1969 Pontiac Firebird Trans AM (69 T/A)
Last updated Dec 11, 2009
Back in 1973-74 the 'Winds of Change' were blowing for me..
I was then working for 3.50 (!!) an hour and driving a 68 Camarro SS 350 4spd.. Some of the sweet muscle cars in my hood back then were a 70 Boss 302, 68 Shelby GT 350, 70 Mach I ( I bought it later on) 69 Mach I CJ 428, Pantera, 71 Cougar Eliminator, 73 Cutlass Hurst Olds, 67 Shelby GT 500 Convertable, and of course this 69 Firebird TA.. Wish I could go back with a suitcase full of cash!! I had always 'wrenched a neck' when the TA would come roaring around the corner past my house.. It belonged to a freind/neighbor of mine that had owned it for a few years prior and was actually for sale for 2500.00 just prior to 'fate' lending me a hand! Back then Muscle Cars weren't worth the price of the dirt they were parked on! and with the scare of 5.00 a gallon gas (not to far off these days:) it was pretty hard to unload a classic piece of muscle history..
So,, as fate goes,, one stormy winter night the owner was crossing the Golden Gate Bridge and one of the 'I beam' toll gates came loose and swung closed 'just' as the TA was making it's way through sealing the deal for me.. Thank the gods that the TA is either low enough or the I beam was high enough :) that the damage was realatively light.. It put a gouge on the Ram Air intake runner on the passenger side, broke the windshield as the beam came through and cut the dash pad! As it swung outward from the impact force it broke the right side glass (door and quarter) as it took the right side/end of the rear spoiler off as it passed on by.. Luckly both the driver and passenger were not injured other than minor cuts from the glass.. Being that these cars weren't commanding any large amounts of money, and the price of gas and/or availabilty with 'very long' lines to buy fuel were more than affecting muscle car sales.. The owner had this TA for sale for 2500.00 with zero takers! I had the option of buying the GT 500 Shelby Mustang for 2800.00 but couldn't swing it.. His insurance paid him 1200.00 for the TA's damage and he wasn't interested in a fix and opted out for a new 240Z.. So,, having no real cash available I had to ask my brother for a quick loan, which came with some 'words of wisdom and advice' that these cars will be worth nothing in the future, more so when gas hits 10.00 a gallon bla bla bla.. He finally caved as I argued on and though a finacial push at the time the TA was mine.. The owner settled on value of 2000.00 and with his insurance payoff of 1200.00 the TA was finally mine for the balance :)
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