QUOTE __________________________________________________________________________________

The most appealing aspect of the Trans Am is the fact that it works so well using old technology. 
No state of-the-art tricks here, just smooth V8 power driving the rear wheels through an
 automatic transmission.

-John Baechtel, "Different Strokes", Hot Rod, July 1986
__________________________________________________________________________________


 

THE  TRANS AM  DIARY
_________________________________________________

 

                        THEN

 

October 1985-    The 8668th Pontiac Firebird of the 1986 model year rolls off the GM F-body assembly line in Norwood, Ohio.   This model is a black and gold, two-tone Trans Am, LB9, 700R4, T-tops, WS6 and tan cloth Recaro interior optioned car.  It is later delivered to Premier Pontiac Nissan, Inc. in Little Rock, Arkansas.

 

                        NOW
 




Here are the correct year 16x8" aluminum high tech deep dish turbo
"feather" design wheels as they were presented on Ebay.


 

                           
 

"FEEL THE RUSH"
Canadian 1985 magazine advertisement
for black and gold Trans Am


       

1985 and 1986 Firebird model line dealer brochures, Canadian GM issue


I found these two ancient brochures online at McLellan's Automotive.  Communication and shipping were friendly and super quick, I highly recommend these people if you need an old brochure or other type of literature for your car!

I enter the '86 TA in a local car show.  I'm late so I miss the judging and any awards given out but the car meets with a lot of awe for its condition and seems to attract a fair sized crowd from time to time.  I spend most of my time there answering questions about how I got the car and on the third gen Firebirds in general.  The only other Pontiacs at the show are a golden green '68 GTO, '76 red Trans Am (though it has a clock in the dash where the tach should be and it is sporting 1979 gold decals instead of the correct 1976 decals so I can't verify its authenticity) and a super sweet old red Lemans convertible that I would love to own.

I join the club that is putting on the car show, The Cool Cruisers of South Mississippi, and am invited back that night to the monthly cruise-in at the Sonic in Oak Grove, MS.  I've been hanging out there with the club for months now with my father and his '55 Oldsmobile so they know me.  During the car show, I make several contacts and begin to track down a local powder coater out of Columbia.  I am also invited to two more shows in the next few weeks, a show for the local armed forces personnel at Camp Shelby (April 22) and a car and bike show in Collins, MS in the first few weeks of May.  The cruise-in at Sonic is shorter than most due to the car show that very day but the TA still draws a small crowd from time to time with a follow-up Q&A session when someone in the club points the crowd over to where I'm sitting.

Third Gen F-body "wonderbar" steering brace / support

"A fearless fighter of the future, this GoBots(tm) warrior can change from a mighty robot
into a sleek Trans Am." -
Golly jeepers!  Says so right there on the side of the model box.

Wow.  I better go check to see if my TA came with this rare high performance transforming option...  Now that you mention it, I think it would be pretty cool to be sitting in traffic, in Lamar county, next to a pickup truck full of hayseed chewing, Earnhardt worshipping, donkey-bangers when I flip a switch and my TA transforms into a giant robot right next to them.  Why, I'd bet they'd either piss their overalls or swallow their chewing tobacco trying to get out of the truck.  Of course, it's not like my Go-Bot Trans Am could do a lot ... it doesn't even have hands, just two big rectangles for arms and tail-lights for kneecaps.  What a gyp.

In other humorous news, the old girl barked rubber again, hard, on the highway.  JC and I were going to lunch one day, exiting the on-ramp from highway 49 to highway 59 when we had to come to an almost complete stop.  Traffic on the highway was preventing us from merging so I rolled along in the TA at about 5mph, idling.  I saw a break in the traffic and put the long, tall pedal to the carpet.  The LB9 roared under the hood and the front end of the TA lifted noticeably as she shot ahead.  The clocks were spinning as I gently moved over into a four car-length slot in the traffic and when the TA shifted from first to second, she shifted so hard that the rear end broke loose, tires barked and the car slewed to the side noticeably.  A big look of sudden surprise appeared on JC's face then the biggest smile replaced it.

"Hell YEAH!" he said, laughing.  "I don't know what got into you but I wish you'd take it more often!"

Original new Firebird owner's packet

 

The optional NP5 steering wheel that I've been chasing for five months now
(one of the few options my TA didn't come with)

 

 

 

 

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