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1977 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am: The Star of Smokey and the Bandit

1977 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am in black

Author: Tommy Flanagan

It's hard to believe that "Smokey and the Bandit" debuted 40 years ago in theaters and drive-ins across America. Burt Reynolds may have been the star, but it was the black 1977 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am that stole the show. There's nothing like seeing that Starlight Black Pontiac Firebird Trans Am emerge from the back of the Bandit's truck and hit the street burning rubber in front of Snowman's house. Admit it, you got goosebumps watching this scene and wanted one of these yourself.

The good news is there are still a few nice examples for sale across the country. If you want the cream of the crop, you'll have to search for the Special Edition package along with the W72 Handling package.

The Special Edition Package, sometimes referred to as the Bandit package, consisted of a gold bird decal on the hood, gold pinstriping, German-style T/A lettering and twin gold front grilles. Also, all Trans Ams with the Special Edition package were painted black and came with 15 x 7 snowflake wheels with gold inserts. Interior-wise, all Special Editions had gold engine-turned dash bezels and gold-accented steering wheels. The Special Edition package had option code Y81 without T-tops and Y82 with Hurst T-tops.

Drivers wanting a little more oomph could opt for the W72 Handling Package. This got you a version of the Pontiac 400 V8 with 200 horsepower, 325 lb-ft of torque and an 8.0:1 compression ratio. Buyers also had a choice between a 4-speed manual transmission and a Hydra-Matic automatic transmission. This package got you 20 more horsepower over the Trans Am's standard 400 V8. That might not sound like much, but remember, this was 1977, and drivers were happy to get any performance car with 200 or more horsepower.

Give Classics on Autotrader a spin when searching for your classic Firebird Trans Am. You just might find that special one you've been looking for.

Find a Pontiac Firebird for sale

Published May 30th, 2017

Frequently Asked Questions About the 1977 Pontiac Trans Am

  • Where was Smokey and The Bandit filmed?

    Smokey and The Bandit was mostly filmed in the Georgia cities of McDonough, Jonesboro, and Lithonia. Although, they filmed more scenes in Ojai, California and at the old Lakewood Fairgrounds on the south side of Atlanta.
  • What year was Smokey and The Bandit released?

    The release of Smokey and The Bandit was in 1977. The film premiered in New York City on May 19th, 1977 and went on to become the second-highest grossing movie of the year.
  • How many Trans Am’s were used in Smokey and The Bandit?

    Pontiac provided the filmmakers with four Trans Am’s for the movie—three for filming and the last for marketing and promotion. The Firebird Trans Am’s were 1976-model cars with 1977 front ends and decals. The three film vehicles were all destroyed due to stunt damage, and the promotional car sold at a 2016 auction for $550,000.
  • What was the last year of the Pontiac Trans Am?

    The fourth generation Pontiac Firebird was last produced in 2002. Pontiac produced the second-generation Firebird Trans Am, which included the infamous 1977 model from the movie, from 1970 to 1981.
  • How much is a 1977 Pontiac Trans Am worth?

    The price for a 1977 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am, like the one which appeared in Smokey and The Bandit, can range from $25,000 to $75,000 depending on the condition and features of the car. After Burt Reynold’s death, his very own 1979 Firebird Trans Am sold at the late actor’s 2019 estate sale for $317,500.

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