By on September 17, 2010

In the comments for yesterday’s article about Eclectic Bubbleland, DucRam noted:

Just outside of Huntsville, AL is a Pontiac Fiero graveyard. The sign outside says The Fiero Factory.

As fate would have it, I saw this place leaving an SCCA Solo National Tour event three years ago and stopped to take pictures. Some of those pictures, and the story behind these Fieros and Fierraris (and all the mysteriously engine-less Cadillacs) can be found below…

Yes, that post-facelift Fiero 2m6 is winking at us! He knows something that most of us don’t… that The Fiero Factory has a near-limitless supply of Fieros and the donor cars required to upgrade them to 3400 GM V6 or 4.9L Cadillac V8 power. The (out-of-date) website offers an automatic-transmission V8 Fiero for just $7,000. It’s likely to have over 200 horsepower (see more info on the V8-into-Fiero swap here) and in a 2600-pound car that’s more than acceptably rapid. At the very least, you’ll be smoking Honda S2000s from a dig.

Some discerning individuals demand that their V8 Fiero have the look and feel of the Pininfarina-penned Ferrari 308GTS. Yes, it’s possible to imitate a $30,000 used Fezza for far less. Make sure that your lady friend is really drunk by the time she gets in the car, or she may notice that the interior is a little more StarBird than it is mid-Seventies Italian chic. On the positive side, no smog-strangled 308 ever had the kind of pace that a engine-swapped Fiero has.

If you’re into thirtysomething Midwestern chicks, you may find that your bar pickup has an intimate knowledge of Fieros, acquired through high-school prom-night fumbling with the rich son of a drywall contractor, and is not impressed by your Ferrari-a-like. Ensure the sweatiest of intimate encounters on the second date by bringing an Indy Fiero. If the sheer rarity of this bodystyle, which returned later as the first Fiero GT and then became available as the Fiero SE, doesn’t cause her to heat up, the inevitable engine fire surely will.

No need for you to “slam this bitch into the weeds”. It’s already been done for you. Enjoy the Fiero 2m6. By late 1985 everybody knew that the Fiero was easy meat in the stoplight drag scene. This 2m6 looks just like a tepid Iron Duke Fiero but has the raging power of the 2.8 GM V6. Line up against a Citation X-11 and wipe the smile off that bastard’s face thanks to superior traction and a similar power-to-weight ratio. I can’t wait to see you both struggling with your cable-operated shifters.

Sir, I can tell you that want the very best. These could be any Fiero GT from 1986 forward, but since they are prominently placed up-front they are very likely the ne plus ultra of Fiero, the 1988 GT. New suspension. “Fastback” panels. Vented discs. If they were yellow, we would know for sure that they are 1988 cars, but for the meantime let’s just agree that you’ll be taking both of these home regardless. The Cadillacs in the background? Well, where do you think we get the V8 transplants? From GM Performance Crate Engines?

Inventory is not a problem at The Fiero Factory, with over 100 donor cars. We are eagerly awaiting the day when our Fiero inventory is worth more than a similar number of 1997 Boxsters, a day which should arrive well before 2020. Thanks for stopping by!

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23 Comments on “This Is… The Fiero Factory...”


  • avatar
    GS650G

    My neighbor has  a Gt with T tops and the self installed caddy v8. To him it’s a labor of love

  • avatar
    brettc

    That’s rad man! There was a guy in my grade 11 auto shop class. He had 2 Fieros from what I remember and also had a mullet and was pretty douchey (grade 11 was in 1994 for me). I bet he’d love it there. The Fiero was a cool concept. Too bad GM pulled their usual stunt:
    1. Build a decent looking car that turns out to have some major problems (like engine fires)
    2. Improve the car slightly
    3. Stop making the improved car because “nobody’s buying them”
    4. Repeat

  • avatar
    SVX pearlie

    It’s too bad he’s not partnered with a kit car manufacturer. Throw in an EcoTec4, and slap on a new body, and it could do quite well.

  • avatar
    Toyondai92

    One thing Fieros are good for, swapping in S/C 3800s or N/A Northstars and running quarters in the 11s. And that’s the only reason I’m looking for one as a side-project.
     
    Here’s the outdated site by the way: http://thefierofactory.com/

  • avatar
    Educator(of teachers)Dan

    “Fiero, a Good Car; In Search of a Company that Gives a Sh*^!”

  • avatar
    Kendahl

    After I got my first generation RX-7, people would ask why hadn’t I bought American. My reply was that I would have been glad to buy a Pontiac RX-7, but Pontiac insisted on building the Fiero, instead.

  • avatar
    aamj50

    I see many, many Fieros hiding amongst patches of weeds in the Midwest. My theory is that the clutches went out and the owner decided it was easier and faster to let the plastic bodies decompose than it would be to break the car in half to change the clutch.
    Yes, I owned one. Briefly. Untill the transmission went out.

  • avatar
    Power6

    Ahh the Fiero. I grew up at the right time to have always thought Fiero’s were cool. Such a GM thing to finally give it the good suspension then kill it.

    I read about those Ferrari lookalikes, the “Pontiac Mera” it was called, I think the story of the Mera included the requisite lawsuit.

    A friend of mine in high school bought a cheap 84 SE beater. I remember helping him change the brakes at one time, and marveling at the “front” suspensions at both ends(Chevette up front, Citation in the back!), the solid discs all around, and the fixed “tie-rod” in the rear where the Citation would have a steering rack.

    I’d love an ’88 Formula as a nice collector/driver some day, but I’ve already owned my quota of GM ’80s “classics”, its probably better off left to fond memories. I could put it in the fourth stall, in between the Grand National and Syclone, or maybe next to the Turbo Grand Prix. Interestingly I owned a Sunbird turbo which might be rarer, faster and more capable than any Fiero (pre engine swap)

  • avatar

    Now that really IS a junkyard.
    Anyway, thanks for a good laugh.

  • avatar
    beken

    As an original owner that still has his 1985 Fiero 2M6 (4spd) and recently acquired collector plates on it, I am grateful for places like the The Fiero Factory for supplying me with parts that are getting harder and harder to find.
    The car actually is pretty good if you took decent care of it.  Given the era, I would say it was actually one of GM’s better cars….which isn’t saying much.
    I’ve developed a pretty thick skin over time after listening to so many people (most who have never actually owned or driven a Fiero) make humiliating comments about my choice in cars.
    I have many friends who bought RX-7′s, MR2s, CRX’s and X-19 from that era and there are more Fieros on the road than any of them.
    Thanks for the reminder about the Fiero Factory.  I was thinking I need some parts.
     
     
     

  • avatar
    Steven Lang

    My own theory…
     
    Classic car collectors will by and large skip the 1980′s. Other than a few limited editions and speial model runs. 95+% of the decade’s cars were a complete waste.
    A few sports cars. From Deloreans, to Lexus LS, to Fiero, to MR2, to Miata and maybe the 300Z…
    Come to think of it. The Japanese will own this market. The Germans will lease this market. The American Big 3 will recycle this market. Except for the Caprice and the Buick Grand National. Oh, and the Shelby’s and SHO’s.
    Will anyone want a Maserati TC or a Reatta? Naaahhh!!

  • avatar

    I had an 84 for a few years.  I’m 6’2″ and it was one of the more comfortable cars I’ve owned!  It’s all leg room up front.

    the rear wheel bump-steer in a hard corner was more than a little interesting, but it was a fun little car.  I literally drove it into its grave: I was driving it to the junk yard as part of one of those $1000 off a new GM for junking your old crap campaigns.  The motor blew as I pulled into the lot and coasted it up to the front gate barfing fluids all over the place.  Good times.

  • avatar
    18726543

    I always thought, and still believe, that these were cool lookin cars!  I never drove one or even rode in one, but a friend of mine had an ’87 GT when I was growing up and in the literal sea of Fox-body Mustangs in my highschool parking lot, this thing really stood out.
     
    Another story, more on-par with the subject at hand, one of my girlfriend’s neighbors has a very “don’t let your kids go to that house on halloween” looking yard, complete with wildly overgrown bushes and trees devouring most of the driveway.  One day, I drove by and to my surprise someone had gone through and cleaned up all the foliage lining the drive.  Even more surprising, there were 2 FIEROS HIDING COMPLETELY INSIDE ONE OF THE FLOPPED OVER TREES!  You know when you put on a pair of jeans and find 20 bucks in the pocket… … …

  • avatar
    DenverMike

    Wanted a new Fiero in ’87 but wasn’t loving it’s 2.9 V6. I knew GM had just the right V6 for the job didn’t want to cannibalize its Camaro/Corvette sales. Them putting it in a Buick Regal was just an insult.
    Ended up getting a Mustang 5.0 LX notch for about $6000 less the Grand National. My notch was still faster than the Grand National from a dig at least.
    Still craved the Fiero like handling and added an ’85 MR2 to my fleet in ’90 plus and an ’84 SVO Mustang just for kicks.

  • avatar
    JMII

    These and MR2s are special… too bad all the ones you see are normally in terrible condition aside – they deserve better. For example:
    The wife of the guy that turn wrenches on my boat has a gold Fiero in showroom condition. I once joked to him that I thought all the “cool” Fieros had burned to the ground. He told me that the wife refuses to own anything unless its a real Ferrari, so he keeps the GM copy cat in perfect running order instead.

  • avatar
    threeer

    I’ve driven by there on numerous occasions…and always have to wonder at seeing that many Fieros in one yard!

  • avatar
    russification

    the fiero was all about the car stereo speakers in the head rest…

  • avatar
    phantomwolf

    Glutton for punishment, I know the 4.9 all to well, iron heads, aluminum block, and all the other idiosyncrasies of it and 4t64E tranny.  Not bad engine choices, considering the abysmal DNA of that block.  The tranny, one of the grand ultimates of 90s GM cars.  Transplanting them into an 80s GM vehical, interesting.  The cadillacs in the background, a major waste.  Think of the practicality.

  • avatar
    DucRam

    Thanks for the chuckle on this old Highway 53 landmark.  I have driven by it many times over the years, but I never stopped to get more info or take pictures.
     
    I am with The Gear Head Skeptic, it is incredibly roomy for it’s size.  At 6’6″ this type of thing is quite important.  I distinctly remember test driving new cars in 1984 and how surprised I was that the Fiero had just as much, if not more, room for the driver than the Trans Am I had just taken for a spin.

  • avatar
    pmd1966 (of GM)

    My neighbor had a Fiero with the Iron Duke. He had to take it to the dealer for some warranty work and needed a ride home. As I was following him, I thought it started to rain. When we got to the dealer, I saw that I had antifreeze all over the front of my truck.


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