1981 Pontiac Firebird Review from North America

1981 Pontiac Firebird 265-V8

Year of manufacture1981
First year of ownership1996
Most recent year of ownership2003
Engine and transmission 265-V8 Automatic
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 4 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.8 / 10
Distance when acquired0 miles
Most recent distance0 miles
Previous carMazda 626

Summary:

Finger Licking Fire-Chicken-Performance Built to Last

Faults:

Transmission

Turbo-Hydra-Matic Metric-200.

Transmission doesn't like to go into reverse unless it's really warmed up. Transmission acts like its slipping & when it does grab revers it "slams" into reverse-squealing the tires at times. Also, the car will not shift into 3rd gear untill I reach a speed of at least 55mph. Which is nice for racing, but gets a little expensive at the gas pumps.

Gauges/Printed Circuit Board

Unable to locate replacement Printed Circuit Board for the gauges, the old one (made out of plastic) fell apart and none of the contact circuitry was intact. Tried to find a new one and was told that they no longer made them for my model. Well I couldn't go around driving with no gauges or gauge lights so I ended up going to a junk yard and getting another set of gauges-they wouldn't sell me just the circuit board, and that circuit board was also in pretty bad shape. Luckily I was able to "RIG" 1 good circuit board by cutting up both bad ones and taping them together. A little super glue and some rear window de-fogger line repair and now I have lights and blinkers and...

General Comments:

When I bought this car my mom asked me if it had air conditioning. All I could say was "Who needs air-conditioning, I look cool enough driving it." This car has had it's problems, but over-all I wouldn't give it up for the anything in the world. Fortunately I have been able to do all of the work on it myself, and the Haynes & Chiltons Auto Repair Manuals have been absolutely life-saving at times. When I drive this car I feel like I'm un-stoppable. Also the suspension/handling of this car is absolutely unbelievable. I have been able to get out of more death defying situations "on a dime" than in all my other vehicles combined.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 21st January, 2003

Average review marks: 6.8 / 10, based on 1 review