Firebird Trans Am 10th Anniversary Edition
16,103 Mile Trans Am 10th Anniversary 400 V8 4 Speed
- Unrestored survivor
- 16,103 original miles
- Original W72 400cid V8
- Borg Warner T10 4-speed manual
- 10 bolt differential / 3.23 gears
- Air conditioning
- Original documentation
Limited run cars commemorating significant anniversaries are pretty much a no brainer when it comes to collectability. Add that tag to the already collectable F2 Trans Am and you've definitely got something special. Buyers in the 1970's must have realized this from day one as amazing cars like this original 16,093-mile 10th Anniversary Trans Am are slowly surfacing as values climb. Completely unrestored and optioned with the sought-after W72/4-speed combination, this is an already desirable T/A with a great outlook for the future. Looking for a fun place to park your money? This 1979 Trans Am is a strong candidate.
We'll get started by breaking down the VIN:
2 – Brand: Pontiac
X – Series: 10th Anniversary Edition
87 – Body: Two door coupe
Z – Engine: W72 400cid V8
L – Assembly Plant: Van Nuys, California
Assembled at GM's Van Nuys, California manufacturing facility in April of 1979, this rare limited edition Trans Am was originally delivered to Schappe Pontiac in Madison, Wisconsin. Diligently maintained and completely unrestored, this survivor shows well overall. The original two-tone paint is in remarkably good shape and looks great from all angles. Since this Trans Am has never been disassembled, it still displays completely factory accurate panel gaps that look surprisingly good and provide great panel alignment. On top of the glossy and subdued paint, a new set of correct black and red outlining stripes, and anniversary call outs perfectly complement a menacing five color 'super bird' hood decal which flows seamlessly onto the car's front fenders.
Not as 'loud' as the Gold Special Edition Trans Am and not quite as menacing as the Black Special Edition Trans Am, this silver 10th anniversary car combines typical Pontiac muscle car attitude with a more refined look that was way ahead of its time. Up front, a slick and pliable urethane front bumper houses four pristine headlights above large dual grilles which, while still being instantly identifiable as Pontiacs familiar split grille look, give the car a much more aggressive face. Behind that front bumper, a traditional shaker hood sits in front of a pristine original Soft Ray glass and proudly displays “T/A 6.6” denoting the cars rare and optional W72 Pontiac engine. Behind the windshield, anniversary car exclusive mirror tinted T-tops sit above chrome GM door handles and correct rear wheel air deflectors. On the front fenders, new black and red “Trans Am” decals are sandwiched between 10th anniversary exclusive screaming chicken decals and fender mounted air extractors with metal inserts. At the back of the car, more red and black 10th anniversary exclusive decals hang over showroom fresh blacked out tail lights and correct Firebird exclusive side splitter stainless exhaust tips.
Between the fenders, you'll find a virtually untouched engine bay which houses the final, and some say greatest, Pontiac block ever created: an original 400 cubic inch W72 V8. By utilizing a thicker casting, chrome moly piston rings, a revised camshaft, a better oil pump, a better distributor and smaller '6X' heads from the division's own 350, the W72 created higher compression and successfully reversed almost a decade of declining horsepower numbers. Not only does this Trans Am's engine carry a correct 172902 partial VIN and a '79 W72/4-speed exclusive PWH stamp, it's also branded with an XX481988 casting number which is found exclusively on Pontiac's beefier W72 blocks. Top dead center is a correct Rochester 4-barrel carburetor, which rides under the car's awesome shaker hood scoop, and a correct HEI distributor, which sends power to the cylinders through replacement silicon plug wires. Below that carburetor, correct GM Corporate Blue paint coats the entire block; and below those plug wires, original cast iron manifolds send spent gases into a high performance factory exhaust system. The car's solid engine bay and hood are covered in a nice coat of familiar GM satin finish. Its original decals are bright and fade-free. Everything from its marked brake booster and Delco air compressor to its fender plenum air tube and satin finish chrome valve covers is in excellent, streetable condition.
Take a look under this pampered F2 and you'll find a straight, rust-free frame. At the center, a W72-exclusive Borg Warner T10 aluminum 4-speed, which wears a 1304065903 casting number and correct partial VIN stamp, sends power to the car's original 3.23-geared 10 bolt rear end and optional WS6 performance suspension package. For 1979, Pontiac's famous WS6 package included larger sway bars, better shocks and springs, a tighter steering gear box and newly designed code J65 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 that suspension a mostly original exhaust system, which appears to have been repaired with factory replacement mufflers and fresh stainless tail pipes, sends a deep Pontiac rumble through spotless stainless side splitter exhaust tips. At the corners of that suspension, flawless 15 inch turbo style aluminum wheels spin beefy 225/70 Goodyear Polysteel Radials around pristine 'red bird' center caps.
Inside this Trans Am, the all original anniversary car exclusive silver leather interior looks fantastic showing very few signs of wear. The firm and comfortable seats are nice metallic silver pieces that have the liquid cool appearance of wet paint, and the original Cadillac supplied shag carpet has aged well. Between the seats, a clean gray console houses chrome switches for the car's power windows behind a chrome Hurst shifter and, above the seats, a stain free headliner is stretched tight around the car's mirrored tops and optional reading lamps. In front of the driver, an excellent looking engine turned dash houses crystal clear gauges above controls for heat and air conditioning, and an upgraded Delco-GM stereo and cassette player. And if authenticity is your thing, no worries; the car also comes with its original GM-Delco AM/FM stereo and 8-track player as well. At the sides of the seats, awesome silver door panels feature bright anniversary car exclusive embroidery that perfectly matches an anniversary car exclusive emblem in the center of the rear seat. 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. Out back, the cars pristine trunk still has its original decals and carries the cars original stowaway spare tire.
Documentation is extensive with a full PHS packet, original GM marketing and sales paperwork from Schappe Pontiac. Also included is a book covering the history of the Firebird as well as two posters – one of an original Pontiac ad and another with miscellaneous pieces of the car's history displayed for all to see.
We've featured many of these 10th Anniversary Trans Ams over the years and, without exception, they've all sold quickly. There's a devoted following who knows these are underrated car and all original pristine survivors like this one are exceptionally difficult to find. With its all Pontiac motor, hot close ratio 4-speed and four wheel disc brakes, this rare Trans Am is an excellent road car that has a tremendous potential upside.
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