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2 for 1: 1979 10th Anniversary Pontiac Trans Ams

Only 1,817 10th Anniversary Pontiac Trans Ams were built with the famous W72 400 cubic inch engine in 1979. Rocco B found these two examples for sale in Dallas, Texas.  Yes, that’s right, two 10th Anniversary Pontiac Trans Ams, both equipped with W72 400 cubic inch V8 engines and 4 speed transmissions for $17,900. The cars are advertised as a pair here on Craigslist. I was just at Mecum Classic Car Auctions in Houston this weekend and saw a 40k mile example sell for $30,000. The first car, above, is in the best condition and has sat since 1998 in a garage in Dallas.

As mentioned, both cars are equipped with Pontiac’s last performance engine, the W72 400 cubic inch motor. Rated at 220 horsepower and 320 lb ft of torque from the factory, the car was the fastest American car produced in 1979 and only came equipped with a Borg Warner T10 transmission. Pontiac designed the W72 with a special camshaft, an 800-cfm Rochester four-barrel carburetor, a high-capacity 60-psi oil pump, special piston rings, and 93.78cc 6X-4 heads, which raised the compression ratio from 7.6 to 8.1. All W72 engines in 1979 also came with larger air cleaner duct adapters, baffled oil pans, and dual turbo mufflers.

You can see the interior of car number one above. It had a special silver leather interior that is very expensive to replace. All W72 cars in 1979 came with the famous WS6 performance handling package with included 4 wheel disc brakes. The 10th Anniversary cars were fully loaded with air conditioning, tilt steering, power locks, power windows and T-tops.

Here is car number two. It was wrecked with only 5,414 miles and has been stored outside. It is in really rough shape and may only be good as a parts car at this point. What a shame. The best quarter-mile e.t. based on published magazine articles for the W72 equipped Trans Am was 14.6 seconds. A total of 8,326 W72 equipped Trans Ams built in 1979. The engines were assembled in 1977 and stored for use in 1978 and 1979.

Compared today’s horsepower ratings, 220 hp doesn’t sound like much, but many think that Pontiac intentionally underrated the W72 horsepower figures. The NHRA dyno’d a W72 engine at 260 to 280 net hp in 1979. Both these cars were once amazing examples of special limited edition Trans Ams. I hope one, if not two of them, are restored to their former glory.


  1. Arthell64 Member

    It’s hard to believe someone put a 10th Anniversary w72 out in the woods with such low miles. These cars have always been highly sought after. Neat car but not cheap to repaint and buy all the interior pieces but I do like them.

    Like 9
  2. Turbo

    wasnt the 57 just on here? I only remember because all of the haters had to hate on it.

    Like 7
  3. md

    I suspect a new owner might swap the 4 spds and vin tags into nice auto cars and part these out. Not ethical, but possibly profitable.

    Like 1
  4. Douglas Threlfall Member

    Too far gone, parts cars now

  5. Jim Henderson

    I was the original owner of a 1979 Spe dial Edition Pontiac 10th Anniversary Trans Am with the 400 CID 4 Speed bought at Straub Pontiac in Wheeling, W.Va. Disappeared from parking lot at Red Roof Inn in North Canton, Ohio.
    Hope somebody Enjoyed it !!!

    Like 2
  6. Andy

    Not worth the money or the expense to restore it.

  7. Marshall King

    Always loved these T/A’s, but could not afford one when new. Hate to see them in this condition, it is too bad the low mileage one was left outside for so long! What a waste of a fantastic car. Hopefully someone will take these and restore at least one of them.

    Like 1
  8. Bobby

    I owned a one my Senior year in high school in 1986. 400 with the 4speed. If I remember correctly they only made 1,817 with the 4 speed. Most came with the Olds 403 and automatic. Junior year in high school I had a 76 TA with the 455 four speed, and a 66 GTO with a 70 Ram Air 400 4 speed. I miss my youth and Pontiacs most of all my 67 GTO convert 400 4 speed when I was 14 and sold at 15 for $1200.00 in 1983 to buy a 67 hardtop that sold before I had a chance to buy it.

    Like 1
  9. George Mattar

    Incredible that someone probably with no brain cells left that car outside. Now he wants to profit. Take the $17,000 and buy a low mileage one. There are many out there if you look. I wanted a new 79 4 speed W72, but was a starving college student in 79. By 1986, I was working and got a rust free California built and raised 1970 GTO for $5,500.

    Like 1
  10. Kenn

    Probably a loved one died in the wreck, which is why it was parked and left to rot outside.

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