Pontiac Firebird Trans AM 2. Generation 400 W72 4BBL Y88 1978

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Firebird Trans AM 2. Generation 400 W72 4BBL Y88 1978





The second-generation debut for the 1970 model year was delayed until February 26, 1970, because of tooling and engineering problems; thus, its popular designation as a 1970½ model, while leftover 1969s were listed in early Pontiac literature without a model-year identification. This generation of Firebirds were available in coupe form only; after the 1969 model year, convertibles were not available until 1989.
Formula appearance package "W50" (1976–1981)
Black-and-gold Trans Am Pontiac 50th anniversary limited edition (1976)
Black-and-gold Trans Am special edition (1977–1978, 1980–1981)
Sky Bird Esprit appearance package "W60" (1977–1978)
Gold Trans Am special edition "Y88" (1978)
Red Bird Esprit appearance package "W68" (1978–1979)
Black Trans Am special edition "Y84" (1979)
Trans Am 10th anniversary edition (1979)
Yellow Bird Esprit appearance package "W73" (1980)
Trans Am turbo Indy pace car edition (1980)
Trans Am turbo NASCAR pace car edition (1981)
Macho Trans-Am (a package offered by the Mecham Pontiac dealership in Glendale, AZ).
Replacing the "Coke bottle" styling was a more "swoopy" body style, while still retaining some traditional elements. The top of the rear window line going almost straight down to the lip of the trunk lid, a look that was to epitomize F-body styling for the longest period during the Firebird's lifetime. The new design was initially characterized by a large B-pillar, until 1975 when the rear window was enlarged.
Changes for 1978 were slight, with a switch from a honeycomb to a crosshatch pattern grille being the most obvious from the outside. Beginning in 1978, the Pontiac group introduced a new special edition vehicle. The Firebird Formula LT sport edition featured a revised 10% raised compression Chevy 305 V8 powertrain producing 155 hp (same as the 1977 Chevy Monza Mirage) combined with a floor center console four-speed manual T-10 BW transmission coupled to a limited-slip differential final drive. The limited touring package (LT) also included a cabin roof, door, fender and hood graphics scheme, the Trans-Am sports handling package with HD gas shocks, modular alloy wheels, and the SE Trans-Am rear deck spoiler with "Formula" word graphic detail. T-tops in 1978 transitioned from Hurst units to Fisher (GM) in mid-year. In 1978 Pontiac also made available the Red Bird package on the Firebird Esprit model. Painted in Roman red with a matching red interior it had a Gold pinstripe treatment with Red Bird graphics on the b-pillars. It also utilized the Trans-Am style steering wheel and dash except these were finished with gold spokes and a gold dash face which was unique to the Red Bird option.
The engineers also revised the compression ratio in the 400 ci through the installation of different cylinder heads with smaller combustion chambers (1977 Pontiac 400 engines also had the 350 heads bolted to the 400 blocks, these heads were known as the 6x-4 heads and were taken from the Pontiac 350). This increased power by 10% for a total of 220 during the 1978–79 model years. The 400/403 options remained available until 1979 when the 400 CID engines were only available in the four-speed transmission Trans Ams and Formulas (the engines had actually been stockpiled from 1978 when PMD had cut production of the engine).


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