The 1987 Pontiac Firebird, Formula, Trans Am & GTA


Blue Formula A blue Formula showing us exactly how to take care of business. Different from previous years only two models of Firebirds were available, the base and the Trans Am. The formula was an option package on the base car. This option gave the base car all the performance options of a Trans Am without all the body an styling cues. A 5.0L 155hp V-8 and 5 speed manual tranny were standard on the Formula package. The WS6 suspension package was also standard on Formula, which featured four wheel disc brakes, gas charged shocks, 36mm front and 24mm rear sway bars, a 12.7:1 steering ratio and 16"x8" aluminum rims.



Custom '87 GTA (91134 bytes)

Custom '87 GTA (74860 bytes)

Custom '87 GTA (74974 bytes)

Custom '87 GTA (84235 bytes)
Yancy Martinez is the owner/builder of this radically customized Firebird. Yancy writes:

     "My name is Yancy Martinez and I live in Palm City Florida. I have been working on my '87 T/A for little over a year now. Below is a list of the customizations that I have done to it so far. All work to the car I have done myself from all rust repair to paint and custom stereo installation."

1987 Trans Am GTA
Owner/builder/painter: Yancy Martinez
Time to build: 16 months (so far)
Location: Palm City, Florida

Paint and Body:
  • Shaved door handles/remote entry through alarm system
  • Converted the t/tops to a targa top
  • Molded all the body panels (bumpers, fenders) together
  • molded in a pro-stock hood scoop
  • custom paint which I used these Dupont paint colors, Viper Black, Fire Red, Dandelion Yellow, Seafoam Green, Lt and Dark Blue. Clear coat with pink pearl mixed in.
  • Painted steering wheel and dash bevels yellow


  • New carpet
  • JVC El Kameleon CD player
  • 2 - 15" 700 watt Reactor subs w/custom built box to house subs and amps
  • 1 - 1200 watt Boss Rage amp
  • 1 - 800 watt Boss Rage amp
  • 4 - American Pro 200 watt 4-way 6"x9"'s (two in lower kick panel, two in stock location)
  • 4 - American Pro 1" tweeters (mounted in dash and doors)
  • 2 - 4" Boston Accoustics 2-way speaker (mounted in dash)
  • Grant steering wheel
  • Bel radar detector
  • 5 panel Wink rear view mirror
  • Tinted windows
  • Clifford car alarm

Wheels, Engine, Drivetrain:

  • 16" x 8" Centerline Outlaw rims
  • 235x60 R 16 Michelins
  • Stock 350 T.P.I. (for now, building a 383 stroker w/tunnel ram and two 600 Holleys, full roller setup)
  • Posi rear end out of a 92 Camaro 3.23 gears
  • Beefed up 7004R tranny

That's pretty much it for now.  I will send more when more is done!



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Black Formula (53626 bytes)

Black Formula (56910 bytes)

Interior (51735 bytes)

Engine (55772 bytes)
John Davis owns this unusual Formula. What's so unusual about it you say? Read on:

     "I bought the car in July of 1999. I was on my way to pick up a Corvette that I had a deposit on - saw the 'Bird on a used car lot - drove it once - that was that. The car is faster than anything I have ever driven. There are probably a lot of cars (including many other Firebirds) that are faster - but, for me - this one is pretty quick. I did a title search several weeks "after" I bought the car and found out that in 1997 it was in Michigan under a SALVAGE TITLE (scrap title - probably ready for the crusher). Between 1997 and now - somebody did a lot of work on the car - and it shows. I took it to Midas muffler several months after I bought it to find out if I needed a new muffler system - (it's very very loud). The mechanic told me that the system was probably less than 6 months old - and stainless steel -- and there was nothing wrong with it, it was a custom low restriction system. I've won several trophies at car shows since I bought the car - and it was featured in the National Firebird & Trans Am Club Fall 2000 magazine "EAGLE" (page 24 and page 25). Anyhow- thanks for publishing the pictures and the information. By the way, it's a great website. I'm also the founder of the Middle Tennessee Firebird and Trans Am Club (summer of 2000) and I send each new member MTFTAC business cards with a picture of their Firebird on the card. I use your website for most of the pictures. Thanks a million for being there for me and all the other Firebird fanatics."

Have a great day!
John Davis
Middle Tennessee Firebird and Trans Am Club

Here are some summary points:

mball11.gif (1000 bytes) 1987 Firebird Formula 350
mball11.gif (1000 bytes) L98 350 c.i.d V-8 with Tuned Port Fuel Injection
mball11.gif (1000 bytes) Option Packages: WS6 - Performance Tuned Suspension and 4 Speed Automatic
mball11.gif (1000 bytes) Low Restriction custom exhaust (Stainless Steel)
mball11.gif (1000 bytes) Aftermarket oversize Fuel Injection intake runners
mball11.gif (1000 bytes) Aftermarket oversize Throttle Body (58 mm)
mball11.gif (1000 bytes) Aftermarket filters (all K&N)
mball11.gif (1000 bytes) Aftermarket hoses - braided steel

Notes: Car was "totaled" in a junk yard in Michigan in 1997 (salvage title). Car has been cut in half and re-welded (rear clip). VIN numbers and engine numbers indicate factory "350" installed. Car is garaged and covered 24/7. Driven to shows only."



Maroon Trans Am (63924 bytes)

Maroon Trans Am (62139 bytes)

Maroon Trans Am (68123 bytes)
Mike Kolodzeij owns this maroon Trans Am. Mike writes:

    "ENGINE/TRANNY: The engine in my 1987 Pontiac Trans Am is a 305, it just made 88,000 mi. The engine, hopefully, will be replaced soon with a 383 from Lingenfelter. The engine right now is basically stock. All it has in there is a K&N Air Filter, and a 160 degree thermostat. The transmission is a 700-R4 and will be rebuilt also when the time, and money, rolls on in.
     INTERIOR: The interior is stock. The only non-stock items are: a JVC stereo head and cheap K-Mart seat covers. When the time for a rebuild comes along, you can bet that the interior will be spruced up.
     PAINT/BODY: The body, surprisingly, was in great shape the paint, however, wasn't. When the car was purchased the paint on the car was dull and had sun-spots on the hood and near the rear on the T-Tops. The paint on the car is the same color but obviously better. At night the street lights give the maroon color a candy-apple red tint, and that is awesome.
     MISC: As I had mentioned before, the car is almost due for a total ground-up rebuild and when that takes place I will write back with the results and then, my friends, the car will truly be great! Thank you



Silver Trans Am (53569 bytes)

Silver Trans Am (53886 bytes)

Silver Trans Am (59040 bytes)

Silver Trans Am (59374 bytes)

Silver Trans Am (50475 bytes)
This great looking Trans Am is owned by Eric Standlee. Eric writes:

     Hi Jimmy,

"My car is a 1987 firebird, with a 5.0 engine, automatic. It was painted just 2 years ago, and after I bought it, I added the hood chicken and the decal on the windshield. It is in great condition! It only has 75,000 miles. It is silver with grey interior, that is in excellent condition! If you need any more information on the car , let me know. I just wanted to share my dream come true with you! Thanks for your time and interest!"

Eric Standlee



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Chris and Diane Beckwith own this pristine Firebird. Chris writes:

     "This is our second Firebird, and the first one I have owned. Diane got tired of her '79 base bird in 1989, and started looking for a new car. What she found was a 1987 Firebird 2.8L in bright red with silver lower body and black and orange striping. It only had about 12,000 miles. I had just started dating Diane at the time. The '87 had less torque but about the same horsepower as the 305ci Chevy in her '79, but the handling was 300% better! This one has T-tops, A/C, rear defogger, dished cross-lace alloy wheels and a gray cloth interior. The only non-factory part is a Pioneer "exact opening match" CD player. The original auto-reverse cassette player was stolen while she was in storage over the winter of 1999 (it still worked!).

While not destined to be a showstopper, she still looks great! No rust and original paint. The years are beginning to show on her, as she needs a new headliner (too many trips without the tops on) and the drivers seat is starting to tear. A reupholstering is in order, complete with new carpeting from ACC. Other than that, a good steam cleaning under the hood and some chrome treatment is all that is required. A restoration paint job is probably due in the next several years as well. Now that we bought the '79 and saved a lot of money versus the 2002 we were considering, we are going to keep her and make the repairs. She has about 88,000 miles on the original engine and 4 speed auto tranny. 

The picture "3Birds" is of our 2000 WS6 TA, the '87 Bird, and my father-in-law's '89 20th Anniversary TTA. We did not have the '79 TA when this was taken!"

Chris and Diane are big Firebird fans and host their own Firebird site entitled: Mr. Ram Air's Website
They own two other Firebirds that can be seen here at the Gallery:
1979 Trans Am located in '79 Trans Ams Lot#4
2000 Ram Air Trans Am located in '00 Trans Ams Lot#1

You can also see Diane's father's awesome 20th Anniversary Turbo TA at Anniversary Edition Trans Ams Lot#3



"Trans Camino" (141523 bytes) Next to the limo Trans Am and the 4x4 Formula this has got to be one of the most radical customizations on a Firebird on the site. This "Trans Am Truck" is owned by Gary Vass. Gary writes:

     "Here is a picture of my 1987 Trans Am Truck, the Trans Camino. The car has been completely redone to 91/92 specs and changed from white to red. The car, with the conversion already done, was found in Auto Trader on the Net. The story is the car was made in Chicago but we don't know for sure. We purchased the car from a gentleman in Tennessee. It has a Rhyno-Liner bed, 305 TBI engine, and a Red and Black Camaro interior. The extra axle is a tag axle off a transport."

Gary is quite the Pontiac fanatic and collector with a collection totaling 12 cars. His expansive collection includes:
a '76 50th Anniversary Trans Am 455 4-speed (see the '76 L.E. 50th Anniv. Trans Am Lot#1),
a '79 10th Anniversary Trans Am (see the Anniversary Trans Ams Lot#1),
an '80 Trans Am Pace Car,
an '81 Nascar Edition Pace Car with only 4,000 miles (seen at the '80 Nascar Edition Pace Car Trans Am Lot#1),
an '83 MR MSE Trans Am #39 with only 4,500 miles (seen at the Macho & MSE Trans Ams Lot#2),
an '83 Daytona Pace Car,
an '84 15th Anniversary Trans Am,
an '89 20th Anniversary Turbo Trans Am with only 500 miles,
a '92 yellow/black Trans Am convertible,
a '94 25th Anniversary with Daytona decals,
and a '96 Formula convertible (see the '96 Firebirds Lot#2). Whew thats a heck of a lot of garage space.



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