The Pontiac Spotlight will feature a different Pontiac each month. If you have a Pontiac that you would like featured here please email me your details and a few pictures to share.
1976 Trans Am Limited Edition. One of 533
Based on the 1974 Chicago Auto Show Black and Gold show car, Pontiac offered a Limited Edition package for the Trans Am celebrating Pontiac's 50th year. The Trans Am featured a T-top roof, installed by Hurst, and gold accents and pin striping. It could be had with either the 400 or 455 V8 engines. Due to leakage and other design flaws the T-top roof was discontinued and as a result only 643 were made with the T-top roof. 533 with the 400 V8 and another 110 with the 455 V8.
TThe feature car is owned by Mike Tyler. Mike had been looking for a 1976 Trans Am for many years and found a very nice one at the Trans Am Nationals in 2003. It was a 1976 Black Trans Am with 24,000 miles on it. Mike kept the owners phone number and made an appointment three weeks later to look over the Trans Am. While there, he noticed, another car in the two car garage that was covered sitting right beside the car he saw at the Nationals. When Mike asked about the car that was covered the owner told him that it was another 1976 Trans Am with only 20,600 miles on it and that he would never sell it because it was a Limited Edition T/A. The owner took off the cover of the Limited Edition and let Mike look at the car that he would never sell. After Mike left without buying the T/A with 24,000 miles on it, he got a phone call later that night on his answering machine, that the original Trans Am he had set out to buy was sold. Another buyer had come only an hour after Mikeís appointment and put money down to buy the car. The seller tried to call Mike many times that day and left many messages but accepted the sale when Mike didnít reply. It seems Mike had gone out of town after the appointment and didnít receive the message until a day later. It seemed at that point that Mike would have to wait to find his Trans Am.
A few weeks later, while Mike was in London, he was searching on Ebay and there it was the T/A that the guy swore he would never sell. Mike recognized it because of the garage in the background of the picture. He immediately called the guy up and asked him if he was really selling it and the guy told him that he had to sell it because his wife had just lost her job. He told him that he would send his neighbor over with a check for $500 to hold the car until he returned from London. When he returned from London he went back to the owners home and bought the car.
With just over 20,900 original miles on the car it just needed only a good clean up. Still intact were the very 70's hood-pins and side-pipes that the original owner had put on in 1977. The side pipes, although very retro, will be one of the first things that will go and in its place will be a factory exhaust that will exit out the back through twin split exhaust tips. Because of the low mileage Mike has had to only to do minor work to get it ready for the road. There was a small altercation between a garage and passengers door, but all is well now. In August Mike made the trip to the 2004 Trans Am Nationals in Dayton, OH, side pipes and all. This time he wasn't looking for a T/A but he was able to proudly show his Trans Am.
Click here for Previous Spotlights:
1979 Hurst Grand Am
1998 Trans Am WS6
2000 Grand Prix Pace Car
1969 Firebird HO Ram Air
1978 Firebird Sky Bird
1977 Trans Am
1980 Trans Am
1968 Firebird Ram Air I