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Pontiac Parts in Action: 5 Firebird & Trans Am Restoration Projects

Over the course of more than eight decades, Pontiac produced a wide variety of memorable cars, but the Firebird and Trans Am might be the most memorable of all. These sporty two-door vehicles shared lineage with their GM F-body sibling, the Chevrolet Camaro, but exuded a bold style of their own. Today, we'll take a look back at five restoration projects that have made good use of the Pontiac parts found in our Classic Industries Firebird / Trans Am catalog.

1969 Pontiac Firebird - Worth the Wait

We've all heard the old saying that patience is a virtue, but it's often difficult to put that virtue into practice in our daily lives. It takes considerable fortitude to see a classic car restoration project through to completion as the months and years tick by, but those who stick with it reap the rewards. Ethan Skinner, of Pennsylvania, experienced this firsthand as he restored the 1969 Pontiac Firebird seen here. He writes, "It has been a slow process, but worth the wait."

1975 Trans Am - A Full-Circle Restoration

It's an unfortunate fact that many of us have owned classic cars we've had to sell for one reason or another. Maybe money got tight, family and work obligations took priority, or we simply ended up with more project cars than we had time for. It's always hard to say goodbye to these vehicles, but on some rare occasions, they'll come full-circle and return to us at a later date. Such was the case with Jim Spears and his 1975 Trans Am, which has a story that's almost as cool as the vehicle itself.

1967 Pontiac Firebird - A Family Project

Just as Rome wasn't built in a day, it takes considerable time and patience to complete any classic car restoration project. But good things come to those who wait, and patience pays off in the end. All the work and waiting just makes seeing the finished vehicle even more satisfying. Such was the case with this 1967 Firebird, which was restored by Ernesto Castro and his sons in their home garage.

1978 Trans Am - Built for the Open Road

In 1977, the film "Smokey and the Bandit" hit the silver screen and took the automotive world by storm. The black and gold Trans Am Special Edition driven by Burt Reynolds quickly became one of the most iconic movie cars of all time, and inspired countless Americans to head to their local Pontiac dealers. Sales for the Trans Am skyrocketed after the film's debut. Even today, this increased demand has caused true Special Edition cars to maintain higher value. However, the availability of reproduction parts has enabled Firebird and Trans Am owners to create their own more-affordable tribute builds, such as the example seen here.

1989 Firebird Formula - The Original Owner

When you know you've found a good thing, you hold on to it. This is the mindset that led Michael Argandona, of Huntington Beach, California, to keep this 1989 Pontiac Firebird Formula for three decades. He has lovingly maintained it, keeping its smooth black paint and sleek sheetmetal in immaculate condition. The result is a car that's just as cool today as it was back in '89.

1978 Trans Am - Customized Convertible

Yes, you're reading that title correctly. Although it may not look like it, this is a 1978 Trans Am. It has been heavily modified with parts from earlier and later model years, as well as a rare convertible top conversion by National Coach Engineering. It also features some custom-molded body panels and black accents on its bright red paint. The result is a truly unique second-gen Pontiac that draws a crowd wherever it goes.

1969 Firebird - Last of the First-Gen

The first-generation of the Pontiac Firebird was the beginning of a legend. Launched in '67 alongside its sibling, the Chevrolet Camaro, the Firebird quickly developed into one of Pontiac's most famous vehicles. It would live on for 35 years across four generations. The 1969 Firebird seen here marks a significant year in the model's history, signifying the third year of its production, the final year of the first-gen, and the starting point for the Trans Am (an option package in 1969).

1968 Firebird - Built for the Open Road

There are many situations in which "too much of a good thing" is a real possibility. Even the things we love can get tiresome if we experience them in excess, like eating chocolate at every meal or listening to a favorite song 24/7. But for Katina Kaliterna, of San Pedro, California, this logic doesn't apply to her restored 1968 Firebird. She drives it every chance she gets, racking up miles with a smile on her face. Take one look at the beautiful Pontiac, and you'll understand why she feels this way.

1998 Firebird - Reborn in a Flash

The fourth-generation GM F-body is a performance bargain, and a platform that has been steadily garnering more appreciation as the years pass. This includes both Camaro and Firebird/Trans Am models. While some may claim the fourth-gen cars are too new to be considered classics, we can remember the same being said about third-gen and even second-gen models in past decades. As far as we're concerned, the fourth-gen is definitely worthy of respect and appreciation.