another mistake. I feel so great about my purchase, I got the vehicle that fulfills my needs at a very reasonable price. My gas mileage is similar to many of the full size cars out there. It's got some pep, and really feels great behind the wheel. As for other peoples reactions, my peers at work all seem to like it (maybe Realtors are a strange breed), but my family reaction is more negative than positive for looks, but once inside they change their tune. Okay so its considered a flop, don't care, I've also owned 3 fieros and loved them too. FYI, I'm one of those persons that thought they looked sharp in the Ads when they first came out. Happy in WI
A lot of these comments seem far too weird and similar to each other to be real. How many mention the ugliness of Scions, or how 'different' Aztek owners are (that part I might agree with)?
Jeff, baby, can you check the IP address of the posters and tell me that I'm not going crazy? There's no way this many people actually like the Aztek.
well then another moron has spoke
well then another narrow minded person has spoke
I have to be honest the first time I saw the Azteck I thought it was ugly. But now I have one. As a working mother of three I love the car. I have just graduated from college and everyone of my friends is getting new cars and I have no interested in a new car. My car is great and I wouldn't trade it for anything. However, I am looking in tring to add a third row of seats if anyone has any inforamtion on it I can do that or if ponitac has them?? All I have to say is don't knock it itll you try it!!!!
Who cares, what have we come to here!!! The other day I was comming home from work. I was so excited to get home and see our new couch. It was a huge investment, my husband and I work hard for everything we own. I remember feeling so proud, and then some guy plows into the side of my car. He failed to yield right of way while he was turning left. It was a toatal loss for us. We bought an aztec today, I wasn't looking for one, never even heard of it. It was affordable and belive it or not I have read really good reviews, all cars have problems. Best thing about it is I got it cheap, because so many people are fixated on the way it looks, and not the actual efficiancy of the car. So thank you to all you critics...I am now in a roomy, gas efficiant aztec that my family can travel comfortably in.
My 2001 Aztek has 140,000 miles on it, still going strong. Have had issues with the AC, other than that I have put less money into repaires for the aztek, than any vehicle I have ever owned.
Reminds me of the Simpsons episode where Homer gets to design a car.
I just wanted to point out that after a search of all the currently available new and late model small SUV's (including ugly ones), I bought a 2001 Aztek. It was the only one that my 6 foot 5 inch body fit in. It seems that the design trend for the small SUV "requires" a large wide console that takes away a big man's needed knee room. If you are tall and don't want to waste gas in a big SUV, look paste the "unique" design and take a seat. You will be sold by the room and the comfort (anyone my height knows how hard it is to find a seat that is comfortable. The plus is my 5' 7" wife is comfy too.
My husband just bought me one. I am totally in love with this suv. Different, well yes it is. Does it look like everything else out there, nope it sure doesn't and that is what attracted me to it.Once I sat in it I was blown away by the cubby holes in the cockpit. I smoke so there is a spot for the smokes and on the other side my cell.The cooler is great for my cd's also. And I really like all of the power outlets throughout it.I have coolers that have heat/cooling options and I can plug one in for hot food and plug another one in for keeping drink cold.The day after we bought ours we left on a vacation for 14 days. Racked up over 5,000 miles on it. Never had a back ache at all. Storage everywhere. I have more people come up to me and ask about it and once they look inside and see all it has to offer they love it as well. Mine is a sleek blk, with red and black interior and as luck would have red is my favorite color. It is totally tricked out and I couldn't be happier with ours.It is a 2002 and we only paid 8,000 for it with our trade in. So I think we got a great deal.
I find it rather disheartening that all those here who don't own one sit and complain. Different is what makes the world go around.If everyone drove the same thing or type of vehicle the world would really be a boring place. So get a life and quit bashing those of us who do like it and have had no problems.
wow can't believe the ones who are SO negative. they have to be some of the dullest people on the road. we purchased an 01 new, now with 88,000 and have had no problems. change oil and tires and maintain it like any car and it will take you anywhere. been border to border and coast to coast and still heading out on long hauls. looking for another, hopefullly yellow with sunroof this time. don't need another vader black. am a traveling contractor and it has ample room for all my tools and gear with left over for the wifes stuff too. hauls as much gear as my F250 but rides oh so much better.
I have had my aztek for 2 years now. I love it! Ya know, everyone has a right to their own opinion, that's what makes the world go round. My Aztek has treated me like a princess. It's soo comfy and roomy and yes, I do have comments about the back, negative, and possitive. Once people ride in it, they love it. It's amazing how people contain the same thoughts and ideas as the ones around them. Some guy probably had an opinion of the vehicle " that's the ugliest thing I've ever seen" and so on and so forth. Just because it isn't a vipor. And then so did his friend and his cousins uncles brother. lol. Guys love camaros right??? I know more people than not that think the front is like a boat. so there ya go. Don't diss people just because they like or don't like something. Everyone is subject to their own opinion. leave it at that.
I think anyone saying that Azteks are "ugly", "designed by a committee" and some other such nonsense, never rode in one. Azteks are for folks who like bargain hunting. For us, Aztek owners, the popular reaction to the vehicle has been a bonus: we got great value for very little money, because there was so little demand for it. My Aztek, frankly, is the best vehicle I have ever had. Where GM failed was not in building it, but in marketing it.
Keep your Azteks, ladies gentlemen--this car will become a classic!
I LOVE MY AZTEK! I bought a 2003 new in 2003 and it still runs as well as the day I bought it. No problems at all. All you nay sayers are afraid to try it because you might like it!
I bought a 2004 pontiac aztek about six months ago and I absolutely love it! It is very comfortable and I have not had any problems at all since I have it. It is the right mix between a car, a truck, a van and an suv. It has it all, comfort, economy and a very smooth ride!
I'll agree they are ugly, but for kicks I drove one the other day and it completely changed my mind! What they lack in looks they slaughter in interior efficiency and effectiveness. And if you will use your brain you use the inside of your vehicle not the outside.
Had a good chuckle out of reading all the "ugly" "no taste" comments. They are right, it is butt ugly. Still have my 2001, been all over Ontario towing a tent trailer. No major problems yet, awesome ride. In the middle of winter it is nice to turn the dials without taking your gloves off. As far as bean-counters go- creative ideas and bean counters is an oximoron.
I loved these Azteks when they first came out,, my kids thought I was nuts,, now years later I just found and purchased a 2001,, Yes, I now know its the ORIGINAL !! (59k )It is 'Sun on Leaf Green' ( would love to find out the real name for the colour..) We love it !! It was a meant to be,,
I have raised my gaggle of kidz in Suburbans and then Yukons,, had a fear factor of tiny things but needed better mileage,, We are getting 27-30 MPG,, sit up off the road, all windows down--we blow our hair back, the seats are most adjustable and comfortable,, and I now am sure that the original intuitions were right on track..You look around and its easy to see that as outrageous as it may have seemed in the beginning,, it didnt take long for every one else to jump on the wagon,, You are correct in stating that the aztek was just ahead of its time,, but all credits to its creaters,, they won !!
I bought my Aztek in '01. I love it. I am starting to have a few electrical issues, but I nothing to major. It is perfect for my life style. Have you seen the new cross overs? Remindes me of the Aztek. I hope GM puts them back out. I would buy another one. When they came out, I thought I would never own one, but I was wrong and glad that I am.
Many of the upper end cross overs are uglier than the Atek.
i already know what s said about the aztek, some love it, some hate it, i thought it was weird looking at the beginning, maybe it was only that the world wasnt ready for it back in 2001, im getting mine next week, i like it a lot, never imagined i'd own one..about the electrical problem it may be a moist harness below the driver seat, dry it and get some dielectrical grease on it...when i read "darth vader" from ppl who likes the aztek..i start to realize i might be a nerd after all
Well it looks like the majority of these posts are "pro" AZTEK! I am happy to include myself as a very satisfied owner. My husband says it looks like a Rhino... my nephews call it "The Great Pumpkin"... and my co-workers refer to it as "Pokemon", however she will always be my "Orange Dream". I have a 2005 Fusion Orange Rally and wouldn't trade it for ... no not even a 65 Classic Corvette. Blind spot??? What blind spot... HANG UP YOUR CELL PHONE! Cheers to my fellow Aztek lovers!
I own a 2004 orange rally addition aztek and for the price it is fully loaded. The inside has over 8 cup holders, a cooler and several power outlets and just as much gadjets as any top of the line suv.I love the way it looks(I'll never loose it in a crowded parking lot)and drives. The aztek does draw a lot of attention,some people do not know what it is. It has a lot of room( you can fit a house in the trunk) and everyone calls me when they need something moved. The aztek is also great in the snow. Who wants to be like everyone else, it's nice not to follow the crowd.
I love my 2001 Aztek, bought new in 2002. It's red and I call it my little fire truck. My husband calls it the Transformer. Even though it's a 2001, the paint and interior have held up very well and it almost looks like a new car. My husband thinks it's ugly, but he likes the ride, especially for long trips. I previously drove a Bonneville and a Buick Reatta. I love the visibility, but agree that you have to be careful about the blind spot. I lost my transmission under warranty and just had to have my gas gauge (the part in the tank) replaced. No other problems. I can load an entire flea market booth in the back and use it to transport sample items for work. Mine is the loaded, rally version. I don't think the options in the redesign model are as nice.
I love my Aztec! I bought it in 2001 and still have it today, I have 84,000 miles on it and it never gave me a days trouble. My kids call it the "tank" and the younger kids say it looks like a leggo car. Don"t know why they stopped making the truck it's a great vehicle. Yes its ugly but like everything else it went full circle from ugly to cute.
What I realized by reading the above comments is that, people and their tastes can be so different; and there is a small minority which is so different from the general population (in a bad way). BTW, are you all Aztek apologists, members of Aztekfansclub.com?, on a mission to boost the general morale and defend your decision to purchase this FUGLY car.
I feel I have a right to complain and type negative comments about the POS that GM passed off to it's buyers. I spend at least 30 hours a month cutting up my arms with razor edged brackets and ill-designed parts while changing out the constantly failing intake manifold gaskets on the 3.4L engine in the Aztek. That engine, ESPECIALLY when it's stuffed into the aztek engine bay, is like one of those chinese puzzles that can only be taken apart one way, and to remove one simple part requires just about everything else on the engine to be removed. It's one of the only cars I know of that takes 3 hours to change the thermostat in, and 4 hours to change the plugs and wires. You have to remove the intake manifold to change the alternator! Anyone who thinks they made a good decision and saved money buying an Aztec obviously doesnt realise that when they pay to have normal maintenance and repairs done they are losing/wasting massive amounts of money compared to just about any other car (unless you compare it to another GM vehicle with a V6 engine in it). Not to mention if you ever spill a bottle of water on the floor behind the drivers seat you will short out the fuel pump, since the connector isnt waterproof from the inside of the truck, just the outside (SUV! hah!)
I love my 2004 Aztek! All my friends who drive the usual boring Camry or Civic get inside this and are amazed. I have single handedly sold over 7 people on switching from Toyota/Honda to Pontiac. Give a Pontiac a try! I love my Aztek and my wife loves her Torrent.
First of all; this is a review site for those who own or may want to purchase, a certain model vehicle. It isn't a site for those who do not even own one to leave nasty hateful comments; just because it does not suit your taste.If you dont like it,dont talk about it or have anything to do with it...move on.If you dont own one then you dont need to worry about it ,do you!
I own a 2002, with 125k and it rides and drives as if it were new,i I like it a lot, and i hope i got a good deal.
Sometimes you get a bum deal from the start, sometimes its how the vehicle is driven, maintained that makes the difference.
If your worried about working on it, I work on my vehicles too; but I looked before I bought it. I knew I wouldnt be able to work on it because of it's design. Then again, the Aztec is not worse than a few GM screwups i could name.I have owned several.
I wanted to write this in hopes that people who are considering buying an Aztek may read it and feel better about their decision.
Read all of the people who love them.... if you are looking at one you must like it.... go test drive one and you will fall in love with it.
I test drove mines and it's been love every since. I don't bother listening to the "why did you get that ugly car" because once they walk up to it they are like "wow these are large in size" then you open the doors and they go "WOW THIS IS NICE"
Honestly I really don't have a complaints. Everyone complains about the rear fin dude.. you have a LARGE WINDOW in the back it's a small line that goes across it actually looks like they intended to put it there to block out peoples high beams becuase that's exactly what i DO NOT suffer from any longer.
Man so many features i could go on and on.
Fast, Roomy, comfortable, removable console/cooler, nice 8 speaker sound system, smooth ride, good mileage on gas everything is great.
The brake system is a little different and weird but... nothing that would turn my head and make me not want the vehicle.
if you have any questions you would like to ask about it you can email me email@example.com
can anyone tell me why my gas gauge does not work on my 2002 Aztec?
i've gotten a lot of crap from a lot of people (mainly GUYS) who think that "aztecs are ugly cars and getting it in yellow just makes it worse!"
to me, my aztec looks like a giant lego. and there's nothing wrong with that. i think that the aztec represents a more alternative and possibly even futuristic take on automobiles. tradionally "attractive" cars just don't appeal to me at all. just because you drive something that costs more than your annual salary doesn't mean that it's aesthetic or practical.
the aztec is the definition of not judging a book by it's cover. i love my yellow 2002 aztec. it's my first car and i could not ask for anything better.
owning an aztec can be a statement, and not everyone in this world can handle bold statements. especially ones that don't sound as ignorant as their statements do.
I have a 2001 aztek with 66,000 miles and it also has been awesome so far, but is now giving me trouble. Gas gauge is shot, ignition also is starting to malfunction. I too have gone through lots of tires and brakes, but I do love my "car". We call it our spaceship! Anyone else had trouble with the ignition?
In resonse to ggszamum's post on on June 19, 2007 06:40 PM
I have the exact same car, the 2001 original and the same color as yours. I purchased it a couple weeks after the car was released. it is called CHAMELEON GREEN since the color changes somewhat depending on the outdoor lighting and time of day. The color name actually serves well to describe its capabilities, as we owners well know and love. The unusual height and depth in back when you take out the cargo tray allow us to jam pack food and fun items along with luggage for five for a full week's stay at condos once or twice a year. It drives smooth as silk, is great on gas, and I use it primarily for back and forth to work. I am completely at home when in the driver's seat, and family members who are passengers say it's their favorite ride ever.
Hey, I am the second owner and I love my Aztek. Loads of room in back for plywood ,merchandise, etc. It has the best A/c of any vehicle I have driven or have ridden. Try that for Arizona heat. You have to love the looks as no one else does. The back window does have a positive. During night driving, there is no glare coming through from vehicles behind you. I have had no problems, mileage is in the 20's in city driving and it has speed at the start from a light. Each to his own.