We all love a good custom car from time to time, but most of us must admit few of these projects rise to the quality and appeal of stock, restored vehicles. Especially when we’re talking about a product that is one way or another relevant to the industry.
In the modern-day world, the name Pontiac is completely absent from the auto industry. The brand was killed by GM during the crisis days of 2010 because it was seen as one of the wounds the corporate behemoth was bleeding money from.
Yet even now, 13 years after that event, Pontiac still makes it in the news occasionally. It does so thanks to the love the brand gets in some circles and thanks to people that hold on to some of the make’s most glorious models. Things like the Firebird, for instance.
One of Pontiac’s longest-running nameplates (it was made from 1967 to 2002), the Firebird is a solid piece of American motoring history. Sung in movies and raced down tracks the country over, the nameplate surfaces these days at various specialized events across the country, from auctions to gatherings, impressing crowds with style, punch, and anything in between.
Today’s Pontiac Firebird story is dedicated to a Cameo Ivory example. It’s a Firebird of the Ram Air II variety, meaning it sports carefully planned modifications to the powertrain to make it a true track contender.
In fact, it’s not just a Firebird of the Ram Air II variety, but the very first one Pontiac made in 1968. It is also one of just 12 examples assembled with an automatic transmission that year, and a vehicle that was raced in the NHRA B Stock Automatic Class in 1968 by a crew called Weidner Pontiac.
The Firebird surfaced not as some sort of customized abomination, but as a restoration back to like-original specs. It was brought back to its former glory back in 2013 by a Michigan-based crew called Supercar Specialties, and it’s now up for grabs during a Mecum auction that will take place in Indianapolis starting May 12.
We have no info on what the car was up to in the ten years since its restoration was completed, but it seems to have been well taken care of.
Propped on steel wheels with small hubcaps, the body of the Firebird looks simply perfect and is adorned with just the right amount of chrome and badges to stand out even more. The interior comes in beautifully contrasted black and is devoid of any unnecessary adornments and fittings.
The hood of the car, once lifted, reveals the sight of a large 400ci engine. This kind of powerplant was the largest Pontiac offered for the Firebird back then, but it’s not the one that initially shipped with this particular example. Instead, we’re talking about a service replacement that, tied to a 3-speed transmission, pumps out 340 horsepower.
The 1968 Pontiac Firebird Ram Air II, the first of its name, is selling during the Mecum auction with no reserve. That means people don’t have to be incredibly rich for a chance to get it, just lucky enough for others not to bid too high.