1969 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am 4 Speed

Original Real Deal Trans Am ; Investment Quality

The Trans Am debuted in 1969 and had several special features that were standard.

1969 models have code WS4 stamped on the body data plate located under hood, on fire wall. Posi-traction rear axles, power steering, disc brakes, rear spoiler & special Ram Air hoods were always standard on Trans Am models.

Total production of 1969 Trans Am was only 687 units, 8 of those were Trans Am convertibles, 55 were Ram Air IV coupes and only 520 were manual 4 sp Ram Air III coupes, such as this particular outstanding example.

This Trans Am is special on many levels! It was purchased new at Jake Sweeney Pontiac in Cincinnati, Ohio.

It is a number matching vehicle with original sheet metal, original window sticker, original owner title, full owner history Pontiac Historial verification and much, much more.

This special TransAm was also invited to the Muscle Car and Corvette Nationals, in order to be showcased in the Class of ’69 exhibit as a best of the best example of its kind!

It is considered to be one of the finest examples available.

Call 630-377-1222 for more info.

A note from the original owner: “One car you did mention was the 428 Cobra Jet Mustang. It so happens that Mustang ran in E Pure Stock. Remember those classes. Buy a car, change the muffler, and run it. Well, I own (for more than ten years) a 1969 Ram Air III Trans Am Firebird. It pretty well dominated that class in 1969.

I bought the car from Jake Sweeney Pontiac in Cincinnati the day after the truck brought it in. I was racing a ‘68 Firebird 400 in F Pure Stock and got tired of Charger R/T’s beating me. Two weeks after buying the TA I put a pair of Thrush mufflers (you could put your fist all the way thru one) on and went racing. This was at Tri-State in Hamilton, Ohio. The car ran in the low 15’s at first. The ’68 ran 15.10 best. I was a little worried because the car had to run in a faster class, EPS, with those Cobra Jets.

Since I got into drag racing for real I bought any magazine that had an article on a Pontiac. The first changes were the jets and metering rods in the Rochester Quadrajet, then the weights and springs in the distributor. After two months of every Sunday racing, the car dropped into the mid 14’s. This ET was fast enough to win most meets and take home the trophy. At Tri-State the competition was 396 Chevelles (350 hp), 428 Cobra Jets with shaker hood and GTO Judges.

Further refinement in driving and the Quadrajet dropped the times into the low 14’s (14.10). I filed the accelerator pump down, moved the arm to the inside hole, bored (delicately) cut the primary passages and put a cooler plate on.

Since the car was almost unbeatable (in pure stock) I started going to different drag strips. Edgewater Park in Cincinnati; Kill Kare in Xenia and US 30 in Gary, Indiana. Xenia was particularly interesting because a 440 Magnum Challenger (375 hp) was running in DPS. In early 1970 NHRA moved the Ram Air III Firebird into DPS. I felt this was my chance to get back for the losses to Dodges in my 68. Racing the Challenger was something else. Two seconds after the lights turned green I was always two car lengths behind. He had an automatic and mine is a wide ratio 4-speed. But somehow at the end I always wound up ahead. I say always because I raced this Challenger three times. The first two meets were rained out before eliminations could finish.

Getting back to the car being almost unbeatable in class. At Edgewater Park I ran against a 1967 GT Mustang with a 428 Cobra Jet engine. I never knew they made such a beast. I did not lose to this car in the two times we raced. The first time he red lighted and next week he dropped second gear. But he could easily have beaten me as the car turned in the 13.8’s. The performance of the Mustang gave me incentive to make one last modification to see if the Firebird would run consistently in the 13’s. I put lock nuts in the rocker arms to give the car another 200 to 300 strong RPM. An in fact the car started running in the 13’s.

Other strips at which I raced and won class trophies were Detroit Dragway (had four parallel strips of which only two were being used) and M37 in Brohman, Michigan. The trophy run at Detroit was against a very fast GTO. I missed a gear while in the lead but then he missed a shift so I lucked out. At M37 I ran up against a 429 Torino (375 hp). I never raced one before but it didn’t make any difference as I won. But at M37 they run the trophy winners off for money. In the money run I lost against a 1969 XR7 Cougar by a tire tread. They used national records for handicapping but it was virtually a match race. This Cougar also had a 428 Cobra Jet.

I moved to Milwaukee, Wisconsin in the fall of 1970 and started running at Great Lakes in Union Grove and Lake Geneva. At Union Grove the car has turned its fastest times, which was 13.75. At Lake Geneva they didn’t have NHRA pure stock classes but bracket racing which was new to me. Lake Geneva’s strip was not as fast as Union Grove so the Firebird would only turn in the low 14’s (14.1 to 14.2). It so happened that ET-8 (bracket 8) was 14.01 to 14.99. This made for some easy money. I remember turning a 14.01 against a 454 Camaro while he ran a 13.86 (broke out).

I moved to Santa Barbara, California in 1972 and expected all kinds of drag strips out here. I found one in Santa Maria at the airport. The rear main seal leaked pretty bad, the engine was getting run out (6000 miles) and I had lost my touch at the lights so I didn’t do any better than losing in the finals the couple of times I raced there. This area is a real disappointment for drag racing.

The car has been kept in very good condition. It was repainted the original white shortly after coming to California. The interior is spotless. It won a trophy in a local car show at the Oaks Mall, Thousand Oaks, in the summer of 1978. Best stock in show. The engine was also rebuilt (for reliability and some HP) by Jennings Auto and Marine. They are well known for their racing boat engines.

Recently (last week) I stopped at OCIR and felt the adrenalin flowing. I know that I can get my timing at the lights back and the engine is as strong as ever. But OCIR is 140 miles away. Oh well, I hope you find this dribble relevant.”

The original owner.

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