1989 Pontiac FirebirdSOLD

1989 Pontiac Firebird

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Firebird fans, here's a rare bird that many people don't even know exists: a 1989 Trans Am GTA convertible with the L98 TPI engine. This 350 cubic inch engine was standard equipment in the GTA throughout its production, but it was never produced as a convertible thanks to the car's impressive power and handling capabilities-GM engineers felt that the convertible chassis wouldn't deliver the performance Pontiac fans demand. But in 1989, ASC (who built all the ragtop F-bodies for GM anyway) ran a batch of 32 GTA convertibles, just to see what would happen. The result is one of the rarest of all 3rd generation F-bodies, and also one of the most potent. The GTA was the top-of-the-line Trans Am in 1989, loaded with every single option Pontiac could throw at it. Because of the performance potential of the L89 engine, the suspension was upgraded, and visual cues were more pronounced, including monochromatic paint. GTAs used body-colored epoxy-filled emblems rather than tape stripes and decals, while a gold Firebird could be found on the rear sail panel. A gold GTA/Firebird combination crest was placed on the nose of the car between the headlights, and "GTA Trans Am" badges were located above the body break line at the back of the front fenders. GTAs did not feature the lower air extractor vents like those used on regular Trans Am models. This beautiful Flame Red Metallic GTA convertible has all the standard GTA styling features, and the same easy-to-stow folding top as the standard convertible. With just 65,721 original miles, it has been a pampered toy from new, and has never been used in winter weather or as a daily driver. Paint is factory and bodywork is super-clean, with gaps that prove that this car has never been in an accident or had any body panel replacements. The urethane ground effects and spoilers found on the GTAs are in excellent condition as well, with no signs of warping or discoloration, and even the unique rear wing remains in almost showroom fresh shape. Paint technology was improving in 1989, and the two-stage process used on this GTA gives great shine and depth, with a ton of metallic for a sophisticated and striking look in the sunlight. And with this convertible, you'll want to spend a lot of time in the sun. This GTA features code 662 Camel leather interior, which has been wonderfully preserved. Looking far more expensive than its $392 price tag would indicate, the Camel leather is the perfect compliment to the Flame Red paint and tan convertible top. The leather is in exceptional condition given that it's now 22 years old, and clearly someone took very good care of this car. There are some comfort lines in the driver's seat, but no notable damage, even on the massive side bolsters which tend to show wear first. You can see in the photos how much the owner has cherished this car and maintained the interior, with plastic floor mats protecting the originals, as well as a monogrammed steering wheel cover. The L98 V8 under the hood is no joke. Stolen from the Corvette, it makes 240 horsepower in this application and a whopping 345 pounds of torque, which was why GM chassis engineers were fearful of putting it in the convertible body (even T-tops were not available on L98 coupes). With a crisp burble from the tailpipe at idle and a full-throttle battle cry that made Mustang 5.0s run and hide, this engine is legendary in GM circles for its performance, civility, and reliability. And forget that nonsense about the convertible chassis not being up to the task-ASC, who does all the convertible work for most of the OEMs anyway-reinforced the GTA's chassis when they removed the roof for the conversion. The result is a 100% factory GTA that you'll never see anywhere else. And speaking of chassis performance, the GTAs also got the WS6 handling package that included stiffer springs and shocks, as well as those gorgeous gold lace alloy wheels wearing 245/50/16 performance radials. There are probably a few of these that are homemade concoctions that Trans Am fans built themselves. But this is a real 1989 L98 GTA convertible built by the factory. People always do a double-take when they see the GTA badges and the big engine in the convertible body, but it is fully documented should anyone ask any questions. Beautifully preserved and an absolute blast to drive, it's exactly the kind of car that we love here at Streetside Classics: unusual, rare, and with an interesting story to tell. Have some top-down fun this summer with this fast and gorgeous GTA convertible. This vehicle is located in our Atlanta showroom. For more information, please call (678) 279-1609 or toll free (877) 367-1835.

Reference Number 120025

as of 3/26/2011

Car 1989 Pontiac Firebird
VIN 1G2FW2189KL247936 
Mileage 65,721 miles 
Configuration Left Hand Drive (LHD) 
Transmission Automatic 
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