Guy rescues Pontiac Firebird – but will it run after 21 years?

After sinking in a hole in a field for 21 years, this Pontiac Firebird had seen better days. Now one man is attempting to fire her up again.

by | Published on 14th Mar 2023

Seeing a Pontiac Firebird in such a state is a hard watch.

Sat sinking in a field for 21 years, time has certainly taken its toll on the iconic muscle car.

Despite its condition, one man is testing to see if it can rise from the ashes and fire up again.

READ MORE: Watch 1967 Ford Mustang get pulled from a swamp after 28 years

Michael Wagner doesn’t tell us much about the car, other than it’s a 1978 Formula Firebird that was forced off the road 21 years ago with an alternator issue.

The Pontiac Firebird also doesn’t have its original 305 engine.

Instead, it’s been swapped out for a 350 from the early 70s.

That’s not all bad, though, as it bumps the horsepower from 135hp in the 305 to 145bhp in the 350.

After attempting to put some air in the tires to get her out of the hole, he then winches the car onto the back of a trailer.

At the shop, Wagner is quick to pop the hood to see what he’s working with.

Other than the unit being swapped out, the Pontiac Firebird looked pretty original under the hood.

The factory air conditioning was even still on the car.

But, Wagner noticed the carburetor was in pieces and needed desperate attention.

Before he could do that, he dropped the old oil and replaced it with fresh stuff and a new filter.

He also removed all of the spark plugs which were looking a bit on the crispy side.

A new battery was then thrown in and the first attempts to get the old girl to fire up were made. 

It was clear she wasn’t going to run freely, so Wagner decided to fit a new alternator and belt. 

It wasn’t long before the Pontiac Firebird fired up, but the carburetor was leaking gas and that was obviously a problem.

Wagner set about stripping it, powersonic cleaning it, then putting it all back together before refitting it to the car.

Wagner’s handiwork worked a treat, as the Pontiac Firebird was soon idling nicely.

After replenishing the transmission fluid which was bone dry, Wagner was already making plans to take her for a spin.

Hopefully, he has plans to rescue the Chevy C10 that we saw in the background of the video, too.



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Adam Gray is an experienced motoring journalist and content creator based in the United Kingdom. Using his media accreditation with motor manufacturers’ press offices, Adam test drives the latest cars and attends new vehicle press launches, producing written reviews and news pieces for supercarblondie.com. Before joining the Supercar Blondie team, Adam was Motoring Editor for Portfolio North magazine, North East Motoring Editor at Reach plc, and provided motoring content on a freelance basis to several lifestyle and business publications in the North of England. When he’s not behind the wheel of the latest car, Adam can be found at his local rink playing ice hockey or supporting his beloved Middlesbrough FC.

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