In 1979, the Trans Am was still an apex predator with nothing else on the road able to match its combination of brute horsepower and striking styling. These are the hot collector cars of the near future as enthusiasts who grew up behind the wheel rediscover their youth, and this gorgeous Starlight Black example is a relatively unusual piece that's just a blast to drive.
Looking for all the world like a clean, well-maintained survivor, this is one stylish 'Bird. Has it been painted? Maybe, but there are obvious signs that this car has been loved from day one and no evidence that it was ever in need of cosmetic help, although it's possible that it's been repainted; hard to say for certain. The steel bodywork is straight, the doors fit like they did on the showroom floor, and even ground effects and chin spoiler are in good order. Code 19 Starlight Black was the go-to color in 1979 and the contrasting red and orange graphics pop off the bright surface and are a great alternative to the usual gold. It's not perfect, but it's extremely nice with an honest look that has nothing to hide, which I think I prefer to outright perfection. All the other Trans Am styling cues look great 30 years later, including the ducktail spoiler, chin spoiler, and blacked-out taillights that stretch across the back of the car. Even the glass still shows a proper light Soft-Ray tint of factory original equipment.
For a car famous for wretched excess, the simple black interior is the model of restraint and good taste. The seat covers have surely been replaced, because they're just too nice to be 40 years old, and they're wrapped around supportive buckets that hug you in place. Black door panels wrap around into a matching dash with an engine-turned fascia. Everything appears to be original and if there are any demerits, it's that the carpets are a little faded and there's a crack in the dash pad, all pretty light stuff. All the gauges are crisp and well-marked, and this sucker's loaded with a bunch of options, including A/C, power windows, and a tilt column, so you get a bit of luxury with your performance. There's a newer AM/FM/CD stereo radio in the dash, which feeds speakers in the usual locations, so it remains OEM-looking. The trunk is in good order with a black mouse fur mat and the original bags for the T-tops.
You could still get your choice of engines in 1979, but the top performer when linked with an automatic transmission was a 403 cubic inch V8. Effortless in everything it does, this matching-numbers V8 makes great muscle car sounds and still carries enough horsepower to be a genuine thrill on the street. It's mostly stock save for routine maintenance items, and it would be hard to tell anyway since everything is pretty well buried under the air cleaner and hood scoop. A stock-style exhaust system sounds suitably muscular and still uses a catalytic converter, so it should be good to go in all 50 states. With the quick-shifting TH350 3-speed automatic gearbox, acceleration is only a gentle squeeze of the accelerator away and the suspension is a good combination of sporting and comfortable. The underside shows off a lifetime in a warm climate and those beautiful "snowflake" alloy wheels wheels are now fitted with 225/70/15 BFG radials all around.
Very nicely preserved, this Trans Am is a sure-fire future collectable that remains a ton of fun today. Don't wait, call today!