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A Pontiac Family

by Bob Gaydo

The Gaydo family of Horton Michigan is truly a Pontiac family. There are (currently) 5 Firebirds in the yard, plus 2 GMC pickups, a Pontiac Sunfire, a 1962 Pontiac Tempest, the current restoration project, plus an original (ordered and purchased new ) 1971 GTO Judge. The three Firebirds pictured include a 1995 Firehawk, a 1995 Trans Am convertible with white top and white leather interior, and a 1999 Firehawk. Bob purchased the 1999 Firehawk new. He originally tried to order a 1998 but due to production issues, there no 1998 Firehawks produced. So he ordered a 1999 (Hawk #437), which has won numerous 1st and 2nd place trophies at Ames Pontiac Performance Nationals in Norwalk, Ohio, as well as the Firehawk Rally also at Norwalk, and the Trans Am Nationals in Dayton, Ohio. Two years ago on the way to the Pontiac Nationals we noticed a red 1995 Firehawk sitting at a Ford dealer. Within a week of returning home we had purchased the car (Firehawk 251) for Jill to drive and show. Both are Formula cars with 6 speed manual transmissions. Bob’s has 13,000 miles and Jill’s 50,000. The Trans Am was spotted for sale on the side of the road almost four years ago and after some serious negotiations it was added to the family as a summer fun car. The other two Firebirds include a 1988 Formula 350 WS6 purchased new which currently is in storage with 70,000 miles as well as a 1990 Firebird which was given to our son Dane as a birthday gift for his 16th birthday (Dane was born in 1990).

Bob who is a licensed US Customs broker works in Detroit and specializes in Customs law, helping importers comply with the import and export regulations. He is also the current Director of the Firehawk Association of America, as well as Treasurer of the Little Indians (1961-1963 Tempest) Chapter of the POCI. Jill is a Credit Manager and Treasurer of the Firehawk Association of America. Dane is a freshman at Michigan State University, working towards a degree in Chemical Engineering. It is his desire to work on alternative motor fuels upon graduation. We also have a daughter, Carlie, who was born in 1995, and based upon her brother receiving a 16 year old Firebird on his 16th birthday, has her eye on our 1995 Trans Am convertible, although she let us know she would prefer it in pink. The final member of the family is Bismarck, our 2 year old German Shepherd who believes one of the GMC pickups is his, and will lay patiently in the bed if we forget to close it, until he gets a ride, preferably to the creemee stand in the summer for his vanilla creemee.

Gaydo Family Pontiacs

Gaydo Family Pontiacs

Gaydo Family Pontiacs

Gaydo Family Pontiacs

Gaydo Family Pontiacs

2011 Pontiac Trans Am by ASC: New Camaro-Based Proposal

2011 ASC Trans Am
2011 ASC Trans Am

Pontiac’s days may be numbered as General Motors plans to phase out the historic brand by the end of 2010, but that hasn’t dampened ASC Creative Services’ attempts to make a Trans Am version out of the all-new Chevy Camaro coupe. ASC has worked many times with General Motors in the past helping out in the creation and design development of cars like the 1987 Buick GNX, various Chevy SS models such as the HHR SS and Malibu SS, as well as the Cadillac STS-V and XLR-V sport cars just to mention a few.

2011 Pontiac Firebird

The design and development firm’s proposal for a Camaro-based Pontiac Trans Am is a fairly simply conversion that could easily lead to a custom-order production model. The changes include a new front fascia complete with unique head lights, twin-kidney grill inserts and restyled apron, a rear-facing hood shaker, new side skirts and alloy wheel designs plus rear-fender air vents. At the back the design proposes a new rear fascia with distinctive tail lights, boot spoiler and a specific apron housing new exhaust pipes.While we don’t have any photos of the interior, we gather that ASC would most likely limit the changes to the trim and seat options along with a revised instrument panel.

There’s no information ASC’s actual intentions on the car, but if you’re really interested, you can send a mail to for more information.

The End of Pontiac?

Ah, another week, another Congressional hearing.  It almost feels like pledge week back in college. Candlelight, dark robes, the glisten of fresh paint on those long, wooden paddles.  “Thank you, sir, may I have another?”

But, the one thing that makes all of this mess worth it is finding out just how many friends we have.  In addition to the comments posted here, we’ve also been getting e-mails and phone calls expressing support for Pontiac and making suggestions for our future.

So, we just wanted to take a couple of minutes and address some of your comments and suggestions, some very general and some very specific…

G6_cluster So, is Pontiac going away?
Nope.  As we said last week, we’re still a very active part of GM’s future, especially within the Buick-Pontiac-GMC channel.

So, what’s all of this “core brand” verses “niche brand” stuff?
We call it a poor choice of words.  From our perspective “niche” means more focused, which means Pontiac does what we do best: sporty, fun-to-drive cars.  And, that’s perfectly cool with us.  We don’t need to be everything to everybody.  When you add Pontiac to Buick and GMC, you’ve got a single, “full line” dealer showroom.

What does this mean for your current cars?
In the short term, nothing.  We’ll keep selling the G5, G6, G8, Solstice and Vibe while we sort out what vehicles are best for Pontiac and the Buick-Pontiac-GMC channel in the future.

What about the new cars you’ve already announced, like G8 GXP, Solstice Coupe, G3 and G8 ST?
We’re happy to say that the G8 GXP, Solstice Coupe and G3 are all being launched in early 2009.  The G8 ST is still on schedule for a late 2009 launch, and it will be part of the total portfolio review for Pontiac, as will all of our other vehicles.

Bring back the Firebird!  –  Jkujo, Pontiacspeed, and numerous others
We’ve got to be honest and say there are no current plans to bring back the Firebird.  But, we can promise you that your comments will be sent directly to the team reviewing our future product portfolio, so the voice of Firebird fans WILL be heard.

Chicago Auto Show Concept Trans Am

by Bob Phillips

Trans Am Concept Trans Am of Bob Phillips This Trans Am is the original, un-restored, survivor, 1 of 1, promotional concept car that was built for the 1974 Chicago Auto Show (actually has 24 separate options that would make this a one of one [1 of 1] car or a first [1st]). The interior has a special silk material used on the seats and the carpet is by Cadillac. The famous 455 Super Duty (SD) engine that Nascar developed with only 1296 made in a two year period was dropped under the hood.  It features a one of a kind special gold metallic flake blended into the black base color with gold  pin striping (also known as a Johnny Player Special) and would become the promo car (for the second time) for the 1976 50th anniversary Limited Edition TA that would evolve into the later Special Edition models from 1977 – 1981. 

It was used as a promotional car (for the third time) for the Trans Am Territories, (which was a gathering and race for Trans Am buffs and GM personnel), and was driven by John Schinella (Head Chief of Design for GM) on the track.  It has untouched, original paint and clear coating, with spider webbing from many clear finishes from all the changes by the design staff.  It is documented 28,000 original miles and still wears its original tires (Goodyear made two sets special for this car with gold lettering).  The car (most thought lost) was purchased from the original owner’s estate sale in 2004 by Bob Reason, car dealer and collector of Michigan.  The original owner (Clarence Sproul) worked for GM as head accountant and was close to Bill Mitchell, the vice-president of GM who owned the car before it was turned into a concept car.  Bill instructed the car go to the accountant rather than being destroyed like most concept cars.  It was personally signed by John Schinella on the center console and core support in 2004.  John was appointed head of Trans Am design by Bill Mitchell in 1971 and used this car to sell the Big Bird idea to Bill Mitchell, who originally hated the bird decal.  The car is titled as a buccaneer red 1973 Trans Am with Turbo 400 automatic transmission. 

The public excitement over the car during the 1974 show circuit prompted the release of the 1976 Limited Edition (50th Anniversary) Trans Am and essentially was the first Bandit car.  It is historically documented in 21 articles online,  and in seven books  publications such as in the  “The Fabulous Firebird” by Michael Lamm, “Firebird Trans Am” by David Newhardt, “Pontiac Firebird” by Marc Cranswick. 

More photos at or .

National Firebird & Trans Am Club

The National Firebird & T/A Club at was founded in 1984 in Chicago to serve the interests of Firebird, Trans-Am and Formula owners throughout North America. The NFTAC offers, magazines, emagazines, technical advice, member recommendations on service, body and parts sources, registration of your Firebird or Trans Am, a tradition of service and FREE member classified ads that appear in the EAGLE magazine AND on the Internet web site.

National Firebird and Trans Am Club – For owners of all year Pontiac Firebirds, Trans Ams, GTAs and Firehawks

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