1989 Pontiac Stinger Concept Car

1989 Pontiac Stinger Concept Car Interior
A cooler and case could slip neatly into the door openings of the 1989 Pontiac Stinger concept car.
A cooler and case could slip neatly into the door openings of the 1989 Pontiac Stinger concept car.
©2007 Publications International, Ltd.

The 1989 Pontiac Stinger concept car interior seemed to have an endless supply of gadgets. But just when you thought you'd found them all, you looked a little further and unearthed more goodies.

There was an extension cord, binoculars with carrying case, sewing kit, compass with magnifying glass, umbrella, tote bags, brush and dustpan -- even a calculator to total up gas mileage or the day's expenses. Inside a pull-out drawer sat a cellular phone.

In short, the stylish sport-utility for the future contained all the gadgets an automaker might provide for a young person's weekend of fun. The goodies were thoughtfully arranged, too: Nothing dangled dangerously. Everything was strapped securely into place.

Head designer Terry Henline called Stinger "a piece of sports equipment" in itself. Popular Science magazine described it as something akin to a "Swiss army knife on wheels."

Rising above the seats of the Stinger was a roof light-bar and spoiler.
©2007 Publications International, Ltd.

Light weight was another design theme, so Stinger turned to a carbon-fiber body. Headlamps and fog lights were integrated into the surface of the front end. The smoothly flowing windshield continued upward to a removable roof panel, and back to the space-frame roll bar, which also contained roof lights and an adjustable spoiler.

Non-scratch paint was the perfect choice for "blasting through the bushes." Sizable rocker panels offered more than a hint of the running boards of yesteryear.

Marietta Kearney, senior designer of Stinger's interior, said she envisioned "hot California young people starting their weekend after a week of work; an atmosphere of freedom and vitality." That thought led to a solid look in the interior, rather than plush comfort; and to a touch of motorcycle in the Stinger's "feel" and controls.

Upholstery and trim followed the same gray/green color scheme as the outer body. Gray seats with bright green accents were made from wet-suit material that looks hosed-down even when it's nowhere near water.

Radio controls were oversized and the steering wheel was bigger than expected. Six-way power seats had a memory, plus an inflatable bladder system for form-fitting comfort up front.

Rear passengers were guaranteed a tight fit in colorful seats.
©2007 Publications International, Ltd.

Looking cool and performing well are two different things, as any car lover can tell you. Keep reading to see how the 1989 Pontiac Stinger concept car lived up to its cool design.

For more on concept cars and the production models they forecast, check out: