2002 Pontiac Trans Am Collector Edition - SOLD
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  • Overview & History
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With just 28,915 original miles, it has always been—obviously—a collectors’ piece and never used as a daily driver.

The guys at Pontiac seemed to know the writing was on the wall, and when GM announced that they were killing the F-body, well, it was as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in horror. 2002 was the last year of the Firebird Trans Am although Pontiac would hang on until 2009. Since they were always big on commemorative editions, for this last hurrah, Pontiac rolled out the 2002 Trans Am Collector Edition, ostensibly to celebrate 35 years of Firebirds, but it worked as a period in the Firebird story just as well. These were top-of-the-line cars loaded with virtually every option you could get and dressed in special Collector Yellow paint with a graphics package that does justice to the Trans Am name. 2000 were built, just about one for every dealership, making them a vital part of any serious Pontiac collector’s roster. If you’re serious about Pontiac performance, you need to own this car.

While it’s anything but subtle, this Collector Edition is nonetheless a very attractive car. The facelift a few years earlier gave the Trans Am a more sculpted look without erasing any of its aggressive vents, flares, and scoops, and the bright yellow paint shows it to great effect. With just 28,915 original miles, it has always been—obviously—a collectors’ piece and never used as a daily driver. As a result, it’s extremely clean and well-maintained, with bright paint and crisp graphics that make a bold statement and still attract attention at shows. All the Collector Edition cars were WS6 Trans Ams, which meant they got the Ram Air hood on top of the standard Trans Am nostrils, plus the rather dramatic wing out back. A blacked-out hoop over the driver’s compartment gives the greenhouse the look of an aircraft cockpit and even those swooping graphics on its flanks look right. It also has discreet Firebird emblems on the doors that are unique to these cars and a familiar WS6 badge on the tail. If this car doesn’t look like a traditional American muscle car, I don’t know what does. It’s in excellent condition throughout with no signs of accidents or damage, and while you might think the rear bumper has been repainted, we’re assured that it was not unusual for the plastic add-ons to be slightly different colors right from the factory. There’s no question that this car has led an easy life (in fact, the most recent of three owners was an elderly gentleman who has owned it for years).

Black leather was standard equipment as well, and the seats carry special “Collector Edition” embroidery on the head rests. The rest is standard Trans Am, which is pretty darned good for a performance car. It’s low but getting in and out is easy compared to many performance vehicles and you get a long, long list of options and features that rival any luxury car of the day: A/C, power windows, locks, mirrors, and seats, cruise control, rear defroster, fog lights, and a powerful AM/FM/CD stereo with equalizer and controls on the steering wheel. If you can’t get comfortable here, the problem is you, not the car. This one also carries an automatic transmission, and before you dismiss it as not as hardcore as the 6-speed cars, drive it. GM’s automatic transmissions give up nothing to the manuals. This sucker is FAST. Everything works, of course, and aside from some minor signs of use on the driver’s seat that is totally in line with the age and mileage, it’s like new. And it wouldn’t be a Trans Am without T-tops, which fit well and stow easily in the trunk. That trunk also includes full carpeting and a custom Collector Edition mat.

The only engine available was the legendary 5.7 liter LS1 V8, which in WS6 Ram Air guise was rated at 325 horsepower and 350 pounds of torque. It’s also bulletproof indestructible. The most notable feature is the giant air cleaner assembly, which takes air directly from those hood scoops up front, surely helping with horsepower output (in fact, Pontiac engineers quietly acquiesce that with the Ram Air doing its thing, the WS6 engine probably made an extra 10 or 15 horsepower at speed). And despite the LS1 being insanely easy to modify, this one remains completely stock and just as it left the factory. It’s tucked in there under the cowl, but it’s easy to see OEM parts are still in place everywhere you look. It starts easily, idles smoothly, and pulls like a freight train on the open road, all features that make these cars special. Best of all, it’s completely emissions-legal and it’ll run like this practically forever. Get in and drive!

As I mentioned earlier, the 4-speed automatic transmission has quick wits and snaps off rifle-sharp shifts at full boot, and we can’t imagine a better vehicle for slicing through traffic—just aim and hammer the throttle, the car takes care of the rest. 3.42 gears out back mean it’s quick punchy at any speed, and it feels lighter than it is thanks to the massive torque available at just about any speed. The WS6 suspension includes upgraded shocks, springs and roll bars, making this the best-handling Trans Am of all time, and ride quality is decent, even on rough roads. They got that part right. Massive 4-wheel disc brakes shrug off speed and the exhaust has a nice bark that never gets annoying. It sits on unique black wheels that were part of the Collector Edition package and a set of fat 275/40/17 performance radials that are only the second set of tires this car has ever worn.

Documentation includes such niceties as the original brochure, manuals, and a letter from Pontiac management congratulating the new owner on his purchase of a Collector Edition. Nice that they went the extra mile, even though they were killing the Firebird anyway.

Cars like this turn into sleeper hits later in life. They have limited-production appeal, a great look, and very usable performance so you can enjoy while you wait for their time to come. In the meantime, you’re getting a heck of a lot of performance and rarity for not a lot of cash, making this a car that makes sense on many levels. Call today!

Vehicle: 2002 Pontiac Trans Am Collector Edition
Price: SOLD
Stock Number: 115006
Mileage: 28,915
VIN: 2G2FV22G622138875
Engine: 5.7 liter LS1 V8
Transmission: 4-speed automatic
Gear Ratio: 3.42
Wheelbase: 101 inches
Wheels: 17-inch aluminum wheels
Tires: 275/40/17 performance radial
Exterior Color: Collector Yellow
Interior Color: Black leather
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