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The 1960s are regarded as the golden age of the American muscle mass car, but the 1968 Pontiac Firebird Sprint showcased on this episode of “Jay Leno’s Garage” exhibits that Detroit automakers weren’t only targeted on V-8s and quarter-mile occasions.
In its place of the V-8 engines provided in other overall performance variations of the Firebird, the Sprint had an inline-6 under its hood. This was an upgraded version of the engine available in base variations of the Firebird, sporting a solitary overhead cam head, 4-barrel carburetor, and functionality exhaust. In the Sprint, it is really coupled to a 4-speed guide transmission the driver functions with guidance from a hood-mounted tachometer.
As Leno tells it, then-Pontiac boss John DeLorean was a fan of the Jaguar E-Form (which released in 1961 with a dual overhead cam inline-6) and needed to create a competitor. Though Pontiac did in the long run make a thought version referred to as the Banshee, General Motors would not approve a output model, fearing it would compete with the Corvette.
1968 Pontiac Firebird Sprint convertible on Jay Leno’s Garage
Alternatively, DeLorean launched the Firebird Sprint, intending to get on the E-Variety with his very own inline-6 (albeit in a larger sized, heavier car or truck) and an emphasis on dealing with. Since the Firebird Dash was meant to contend with European sporting activities cars and trucks, it even received “4.1-liter” badging, as a substitute of the cubic-inch displacement measurement that was common for U.S. automakers at the time.
The Firebird Sprint may perhaps have contented DeLorean’s famous ego, but it was not a industrial achievements. It built much less energy (about 220 hp) than a V-8 Firebird of the time, but price much more, Leno pointed out. Therefore, the Sprint is now incredibly uncommon. Keep in brain that there was under no circumstances an equal model of the Firebird’s Chevrolet Camaro twin, which shared the GM F-overall body platform.
Leno acquired his Firebird Dash convertible in 2019, and set it again on the road following a mild restoration and some modern day upgrades for drivability. Observe the entire video for extra particulars of this abnormal Pontiac, and to read that straight-6 sing.