1979 Pontiac Firebird

The 1979 Pontiac Firebird had quad rectangular headlamps in the front that were separated by recessed housings. There was no grille; rather, they had horizontally ribbed lower grilles that went into twin slots below the bumper area. On the outer end were clear park/signal lamps.

The only body style option was a hardtop coupe, though several models were available including the base, Esprit, Formula, Trans Am, and Trans Am Limited Edition. Pricing began at $4,830 and rose to over $10,500 for the Limited Edition models. The base engine was Buick's 231 cubic-inch (3.8 liter) V-6 mated to a three-speed manual shift gearbox. They had power steering and FR78 x 15 steel-belted radials.

Esprit models had wheel covers, sport mirrors and additional body moldings. In total, 30,853 Esprit examples were produced. Formula models sold for just over $6,000 and total production reached 24,851. Powering the Formula models was a 301 cubic-inch V8 mated to an automatic transmission. They had power brakes, black-accented grille, non-functional twin hood scoop, and rode on P225/70R15 blackwall SBR tires. They also had Rally II wheels with trim rings, and a console.

Trans Am models were powered by a 403 cubic-inch V8 with four-barrel carburetion and mated to a four-speed manual transmission. They also had power brakes, air dam, rear spoiler, chrome side-splitter tailpipe extensions, and 'shaker' hood. In total, 117,108 examples were produced.

By Daniel Vaughan | Jan 2013

Vehicle Profiles

Trans Am Limited Edition HardTop Coupe

Chassis Num: 2W87K9L177847

The Pontiac Trans Am production began in 1969 and only a few hundred were sold that year. As the years progressed, the muscle car era and the days of the high-horsepower engine greatly digressed. Emission regulations, increase in oil prices, and in....[continue reading]

Trans Am HardTop Coupe

Chassis Num: 2W87Z9L157445

This 1979 Pontiac Firebird Trans AM W72 2-door coupe was built in Van Nuys, California. It has a WS6 handling package, 6.6-liter L78 V8 engine, and 4-speed close ratio manual transmission. The exterior is finished in silver with a carmine red cloth i....[continue reading]

Formula Hardtop Coupe

Chassis Num: 2U87Z9L133021

This Pontiac firebird Formula 2 door coupe is powered by a 6.6-liter V8 engine and fitted with a 4-speed Borg Warner transmission. There is a posi-traction rear, in-dash tachometer and gauges, and WS6 special performance package. The car was ordered ....[continue reading]

Trans Am HardTop Coupe

Chassis Num: 2W87W9N152224

This Pontiac Trans Am is powered by a 403 CID engine mated to an automatic transmission. It has new paint with stripes, new interior, and new wheels.....[continue reading]

Trans Am Limited Edition HardTop Coupe

This Pontiac Firebird Trans Am is a special 10th Anniversary Edition powered by a 403 cubic-inch V8. It is a T-Top with factory air, an automatic transmission, and 4-wheel disc brakes.....[continue reading]

Trans Am Limited Edition HardTop Coupe
Chassis #: 2W87K9L177847 
Trans Am HardTop Coupe
Chassis #: 2W87Z9L157445 
Formula Hardtop Coupe
Chassis #: 2U87Z9L133021 
Trans Am HardTop Coupe
Chassis #: 2W87W9N152224 
Trans Am Limited Edition HardTop Coupe


Produced by Pontiac, a division of General Motors, the Pontiac Trans Am was based on the Firebird coupe body style and built on the F-body platform.

The last high-performance muscle motor from the original muscle car generation was the Firebird Trans Am with the 455 motor.

In 1971 appearing first as the 455-HO, the 455 motor was introduced.

The SD-455, a unique version of the 455 was offered I n 1973 and lasted one year. Using the leftover components from Pontiac's 366 NASCAR engine, it was built as a full bore racing engine.

With the ability to produce over 540 horsepower, the SD-455 had to be toned down to satisfy the EPA and meet GM's strict horsepower policy which required all GM vehicles to hold the HP under 300.

Though producing in final form, 371 HP SAE NET, approximately 440 gross horsepower, the PMD engineers listed the SD-455 at 290 HP. The ease with which it could be returned to its 500+ horsepower form was what made this engine so unique.

Some consider this SD-455 to be the most powerful factory Pontiac engine to ever be produced.

Offered for a few more years, the restrictions on vehicle emissions eventually became too much to the producers.

With only a total of 7,100 units produced with the 455 engine, the 1976 Trans Am was the final of the 'Big Cube Birds'.

The Trans Am was a strong effort to appeal to the growing muscle car population in the late 1960's.

The Pontiac Firebird was produced from 1967 until 2002. Both the Trans Am and Firebird were discontinued in 2002, though the body is still utilized in the IROC Racing Series.

The first generation of the Pontiac Trans Am was only available in 1969 and came with an optional handling package called the Trans Am Performance and Appearance Package, named after the Trans-Am Series. The package cost a total of $725.

Because the name was used without prior permission, the SCCA threatened to sue GM. The deal was settled by GM offering to pay $5 per every Trans Am sold.

689 hardtop models and eight convertibles were produced in the first year of production. In the same year, an additional Ram Air IV engine option for the 400 in³ to complement the Ram Air II.

Production of first generation models continued longer than one year, actually totally 17 months. The first generation models were differentiated from the Camaro by its four round headlights compared to the Camaro's two.

The Second generation was available from 1970 until 1981.

From 1982 until 1992, the third generation of Trans Am was introduced.
Available from model years 1993 until 1997, the fourth generation Trans Am offered anywhere from 275 to 305 horsepower as a result of the LT1 Small block aluminum headed engine.

By Jessica Donaldson
Recent Vehicle Additions


All new Ford F 150 Raptor wrapped up the Best in the Desert 2016 season finishing the Pahrump Nugget 250 in 10 hours 21 minutes and 59 seconds to capture 432 points in the 1200 pro truck class For...


69 Trans Am Convertibles 69 ZL1s and Featured Corvettes at Auction Jan 15 24 br I Walworth Wis Jan 12 2016 I As the world s largest collector car auction featuring 3 000 vehicles...

Thomas Scott Collection of Classic American Automobiles to be On Offer at No Reserve at Russo and Steele's 2015 Monterey Collector Automobile Auction Event

I Scottsdale Arizona July 18th 2015 I Thomas Scott is an accountant and entrepreneur from Athens Georgia who has had a love for all things automotive for as long as he can remember He possesses...

Low Mileage Collectables offered at Fort Lauderdale Auction

Auctions America kicks off its 2014 collector car calendar March 14 16 in Fort Lauderdale Leading recent entries are fantastic low mileage examples including a 2005 Ford GT a 2006 Ford GT Heritag...

Holden Celebrates 35 Years of Commodore

Holden is celebrating the 35th anniversary of its most iconic nameplate Commodore For over three decades the Holden Commodore has delivered significant advances in vehicle performance safety and...

Pontiac Models

© 1998-2018. All rights reserved. The material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Vehicle information, history, and specifications from concept to production.

Follow ConceptCarz on Facebook  Follow ConceptCarz on Twitter RSS News Feed

© 1998-2018 Conceptcarz.com Reproduction or reuse prohibited without written consent.