Trans Am Pace Car
We love prototype; we love survivor cars; we love classics with stories - and this one has the potential for all of that and more! This 1980 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am Pontiac Development car is a believed one of one that has documentation on GM's development program for the famous Indy 500 turbo pace cars. And it even has the kind of dry desert preservation added to the story to create a singularly unique classic we've all been searching for.
Take some time to look over all the exterior pictures. It tells the tale of a car that has been under the dry Arizona sun, and the ultra-low mileage tells you it has been parked most of this time. But the lacquer paint still knows how to give off a nice shine, so you know this special car has been treated with respect. It remains correct from the special wheels, to the intricate decal package. And while a surviving Pace Car is already a seriously desirable T/A, this one takes it to a whole new level. The consignor states this is a pre-production pace car that was sent to GM's proving grounds as a development mule. Remember, pace cars are sustained high speed machines. This is the car that John Callies (GM's motorsports engineer) used to dial in the suspension and extra wide track tires so that the short run of special T/As could lead purebred racecars with ease. So not only is it a real-deal pace car, but also the one who got to lead the way for the rest of the legendary handful that were created. We do not have the original docs or direct proof on hand for the consignor's full claim. However, the sale does come with emails from Callies, copies of Pontiac's experimental work orders, PHS (Pontiac Historic Services) documentation, and title documentation on this car. All of this does provide corroborating information.
Inside is a well-preserved and loaded interior. The Hobnail cloth pattern on the seats is practically a legend at Pontiac. So it's nice to have them looking so clean and complete, right down to the logo in-between the rear seats. And not only are the T-tops another iconic touch, but it's also great to take them out so people get a full look as you tell this unique survivor's tale. This one come loaded with more great features, like power windows, power locks, power front seats, power steering, a three-speed automatic transmission, the factory AM/FM radio, and provisions for air conditioning. The tilt steering wheel means you get a great view of the full gauge package in Pontiac's iconic machine-turned metal panel.
Lift the hood for a very unique presentation. The 4.9-liter turbocharged V8 motor was only offered for two years, and fans instantly identify this setup with the offset air topper that makes room for the turbocharger. Everything looks quite correct in the engine bay, and we believe this to be the original block. These unique T/As were a cool addition to the lineup when the big torque of the V8 would get you off the line and the turbo offered an extra hit of power in the mid-range. The suspension was specifically dialed-in for high-speed pace car duties. Plus, you have thick sway bars front & rear, wide Goodyear Eagle GT tires, and four-wheel power disc brakes.
This is an amazing piece of history, and it comes with a large document file. So if you're someone who appreciates a rare car with a singular history, we know this already has you intrigued. Plus, we can just imagine taking out the T-tops, putting on a light bar, and leading every local parade. Call today!!!