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1979 Pontiac Firebird
Formula 6.6

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In the early 1960s a new breed of cars emerged in the greatest country on Earth: muscle cars!

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Incredibly powerful, incredibly thrirsty, and mighty impressive, muscle cars dominated the streets and drag strips of America until the first energy crisis in 1970 brought petroleum shortages and with it sky-high gas prices. When insurance companies cranked up the rates for muscle cars shortly after, the party was over.

What survived for a little while was watered down versions of the real thing. Sure, there were still Barracuda, Challenger, Chevelle, and Mustang offerings from the big three, but their resemblence to muscle cars faded quickly. Pontiac kept the flame alive the longest with its Firebird model. The 1973 455 Super Duty Trans Am is one of the most desirable muscle cars in the universe. And while its successors lacked the neck-snapping power, they still made an impact until about 1981, with the Turbo Trans Am being the last of a generation.

The 1979 Pontiac Firebird Formula proudly introduced here, VIN*2U87K9L136261* is a great example of the breed. A California car from new, it has been sensibly refurbished as needed, but still preserves its integrity as a largely original survivor.

Assembled in December of 1978 in the General's Van Nuys, California plant, this Firebird Formula is basically a Trans Am without the scoop, the hood decal, and the fender flares. It's a rare car, as the original owner opted for the 6.6-liter engine option instead of the rather uninspriring yet popular 301 and 350 cubic inch engines.

But what really boggles the mind is the truck load of options this car was born with, all documented in the original broadcast sheet that is included in the sale. This 'Bird got the Deluxe Package, and the Trans Am's special order custom interior with Lombardy cloth seats. It got the 15x7 Snowflake alloys. It's got air conditioning and cruise control, power everything, and the decal package.

Still wearing its original California blue-and-gold license plates, the car had 2 owner's until it was parked with engine problems in 2007. A famous collector from Yucaipa, Calif. bought it a few years later and put it into storage, where we found it in mid-2020 and brought it home.

The car comes with a handful of documents that give insight into the car's history. So let's inspect this Firebird in more detail, starting up front, under the hood.

We installed a new O.E.M. hood pad.

The original 403 cubic inch (6.6-liter) Oldsmobile V8 was completely rebuilt at a local shop back in 2017.

The repair cost the owner $5,255.59, fully documented, and that was at 85,331 miles. Mileage today is 85,409, so the engine is not even broken in yet!

Everything looks bone stock here, because it is.

Engine block stamping.

More details from under the hood . . . .

Naturally, there are no fluid leaks anywhere.

Pontiac's body is straight as an arrow. There are no signs that it has ever been in a fender bender, nor are there any signs of rust or rust repair anywhere.

The finish is an older repaint in the original Camelmetallic. It's in great condition throughout, with just a few minor imperfections, most noticiable on the edges of the front bumper. When hit by the sunlight, the car looks like it's covered in 24-carat gold!

Special ordered 15x7 Snowflake alloys are in excellent condition. B.F. Goodrich radials have plenty of meat all around.

Stock dash is crack free.

The entire 1-piece carpeting is brand new. It was professionally installed by the folks at Quality Upholstery in Ventura, using a heat gun to avoid wrinkles, and we paid through the nose for it.

Primary gauges.

Auxiliary gauges and controls, including stock AM/FM radio.

Original headliner and sunvisors are in excellent condition.

Seats received correct, all-new Lambardi cloth seat covers, featuring Hobnail cloth inserts. They are as expensive as leather, but well worth the investment, so we went all in on here, with a bill exceeding $1K.

Seat covers in more detail.

Rear seats are covered in the same fabrik. Rear package shelf is new as well.

Firebird rear spoiler was an expensive option back in '79, but this car was ordered with it. Formual script is still the 42 year-old original.

The trunk received a new, correct rubber floor mat.

Original jacking equipment.

Original trunk floor is flawless.

The undercarriage is all original and unmolested.

There is no rust to be found anywhere, and no spray can artistry hides the natural beauty.

Driving the big bird envoked memories of my youth. Still clinging to the flower-power followed by the disco era periods, the Firebird makes a bold statement.

The car starts, runs, and drives fabulously. There are no issues of any kind anywhere. I wouldn't think twice on driving this Pontiac across the country, if needed.

Time moves on mercilessly, and it's indeed been over 4 decades since this car was built. Its impact today is every bit as dramatic as it's been when new. We received thumbs up and most favorable comments every time we take it out for a spin.

Further fueled by the Smokey and the Bandit TV series, featuring Burt Reynolds, the late '70s Pontiac Firebird has become a cherished collector's item, and deservedly so.

This one has the right colors, the right equipment, a freshly rebuilt big block engine, and all the goodies one could check on the options sheet, except for the T-tops.
It's the second such car we've owned in the past 22 years. Will we ever find another one like it?


You are most welcome to inspect this fine automobile at our location in Ventura, by appointment, or have someone inspect it for you.
Please, direct all inquiries to or call us at 805-792-9797.