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Rare 1-Of-20 Y84 SE: 1978 Pontiac Trans Am

Is 1 of 20 unique enough to be considered rare? This is a 1978 Pontiac Trans Am optioned with the Y84 Special Edition package and 4-speed transmission. In 1978, there were only 20 of these cars built. Total Special Edition production was 12,319 cars but that included Y82 and Y84 production. The Y82 was the early designation for the Special Edition package and came with Hurst T-Tops or no T-Tops. The Y84 option was produced late in the production year and came only with the the larger Fisher T-Tops. There were 20 4 speed cars built and 68 automatics with the 400 cubic inch V8 engine. another 210 Y84 cars were built with the 403 cubic inch V8 engine. This car is a nonrunning project and is located in Denver Colorado. The car is rough on the edges and can be seen here on eBay. Bids are rising and the car is currently bid to $27,100 but the reserve is not met. There are still four days remaining in the auction so there is plenty of time for a new owner to win this auction.

The build sheet from Pontiac Historical Services confirms this is a true Y84 car. The Special Edition package with T-Tops added a whopping $1,259 to the MSRP of this vehicle. The car was delivered to Colvin Pontiac-GMC in Denver, Colorado in January 1978. The car was also equipped with air conditioning, remote trunk release, power windows, AM/FM 8 Track player, tilt steering and the fabulous WS6 handling package.

There were multiple engine options for the 1978 Trans Am. The build sheet indicates that this car was produced with the base engine which was the L78 400 cubic inch V8 motor that generated 180 horsepower. The California Only L80 Oldsmobile 403 cubic inch V8 engine was also available with automatic transmission and produced 185 horsepower. Cars equipped with this engine had a K in VIN code. The top engine option was the W72 400 cubic inch V8 motor that produced 220 horsepower and only cost an extra $75. This engine was available with an automatic and 4 speed transmission early in the year and all late production Trans Ams were required to be 4 speed cars as the engine supply dwindled. About 8,000 of these W72 engines were stockpiled and used in 1979 Trans Ams and Formulas.

The overall condition of the car is solid but will need to be restored. There are several parts of the interior that can be saved or redyed. The engine will need to be rebuilt but is numbers matching. There is rust in the quarter panels and in the front fenders but the frame and floorboards are said to be solid. Most people looking at this car know of its rarity but the seller educates the rest of us by spending about half of the write up talking about the value of the car. I don’t know what the reserve is on this car but I imagine it will sell close to $35,000. That is a pretty penny for a project but someday this car will be back on the road and putting a smile on the owner’s face.


  1. Avatar photo Big_Fun Member

    I remember reading a comment on here about the SE T/A having a steering column that matches the interior color, and with a gold turned dash and steering wheel.
    Is this rare ’78 Y84 with the Y90 interior suppose to have that, also?
    Neat car, regardless.

    Like 3
    • Avatar photo PatM Member

      You are correct and also the headlight inserts should be gold on a SE.

      Like 2
  2. Avatar photo richdamm

    It’s at $28,100 and the reserve had not been met. I would not have touched this car for anything over $15K. It is indeed a project car but the asking price right now is over the top. I had a 1977 TransAm Auto with the T/A 6.6 and the 1981 Daytona Pace Car with the Red/Black Recaro Buckets and the automatic with the 301 Turbo. I think my 1981 was my favorite for its handling capabilities. It was tight handling and clung to the winding roads of rural Connecticut where I used to live. By the late 1970s, the horsepower in the TransAms was lacking, and although I love the 4-speed option on this 1978 I think the handling issue would be the more important aspect of buying one of these cars. BTW the T Tops probably leak. They are notorious for leaking.

    Like 2
  3. Avatar photo Mark

    $27k? I’m in the wrong line of work….

    Like 11
  4. Avatar photo CCFisher

    This nonsense about 1-of-whatever gets very tiring. Does having one type of t-tops over another really add any value, particularly since this has the base L78 400 instead of the W72?

    How long until we see, “This is the only 1973 Maverick coupe with the 200-cid 6, 3-on-the-tree, avocado green paint, and red plaid interior.” My response would be, “Great! Then we only have one car to get rid of.”

    Like 35
    • Avatar photo Carl

      Someone somewhere will spend a little extra for that. Not me but theres always that someone

      Like 2
    • Avatar photo RedHawk

      It is a W72. You can tell by the chrome valve covers.

      Like 0
      • Avatar photo md

        All pontiac 400’s were W72’s in 1979

        Like 1
  5. Avatar photo Turbo


    Like 0
  6. Avatar photo Mikekinports

    I have a 77 Hurst y82 ta black on black car has 400 super t10 possi n t tops how rare is this one⁹

    Like 0
  7. Avatar photo Chillywind

    Go home today and tell your Girlfriend she one of twenty and see where that crap will get ya for the weekend.

    Like 16
    • Avatar photo JoeBob396

      Probably better to tell her that she ‘is one of one and only’.

      Like 2
  8. Avatar photo mainlymuscle

    Leave the ” one of ” nonsense for Kevin Marti and the Ford (and Mopar ) guys.But Bandit T/A’s are just beginning their “second wave”.Burt’s ailing health ,and some high profile ,high price, sales was the apex of the first wave,in 2016/17.After dropping for a while,prices have been on a steady increase this year.The attention that mine gets is exponentially greater than my other cars worth 4 to 6 times more,despite underwhelming performance.
    The world loves Bandit cars !

    Like 6
    • Avatar photo Little_Cars

      RIP Burt Reynolds. True badass.

      Like 4
  9. Avatar photo S

    OK, I know this is a Trans Am, but 1978 did not have engines that were very powerful. 180 hp. 1978 was one of the best selling years (pretty sure 1979 was the high water mark), so it’s not like they’re rare or anything. A 4 speed is cool, and the S/E package is cool – but it’s not running, and someone has to spend thousands to get it fully restored and get the engine rebuilt. But someone wants over $30,000 for a NON-RUNNING car?? (bidding currently at $29,600 and reserve not met.) Maybe if it was already completely restored, or if it was a 1972 model (low production year) with a 455 and a 4 speed. I have a 78 Trans Am. It’s in about this condition appearance wise, and it runs and drives. I’ve taken it on a 500+ mile road trip in the last year. So its an automatic and isn’t an S/E, so it’s worth less. I had it appraised last year because I was curious, and they gave me an estimate of $4000. So how is this worth more than 7 times that?? These people are on drugs or something.

    Like 15
    • Avatar photo JoeNYWF64

      On your trip did you see any hitchhikers(maybe in a wedding dress)? lol Since Mr. Job’s invention, i have seen no hitchhikers, let alone younger people hanging out on main strips at night, like they used to especially in the ’80s & earlier.

      Like 2
      • Avatar photo S

        No! Ha ha!

        Like 0
  10. Avatar photo Roland Schoenke

    I think restoring old cars has become a rich man’s hobby, I remember when a few dollars and a lot of time spent were the requirements to restore a car. I restored a c3 corvette, sold it 7 years later because I had three kids growing up. Now I cant afford to buy another one.

    Like 4
  11. Avatar photo S

    He says the only thing missing is the shaker air cleaner base. As other people pointed out, what about the gold headlight bezels? What about the gold engine turned dash? Steering column doesn’t match the interior. The steering wheel is gold on the spokes and is there. Why are these other things missing, and if they’re missing, how is this worth so much?? If you read his ad, he sounds like a flipper anyway who didn’t want to get involved with the restoration. Bought it from the owner who had it since 1980, says if you restore it, it’s going to be worth 6 figures (??)

    Like 4
  12. Avatar photo John

    Big woof. T-tops! Hahaha.

    Like 4
  13. Avatar photo Electrichead

    Waste of money. Who cares about original at this point since original sucks anyway. 1/2 HP per CI? Laughable.

    Like 2
  14. Avatar photo JoeNYWF64

    The factories painting over chrome trim with flat black paint in the later 70’s & later was a dumb idea, as shown, for ex., on this car.
    30 plus grand with passenger rear quarter paint like that? Are the bidders on something?

    Like 1
  15. Avatar photo S

    OK – I had to see where the bidding ultimately went on this. Sunday evening 10/25… it went to $49,999 and reserve not met?! So what did he do, did he have his friends bid it up to $49,999 hoping someone would give him the $50,000 he wants for this non running car that needs a complete restoration?? Good God! He’s nuts!

    Like 2
  16. Avatar photo MoPar Mike

    Ended at $49,999 reserve not met. I suspect shill bidding with a reserve of $50,000. They should’ve kept the reserve realistic.

    Like 2
  17. Avatar photo JoeNYWF64

    Didn’t the t/a’s in 1977’s Bandit movie have Hurst hatches? I believe they were all ’76’s converted to ’77s with the different ’77 hood & front end since the ’77’s did not come out yet!
    So why is this car that’s in poor shape yet so much more money if it does not even have the Bandit movie hatches? Sure it’s rare, but so is the ultra rare ’73 only t/a with whitewall tires! & even rarer, the ’77-78 SE t/a with gold rally 2’s! Rare does not necessarily mean more valuable – or even AS valuable.

    Like 2

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