1977 Firebird Interesting Facts
The Second Major Styling of the Second Generation
For 1977 the Firebirds were again restyled with a dramatic new
front end with quad headlights set into a new grille design. The
'77 to '78 is often referred to as the "Batmobile" style, referring the
aggressive front end. The hood was updated with new sheet metal making it more flat
(better for bird decals).
The Trans Am Special Edition
The Black and Gold Limited Edition of 1976 returned for 1977 as
the Special Edition. This is the car made famous as the Bandit from the
1977 movie Smokey and the Bandit. Again the car was painted
all black with a gold matte hood bird and special German style lettering
on the decals, and gold striping around every feature. The Special
Edition was available with or without the Hurst hatch roof (T-Tops) and
was very popular now that most of the leakage problems were fixed.
Skybird, Esprit Special Edition Debuts
A new Esprit, the Skybird, debuted for 1977 featuring light
blue upper and dark blue lower with special sail panel and spoiler
decals (if equipped with spoiler). The snowflake wheels were also
painted blue. The interior featured and all blue custom interior
with a gold engine turned dash insert similar to that in the Trans
Am Special edition. The Formula Steering Wheel was also included
and for the first time came in a color other than black, in this case
T-Tops Take Off (Hurst Hatches)
The Hurst Hatch Roof option introduced on the 1976 Black and Gold
Limited Edition became a standard option in 1977 for all models.
Although the Black and Gold Special Edition received always received
black trim on the hatch roof other models received either black trim or
bright chrome trim. Why these two trim levels were installed on
1977 Firebirds and which cars received which type is unknown.
Trans Am Hood Scoop
A new, more angular hood scoop was developed for the newly restyled Trans Am.
Interestingly the first Trans Ams came with a lower hood scoop at first
and was enlarged at some time after the models introduction. The
early hood scoops sat much lower and it was more difficult to read the
engine call outs.
Formula Hood Scoops
The Formula received a new steel hood as well with the newer,
flatter hood design with new hood scoops. These scoops mimicked
the 1976 Formula scoops but were set slightly lower and had a more
angular design. The scoops were non-functional.
>The W72 400 Debuts
The now legendary W72 400 debuted in 1977. This engine
maintained the same 200hp as the prior 455 with 55 less cubic inches.
The W72 was a true performance engine and highly desirable today in the
'77, '78, and '79 models. The W72 400 was the only engine available with
a 4 speed in a Trans Am for 1977. All other 400 options were
available only with the automatic transmission.
The now famous snowflake wheel debuted in 1977. Made of aluminum
the snowflake was available in Gray or Gold the snowflake was standard
on the Trans Am Special Edition and the Skybird. This was arguably
one of the nicest wheels ever to come from a car manufacturer. The
Snowflake replaced the polycast Honeycomb wheel of 1971 to 1976.
New V-6 Replaces The Chevy Inline 6
A new Buick-built V-6 replaced the previous inline 6 made by Chevrolet
as the standard engine in the Base Firebird and Esprit.
The Pontiac 301 V-8
For the first time the Pontiac 301 V-8 was available in Firebird and
demand for the engine was so high that eventually the engine became
scarce. Although much maligned as a performance engine the 301 was
a very economical engine and buyers were lining up to get it. The
301 weighed 119lbs less than the 350. The 301 was optional on the
Firebird and Esprit and standard on Formula. A Pontiac Product
Manual Update dated June 2, 1977 announced that the 301 had been
replaced with a Chevrolet built 305 for all Firebird applications.
The Chevrolet 305 V-8
On June 2, 1977 a Pontiac Order Guide update listed that the Pontiac 301
had been replaced with the Chevy 305cid V-8 in all Firebird
applications. A 1977 Firebird product strategy lists the 305cid
engine as being standard in the Formula. In the Tran-Zam Options
page you will see both the 301 and 305 listed as standard in the
The Oldsmobile 403
The Oldsmobile-built 403 became the standard Trans Am engine for
California and high altitude bound cars and could only be had with the
Turbo 350 Automatic transmission.
Metric Engine Callouts on the TA Hood Scoop
The lower end 400 and the Oldsmobile 403 when installed in the Trans Am
added decals to the shaker hood scoop reading 6.6 liter, using
the European spelling. Designers felt this gave the car a more
European flair versus the previous 400 decals that were installed in
previous years.. The W72 400 rated at 200hp received callouts that
Trans Am Console
The front console was now standard on Trans Am.
The Citizen's Band Radio (CB) was now available as option #UN8 on all
Cruise Control (K30) was now available for the first time.
Electric Trunk Opener
The Remote Decklid Release (A90) was a new option for 1977. The
rear trunk could be opened with a switch inside the glove compartment.