What Is the History of the Pontiac Trans-Am?


Quick Answer

The Pontiac Firebird Trans Am was a pony car released by Pontiac and General Motors beginning in 1969 that was an upgraded specialty automobile in the company's Firebird line. The Trans Am is an iconic American muscle car and was constructed on the same F-body platform chassis from its inception until its final edition in 2002. The Trans Am is generally associated with earlier pony cars from other automakers, particularly the Ford Mustang and the Chevrolet Camaro.

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Full Answer

The Pontiac Trans Am was introduced in 1969 as an upgraded Firebird, featuring better handling, suspension and horsepower than General Motors' original 1967 Firebird model.

Four generations of the Trans Am were released by Pontiac. The first was a limited edition release in 1969, the second spanned 1970 to 1981, the third from 1982 to 1992 and the fourth from 1993 to 2002. The basic design of the car changed little through its many iterations, but different generations produced cosmetic changes such as hood, spoiler, wheel and body adjustments.

Special editions of the Trans Am have periodically been released by Pontiac to celebrate important anniversaries of the Firebird model. For example, the Trans Am GTA was sold from 1987 to 1992, and the Trans Am Turbo limited edition was sold in 1989. An edition of the Trans Am with yellow trim and special graphics was sold in 2002 to commemorate the Firebird's 35th anniversary.

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