By on June 8, 2015

QOTD - Instead of Trans Am Bandit Choice - 610px

We had a 1970s movie-car QOTD last week, and that was so much fun we’re doing it again! So, here we go: in the beginning of Smokey and the Bandit, when Big Enos challenges The Bandit to fetch 400 cases of that Colorado Kool-Aid, a wad of cash of unspecified thickness gets handed over for expenses, including a “speedy car.” As we all know, The Bandit headed straight to the nearest Pontiac showroom and bought himself a brand-new 1977 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am. In the film, that car seemed to be the fastest imaginable motor vehicle (thanks to the magic of engine swaps, stunt drivers, and special effects). In reality, however, the ’77 Trans Am was kind of a bloated Malaise Era slug, and The Bandit probably had a lot of better escape-the-smokeys car choices available.

So, in his shoes and with a ’77 Trans Am-sized stack of C-notes, what car would you have bought for that run to Texarkana and back?

Now, the list price of a 1977 Firebird Trans Am was $5,456, but the Bandit’s car had the $556 Hurst Hatch option, the $1,143 Y82 Special Edition option package, the $195 factory CB radio (which itself required one of a number of costly factory sound-system options), and no doubt lots of other price-inflating extras (you think The Bandit and his perfectly groomed mustache would have gone without air conditioning – 442 bucks – in that climate?) we must assume would come in any fully loaded 1977 Detroit car. It’s safe to say you’d be looking at something around $8,000 by the time the dust settled. That gives us a baseline to work with. For the purposes of this exercise we’ll toss in an extra thousand dollars and say you can pick any brand-new, 1977 model-year, street-legal-in-the-United-States car or truck that costs under $9000 (about 35 grand in 2015 bucks). If you don’t have the Standard Catalog or equivalent, you’ll need to at least make an effort to look up ’77 MSRPs online, or just make quasi-plausible guesses. Obviously, the best choice would be to buy something like a cheap used 240Z or Corvette and then spend all the leftover money on aftermarket hop-up goodies, but this option is not allowed here. Likewise, there will be no dealer-installed NASCAR race motors, “brand-new” rally-prepped cars, or other loophole-exploiting workarounds. Available-to-the-general-public, right-off-the-showroom floor, bone-stock 1977 four-wheeled vehicles only!

QOTD - Instead of Trans Am Bandit Choice - Warlock 610px

If the film had been made in 1978, I’d probably go for the Dodge Lil’ Red Express pickup, which was the fastest Detroit production vehicle that year and fully loaded with genuine Burt Reynolds-grade redneck badassness. However, we’re stuck in 1977, which means you could still get the nearly-a-Lil’-Red-Express ’77 Warlock pickup. I’m not sure what the list price for the Warlock package was, but the ’77 D100 Sweptline half-ton started at a mere $4,737, which means you’d have plenty of money left over to get the 170-horsepower four-barrel 360 (sorry, no factory big-block in the D100 that year), floor-shift four-speed transmission, heavy-duty everything, and a CB radio.

QOTD - Instead of Trans Am Bandit Choice - RX4 610px

Of course, The Bandit would have been pretty quick (by 1977 standards) in a cop-grade Dodge Aspen with 4-speed and every available performance option, and the ’77 Chevy Nova with a similar setup would have been decent in a car chase. But Burt Reynolds was known to drive fast in imports in his films, so we shouldn’t overlook such options. Sadly, the Citroën SM he drove in The Longest Yard was a $13,500 car and not even available in 1977… but what about something like the Mazda RX-4? Imagine The Bandit with Wankel power! The ’77 Datsun 280Z had great handling, proper disco styling, and a not-too-shabby-in-1977 149 horses. Or the Alfa Romeo 2000 Spider Veloce, with 110 Italian ponies in a 2,455-pound package and an $8,795 price tag? Il Bandito in an Alfa would have driven circles around those ponderous Pontiac cop cars! The Porsche 911 was, of course, way out of Der Bandit’s price range, but the nimble BMW 320i could be had for a hair under 8 grand.

QOTD - Instead of Trans Am Bandit Choice - TR7 - 610px

So many sub-$9,000 cars to choose from in 1977! So, what’s your choice?

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100 Comments on “QOTD: It’s 1977 and You’re The Bandit. Do You Buy a Trans Am… or Something Else?...”


  • avatar
    swaghole

    1977 Saab Turbo. 135 Swedish horses.

    http://www.saab99turbo.com/images/saab-99-turbo-registry2.jpg

  • avatar
    Joss

    Used SEL 6.9? Used Leyland XJ12 or Stag too risky proposition.

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    ’77 Corolla wagon, olive green. You don’t have to be fast if they never notice you in the first place. Carry way more stuff, too.

  • avatar
    STS_Endeavour

    What was the list price of a Lancia Montecarlo in 1977? Though, I presume Pontiac offered Toyota-like reliability compared to Lancia in 1977.

    • 0 avatar
      Jamblastx

      I used to buy the Edmunds new car guide religiously beginning in 1977 and I practically memorized it as a kid. If I recall correctly, the US version of the Beta Montecarlo (Scorpion) was $9,995 so it was too expensive for this. Obscure prices I remember but ask me what I had for lunch yesterday and I have no clue

  • avatar
    ajla

    “Available-to-the-general-public, right-off-the-showroom floor, bone-stock 1977 four-wheeled vehicles only!”

    Because hooch runners are historically known for keeping their vehicles stock?

    What’s with the restrictive criteria on a QOTD post? Is it that big of a deal if someone picked a Dusenberg or unicycle?

    • 0 avatar
      sproc

      I think it’s a great QOTD. It means no “I’d build a time machine and bring back a Porsche 918 Spyder” type answers, but it also highlights a really unique era when factory performance was very tough to come by.

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        I guess I have never been bothered by the “time machine” answers.

        It’s not like we are doing serious business here. By the editorial staff’s own admission the QOTD is supposed to be a silly time-waster. I don’t see what is gained by handcuffing the readers.

        Anyway, it isn’t a big deal. There is no rule that says I need to like every post.

        • 0 avatar

          Everyone has a different idea of a fun QOTD. Just because you don’t enjoy the question doesn’t mean nobody else will. Also, adding the restriction can take us down a possibly less traveled memory lane.

          • 0 avatar
            ajla

            Mark, like I wrote earlier, it’s not a big deal and I get other people have different tastes. I can just abstain in the future from the ones I don’t like.

            I just personally like these a lot more when they are totally open-ended and if this is going to stay a TTAC feature I hope you’ll maintain some variety to it.

          • 0 avatar

            @ajla We have Murilee doing QOTD on Mondays. I’m trying to do them as often as I can Tuesday through Thursday. Doug will continue to do them on Fridays.

            As you’re probably aware, we all have very different views and interests. The questions are varied. Our methods are quite varied. I’m hoping with three different people doing QOTD, we can allow all readers with a wide variety of automotive tastes to have fun at least one morning out of the week.

        • 0 avatar
          sproc

          Of course nothing rational about it, just a good dumb time waster that engages vastly more brain cells than my work e-mail.

          If you really get silly thinking about it, the idea of driving any car–but especially one from 40 years ago–directly off the showroom floor and immediately flogging it mercilessly for 2,000 mi is pretty crazy. It’s a wonder the Bandit made it back to the Southern Classic at all.

    • 0 avatar
      autojim

      Well, given that the Bandit only had 28 hours from time of challenge to make the trip, so spending a lot of time doing engine swaps wouldn’t have worked so well.

  • avatar
    Jamblastx

    You could get a brand new TVR in the US in 1977 for $8,888. Off the top of my head, its my choice.

  • avatar

    Just give me a Cutlass Supreme with a 403 and call it a day. 1977 means I miss out on the 455 Rocket, though.

  • avatar
    sgtyukon

    Texarkana and Denver are less than 1,000 miles apart. They could have flown to Denver and driven back in almost anything.

  • avatar
    Zackman

    1977? Hmmm… My wife-to-be and I saw the movie and laughed our heads off! Would I want a Trans Am, after all, a friend owned one, and it was pretty cool?

    No. At that time, and later that year when I married, I was driving a 1976 Chevy C-20. Shortly after marriage, I sold the truck and bought a 1976 Gremlin! Selling that truck exactly two years to the day after I bought it, I got almost what I paid for it, paid off the loan, paid off Wifey’s new transmission in her 1970 Mustang convertible, bought the Gremlin and banked the rest. Amazing.

    A hot-rod was never in my dreams, but a 1977 Impala bent-window coupe sure was, and I would have bought one if I had the financial means to do so! Should have bought one used later on, but didn’t. Life got in the way.

  • avatar
    Conslaw

    The implication in the movie was that they were going to drive it right out of the showroom practically and onto their beer run, so there wouldn’t have been time for many modifications. I think under the circumstances, the Trans Am was the best choice for the job. You wanted something flashy both to gain the attention of the authorities and to match Bandit’s ego. In another year, the Plymouth Fire Arrow would be available, a car roughly as quick as the Trans am with a 2.6 liter 4-cylinder engine.

  • avatar
    65corvair

    $5,500 in todays dollars is about $21,500.
    200 hp is the about the max.
    If it was like my ’76 Pontiac Astre, quality control and workmanship was worse than awful.

  • avatar
    PeteRR

    Plymouth Superbirds were languishing because of fuel prices. You get one for under $9k and it will out run anything new sold in 1977.

  • avatar
    heavy handle

    The smart “fictional character car choice” is the 400 ci Firebird Formula that Jim Rockford drove, but that one was probably custom ordered.

    The T/A makes pretty good sense if you need to buy something off the lot.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    Something other than a Trans Am?

    I’ll BBQ your ass in molasses.

  • avatar
    Athos Nobile

    How about a downsized 9C1/equivalent Malibu? Maybe coupe

    Stuff that, I’d pick the screaming chicken too. Or a Corvette.

    OTOH, I think the perfect replacement would be a King Cobra Mustang II.

  • avatar
    Crabspirits

    How about a little car that makes the women flow like the salmon of Capistrano?

    I’m talking about a little car called As-pen 360-2 Super Coupe.

    Because of build quality, the entire exhaust system falls off on Cletus’ driveway, and it spends the rest of the film with open header.

  • avatar
    slance66

    He chose correctly. I’d just go with the Trans Am. I mean, could get a Z28 Camaro, but why would you? Not nearly as cool. In a few years the choices would shift to Mustangs, but not yet as of 77.

    BMW 320i? That wouldn’t keep up with a modern Civic, let alone a police car from 77.

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      The Trans Am and Z/28 wouldn’t see which way a modern Civic went either, but that’s what almost 40 years will do for you. The Trans Am was the pick. Interestingly, the revived Z28 was supposed to be focused on handling over the T/A, but Car and Driver found that the ’77 Pontiac outhandled the Z/28 in a comparison test. Interestingly, the 180 hp Camaro was actually quicker than the 200 hp Pontiac, but they were both in the 16s in the quarter mile. Nonetheless, the T/A was almost certainly the right pick for the Bandit.

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    This made me watch YouTube clips of the film. God, what a breakthrough era was the ’70s.

    Prior to it, white trash dysfunction had a severely limited entertainment venue. But then came Smokey, Dukes and Skynyrd. I’m proud to have been there for America’s tipping point.

  • avatar
    Athos Nobile

    AMC Hornet AMX, with the 360 V8.

    Beats crabspirits Aspen handsdown.

  • avatar
    tonyola

    Jeep Cherokee with the optional 401 under the hood. You might not be the fastest thing out on the street, but you’ve got plenty of room for hooch-hauling plus you can go where the cops can’t.

  • avatar
    STRATOS

    That ridiculous screaming chicken on the trans am hood cannot replace the horsepower of previous models.Real muscle car era was already over in 77.The Corolla had a real hemispherical cylinder head in those days.

  • avatar
    cdotson

    Triumph TR7. Found some listicle of fastest 1977 cars and the TR7 is the quickest to 60 below the $9k MSRP threshold. Not sure where the list pulled 0-60 or pricing data, but no one else has suggested it.

  • avatar

    How much is Jackie Gleason’s PPV Pontiac LeMans? I’m buying that…

  • avatar
    Brock_Landers

    With the budget you set there wasn’t anything faster available in ’77.
    Cosworth Vega production ended in ’76. Although lightweight and with a nicely balanced chassis, it still loses in straight line to the ’77 W72 Trans-Am big time. And highway speed is what we are looking for :) W72 was bad ass at the time (golden wheels and decals didn’t give out empty promises :) ) – it had lot of performance goodies under the hood – high compression heads, higher performance camshaft, 800 cfm carb, high performance oil pump (for sufficient oil pressure during high RPM use), special slotted spring pin main bearing caps for high RPM use etc.

    I just found one potential candidate – COPO 9C1 Nova was available for the public in 1977. 170hp, but lot lighter than the trans am. Cheaper too :) https://msu.edu/~bellr/

    • 0 avatar
      heavy handle

      One requirement is that the car be available “right-off-the-showroom floor.” Not much chance of that happening with a COPO Nova.

      • 0 avatar
        Brock_Landers

        COPO cars couldn’t be ordered through dealerships?

        And maybe there was some old stock at Ford dealerships in 1977, Gran Torino was offered with a 460 in ’76 :)

        • 0 avatar
          heavy handle

          You could order COPO cars, you just wouldn’t expect one to be already in stock.

          One of the movie’s premises is that they had to get to Texarkana ASAP, so they bought something off the lot.

          Thanks for the link, BTW. Fun stuff.

    • 0 avatar
      STRATOS

      High rpm use? All the oil went to the top end of the engine ,instead of the crankshaft main bearings ,meaning they would self destruct if revved high.This was a common problem .Oil to to valve train is useless.Any engine builder will tell you that.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    Come on, man, the Bandit without his Trans Am is like Indiana Jones without his whip and the fedora.

    (And, yeah, that T/A was probably a good candidate for that kind of mission anyway!)

  • avatar
    87 Morgan

    I propose a 1977 Morgan Plus 8. I looked, but can’t find the MSRP But I believe it is close to that number your proposed if not slightly above. You could sell the ‘rights’ to the stache and make up the difference,

    Very fast, for the time, drop top or no top. The only issue would be the scenes in the movie where he is getting fuel, the Plus 8 in the states ran on Propane that era and refueling took some time. Of course, the only car less reliable than a malaise era GM would be a Morgan of any vintage.

  • avatar
    danio3834

    ’77 was a rough year for performance, I gotta say I think the Bandit made the best choice possible with the T/A. The Mustang was still the Mustang II and pinto based, even if you could get a wheezy 302 and COBRA decals. The Camaro was the T/A but with lesser engine options (stock of course, way easier to make an SBC fast though). Anything Euro that was remotely fast cost multiples more.

    The only other option I think the Bandit would have considered would be the new for ’78 Dodge Magnum. If the journey took place in late ’77, it may have been possible to buy a 400ci, t-toped piece of Windsor assembly pride.

  • avatar
    autojim

    1977 Dodge Royal Monaco or Plymouth Gran Fury with the A38 (“Pursuit”) package and the optional E86 255hp 440 engine w/ dual exhaust. Would have come in under $6k in 1977.

    Has the added benefit of being easily mistaken for a law enforcement vehicle running escort duty.

    • 0 avatar
      Detroit-Iron

      “It’s got a cop motor, a 440-cubic-inch plant. It’s got cop tires, cop suspension, cop shocks. It’s a model made before catalytic converters so it’ll run good on regular gas.”

      • 0 avatar
        autojim

        Well, the ’77s had cats, but there’s a reason there were so many Chrysler cop cars in the mid-to-late ’70s (they by far had the deepest market penetration), namely they could stop better than the GM or especially Ford offerings of the time. Though you wouldn’t know it if your primary exposure to those vehicles was by watching The Blues Brothers. :)

        But yes, Elwood-approved.

        • 0 avatar
          Scoutdude

          The reason there were so many Chrysler cop cars in that era was because they just about gave them away. Remember that is the era of the sales bank where they kept cranking out cars that no one wanted. Then they offered big discounts to the dealers to take them followed by rebates to get consumers to buy them.

          • 0 avatar
            autojim

            Oh, sure, they were inexpensive, which government bid coordinators like, but if you look at California, Michigan, etc. department testing of the manufacturer’s offerings of that era, the Chryslers stopped the best, and with the 440s, particularly, had the highest top end. Combine that with low price and you’ve got a winner.

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      Wasn’t the object of the Trans Am to attract as much attention as possible in order to distract law enforcement from focusing on the tractor trailer full of contraband Coors?

      • 0 avatar
        autojim

        Yes, true, but a stop at a Radio Shack for a dash mounted red light, a good cover story on the radio (without naming any agency, just letting other minds fill in the blanks) and suddenly he’s from some letter agency escorting that rig. Not only would he not get hassled, maybe some of the cops would help clear the way.

        It’s not as exciting as a movie plot, of course, but if someone was to consider doing that for real (moot point now that Coors is available nationwide, of course), it’s more practical.

  • avatar

    I think that 24 Hours of LeMons has already given the answer: Burt-of-the-small-sideburns (as opposed to Burt Rutan) shoulda gone down to the Volvo dealer and picked up a new 242 with B21 engine and well-nigh bulletproof K-Jetronic fuel injection.

  • avatar
    ponchoman49

    The Bandit chose well. What other car in 1977 better captured the spirit of that decade than a black special edition TA with it’s 400 cubes of Poncho power and torque, sexy styling, T-tops and far better than normal handling? That would have been like Dr Who without his Tardis or Captain Kirk without Spock or Rosco without Flash!
    Yes a Corvette would have worked but it only had smaller less powerful 350 small blocks by that point. Ditto the Camaro. The Mustang. Come on. A Volare’ with a 360. Rare as hens teeth, probably would have had to special order and not nearly as sexy or good handling. A Mazda RX4. I don’t think so.

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      http://media.caranddriver.com/files/camaro-z-28-vs-firebird-trans-amcamarocomparo.pdf

      The ’77 W72 was big, but it wasn’t fast: 0-60 in 9.3 with a stick and 16.9 in the quarter at 82 mph. Better not race any Corollas. The Z/28 was less slow, but didn’t handle as well. As bad a time for Corvettes as it was, they were meaningfully quicker.

      • 0 avatar
        FreedMike

        Yeah, it was slow by today’s standards. Some kid delivering pizza in his mom’s four-banger Camry could lay waste to one now. If mom had the V-6 Camry it would get REALLY ugly.

        And the T/A was a gas pig to boot. C/D observed 12.5 mpg.

        Dark, dark days indeed.

        Still, that T/A was definitely my adolescent dream car.

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    Chevette – it’s invisible, and the cops would run out of gas before you do.

  • avatar
    paxman356

    I didn’t think he bought a car just to be fast, he bought it to draw attention from the Snowman. With that in mind, what was better than a black Trans Am with a flying chicken on the hood?

  • avatar
    rpol35

    Here’s a few that wouldn’t have made the list:

    It wouldn’t have been a ’77 Z28; I had one of those, new, and I don’t think it was as fast as a Trans Am. My father bought a new ’77 Caprice and it wasn’t much of a performer either. And…a good friend bought a new TR7, can’t say much about the performance because it was mostly inoperable for the six miserable months that he owned it.

    Considering Burt’s outsized personality, I think he had it right.

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      The Z/28 was quicker in a comparison test. You’re right about the TR7. People loved the design when it came out and bought as many as the left wing suicide cult at Speke would make between vanity strikes. Then they became driveway decorations as their owners hitched rides to work.

      http://media.caranddriver.com/files/camaro-z-28-vs-firebird-trans-amcamarocomparo.pdf

      • 0 avatar
        rpol35

        “The Z/28 was quicker in a comparison test.”

        Well that’s interesting. My Z was 185 HP and I think the Trans AM was 200 but the T/A was probably heavier. My Z had a 3.73:1 rear axle ratio and at 105 MPH it was pretty much done as it was running at 5,000 RPM – no O/D in those days. So, I can see where the Z may be a bit faster on acceleration but I would think the T/A could cruise longer and higher than the Z which is probably what the Bandit would want.

        Did the test reference acceleration, top end or both? Thx.

        • 0 avatar
          CJinSD

          The Z/28 they tested had 3.73 rear gear and 4 speed. It ran 111 mph at 5,250 RPM, which was 250 TPM past red-line. The T/A W72 had a 3.23 axle ratio and a 4 speed. It ran 110 mph at 4,550 RPM, which was as fast as it could go even though red-line was also 5,000 RPM.

          0-60 was 8.6 for the Z/28 v. 9.3 for the Trans Am.
          Quarter mile was 16.3 at 83.1 mph for the Z/28 v. 16.9 at 82.0 mph for the Trans Am.

          • 0 avatar
            danio3834

            “0-60 was 8.6 for the Z/28 v. 9.3 for the Trans Am.
            Quarter mile was 16.3 at 83.1 mph for the Z/28 v. 16.9 at 82.0 mph for the Trans Am.”

            Dark times indeed.

        • 0 avatar
          FreedMike

          I think that Z28 they tested was a ringer. Common practice for the day.

  • avatar
    Bunter1

    The one thing these answers make clear is the abysmal state of performance cars in ’77.

    Love ‘n bullets,

    Bunter

  • avatar
    cgjeep

    77 AMC AMX with the 305V8. Could even get it with a screaming chicken on the hood. Get it in yellow. Less motor than the TA but had to be a lot less weight too.

  • avatar
    Maintainer

    It’s 1977 and Bandit’s job is to distract the Police from the Big Rig hauling 80,000 pounds of contraband Brews.
    The T/A seems like a good choice.

    The only other car that would seem appropriate would be the 1977 Pontiac Can Am.

  • avatar
    Geekcarlover

    Damn you! Now I’ve got to waste time on the Old Car Brochure Project trying to match engine/transmission options. And I was actually going be productive today.

  • avatar
    lowreyldjd

    Dang, I missed 1977! But bracketed I that year pretty well: 1974 Corvette (manual 454 roadster with every option), 1975 Trans Am (every option except the “screaming chicken” on the hood, the first car I owned), and 1976 Trans Am (Anniversary Edition with, unfortunately, the automatic and, yes, the avitar). Then a 1978 Dodge Challenger (modded motor with a 5-speed) after marriage claimed me at the end of 1977. The wife got a 1978 Dodge Colt station wagon: it was entirely different than the Mitsu-built Colt sedan and was actually a Challenger/Sapporo with a wagon body (it even had the same 2.6-liter motor as my Challenger).

    If Burt could have waited a year, the ultimate stealth car (with massive Coors-hauling capacity) would have been that 1978 Colt wagon…or the Toyota Cressida or Datsun 810 wagons, if you insist on 1977…which was a very capable high-speed cruiser.

  • avatar
    Geekcarlover

    Mustang II Cobra? Definitely more show than go, but it would stand out and be noticed by the police.

  • avatar
    e30gator

    First, the Bandit wouldn’t be caught dead in a foreign car. Period. No Porsche 911 here. The only import he would have looked twice at was the Detomoso Pantera with a Ford 351 under the hood, and then kept looking. Second, none of the American competition was really up to par with the TA in ’77.

    The Mustang Cobra was just a worked-over Pinto (no dice), Chrysler products (pffft!), and the rest was the GM stuff that Burt would have whittled down and eventually chose the Trans Am anyway.

    The ONLY other car that I could see the Bandit driving at high speed through the American south in the 70’s was a Corvette. With T-tops of course. But the C3 of the late 70’s was a pig and a shadow of its former self, so the TA it is, since it at least had charisma–like Burt Reynolds.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    A nice large-cargo Q-ship, where you can travel in fast comfort you ask?

    The 77 Dodge Monaco Royal Brougham Wagon, available with the 440.

    Ad:
    http://www.oldcarbrochures.com/static/NA/Dodge/1977_Dodge/1977_Dodge_Monaco_Brochure/1977%20Dodge%20Monaco-08.jpg

    Specs:
    http://www.lov2xlr8.no/brochures/mopar/77mon/bilder/11.jpg

    Cost:
    http://i57.tinypic.com/szv0np.jpg

    $7,332 for one with the 360 engine, so I’m sure we’re under $9,000 fully loaded.

    :) Plus I really like the way it looks.

  • avatar
    savant idiot

    1977 Chevy Monza Mirage. 305 slug but equaled the Screaming Chicken in the 1/4, probably out handled it as well. Mirage package was a “LOOK AT ME” tape job to draw attention of the law…

    Not saying that I myself would choose it, but I am a little surprised by the short memories of the Gearheads on this board…

  • avatar
    wmba

    Best reason to see this “movie” was Sally Fields. A BMW 633CSi with sunroof would have done just fine for transportation and viewing of the sweetmeats through the huge windows. The biggest disappointment afterwards was actually tasting Coors.

  • avatar
    JimC2

    Guys, guys, guys… anything with raised white letters on the tire sidewalls!

  • avatar
    Maymar

    What about just borrowing Big Enos’ Eldorado? No, it might not have the outright speed of the Trans Am, but it’d certainly draw attention to itself.

  • avatar
    donutguy

    My dad had one of these as a company car back in 1977.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CPZU5eWw59A

    His had the 460, was lime green and had the tiny pie plate hubcaps. I was 17 at the time and would cruise with it. I’d take the air cleaner lid off and I swear it sounded like it was gonna suck the hood into the engine.

    IIRC, it got about 7 mpg.

  • avatar
    Lou_BC

    Were there any good cars in ’77? or should I say where there any good cars made in America in ’77?

    I’d only consider any 60’s era or very early ’70’s muscle car.

    In ’77 the malaise era was in full swing.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      True, but the GM B-bodies were a big hit and many went on to have long service lives through the 80s and 90s. In 1977 you could still get a Cadillac with a 425ci or an Olds 403ci, both of which were great motors (fuel economy and carburetors notwithstanding).

  • avatar
    Ogre Backwash

    Ha! I came within a heartbeat of buying one exactly like this in 1977. It may have been the last one on the lot. I was driving a very nice low milage 71 340 Duster (with 4-speed, Hurst Competition Plus shifter, dual plane Edelbrock and 650 Holley, dual point Mallory ignition, Schiefer clutch and McCleod flywheel,Sure-Grip, Shelby 500 slot-mags with Goodyear Poly-Glas GTs. Original Sherwwod Green metallic and full length flat black 340 stripes and two-tone green vinyl interior with front bench seat and optional fold down center armrest.)
    I was 19, I had cash, a trade-in, a new pair of Fry boots and a why the hell not attitude.
    Fortunately I had the world’s most jaded, low energy, beat down salesman. It was Abe Vigoda in a yellow cardigan and Italian loafers. He psyched himself out, so sure that I was wasting his time. No eye contact, mumbled, bad body language. If he had made the slightest effort to sell I would have laid down. I drove it, said I wanted to think about it and left. Five minutes later I broke into a cold sweat realizing how close I had come to screwing up my life for 3 or 4 years with car payments I could not afford and falling into a spiral of poverty, despair and perhaps a Mullet! 6 months later I sold the Duster and used the money to finish my Bachelors degree.

  • avatar
    "scarey"

    No cheating. So let me tell you what I DID buy in 1977. A Ford 4WD F-150 short wheelbase short flareside box in red with the white pinstripe package. 400 cubic inch V-8, and automatic transmission. That sucker was Fast ! And I mean FAST !
    But it got 6 miles per gallon. I traded it for a 6 cylinder Ford van in less than a year. So sad.


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