11,169 Original Miles: 1985 Pontiac Fiero

The Pontiac Fiero is part of that emerging class of collector cars that is still quite affordable to buy and somewhat rewarding to own, depending on which spec you buy. Generally speaking, the V6-powered models are the ones to own, so examples like this lightly modified example are good candidates for a hobby car that you can enjoy without spending tons on maintenance or insurance. Somewhere along the line, the Fiero was treated to aftermarket wheels, a custom paint job, and perhaps a lowered suspension, based on how it sits in these photos. It has the preferred manual transmission, too, and is available here on eBay for $17,000 or best offer.

The Fiero is said to have just 11,169 miles, and it certainly presents as a car with that low of an odometer reading. The paint is interesting – it appears to have some color-shifting abilities, given I see shades of turquoise mixed in with the black finish. The wheels resemble a set of Enkeis that was all the rage in the late ’80s and early ’90s, so this is definitely a period-correct Fiero if you’re big into the Radwood-era scene that’s been growing increasingly popular. The bodywork looks laser straight and given this is a low mileage specimen, one would assume the builder started with a rock-solid example before applying all of the custom touches seen in photos.

The interior also looks like it came from a car with just over 11,000 miles, as it, too, is in mint condition. The manual gearbox is exactly how you want to spec one of these, but it wasn’t always a given when new that the first owner would opt for the row-it-yourself option. Pairing three pedals with the larger V6 will make this Fiero a very fun driver, and I’m dying to know what it has for suspension given how low it sits to the ground. The seller doesn’t mention any modifications, so it’s likely they just don’t know the origins of the customizations. The Fiero will come with four new tires, and the seller claims there are no electrical gremlins lurking in the cockpit.

The engine bay presents well, with perfect upholstery in the small storage cubby and an intake manifold that appears to retain a near-perfect red finish. No word on any proactive maintenance that’s been performed over the years despite the low mileage; overall, the lack of any meaningful history could hold this Fiero back. Still, the low mileage, V6, and manual gearbox make this Fiero immensely appealing regardless of the gaps in its story, but I feel like the seller’s asking price is a few years ahead of where Pontiac’s mid-engine masterpiece may eventually go value-wise. What’s your flavor – a modified Fiero like this or a bone stock survivor?

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Comments

  1. FordGuy1972 FordGuy1972 Member

    Looks like a nice car but it may be a little pricey. The early models had front suspension and brakes of a rear-wheel-drive Chevette and a rear suspension derived from the strut-type front suspension of a front-wheel-drive Chevrolet Citation. 1985 got the V6 but the more desirable model is the ’88 Fiero when Pontiac bolted up a new multilink rear suspension which improved handling.

    Just as a matter of interest, a 1988 Pontiac Fiero in perfect concours condition and under 600 miles sold at auction in early November, 2020 for a staggering US$90,000, making it the most expensive Fiero ever. 1988 was the last year GM’s mid-engined sports car was produced, and it was the last one off the production line.

    Like 4
    • Chris

      I believe the one you’re referring to was the last car off the assembly line in 1988.

    • Terrry

      and in typical GM fashion, once they got it right and sorted out they discontinued it.

      Like 22
      • Dave

        The Fiero had several things working against it…first was the documented ability to change its name from Fiero to just “Fire!” Second was the insurance companies applying the “sports car” tag to it (and Buick’s Reatta too) that caused owners to pay Corvette prices on a decidedly non-Corvette car. The car also got a bad rap for quality issues as well. Still…I would love to have one except for the fact that getting in and out would require an electrically pendant operated crane.

      • CCFisher

        If that’s not upsetting enough, the stillborn 1990 Fiero in development would have had all-new body panels, the HO Quad 4 (~180 HP) and 4-wheel steering. I was an engineering student at Carnegie-Mellon in 1988 and nearly landed a summer intern position working on the 1990 Fiero’s 4-wheel steering system. Needless to say, that opportunity evaporated when the Fiero was cancelled.

        Like 3
    • kbaudoux

      agree, list it at 8K it might bid to 12-13

      Like 1
  2. Ralph

    Although it is impossible to be certain from the photos, this car looks to be of stock height and perhaps suspension. The space between the top of the tires to the fender wells appears stock, not lowered at all to me. The add on rocker panels and front and rear facias (factory), add to the impression that the car sits lower than stock. The tires look to be “taller” profile than stock ones were, that could also contribute to the illusion regarding the ride height.
    The paint could be a mix or shade of the Dupont Chromalusion, which was popular in the 1990’s. For reference Jeff Gordon had a car with this brand paint for at least one race in the 90s. My understanding was the paint could be mixed and shaded (custom) to whatever base color the customer desired.
    For a year I did quality control on the Fiero for Pontiac, 1984-85. I could be wrong on some of this but even after 36 years, the ride height appears stock, just the wheels and tires change the perception.
    It looks very clean, and nice. Someone will end up with a rare and special ride, I hope. YMMV.

    Like 7
    • Ralph

      Further inspection reveals these are General brand tires. My Toyota truck had 15 inch wheels. (1994 and 1991 models). Over the years it became almost impossible to buy 15 inch tires with everyone going to larger sized wheels from the factory.
      My last set of tires were Generals because they were about the only brand available. After they arrived they looked “funny” despite being labeled same size as the GoodYear Eagles on my trucks. So I put one of each brand side by side for comparison. The Generals were almost an inch taller than the GoodYears. BTW, they were the crappiest tires I ever owned, except for wear, 7 years and could not wear those pieces of junk out despite my best efforts. After 30+ years of GoodYear Eagles, I will buy bigger wheels before I will accept a crap tire again.
      Sorry to go on about this but if it can save someone else the pain I dealt with, it’s worth the effort…they were such crap tires I would not allow my wife to drive the truck with the Generals ever. (We had 2 Toyota trucks at the same time.) Never got more than 30K out of the Eagles, but the handling and safety far outweighed the mileage factor. Your tires are truly one of the most critical factors in how safe your vehicle truly is. Never skimp, the life you save may be your own. BTW, I drove my trucks like I stole them…..YMMV

      Like 5
      • Jay

        There are way better (and cheaper) tires out there than Goodyear fwiw

      • JoeNYWF64

        You might be surprised how many people have had problems with NAME brand tires bought this century –
        myself included, regarding size 225 55R16 firestones, goodyears, & continentals – H & V rated tires – with premature cracking & wear, tread separation, excessive noise, sidewall bulges, etc. S rated not avail in that size.

        It makes no sense today for brick & mortar tire dealers to stock 14″ & 15″ tires. But i have no problems finding
        195 75R14, 215 65R15, etc. tires on walmart, simple tire, discounttire, & even tirerack websites.
        I stick with S rated tires in those sizes to get more tire life & less annoying noise. & the higher sidewalls give a smoother ride on bad COUNTY roads near me that “they” refuse to pave – even after 50 yrs! – or others city roads not patched smoothly after being dug up by utilities soon after being paved. lol

      • Dave

        The tire problems extend into motorcycles too. A few years ago the Dunlops on my Sportster failed inspection due to dry rot and cracking after one year and less than 1000 miles. I paid for the labor, the dealer paid for two new tires.

    • Edfiero

      I disagree. Totally looks lowered. My stock Fiero has much more space between the tire and the wheel well. Plus you can see that bright red sway bar under the rear…. you know it has some stuff done to it. Maybe not a bad thing… but just saying, she aint stock.

  3. Terrry

    Other than the wheels , this is a nice looking Fiero. The price is a bit high which is too bad. Perhaps they really don’t want to sell it.

    Like 4
  4. angliagt angliagt Member

    Located in Glendale,California.

    Like 1
  5. SirRaoulDuke

    This price is incredibly out of touch with reality. The seller is asking mint, low mile 88 GT money. This year, two 88 GT’s, manuals, both with 3+k miles sold on BaT. One for $18k, one for $15k. 1988 models are the most desirable.

    You want $17k for an 85? It better have a V8 swap.

    Like 6
  6. Dave

    Anyone ever wonder why they chose a DeLorean and not a Fiero?

  7. Car Nut Tacoma

    Beautiful looking car. I remember when the Fiero was introduced. I thought it was the best car by Pontiac. It’s a damn shame that it was discontinued after only a couple of years.

    Like 1
  8. Gary

    I drove alot of them when I was at the dealership, fun cars and the V6 ran very well. I saw two at the Street Machine Nats one year, two brothers, both were red, both were 86 models with V8 conversions, one with a 6-71 blower. He said if you rolled easy from a stop and then hammered it the transaxles held up but if you jumped on it from a dead stop lots of things broke fast. I remember the blower block 80% of the rear window.

    • JoeNYWF64

      I would think the many CV joints(as opposed to just 2 universal joints on solid axle cars) on the current rwd irs pony cars don’t fare much better from a dead stop.
      Is there such a things as a heavy duty cv joint?
      I am surprised the hellcat cars don’t get a solid axle.

      • Dave

        I thought all Challengers had an old-school rear axle.

  9. ed casala

    I got this project coming up where I am going to strap a rocket engine on the back and get a lift up to 50000 feet and launch it into orbit. Then meet up at the space station and get a ride home. Step one, find a Fiero, in progress.

  10. t-bone BOB

    Located in:Glendale, California

  11. Steve S

    I would get rid of the chrome tube that the air cleaner is on for a black plastic one. The chrome attracts heat and the black plastic doesn’t and is like 5 degrees cooler than the chrome.

  12. theGasHole

    The 84-85 Fieros are not what people are looking for. Mechanical improvements were brought on in the ’86 model year, and the 88’s are the ones everyone really wants as the suspension was much better than any of the previous years, plus “final year” status. As others have said, $17k for an ’85, non-GT, and no special options (no t-tops, no lumbar seats, etc.) is a huge ask. It’s a nice car, but I can’t imagine anyone paying more than $10k for this one.

    Like 1
    • EdFiero

      This IS a GT. Check out the logo on the Sail Panel…Plus its got the fat GT Steering wheel. That said, there is no air conditioning. A deal breaker for me.

      • theGasHole

        In typical GM fashion, the ’85 “GT”s have always been a bone of contention/confusion. The ’85 “GT”s were, by 1986 SE’s. Most Fiero people consider GT’s only to be the model with the fastback roofline (i.e. ’86 GT onwards). I’ve had an ’86 SE (which would have been a GT in ’85), an ’88 GT and an ’88 Formula. Other than the “GT” decal and steering wheel, I have never been able to discern what made an ’85 GT a GT. This particular one is odd in that it doesn’t have a rear spoiler, and I’ve never seen that on a GT designated model, though it does have the ground effects. Overall a bit unique & I agree no AC is a deal breaker as these get very hot inside!

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