The next Rough Start find takes me to my hometown, Colorado Springs, Colorado. From the mountains to the prairie, from Fountain to North Academy, this city is teeming with great sheetmetal. The warm mountain/high desert climate helps preserve these cars in decent condition, and the city’s use of ash and red rock instead of salt in the winter contributes to many decent older cars available.
The 3rd gen Pontiac Trans Am was one of the best deals of the ‘80s. The chickens on the hood weren’t the only things screaming…indeed, one could see the embers of the horsepower war start to glow a little brighter here. While the four cylinder (GAK!) and base V6 had all the motivation of a land tortoise on Quaaludes, the turbo V6, borrowed from the troublemakers over at Buick, was finding it’s way into the GTA. The 305 was torquey enough to be interesting, and a lot of people were shoving older 350s into these ‘Birds to make them move properly. Aerodynamic, aggressive looking, and finally a decent handler with good brakes, the Firebird and Trans Am is a great start for a first ride.
This ’86 sits up in the mountains a few miles away from the Springs in Divide. The downsides? The plastic body pieces from the forward edges of the front fenders appears to be AWOL, and the torque converter in the 700R4 (!) has called it a day. The bonuses include a Corvette 350 (hell, any 350 will do), the 700R4 itself, four wheel discs, a Flowmaster exhaust kit, and T-tops…because you want to be seen in this blue screamer. The hood bird is a bit faded, but overall the car should clean up nicely. It also sports the GTA-style taillights, which I prefer over the layered taillights normally offered. You even get a set of Mickey Thompson ET Streets for rear tires!
This Trans Am has a great buy-in price at $2K, and other than the torque converter, as far as I’m concerned, is ready to rock. The bodykit is up to you, but the good bits are there, and it’s before that irritating chip-in-the-key system that pissed off a lot of GM owners.
Find this Bird for sale here
If I had the money and space my ass would be on a plane right now. What about you?