1979 Pontiac Firebird


1979 Pontiac Firebird FORMULA

1979 PONTIAC FIREBIRD GETS A NEW NOSE
After the handsome ’77 and ’78 Trans Ams, the front end was changed after just 2 model years to a big, snarky-looking affair with big vents in the face of the front bumper and four square headlights, spaced apart and flaired into the slant nose. It made the front end look ponderous, long and heavy, certainly more than the graceful lines of the ’77-’78. Some people like it, many liked the earlier car better. But, like it or not, it stayed with the Firebird through the end of the 2nd-generation in 1981. Someone must have liked it because 1979 turned out to be the hottest-selling year for the Trans Am models EVER, before or since! They sold 116,535 Trans Ams...just Trans Ams. All the other Firebirds were in addition to that number.
1979 PONTIAC FIREBIRD ENGINES
The 400 V8 got a set of 6x-4 cylinder heads (borrowed from the 350) with smaller combustion chambers and better breathing that raised compression and horsepower to 220hp. The 400/403 option remained only through 1979. Pontiac’s own 400 V8 couldn’t pass smog in California, so they borrowed the 403 V8 from Oldsmobile, and labeled it a 400. By 1980, tightening smog regs forced Pontiac to drop all its large displacement V8s. The base engine for non-Trans Ams was (since 1977) the 3.8L (231ci) V6. Next up were two Chevy
V8s, a 5.0L (305ci) and a 5.7L (350ci), both small blocks. As far as V8s went, they were down to just one engine of their own, the 400, and it was very limited in its use. Out of the 4 V8s offered, 2 were Chevys and 1 was an Oldsmobile. The lines were about to blur even further in the near future.

1979 Pontiac Firebird INTERIORS

1979 PONTIAC FIREBIRD 10th ANNIVERSARY TRANS AM
1979 marked the 10th anniversary for the Trans Am line, launched in 1969. To commemorate it (read that: cash in on it), they built a limited edition 10th Anniversary Trans Am with 2-tone silver paint, silver leather interior and a huge hood decal that spilled over onto the front fenders. Of the 7,500 10th Anniversary T/As built, 1,817 of them had the 400 V8 with Borg Warner T-10 4-speed manual transmission. California cars got the Olds 403 with automatic. No matter where you lived, if you wanted an automatic in your Trans Am, you got the 403. The 400 with 4-speed got a rear axle ratio of 3.23, and 403-automatics got 2.73 gears.

1979 Pontiac Firebird SPECIFICATIONS

Produced

Wheelbase

Length

Width

Height

Track, front

Track, rear

Weight

ENGINE OPTIONS

231ci V6 1X2bbl

301ci V8 1X2bbl

301ci V8 1X4bbl

305ci V8 1X4bbl

350ci V8 1X4bbl

403ci V8 1X4bbl

400ci V8 1X4bbl

PERFORMANCE

220hp 400 V8

117,108

108.0 in / 2743 mm

196.8 in / 4999 mm

73.0 in / 1854 mm

49.4 in / 1255 mm

61.2 in / 1554 mm

60.3 in / 1532 mm

3,635 lbs / 1649 kg


105 hp / 185 lb/ft

140 hp / 235 lb/ft

150 hp / 240 lb/ft

133 hp / 244 lb/ft

160 hp / 260-270 lb/ft

185 hp / 320 lb/ft

220 hp / 320 lb/ft


Zero-to-60mph = 6.7 sec

















1/4-mile = 15.3 sec @ 96.6 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 1/7/17

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