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Updated on Oct 11, 2012
Jose's "TempTAtion" 1979 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am
Originally, Solar Gold 403 Oldsmobile, TH-350 car. Engine: 1972 Pontiac 455 (out of a Bonneville) with 6X (400) heads, 9.25:1. Extensive restoration and customizing job done in 2005-6.
Mild custom details are grill removal, bumpers smoothing; side marker, mirrors and door handles eliminated and smoothed (power windows roll down by remote). House of Kolor® Kandy Tangerine (KBC08) base coat over silver metallic sealer was painted and then a pin-up of model Vida Guerra was airbrushed on the trunk lid. Other airbrush graphics are the 455 shaker call-outs and the black phoenix on the hood.
The black and white interior features 2000 Camaro white leather buckets, rears covered to match. The other interior parts are covered in synthetic black suede. Interior work: Got-U-Covered, Taylors, SC.
Backing the massive torque of the Pontiac 455 is a built 4L60 automatic (4-spd overdrive). With the 2.73 rear axle ratio, first gear now has the torque multiplication of a 3.33 geared car and a final drive ratio of 1.9! So, at 1500 rpm the car travels at 62mph. 2000 rpm = 83 mph. The overdrive transmission makes this car a fast grand tourer.
Suspension: Lowering springs up front (Coil Spring Specialties) and VB&P composite leaf springs in the rear with Konis. The leaf springs drop about forty pounds from the car! Curb weight: 3570 lbs. Competition Engineering subframe connectors reduce body flex and the entire front suspension was rebuilt with Moog components and new fast-ratio steering box.
Running on E85 since October of 2010. The Q-Jet carb was "fattened up" somewhere between 17% and 34% to create the proper richer air/fuel ratio. I based this on the recommended 20-40% increase to run pure ethanol and adjusted down to compensate for the 15% gasoline in the fuel.
The carb I purchased for modification is from a 1976 Pontiac 400 or 455 application, identical part number to the one on the car. I ended up modifying the original carb and the newly rebuilt one, back and forth, until I started seeing improvements.
I've achieved some interesting results that run contrary to what some have said I should expect from the conversion, namely a loss of fuel economy and a drop in power. Instead, the highway fuel mileage is the same with what the car ran before, that is, on economy conservative driving mode, which is what concerns me. Of course, it sucks down fuel at WOT, just as any powerful engine will, but it doesn't appear to be any worse than on gasoline, nor do I care. The power is roughly equal or even slightly better, judging by testing with the G-Tech performance computer and quarter mile trap speeds.
Drivability is excellent: The engine seems to idle more smoothly and also seems to run quieter, especially noticeable at idle and low cruising speeds. Page 1: Pics of car and its original airbrush artwork Page 2: The restoration process Page 3: Car shows and events
Birds of a feather... My brother's 1989 TTA: Buick 3.8L turbo with a 0-60 in 5.0.
Displaying entries 1-5 of 168
Nice car awesome paint 5*****
nick ta 79
Planning on putting the 4L60 in my trans am. Any major issues with the install?
You need an adapter plate to match up to BOP engines. TV cable adjustment is critical. If you have a computer controlled model, then I think you need a stand-alone controller. My transmission guy set up lock-up only in 4th at 50 mph, with a high-stall TC, lower speeds were over revving and annoying. I had another transmission shop connect lock-up engagement in 2nd and 3rd, with a switch to disengage lock-up for high acceleration and standing starts. Still my TC seems to be failing. Next up is a more aggressive engine build and heavy-duty Hughes TC. I am still not convinced that a 4L60 is the best transmission out there for durability, even with all the upgrades. A TH-400 or 4L80 is way stronger and heavier built and the best may be a Ford 4R70W built, the TH-400 and Gear Venders OD would be stout. All depends on what motor you are running and torque and horsepower levels.
love the Paint Job...
Sick Transformation! Lovin the pinup! The candy is gorgeous! 5 stars!
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