Just as we predicted, 1977- 81 Pontiac pony cars have become some the hottest classics on the planet! If you grew up in the mid to late 70''s, very little of the metal offered by the big three had any appeal, except for the Firebird. You either had one, your buddy had one, your uncle had one or you wanted one. And now, the generation that loves these cars is starting to move into the collector car hobby in full force. That means TODAY is the day to grab a correct, low mileage F2 to show and enjoy. And this awesome 1978 Trans Am is a numbers-matching time capsule that combines 29,579 original miles with enduring Pontiac performance and all-American style!
Before we jump head-first into this solid gold Poncho’s detailed description, I’ll go ahead and break down both its VIN and cowl tag:
* 2: Pontiac Motor Division
* W: Trans Am
* 87: Sports coupe
* Z: 400 cubic inch V8
* 8: 1978 model year
* N: Assembled in Norwood, Ohio
* 140563: Production sequence number
* 78: 1978 model year
* 2: Pontiac Motor Division
* FS: Firebird
* 87: 2-door coupe
* N: Assembled in Norwood, Ohio
* C154860: Fisher Body unit number
* 19R: Black interior
* A51: Bucket seats
* 50L: Solar Gold (50) lower (L) body paint
* 50U: Solar Gold (50) upper (U) body paint
* 01B: Assembled during the second week (B) of January (01), 1978
* A31: Power windows
* WS4: Trans Am
* BLK: Black secondary interior color
* 020572: Fisher Body time date code
Assembled at GM’s Norwood manufacturing facility in January of 1978, this brassy Trans Am appears to have led the Motown easy life. Its unique coat of GM code 50 Solar Gold still pays excellent homage to factory body panels that are as solid, straight and sculpted as the day they left the showroom floor. An outfit of tri-color Trans Am call-outs trace a brown, yellow and gold hood decal to complete the car’s transformation from a regular bird into full-tilt ''screamin’ chicken''. And today, this F2 looks just as good as you’d expect any 35 year old, mostly unrestored F-body to look; featuring classic lines and sizzling graphics that create one of the most iconic brandings in automotive history!
Fresh off a significant cosmetic update that was performed at the beginning of the 1977 model year, Pontiac’s 1978 Trans Am was all about minor visual tweaks and major mechanical upgrades. At the front of the car, a glossy ‘batmobile’ nose hangs cross-hatch grilles behind a small “PONTIAC” script, a traditional arrowhead emblem and multiple halogen lights that create the brand’s familiar dual-grille, quad-eye aesthetic. Behind those grilles, a classic, “T/A-6.6” branded shaker rides in front of like-new glass that’s bordered by bright stainless trim, correct sport mirrors and ‘red bird’ B-pillar emblems. At the sides of that shaker, new-for-1978 “TRANS AM” call-outs hang below functional heat extractors, chrome door handles and optional parking lot armor. And at the back of the car, an option D80 decklid spoiler flaunts a third “TRANS AM” call-out above a correct black valence, clear tail lights and awesome side-splitter exhaust tips.
Pop this tin indian’s dramatic hood and you’ll find a stout, 400 cubic inch Pontiac V8 that forms a correct, ‘strong block’ XX481988 casting number behind a 4-speed-exclusive assembly stamp and matching partial VIN. Thanks to government-mandated emissions standards, performance had almost been legislated out of existence; and that left the Trans Am suffering a bit of an identity crisis. This ‘bird’s “WC” branded L78 combined the largest muscle car engine you could buy with Pontiac’s proven “6X” head design and newfound handling prowess to create one of the fastest pony cars on the market. At the top of the smooth engine, a big Holley carburetor and aluminum Edelbrock intake ride under a familiar Trans Am shaker. Below that carburetor, correct, GM Corporate Blue paint coats the entire block, while big, long-tube headers send spent gases into an aluminized, true-dual exhaust system. All the hard parts around the motor, from the brake booster and belt driven accessories to the functional air conditioning system, appear to be factory-correct. The car’s authentic engine bay and hood are covered in a nice combination of GM Satin Black and Pontiac Solar Gold. And, as expected, there’s pliable belts, clean hoses and a strong battery.
At the bottom of this vintage coupe you’ll find an amalgamation of super solid hardware that’s been well maintained for roughly 35 years. In the middle of the car’s Ziebart-coated floors, a Borg Warner Super T-10 4-speed hangs a familiar 1304065903 casting number and September (9) 29th (29) of 1977 (77) assembly date above matching partial VINs. That aluminum transmission sends power to a familiar GM 10-bolt that’s fitted with friendly 3.08 gears. Below that stellar powertrain, a correct WS4 Trans Am suspension, which includes factory power steering, thicker sway bars, better shocks and stiffer springs, combines with 4-wheel power disc brakes to provide quick stops and great handling. At the center of that suspension, an aluminized exhaust system barks out a deep, vintage roar from welded, dual-chamber mufflers. At the corners of those pipes, aluminum ‘snow flake’ wheels spin classic gold paint between ‘gold bird’ center caps and modern 225/70 Goodyear Eagle STs. And all the car''s hardware and bushings, from its leak-free fuel tank to its correctly installed emergency brake cable, appear to be fully sorted and ready to roll.
Open this Pontiac’s massive doors and you’ll find a stylish blend of black and white vinyl that creates a striking, yet comfortable cockpit. The car’s thick seats are surprisingly firm and, carrying hides that seem much newer than typical survivor attire, present like a fresh restoration. In front of those seats, a bright, engine-turned dash hangs crystal clear gauges above a clean radio delete. Below that dash, a simple black console props a tall armrest behind chrome power window switches and a classic Hurst shifter. Below that console, like-new carpet shows minimal wear thanks to big rubber floor mats. At the sides of that carpet, fresh black door panels fly vivid ‘red bird’ emblems above full-length armrests. Above those panels, a perforated headliner stretches tight around a chrome-trimmed dome light. In front of the driver, a familiar Formula steering wheel spins a ‘red bird’ horn button around a tilting steering column. And behind the passengers, the car’s solid trunk hangs an original decklid decal above a carpeted mat and correct space saver tire.
The sale of this bling bandit includes an original build sheet, an original owner’s manual and a reproduction window sticker.
NOW is the time to buy a correct, low-mileage Trans Am to show and enjoy for years to come! And here''s a guarantee: if you don''t, someone else will, and you’ll be chasing a value curve that heads straight up for the next 20 years. This 29,579 mile time capsule is the kind of car that you can take to the cruise in on a hot Saturday night, then drive to work on a sunny Monday morning. If you’re in the market some quintessential American muscle, grab this ‘bird and thank us in ten years while you’re watching its value soar!