1971 Pontiac Firebird

1971 PONTIAC FIREBIRD CARRIED OVER
The 1971 models were mostly carried over from the all-new 1970 Firebird, which itself had just launched the 2nd-generation. In its second year, the Firebird didn’t change all that much in appearance, just minor trim and detail differences. Going to the 2nd-gen just the year before was such a radical change from the previous 1st-gen cars that now it was time to settle into this new 2nd-gen platform, as it would be with us for 12 model years, an extraordinarily long time period in the car business. This body style would stay with us through the 1981 model year.
1971 PONTIAC FIREBIRD GETS THE 455
The big news for 1971 was the addition of two more engines (actually two versions of the same engine) on top of the existing engine lineup. Through 1970, the biggest engine you could get in a Firebird was the 400ci V8. Now you could get a 455 V8, perhaps the last high performance engine of the Classic Muscle Car Era. The base engine in 1971 continued to be the 350 ci V8. Next up was the 400 V8. And now 2 versions of the 455, one with lower compression and lower performance. The 455 was an undersquare design (long stroke when compared to the bore), so it was really a torque motor, not a high-rpm engine. Unlike other carmakers, Pontiac built all its V8 engines out of the same basic block, changing them internally, through adjusting the bore and stroke, but with identical outside dimensions. So there aren’t any ‘small block’ or ‘big block’ Pontiacs, they’re all the same on the outside. The 455 was new for 1970, made by boring the old 428 out. GM had just lifted its age-old ban which limited midsized cars to no more than 400 cubic inch engines. So now the 455 came to the Firebird and Trans Am lines and would stay until 1976 when smog regs made it impractical to continue. The process had already started as early as 1971 when even the 455 H.O. (High-Output) only made 335hp, where it made 370hp in the 1970 Grand Prix. Wholesale reduction of compression ratios was to blame, done to compensate for the new low-octane/low-lead fuels the government was mandating.

1971 Pontiac Firebird PRODUCTION NUMBERS

MODEL                  

Base Firebird

Firebird Esprit

Firebird Formula

Trans Am

   PRODUCTION   

23,021

20,185

7,802

2,116

  PRICE WHEN NEW  

$3,050

$3,416

$3,450


1971 Pontiac Firebird SPECIFICATIONS

Wheelbase

Length

Width

Height

Track, front

Track, rear

Weight

V8 ENGINE OPTIONS

350ci V8 w/1X2bbl

400ci V8 w/1X4bbl

400ci V8 w/1X4bbl

455ci V8 w/1X4bbl

455ci V8 w/1X4bbl

PERFORMANCE

345hp 455 V8

108.0 in / 2743 mm

191.6 in / 4867 mm

73.1 in / 1870 mm

50.2 in / 1276 mm

61.3 in / 1556 mm

60.5 in / 1537 mm

3,197 lbs / 1450 kg


255 hp / 355 lb/ft

265 hp / 400 lb/ft

300 hp / 400 lb/ft

 325 hp / 455 lb/ft

  335 hp / 480 lb/ft


Zero-to-60mph = 5.9 sec















1/4-mile = 13.9 sec @ 103 mph


OTHER FIREBIRD & TRANS AM PAGES:
..........PONTIAC
....................Firebird/TransAm
..............................1967
..............................1968
..............................1969
..............................1970
..............................1970 Trans Am
..............................1971
..............................1973
..............................1973 Trans Am
..............................1974
..............................1976
..............................1976 Trans Am
..............................1977 Trans Am
..............................1978 Trans Am
..............................1979
..............................1987 Trans Am GTA
..............................1989
..............................1999 Trans Am

Check out these FIREBIRD & TRANS AM BOOKS

TRANS AM & FIREBIRD RESTORATION 1970-1981


PONTIAC FIREBIRD 1967-2000


PONTIAC FIREBIRD V8 1970-1981, HAYNES REPAIR MANUAL


HOW TO REBUILD PONTIAC V8s


PONTIAC FIREBIRD 1982-1992, HAYNES REPAIR MANUAL


THE FABULOUS FIREBIRD


DEFINITIVE FIREBIRD & TRANS AM GUIDE 1967-1969


STANDARD CATALOG OF FIREBIRD 1967-2002


PONTIAC FIREBIRD


FIREBIRD/CAMARO 1993-2002, HAYNES REPAIR MANUAL


PONTIAC FIREBIRD ANTHOLOGY 1967-2002


ORIGINAL FIREBIRD & TRANS AM RESTORERS GUIDE 1967-2002


FIREBIRD 1967-1981, CHILTON’S REPAIR MANUAL


PONTIAC FIREBIRD: TOP AMERICAN CARS OF ALL TIME, Kindle


PONTIAC FIREBIRD ADS: 1967-2002


ILLUSTRATED FIREBIRD BUYERS GUIDE


FIREBIRD! AMERICA’S PREMIER PERFORMANCE CAR


FIREBIRD & TRANS AM 1970-1981, CLYMER’S REPAIR MANUAL


FIREBIRD & TRANS AM 1969-1999 PHOTO ALBUM


FIREBIRD 1982-1992, HAYNES REPAIR MANUAL





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Last updated 12/29/16
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