Classics: The Best of All Worlds: Trans-Am Put American Muscle in Cars That Cornered - PressFrom - US
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ClassicsThe Best of All Worlds: Trans-Am Put American Muscle in Cars That Cornered

22:19  12 august  2019
22:19  12 august  2019 Source:   hotrod.com

Be An Automatic Hero In A 1971 Pontiac Trans Am

Be An Automatic Hero In A 1971 Pontiac Trans Am Driving such a beast doesn’t get much easier. Old muscle cars are a blast to drive, but for some they’re also a chore. If you want to make the experience less labor-intensive, perhaps the best way is to find something with an automatic transmission. While that might sound downright blasphemous, this 1971 Pontiac Trans Am is cool enough to look past that and realize everyone deserves a shot at enjoying classic muscle. Thanks to a recent restoration, this Trans Am has been returned to its previous splendor. That means the white paint job looks great, even under close examination.

On a recent trip to northern California to visit my parents and my youngest, who's attending college up there, my wife and I found ourselves on some of the mountain backroads that had been the local automotive playground when I was in high school.

The Best of All Worlds: Trans-Am Put American Muscle in Cars That Cornered© Petersen Publishing Co. Archive 001-edit-follmer-gurney-boss-mustang-aar-cuda-laguna-seca-1970.j

We were in my parents' Jetta, not the canyon carver of anyone's dreams, but it still got a workout as we rose, fell, and curved back and forth along twisting, turning, two- (and sometimes one-) lane mountain roads, tall redwoods whooshing by our windows. At one point I said to my wife, each word punctuated by my working the steering wheel: "This. Is. Why. We. Didn't. Own. Muscle. Cars."

Burt Reynolds’ Trans Am Up For Sale

Burt Reynolds’ Trans Am Up For Sale It’s not the famous movie car, but it was personally owned by the famous actor. This June 15 and 16, one lucky person will become the proud new owner of Burt Reynolds’ personal 1979 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am. The car is similar to what he famously drove in Smokey and the Bandit, and should go for a good-sized fortune. That, and many other personal items owned by the late Reynolds will be auctioned off In Beverly Hills by Julien’s, which is based in Culver City. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle) { medianetNativeAdOnArticle.

I've mentioned in this column before that my formative years in cars were spent in sports cars, or sporty cars, or cars I wished were sportier than they were, as there were miles and miles of winding roads that snaked through the mountains that separated what is now known as Silicon Valley from Santa Cruz and the greater Monterey Bay area. Sure, dragstrips in Fremont and Half Moon Bay weren't far away, but they never were a part of our universe. We'd run up and down those mountains, way faster than we should have, clinging to each turn with all four skinny bias-ply tires howling in protest.

In hindsight, I realize we could have had a lot of fun in muscle cars had we emulated Parnelli Jones, Mark Donohue, and other stars of the SCCA's Trans-Am series. Our recent fling in the Jetta would have been a totally different experience in Bob Werneke's Boss 302 (page 28) or J. Bittle's real-deal Mustang Trans-Am race car (page 24).

Burt Reynolds' old Pontiac Trans Am replica sold for $317,500

Burt Reynolds' old Pontiac Trans Am replica sold for $317,500 Part of the actor's estate sale.

Talk about the best of all worlds. Those glory years of Trans-Am took good ol' American muscle and planted it in chassis that could actually take a corner, with some of the most talented drivers of a generation behind the wheel.

Fifty years ago Ford and Chevrolet were going at it tooth-and-nail, with the Bud Moore Mustangs trying to end the dominance the Penske Camaros had enjoyed during the 1968 season. Gone was Ford's uncompetitive Tunnel-Port V-8, replaced by the Boss 302. The Penske team had a few tricks of its own, starting the season with Camaros wearing vinyl roofs that, some believed, helped reinforce sheetmetal that had been in the acid bath too long.

Despite having much more competitive cars, and two of the best drivers in the series in Jones and George Follmer, Ford once again watched Penske and his Camaros take the Manufacturer's Championship, as Donohue and Ronnie Bucknam won eight of the season's 12 races. Jones, quoted in Dave Friedman's Trans-Am: The Pony Car Wars 1966-1972, said the Firestones on Ford's cars that season "cost us the championship. We had the fastest cars and the best operation in the series that year, and if we had tires equal to the Goodyears, we would have easily won the 1969 championship."

Rare Muscle Cars Stolen From CT Farm

Rare Muscle Cars Stolen From CT Farm A classic Camaro and Mustang were lifted from a rural Connecticut property. You'd think that nestling a collection of classic cars on a 144-acre farm should keep them protected from thieves, but sadly that isn't the case for two iconic pony cars. The Connecticut State Police are searching for a 1966 Ford Mustang and 1969 Chevrolet Camaro that were stolen from a 234-year-old farm in Voluntown, CT at some point between November 2018 and March 2019.

Big changes made for a very different 1970 season. Jones and Follmer were back in Boss Mustangs, but Penske Racing surprised everyone with its move to AMC Javelins. And added to the mix were Dan Gurney's All American Racers 'Cudas and Challengers piloted by Sam Posey and Ray Caldwell.

Like the Camaros had the year before, Posey famously had his own issues with aggressive acid dipping at the season-opening race in Monterey, his Challenger's roof bending under the weight of a tech inspector's elbow resting on it. And Gurney's AAR team was cut in half when he left partway through the season to race in Can Am, leaving Swede Savage to carry the Plymouth banner.

But 1970 was Ford's year. Penske's team finally found its footing in the Javelins midway through the season, and finished in Second Place, but Jones was a force to be reckoned with, winning five of the season's races and handing Ford its third Manufacturer's Championship in the T-A series.

If all this makes you nostalgic for those few glorious years, or if you were too young to have experienced it the first time, historic Trans-Am cars from 1966-1972 will be back in action at this year's Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion, August 15-18, at the Weathertech Raceway Laguna Seca, one of the most picturesque (and challenging) tracks in the country.

Depending on how you get to Laguna Seca, you can enjoy those same mountain backroads where my friends and I played 40-some years ago. Just do yourself a favor and take something more fun to drive than a Jetta.

1977 Pontiac Trans Am Special Edition Y82 Bandit Is A True Survivor.
Quality Trans AM SE models are getting harder and harder to find. Restore A Muscle Car is pleased to announce the sale of this special 1977 Pontiac Trans Am SE. Quality Trans Am Special Edition models are few and far in between these days, so take advantage of this opportunity before it’s too late. The example you see here is a true Y82 Smoky and the Bandit Special Edition TA, with detail and pride in ownership clearly visible throughout. It is one of only 2,699 four-speed SE cars built in 1977, which is less than five percent of total production numbers.

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