Limited Production: 1995 Pontiac Firehawk

The Pontiac Firehawk had enjoyed unprecedented success upon its introduction in 1993, and the original production run of 201 cars sold out very quickly. These numbers increased in 1994, and in 1995 the plan had been to produce 1,000 cars, but the total fell short by more than 250 cars. This didn’t end the story of the Firehawk, as it remained in production until 1997, and then production resumed from 1999 through until 2002. This 1995 model looks to be nicely preserved, and I have to thank Barn Finder Roger for referring it through to us. The Firehawk is located in Bella Vista, Arkansas, and is listed for sale here on Craigslist. The owner is asking $11,500 for the Pontiac, although he may be willing to listen to offers.

The Firehawk looks to be in impressive condition, with no really obvious problems to report. When it comes to rarity, it does score well in a couple of areas. Of the 743 cars built, only 393 featured a T-Top like this car. The Firehawk was available in 10 different colors, and while Bright Red was the 2nd most popular color, it still only accounted for a total of 170 cars. There’s no doubt that you can make numbers work in your favor when selling a car if you really set your mind to it. I don’t think that in the case of the Firehawk, that they really make an enormous amount of difference. They are just interesting. One feature that I do like is those alloy wheels, which were specifically for the Firehawk. They have a muscular but subtle look, and at 17″ x 9″, they suit the car nicely. These ones look to be as well preserved as the rest of the car.

The interior photos are really lacking for this car, and while we see some bits and pieces of the interior, we don’t get a full picture. What we see of the interior looks promising, and the Graphite Leather seats also look quite good. It’s interesting to note that the original owner chose to include the optional factory CD player in place of the standard cassette player, which has turned out to be a pretty savvy move. Try buying a cassette tape today, and you’ll know what I mean.

Most of what made the Firehawk special was hidden under the skin. Based on the Formula trim and mechanical package, a company called SLP Engineering waved their magic wand over the car. With some upgrades to the induction system and a larger exhaust system, power output for the 350ci LT1 engine was boosted from 275hp up to 315. This power is then sent to the rear wheels via a 6-speed manual transmission. These upgrades certainly led to an improvement in performance, with a Firehawk capable of accelerating from 0-60mph in 4.9 seconds and tearing through the ¼ mile in 13.5 seconds. The owner says that the Firehawk runs and drives really well and that he has just fitted a new set of 275/40R/17 tires to the car.

After the misery that was inflicted upon performance car enthusiasts through the second half of the 1970s, and the 1980s, cars like the Firehawk were a revelation. With this in mind, they also weren’t a cheap revelation. The owner quotes a price of $6,995 for the Firehawk package and a further $900 for the larger exhaust. My research suggests that these numbers may actually be slightly conservative. However, when you factor these figures to be in addition to the price of a Formula ($19,242), that really does become an expensive car, and that also put it beyond the reach of many enthusiasts. With examples like this one now available, suddenly a car that was previously unattainable has become far more affordable.

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Comments

  1. irocrobb

    I owned for a summer a 1995 Trans am back in 2000. It was 275 hp and had the 6 speed manual. Interesting,top speed was attained in gear five ,not six as there was never enough road.I could cruise in 6th gear at 60 mph at like 1100 rpm if my memory serves me. It was a very quick, fun car and decent on fuel if driven properly.
    I always loved the firehawk model and looks great without the cladding on the bottom. Looks like a nice example

    Like 5
  2. Graham Lloyd

    I don’t know about the US, but here in Canada, the biggest detriment to sales of Firebirds of any kind was the dealer network. Finding a car on a dealer lot was near impossible. Usually only a Trans Am ragtop that the dealers family would have driven. Wanting full pop or a premium for essentially a used car.

    Firehawks and Anniversary Trans Ams sat on dealer lots forever here. Again, the premium nonsense. Plus the extra cost for not much performance gain wasn’t worth it.

    You’re right about the production figures being more of a curiosity than a dollar value. My 96 Formula is one of less than 50 produced in 3 or 4 combinations. Might even be close to 1 of 1 if I played with the numbers. It’s not the only one out there like that. But it is interesting.

    Values are climbing on these cars. I have been surprised at the offers I have had. But for now, I’m going to drive it. Whomever gets this car is going to have fun. Guaranteed.

    Like 4
  3. James

    I’ll never understand why they stopped building Pontiacs…

    Like 4
  4. plwindish

    I always liked this body style, but I like the job Avanti Motors did in creating the ’02-’04 Avanti from this body style. The cabin is a bit cramped for long distance traveling though as I found out in 2015, driving a friend’s ’02 Avanti back from Santa Monica to Chicago.

  5. Don Irwin

    I own a 1994 firehawk Canadian pilot car #004, red, hard top and I love to get behind the wheel, drive it a couple times a year, stage 4 clutch, goes like hell. Wax and clean her all the time, looks great. Had a porch chase me down to get a look a her and off we went, Had to down shift into 3rd to get up to him and blew by him in a corner and had to shut it down, got up there to fast, safty first, but it was a blast. Love that Firehawk! Not everybody likes them and I can’t understand, a very under rated car. Give me a chance and I will blow you away on the road, who ever. Don’t care about a price it’s mine to keep. Very solid, tight, fast, handles the corners great, and gets alot of looks, who has one? Why the envy?

    Like 1

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