Firebird Trans Am Turbo Pace Car
11,285 Actual Mile Trans Am 20th Anniversary Turbo Pace
In 1980, the Pontiac Trans Am was on a popularity roll! Burt Reynolds made a black one famous just a few years earlier in “Smokey and the Bandit,” and the car was regarded by most as the last true muscle car on the planet. Driven to deliver the absolute best combination of performance and visual excitement, Pontiac pulled out all the stops with yearly special editions which have since become some of the hottest collector cars on the market. As one of only 5,700 cars built to commemorate the first time one car paced both the Indy 500 and Daytona 500 in the same year, this 1980 Trans Am Turbo Pace Car is one of the most exclusive Trans Ams ever built. If you're a savvy classic car buy who is looking for an awesome car that you can spend a little money on now and get a big return on later, here's your chance!
Before we go any further, I'll go ahead and lay out both the car's VIN and cowl tag for the sake of authenticity:
2 – Pontiac
X – Turbo Indy Trans Am
87 – Sport coupe
T – 301 cubic inch turbocharged 4-barrel V8
A – 1980
L – Assembled at Van Nuys, California
138994 – Sequence number
80 - 1980 Model year
02B – Built during the second week of February 1980
2FS87 - 2: Pontiac Motor Division, FS: Firebird, 87: coupe
L – Manufactured at GM's Van Nuys, California assembly plant
120470 – The car's Fisher Body production number
12C – Hobnail cloth/Doeskin vinyl custom interior
11L – Cameo White lower (L) exterior paint
11U – Cameo White upper (U) exterior paint
W – Water based paint
A51 - RPO code for bucket seats
CC1 – Fisher T-Tops
G34128845 – Fisher Body time/date code
Owned by one very meticulous owner and garage kept for its entire existence, this pristine California Pontiac is one of the cleanest second generation Trans Ams we've ever offered. Thanks to three decades of exceptional maintenance and a little cosmetic T.L.C. from RK Motors Charlotte's first rate restoration shop, the car presents as well today as it did it when it rolled off the showroom floor over 30 years ago. A bright and crisp coat of correct GM code 11 Cameo White covers 100% original body panels which are straight, rock solid and free of waves and major imperfections. Because this Trans Am has never been fully disassembled, it still displays completely accurate panel gaps that are surprisingly tight and provide the car with great panel fitment and correct factory alignment. On top of the ghost white panels, a fresh set of tri-color outlining stripes perfectly complements a five color 'turbo bird' hood decal and factory applied Indianapolis 500 Pace Car door stickers to complete the look.
The 1980 Trans Am Turbo ushered in a new approach to traditional Pontiac performance and the appearances of Pontiac's wildly successful special edition packages were updated accordingly. Up front, the cars slick and pliable urethane front bumper houses instantly identifiable Pontiac split grilles below four pristine headlights in new body matched surrounds. Behind that front bumper, a new 'turbo hood' that ended a decade long run of top-of-the-line shaker hood equipped Trans Ams features a left facing firebird decal and an optional three light turbo system. At the car's greenhouse, pristine Soft Ray tinted glass which features a familiar “Pontiac” windshield banner sits below mirror tinted Fisher T-tops that seal well and look great. On the front fenders, four-color “Trans Am” scripts sit under fender-mounted air extractors with body matched metal inserts and on the doors, GM code 84 Ontario Gray sport mirrors sit above chrome GM door handles and correct rear wheel air deflectors. At the back of the car, a black trimmed backlight holds an original Ziebart decal (which we have documentation for) over a contoured rear decklid spoiler that features another pristine four color “Trans Am” script. Below that spoiler, a showroom fresh blacked-out tail light panel combines with correct Firebird exclusive side splitter stainless exhaust tips to give the car a menacing wide body look.
Thanks to increasing emissions standards and the 1978 oil crisis General Motors had to seriously re-think its performance vehicles, and that led to some innovative and very creative powerplants. Under this Trans Ams “Turbo” stamped hood you'll find an all original Pontiac code YL turbocharged 301 V8 that made substantially more twist than the mighty 6.6 liter it replaced while being significantly more efficient. Originally conceived as an economy offering, the Pontiac 301 was beefed up with a better block design, thicker gaskets, lower compression pistons, a mild camshaft, a rolled fillet crank, a fully baffled oil pan, a unique single plane intake and an electronic spark controller in preparation for a Garrett TBO-305 turbocharger. Once the turbo was installed, it created a waste limited 9 PSI of boost and helped the reborn 301 achieve 236 horsepower and a serious 345 lb./ft. of torque. Riding below a factory installed heat shield that prevents the paint on the car's hood from bubbling, that Garrett blower is fed by a high pressure fuel pump, cooled by a high pressure oil pump and breathes through turbo specific exhaust manifolds. Below the turbo, a YL 301 specific Rochester Quadrajet M4ME 800 CFM carburetor sits in front of an original HEI distributor which sends power to the cylinders through blue Belden Edge plug wires. All the hard parts around the motor, from the belt driven accessories to the brake booster and turbo mandated C51 air conditioning are factory original pieces, and all the belts and hoses appear to be in good working order. As far as appearance goes, the car's clean engine bay and hood are covered in a nice coat of GM satin black which contrasts well to the entirely painted GM corporate blue engine.
Underneath this Trans Am, a clean and solid 31 year old undercarriage tells the story of excellent caretaking with great looking floor pans that still display their factory undercoating and a Posi-traction rear end that still maintains its factory 3.08 gears. Behind the motor, the cars original tough and proven Turbo-Hydramatic 350 3-speed automatic transmission sends power to the cars original 10 bolt rear end, and a standard WS6 handling package. For 1980, the WS6 package included larger sway bars, better shocks and springs, a tighter steering gear box and newly designed power front and rear disc brakes that, when combined with the cars standard power steering, made for serious handling ability and greatly reduced stopping distances. In the middle of the floor pans, what appears to be the cars original dual exhaust system carries factory correct mufflers and catalytic converters in front of correct stainless side splitter tips, and all of the cars hardware and bushings appear to be in good shape. Power flows to the pavement through pliable 225/70 white letter Goodyear Polysteel Radials that are mounted to exclusive 15 inch 'turbo' style body matched aluminum wheels that feature slick machined edges and pristine plastic center caps.
The cars all original fully equipped Oyster interior features optional doeskin vinyl with hobnail cloth inserts which created a sophisticated appearance that built on 1980s increasing list of luxury options. The firm and comfortable seats are nicely patterned pieces that feel every bit as comfortable as they look, and the original brown carpet shows very little wear. Between the seats, a clean gray console houses chrome switches for the cars power windows behind an engine turned shift plate, and above the seats, a stain free headliner is stretched tight around the cars mirrored tops. In front of the driver, an excellent looking engine turned dash houses crystal clear gauges above controls for heat and air conditioning and the cars exclusive Delco-GM seek/scan stereo cassette player. At the sides of the seats, excellent Oyster door panels that feature bright 'turbo bird' embroidery are detailed in pristine stainless trim and chrome door handles and door lock buttons. Connecting the driver to the road is a correct aluminum steering wheel that features a gray rim and sits on an optional tilt steering column, and out back, the cars pristine trunk still has its original decals and carries the cars original stowaway spare tire.
Included with this sale is the cars original owner's manuals and warranty booklets as well as a stack of maintenance receipts that spans from 1980 to 2011.
High quality second generation Trans Ams are red-hot right now with the value of clean, unique factory correct cars climbing steadily each year. Enthusiasts are turning to cars like this to round out their collections, or building entire collections around the cars of their childhood just like this one. With its clean turbocharged motor, fantastic interior and low original miles, this has to be one of the nicest Trans Am Turbo Pace Cars available anywhere. Opportunity is knocking. Call today!
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What Customers Are Saying
First I would like to say that the staff at RK Motors were very professional and courteous. I was very impressed with the write-up and the details that were presented on this car. The photo shoot was amazing and the video was outstanding. Tony Klein, the consignment manager was amazing to work with. Tony always answered all of my questions within a timely manner. I was impressed with the time frame in which my vehicle was sold. I would and have recommended RK Motors to all of my car enthusiasts. Thank You RK Motors for a great job!