1972 Firebird Interesting Facts

New Honeycomb Grille Insert
The easiest way to tell a 1972 Firebird or Trans Am from the 1970 to 1973 models is by the honeycomb grille insert. This grille was used this one year only and was designed to match the theme of the Pontiac honeycomb wheels that were optional on the Firebird line.
New Plastic Valance Panel
The plastic valance panel debuted on the 1972 Firebird and differed from the metal ones of 1970 and 1971. You can tell the plastic units by the lower lip "spoiler" and the fact that the intake holes are fully surrounded by material versus the notched out look of the earlier versions. Many 1972 Firebirds did receive the previous years metal valances as service replacements since the plastic units were not very durable. The plastic valance is correct for factory built Firebirds.
Formula Ram Air Option
The Ram Air set up continued as option WU3 for 1972 but was a required option on the LS5 455 HO, the only engine that the option was available for. The 455 HO was the only 455 cid option for 1972. When equipped with the WU3 RAM AIR decals were added to the leading edge of the hood scoops.
Cordova Top
The Cordova Top (SVT/C08) received a new wet look this year.
The First Red Trans Am
One red Trans Am was reportedly built for the president of SCCA racing in 1972. Pontiac wanted to provide a Trans Am for the president's use but was turned down because the president only drover red cars. The car still exists and was sold a few years ago. This car appreared in Gary Witzenburg' book, Firebird, America's Premier Performance Car in 1982.
Special Order Colors
In 1972 you could order your Firebird or Trans Am in non-standard colors, that is colors that were not shown as available on Firebird. Any color available in the GM color pallette was made available. In the last few years some Trans Ams have been discovered in non-standard colors. Four Trans Ams have been found and confirmed to be one off: the aforementioned Cardinal Red, another in Adriatic Blue, one in Starlight Black (the first black Trans Am!), and one in Revere Silver. One Formula has been discovered as well. A special order color car can be identified by the Trim Tag that will have dashes where the numeric color code should be.
Examples shown on this page consist of scanned images or reproduction artwork that can not be faithfully reproduced on a computer screen. Illustrations are for example only. Consult with your vendors offerring reproduction parts for their historical accuracy.