1 of 100: 1987 Pontiac Firebird Pro AM

We’ve all heard of the Pontiac Trans AM, but how about a Pro AM? If not, don’t feel bad, there were only 100 of these custom Firebirds built. Choo Choo Customs out of Chattanooga, Tennessee ordered 100 Firebirds which they converted into what they called the Pro AM. With a name like this, you would think these cars were all out performance machines, but the conversion was mostly cosmetic. It’s still an interesting find that could be fun to have! You can find this Pro AM here on craigslist in Leesburg, Florida with an asking price of $7,000. Special thanks to Rocco B for this tip!

The asking might seem a bit high considering this is just a regular Firebird with a new hood, some ground effects and a spoiler, but it actually isn’t bad considering it’s a 78k mile survivor that is in nice shape and currently drives. You would spend nearly as much for a regular V8 Firebird and wouldn’t have the special Pro AM parts.

There really isn’t a lot of information out there about these cars, those that do know about them only seem to know that it was mostly visual upgrades and that they are rare. I don’t see any performance parts under the hood to suggest any kind of performance upgrades, which is actually a bummer. These third generation Firebirds have the potential to be fast cars and can even be made to handle well. The seller doesn’t state which engine this one has, other than that it’s a V8, or what options it had from the factory. Hopefully it’s a 350 TPI equipped car, but the 305 isn’t terrible.

We’ve seen demand for F-Body cars go up quite drastically in the past few years, so something as interesting and unique as this could be worth picking up. I would be tempted to add a few bolt on go fast bits, but other than that, I would leave this one alone. And while the Pro AM conversion might not increase performance, it certainly makes it eye catching and would start up lots of conversations! So will you be hitting the road in this Choo Choo Bird?

Fast Finds

Comments

  1. Gene

    l03 305 TBI

    • Tony S

      Grind that lump out of the intake bowl and slide in a better camshaft and these aren’t bad engines. Had a couple, L03 and L05s in B-cars.

      Like 1
  2. Steve R

    They weren’t kidding about “garage kept”, the didn’t even back it out of the open garage door to take better pictures.

    Steve R

    Like 1
    • Melanie cook

      I have a red one. It also hasn’t been out of the garage in 25 years. I can not bring myself to sell it. I have been in love with it since the moment I laid eyes on it… and I have a Shelby black mustang. Also this pro am isn’t the top of the line… hence could be reason for price. I know this because of the wheels. Like I said I’m in love with her so what else would u like to know about her?

  3. King Al

    Never heard of these before, but it did bring to mind the “Macho T/A” of the gen 2 T/As. Wonder why DKM didnt do a repeat on gen 3. Maybe had trouble unloading the originals in late 70s. Modifying the appearance of any vehicle is risky. You can always find a couple folks that will pop for something “different”. But after a few are built, everybody who wants one, has one. The rest get marked down. And, at trade-in time, the big hit happens.

    • al8apex

      DKM did make 3rd gens, they were called Talons

      Not “Macho” anymore, had the same type of mods the 2rd gens had

  4. DrinkinGasoline

    Pass…

  5. Pa Tina

    So you’re saying if I paint 100 really bad Paint-By-Number Clowns, one of them will be a collector’s item in thirty years?

  6. Miguel

    Could you assume the rear has been hit since it is sporting ’82 – ’84 base tail lights?

    The 1987 model had a separate amber turn signal.

    Why would somebody put older tail lights on a car that was supposed to be a better looking package than the older cars?

    • King Al

      Unless you have uncovered some sort of damage repair here, maybe somebody like the older tailights. I prefer the older (current gen) Challenger tailight panel to the newer models.

      • JDJonesDR

        The amber lights are coyote ugly to me. Maybe it was a change to older because they look better.

    • Mark

      Changing the taillight lenses could’ve also been part of the upgrade package. Or as King said, they could have been changed because the owner like the looks of them better. I agree I definitely prefer the ones that are just red versus the ones that are red and amber.

      • Miguel

        It seems odd that they would want the car to look older than it was and also rewire it to use the older tail lights.

        I wonder if all 100 cars had the older tail lights.

      • King Al

        Another thought: maybe they added the amber lenses to impart a “European” look. That was a popular go-to styling trick automakers used often in the 80s. Remember the Pontiac 6000 with the STE package that added Euro style taillights amongst other visual mods

  7. Mark

    It’s a 305. If you blow up the photo of the hood, you can see it says 5.0 Litre. Obviously it would say 5.7 if it were a 350

  8. CJ

    Nice ride! But p, wow! Looks like a bunch of snakes under the hood!

  9. z28th1s

    There was a red Pro Am in my hometown back in the day. It had the 305 and auto trans.

  10. RS

    :What a nightmare to work under the hood of a car like that. Just a tangle of hoses and brackets from all that emissions garbage.

  11. Rustytech Member

    It’s hard to find any Firebird or Camaro of this vintage that hasn’t been beat to death. This is a good looking car, and with a few go fast mods it could be a unique and fun ride. I think this price is more than fair. Wish I was in the market.

  12. Zipy

    Wow not a TPI Motor. Has to be 305. Not even a Trans Am. This is a regular firebird. Trans am did not have the black wrap around bumper guards. The tail lights are correct. Trans am were different. The word firebird is on the front fenders near the door. Here’s a picture of my 85. Barely see the taillights

    • Miguel

      Did you mean the tail lights on the picture you posted are correct? The lights on the car for sale are definetely not correct for the 1987 year.

      • Dave

        You are correct Miguel. The spoiler is incorrect also. 85 was the last year for that style.

      • Zipy

        Miguel I’m saying trans am tail lights are different then a regular firebird and the one for sale might be correct, but the look 82-84.

      • Zipy

        Dave the spoiler is correct with the 3d brake light. 1985 had no 3d brake light then in 1986 it was at the top of the rear window and in 1987 was under the spoiler

  13. Don H

    That 305 looks like a carb engine it does not look like a fuel ejections engine ,the last real Trans Am was 1981 ,after that they are all chevy 305 our 350 ,my big fat fingers do not work to good on cell phones ,so if my typing is bad big deal ,have a great 4th my friends

  14. Conrad Testamark

    For 7,000 that stile of a deal! If I had the money to buy this car, and modified it with a 5.7L stock V8 engine 6-7 speed automatic transmission or an 8 speed automatic transmission, a pro am ever hard about this one before, that sounds like a race car for a race series! I like the look of it.buy another one modified it and use it for racing.

  15. Vince L

    I have had my 1989 Firebird Pro-AMII for over 25 years now. This is a true Pro-AMII. I purchased it from my brother-in-law who lived in Louisville KY at the time. This picture was taken on 5/28/2018.

    Like 1
  16. Faulk

    I had a 1989 pro am and this is the correct wing.

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