photos by: Trans Am Specialties
Quickly coming of age, the late second-gen Camaros and Firebirds have been gaining momentum in the marketplace for the last ten years. Initially spurred on by the fortieth-anniversary of Smokey and the Bandit and the renewed popularity of the ’76-81 Special Edition Trans Ams, brought to light by Burt Reynolds, the continuing popularity of the smog-era F-bodies just continue to climb!
Now as with anything in the classic musclecar hobby, there’s the “trickle-down effect,” where less-popular versions of a specific car reap the benefits from the more-popular incarnations. One example of this would be the ’79 Tenth-Anniversary and Turbo Pace Cars of ’80-81. We recently about about this particular ’80 Turbo Trans Am Pace Car directly from the owner of Trans Am Specialties, Rick Dieters, through our Facebook page.
Showing a total of, get this, 18 miles on its odometer, the Trans Am is basically brand new. Heck, we’ve purchased brand new cars before with higher miles than that, so to say that this is a legitimate time capsule would be a bit of an understatement. To top it off, it was a campaign car, used in not only the ads but promotional events as well! In fact, one of the original ads adorn the car’s driver’s side window, as you can see in the photos.
But it’s not without it downsides; first and foremost, the 301 ci. turbocharged V8 wasn’t exactly a powerhouse from GM; with 210 hp on tap and a curb weight close to 4,000-pounds, the T/A was only good for quarter-mile blasts in the mid-16 second zone. Not exactly Earth-shattering, then or now – but with such super-low miles on the clock (the lowest documented in the world), it’s not exactly something you would want to drive on a regular basis, anyway.
Having a car that’s essentially undrivable in this regard is usually reserved for the ultra-well off; for someone who simply wants to add it to their collection of well-appointed classic musclecars or Firebirds. With a car this elite, comes a higher price tag; $60,000. It might be a lot for an ’80 Trans Am, but given its statistics and historical significance it may very well be worth it. You just can’t drive it!