Last updated Apr 27, 2011
I bought Blue brand new.
For me, it all began when I left the farm, got a job at 17 and started earning some $$. I wanted a 1977 Mercury Cougar or Ford Thunderbird ( or so I thought). I went down to the dealer where the salesman, Mr. Greer, was a close neighbor of ours and asked him if I could order a midnight blue metallic car with a silver 1/2 vinyl top. Some of you may remember those landau tops with the chrome strip across the front of the vinyl. Anyway, he checked the color charts and a silver car with a dark blue vinyl top was listed but not the other way around. I told him politely that specific color was what I wanted and if he couldn't order it, then I would keep looking. :scratchchin:
So I proceeded over to M-W Pontiac in Sylvester, GA where Stanley Willis was the principle salesman. Now Stanley was about the same age as my older brothers and had sold our family several vehicles over the years. The most recent car at that time was a 1976 Grand LeMans... medium blue with a white landau top... (gorgeous car) for an older brother. Stanley's dad and my dad had attended the same high school back in the early 40's where my dad had won a basketball championship. Vaughn Willis was a great friend of our family. Stanley was as slick as grease when it came to selling... but he didn't have to be very slick to talk me into ordering a 1978 Martinique Blue, WS6, TA. Having just seen Smokey and the Bandit a few months earlier, I was game and we started the order sheet.
Having just turned 18, I didn't have a lot of cash and options weren't on my priority list. T-Tops for instance at $1100 wasn't an option for me. I ordered AM-FM, 8-Track, Auto, WS6 w/Snowflake wheels, TA 6.6, Tilt wheel, Power Windows, Custom Interior. That was about it. The order took place in November 1977. The car arrived at the dealership in March, 1978. Talk about a long wait for a first new car and it a Trans Am to boot!!! Whew!
This is the 1st new car I purchased. The car was traded in 1981 after getting married. We traded for a 1981 Buick Skylark (more of a family car). Really sorry I traded this car. It took me over 20 years to get it back!! When I did get it back, it was in rough shape mechanically and needed paint and full restoration. 2nd owner still owned car until I bought it back in 2000 and started restoration. 9 years later and almost done! If you look closely at the photos of my red 79 TA, one photo shows the blue hood leaning against another car in the garage (in the album called "Red" on my garage page). The paint and bird are peeling off and underneath where the bird is/was, the hood rusted and pitted the metal so bad, we had to replace the hood.
I have driven this car on 2 of the 5 Bandit Runs (2009 from Branson MO to Year One and 2010 from Year One to Daytona, Jupiter, and back to Disney World).
Car had a service replacement 400 c.i. block after original engine broke the crankshaft on September 26, 1979 on my honeymoon! Service Replacement engine (dealer simply ordered a short block) was still in car when I re-purchased in 2000.
'78 TA was ordered when I was only 18 years old so I couldn't afford many options. It was a 220 HP WS6, Martinique Blue, with 'custom' light blue vinyl interior, Auto, AC, PS, PB, PW, tilt, AM/FM/8-Track. I still have original bill of sale and other documents from purchase. The car was built in Van Nuys, CA. Talk about a long wait for a new car from November to March...and for an 18 year old that seemed like eternity!
Today, the car has a 1970, 455 HO, balanced & ported. Built by David McIntosh of McIntosh Performance. Eagle Rods, Forged pistons, and roller tipped rockers... all the good stuff. Oversized exhaust manifolds from Ram Air Reproductions, 800 CFM Quadrajet, Holley Dominator Intake, 2 1/2" exhaust, etc. Engine wasn't put on dyno but estimated at 450+ HP. Fast car with automatic behind a 3200 stall converter. Early 70's style tailpipes. Some like 'em, some don't. I am undecided.
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