The Firebird Trans Am Bandit edition brings back everything car enthusiasts loved about the original black-and-gold version of this iconic muscle car, which was made famous by the Smokey and the Bandit movies during the late 1970s. According to Andre Vergara of Fox Sports, there were only 77 of the 2016 Trans Am Bandit edition made and each one was signed by movie star Burt Reynolds, who also narrates the following video.
“I’m just proud to be a part of it,” Reynolds told Tallahassee.com.
Although Pontiac produced the Trans Am from 1967 to 2002, the company ceased production in 2009, Trans Am Depot purchased the licensing for the Trans Am name and logo from GM and produces custom Trans Ams that are actually rebuilt Chevy Camaros. And, as Fox Sports puts it, “the results are pretty awesome.”
According to Tod Warmack of Trans Am Worldwide, the price tag for the new Trans Am runs between $70,000 for the basic model, up to $115,000 for the 2016 Bandit edition.
“The cars are equipped with more than 230 new parts and supercharged engines that can put out as much as 840 horsepower.”
— Fox News (@FoxNews) March 25, 2016
— Fast Muscle Car (@fastmusclecar) March 24, 2016
Florida-based Trans Am Worldwide built the new Trans Am Bandit edition on the fifth-generation Chevy Camaro SS. The modern muscle car also features the original signature split grill design, along with quad square headlights, ground effects and a rear lip spoiler. Other features include snowflake wheels, a modern take on the original black and gold paint job, a classic “Screaming Chicken” Firebird decal on the hood and T-Tops to complete the look.
— Maxim (@MaximMag) March 27, 2016
— Esquire Magazine (@esquire) March 27, 2016
According to Maxim, Trans Am Depot revealed the limited-model SE Bandit edition at the “Spirit of ’77” New York International Auto Show. Warmack has a hard time containing his excitement on the promotional video.
“It’s got the shaker hood and the T-Tops were a must; if you don’t have the T-Tops, you don’t have a Trans Am, really.”
But it’s not just all about the exterior with the new Trans Am Bandit edition. Under the hood, performance upgrades include a lowered, tuned suspension, a cold-air intake 7.4 liter General Motors V8 that has been supercharged to 840 hp, with a Hurst close-ratio, short throw shifter on a six-speed manual transmission.
The interior of the new 2016 Bandit Trans Am also won’t disappoint, with sleek custom leather trip and retro-style gauges. A unique “Bandit” logo also adorns both headrests, showing an abstract cowboy profile, while an authentic Burt Reynolds signature is on the dash.
Warmack also pointed out the challenges that came with recreating the gold-toned “snowflake style” wheels and original raised white letter tires for the new spin on the iconic Bandit Trans Am.
Warmack launched Trans Am Depot with his brother and the outfit converts 2015 Chevrolet Camaros into a modern version of the original Pontiac Firebird. In addition to the new 2016 Trans Am Bandit edition, the company also creates a variety of more competitively priced Trans Am models, designed to turn heads among muscle car enthusiasts.
According to Tallahassee.com, Warmack has been “obsessed” with the Firebird-emblazoned Trans Ams ever since he watched Smokey and the Bandit decades ago.
“It’s like you remember your first kiss, you always remember where you saw the movie and who you were with.”
[Photo by Mike Windle/Getty Images for SXSW]