Rare Muscle: 1978 Pontiac Macho T/A

UPDATE – This sweet machine has now been listed here on eBay!

FROM 11/13/18 – It’s pretty easy to find a late 70’s Pontiac Trans Am, but it’s a lot harder to find one like this. That’s because it’s one of the just over 200 Macho Trans Ams sold in 1978. Found here on Craigslist in Southern California and submitted by Rocco B, this Macho T/A is sure to get a few looks.

These Macho Trans Amsย were units that were upgraded and sold by brothers Dennis and Kyle Mecham, at their father’s Pontiac dealership in Glendale, Arizona. These cars had fairly simple dealer upgrades like different jets in the carb, a set of Hooker Headers, and some suspension tweaks. These changes were enough to sell over 200 in 1978, up from only 26 in 1977. The one listed here is made even more special because it is said to be signed on the glovebox by Dennis Mecham himself.

The seller gives plenty of history on this unique car and states that the drivetrain is numbers matching. Interestingly, stock manifoldsย were put in place in the 1980’s in place of the headers that it left the dealership with. Even if some minor changes have been made, this example appears to be a genuine piece of Trans Am history. The sell of the car also includes the Macho racing jacket, which is said to be incredibly rare.

The seller states that the paint is mostly original and has mainly been preserved to keep the originality of the car. Some may not be a big fan of the red and white paint scheme, but it certainly sets this car apart from the other Trans Ams of the era. This Trans Am is definitely macho, but so is the price tag. Could this car really command $37,000?

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Comments

  1. Herbee

    I would like to drive it for a couple of weeks in all kinds of conditions but owning it I don’t think so.

    8
  2. Ike Onick

    Oh, Boy! A rare “Macho” jacket! For just $37K you can be the biggest dork in your town. Now I’m really sorry I bought the 1978 Corvette Pace car just to get the matching jackets.

    24
  3. Herbee

    Tight Fittin bootcut Levis or Wranglers along with some snakeskin cowboy boots and a T-shirt and what was that 80’s style haircut where it was cropped on the top and the sides and down to your ass in the 80s what did they call that style of haircut ,that with the included race jacket would go great.

    3
    • Ike Onick

      The hairstyle was called “The Dork With The “Macho” jacket”

      10
    • Matt P

      I believe you are referring to the Mullet. Business in the front, a party in the back!

      21
      • Herbee

        well mr. Matt P you nailed it that’s the haircut I was referring to. Thanks for posting. I

        6
      • Ike Onick

        Based on the evidence presented, I’m sticking with “The Dork With The Macho Jacket”

        3
      • Lowell Munn

        I am a retired barber, and you are right on!!!

  4. Rock On

    The ultimate car for fans of The Village People.

    12
    • Ike Onick

      The Village People thought it was too over the top for them and sold theirs to Liberace. (No jacket required)

      8
      • Herbee

        Ike onick, I believe you’re trying to say that Liberace had an extensive wardrobe, yes?

        1
    • Classic Steel

      I was thinking the same thing..macho man

      I guess for that price one
      could stay at the โ€œYMCAโ€ ๐ŸŽถ๐ŸŽถ๐ŸŽต. as I hear itโ€™s fun to save some cash ๐Ÿ’ฐ๐Ÿ˜†๐Ÿ˜œ

      8
  5. LT1 Mike

    Really clean, and I like the manual trans. I can appreciate the originality and the work put into this Trans Am so many years ago. I hope the next owner continues to enjoy and preserve this rare Pontiac.

    21
  6. Herbee

    LT1 man it just represents for me a time in the country where I hated the music of that era the clothes style the hairstyles of both men and women that car the interior of it looks like a disco Lounge man and I always felt that about those cars I know they handled and Brake extremely well for cars of that era but I could never get past that interior look man. Even when those cars were ordered in vinyl or leather whatever / both if they use I just did not ever like the looks of those Interiors.

  7. Steve A

    ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚
    $37K
    ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚
    I needed a good laugh today!
    THANKS!!!

    You’d have to pay me to be seen driving it.

    19
    • Ike Onick

      That would be one way to get the $37K back.

      3
  8. Steve R

    Itโ€™s a bit tacky and dated, but they at least injected some performance into this car unlike the 78 Pace cars and 25th anniversary Corvettes, not to mention most of the factory produced special edition Trans Ams. I donโ€™t see $37,000, but Iโ€™m not a buyer for this type of car, for those that are, it might be reasonable enough to make an offer.

    Steve R

    9
    • Frank Sumatra

      Some would say an L-82, 4-speed, FE-7 suspension equipped Pace Car would make El Macho look pretty sad.

      3
      • Dave

        El Macho?! The villain from Despicable Me 2?

  9. Blk63vette

    Hello
    I donโ€™t care what everyone thinks these cars are bad ass. The run like a bat out of hell. One of the best handling cars of the day too. Tacky? I do not mind being looked at in this car.

    Macho Macho Man

    22
    • Johnny Joseph

      I’m with you Blk63vette. A bunch of hater clowns doesn’t take away from the fact that the Macho TA’s blow the doors off of any other ’78 TA. If you want a’ 78 Pace Car, with those graphics, have at it. These TA’s are sought after, and Rich will have the last laugh. GLWTA

      3
  10. Herbee

    Yes BLK 63 Vette however you would care when it came time for you to sell the car if you bought it you would most certainly care what people thought about it. it’s not a desirable car and at with that being said if you put graphics on your car that says Macho t a and throw in a jacket that has Macho t a man you better expect to catch some Flack and have thick skin

    6
    • Blk63vette

      Herbee

      I can honestly say I never made a killing off classic cars. I buy them because of live them. My 63 Vette cost me a oat Lias of money. I am always amazed when people tell me how lucky I am to have it and I will make big $$$ when I sell it!!! ๐Ÿ˜†

      8
      • Johnny Joseph

        Well said! Agree 100%. Ya buy em cuz ya love em. Half of these clowns are probably driving Camry’s, and wishing.

        5
    • Dave

      You have to remember that cars like this, Dodge’s Warlock and Little Red Wagon trucks were reflections of the culture of the era when they were built. After the Pittsburgh Steelers won their first two Super Bowls, area Ford dealers began selling black and gold “Steeler Special” F-series pickups. They sold like crazy! Try to find one today.

      3
  11. Jack M.

    I bet that this car would be a lot of fun to drive. Too bad that I canโ€™t the song out of my head every time that I see one.
    https://youtu.be/okp_A1HqY08

    4
  12. Dean

    ยฟQuien es mas macho?

    6
    • Dave

      I remember that skit, back when SNL was young and funny.

  13. RoKo

    If it were mine (and that wouldn’t happen unless I was given the car for free), I’d at the very least remove the ‘macho’ part of the decal as that just screams over-compensation.

    7
  14. John m leyshon

    Damn nice car ! the market will probably agree with most of us readers. 37k is one hell of a reach. No one over 35 years old knows the term or concept of “macho” Just to make it simple…

    Mustang had the “Mach 1”
    Pontiac had the “Mach0”

    2
    • Herbee

      Hi John are you saying the Pontiac was a slow car? I think they have weak bottom ends.

      1
      • Ike Onick

        Most “machos” do. It’s a result of over use

        5
  15. Mark H

    About a half-dozen of these passed through Mecum in the past 2 years. Sold in the $32,000 to $35,000 range. A turbo-charged one (1 of 9) went for $57,200. A 1979 went for $46,200.

    13
    • Ike Onick

      So you are saying there are at least six Dorks doing their best to re-live a past they never had? Cool.

      3
  16. Troy s

    Would have been better off with no graphics at all , nothing. Not even the ones that came from the factory. Make the car stand out with less, use the paint, rims and big tires to let the car stand out. Maybe a bit more growl coming out of the tailpipes. I guess the dealer knew better.
    But this was the late ’70s, different times, especially for new automobiles. I give the dealer credit for trying.

    3
  17. KevinLee

    Except for the word Macho on the side, this is a good looking car. I remember seeing these as a teen and thinking it was a goofy moniker.

  18. Dave

    I love these cars but not this one! Way too over the top, my uncle has a 78 he bought new, it’s the metallic blue, can’t remember the name, anyhow he ordered without the screaming chicken on the hood, ws6 suspension, Pontiac 400, he’s added headers, cam and a tuned qjet, car runs excellent and looks subtle with the wide snowflakes and bfg ta’s. Now that one I’d love to have.

    3
  19. Farhvergnugen

    Let’s see. Go to the thrift shop to find a Members Only jacket, some Guess jeans, mix tape of disco hits, glue on a fake bushy mustache, and all I’d have to do is dye my chest hair back to the original, and then watch out world.

    NOT.

    2
    • Herbee

      Farhvergnugen if you go through with the dyeing of the chest hair don’t get caught in the rain with to many gold neck chains. First the dye runs off onto you and your clothes and then the chains get tangled up in the chest hair when you’re trying to take them off it’s really embarrassing.

      4
      • Dave

        Chest hair? I used to have chest hair until they shaved it to use the defibrillator…

        4
  20. leiniedude leiniedude Member
  21. Chris

    This is unquestionably the pinnacle of 70s tacky. Never would I expect to see these cars listed for this price. Id really be curious to see what the real number is on sale day. For near 40 grand there’s multitude of more desirable cars available. Purely my opinion of course.

    5
  22. OIL SLICK

    This one is cool but not a turbo version which would be the one I want. It would give me an excuse to grow my mullet back and cruise the drive in.

    LOVE IT!

    1
    • Herbee

      oil slick if you decide to go through with that make sure you get you some tight fit and Levi’s bootcut and the snakeskin cowboy boots it would be a must have

      1
      • OIL SLICK

        not my style

        1
      • Dave

        That stuff goes with the Urban Cowboy tribute F-150 that should be showing up on here any day now.

  23. Herbee

    Well Boy’s I’ve hurled enough insults on Macho. I’m going to go dump the summer time oil and add winter time oil. I will be spending time on my junk today.

    1
  24. Tort Member

    I really enjoy Barn Finds so I am not complaining but I think there must have been more Firebirds produced than Tri-five Chevy’s. Gotta be just me because a lot of them were sold but so gaudy an tacky with birds on the hood, wheel well flares, spoilers, etc.

    1
  25. Daved

    Strangely enough, โ€˜64 Impalas command similar prices and from the side, you canโ€™t tell if they are coming or going. Only when viewing the front end, which looks like it kissed a concrete wall- would you know.

    Iโ€™ll take this bad-ass T/A any day! And yes, Iโ€™m currently working on growing out my mullet, thank you very much!

    2
  26. v

    if the car was broke down and sold in individual pieces you would recoup $60,000.00 . sad to say isnt it. 37,000 is a give away even if they kept the coat.pontiac the next gold rush. they stopped building them. hopefully some millionaires get together and buy the brand. and then wait to see what happens to pontiacs. they should have retired chevy instead.typical gm meeting do everything for chevy corvettes and throw in some nice tires for them thar pontiacs that are faster than corvettes. the pontiac engineers new to much about power. thus the pontiac back room power deals.

    • Ike Onick

      “They” stopped making buggy whips and typewriters also. Are they valuable today? A crap GM product is a crap GM product forever. How did you figure $60,000 for the parts?

      • v

        try FIREBIRD CENTRAL & FRANKS PONTIAC PARTS see what they are charging for used firebird / trans am parts. then do the math piece by piece for a whole pristine car. comes out to 57,389.00 . the only problem with the piece x piece scenario is the waiting time to sell the parts. they would not be in buisness if they were not making the cash.

        1
      • v

        i do not want to offend you. but why do you think they steal cars.

      • Ike Onick

        Ike stands corrected. Thank you.

      • Dave

        Well…equestrian folks can get you a buggy whip, and depending on what make and model it is typewriters can go for crazy money on fleabay. My money is on tube type 23 channel CB radios. They, like cars, reflect the era in which they were made and run the gamut from the Chrome Era through the Woodgrain Era.

  27. RITON

    What are the controls on the side of the center console for?
    https://images.craigslist.org/00a0a_6tgWYK3o1LS_1200x900.jpg

    • v

      i would say its possibly an equalizer. or maybe a radar device. thats a giveaway price. a true piece of history.if i only had the cash. thats going to be worth 60,000 in another 15 years.

  28. Arthell64 Member

    I like the standard T/A much better than the Macho.

    3
  29. exartist

    Signed? There’s only one MACHO MAN I would want to sign this…

    http://media.syracuse.com/news/photo/2011/05/9615546-large.jpg

    1
    • leiniedude leiniedude Member

      Never understood the glove box signing thing?

  30. Marko

    The Macho T/A fits into the same dealer program, as the Yenko Super Chevy, or a Baldwin Motion car. Yes the somewhat “testosterone” infused name might be a bit dated, but the car had some tweaks to make it perform better than showroom models. These should continue to be collectable and increase in value over time due to their rarity.

    3
    • Johnny Joseph

      Thank you. Agreed.

      2
    • Ike Onick

      Baloney! Comparing Yenko and Motion performance cars to a GM decal project is foolish and proves you don’t know much about performance car history.

      1
      • OIL SLICK

        You are completely wrong Ike. Do some research before you post. Some of these were turbo charged.

      • Ike Onick

        Again, big deal. ANY Motion or Yenko product would be in the next county before the 98 lb weakling “Macho” and its macho turbo knew what hit it.

  31. misterlou

    …and with the Difficult Hood option.

  32. UK Paul ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง

    Itโ€™s a lovely thing.

    1
  33. OhU8one2

    Better buy one now before they hit the big money! I grew up in Phoenix when these were new. Got to drive and ride in quite a few. If you have never been in one, then I wouldn’t be bad mouthing them. The Mecham brothers were using the Macho name as a reference to the times, almost like a joke. I would give anything for one of these. Especially “Bruiser”. For those with NO clue, they built 1 black with blue graphics and that car is bad ass.

    2
    • Ike Onick

      Pipe dream. New in 1978. When do you think the values might start climbing: 2078?

      • UK Paul

        They already have?

        1
    • Survivor69 Member

      Just posted a link to Bruise!

      1
  34. Kevin Frame

    They are all just jealous of this TA

    3
  35. Robert Sabatini

    Car & Driver did a test between the ’78 Z28, ’78 Trans Am and ’78 L82-equipped Corvette and stated at the end of the road comparison…that the Trans Am would run them all into the ground.

    • Ike Onick

      Big deal. Pretty low bar to get over.

      1
    • Survivor69 Member

      However the Macho TA with the 400 and the Macho Z28 would outrun and outhandle any stock 78 TA.

  36. Joe Mac

    The paint / decal scheme on the Macho’s is just horrible. It’s a shame that if you buy one and do anything to the decals, you’d probably lose some value. I have a ’78 W72 TA in Mayan Red and in my biased opinion, it looks so much better than this.

  37. Michael Ridley

    I like the paint scheme. I have done several that way. You can fix all the rust around the glass and rockers and paint it a different color so you dont have to get into the original color. Works for me.

  38. Survivor69 Member

    So I am more of a corvette guy, but I have to tell you from experience the DKM cars are pretty cool. At first I thought they just had goofy graphics, but the more I learned about the history of the cars, the more I liked them. I was lucky to own two DKM cars.

    I owned “Bruise” the only black/blue car built and it was shipped to California. In California you could only get the 403 motor but through DKM you could order a new trans am with the Pontiac 400 and the DKM package. It has a super cool history and was even owned by Flowmaster for a period of time.

    The other DKM car was the 1978 Macho Z prototye car they built 1. It was all original and un-restored. It was featured in Hot Rod magazine in 1978 and reissued a few years ago. Best of lust to the seller I hope the car finds a good home!

    Here is a link to both cars:

    http://machoz28prototype.wixsite.com/dkm-cars

    I wish I hadn’t of sold them but they went to a collector that is now collecting these cars. They were a blast to drive and the 70’s version of dealer modified muscle cars.

    5
    • OhU8one2

      Cruising Central Ave on a warm Saturday night with loads people. Good times.

      1

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