Pontiac Firebird Yellow Bird : 1980

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New for 1980, the Yellowbird became the third and final color scheme for the Esprit appearance package. Like the Skybird, the Yellowbird is a very bright package that's not at all masculine. Yellowbirds are much more rare than Skybirds and Redbirds. Yellowbirds used RPO W73.

yellowbird logo

The Yellowbird's decals are almost identical to the 1979 Redbird's. Both used gold accents, and all the locations of stripes are the same. (The Yellowbird had a sail panel bird on its tail whether or not you had the spoiler).

Yellow snowflakes hadn't been used at all before 1980, but body-colored Rally II's had been very popular on yellow Firebirds like the yellow Formula W50.

Pontiac had figured out that color-coordinated wheels on a yellow car were great styling, and these wheels really make the Yellowbird stand out. Since there was no longer any reason to use red wheel emblems, the Yellowbird also has the gold wheel emblems like a Trans Am Special Edition.

(source: firebirdtransamparts).

yellowbird rear

The Yellowbird's most distinctive new feature was its taillights. It used Trans Am taillights, which have no hint of red when unlit, and added a yellow accent stripe on each rib.

yellowbid in

The interior, departing from Skybird and Redbird practice, isn't yellow. It's Camel Tan, a very popular color from 1978 to 1980. This interior, like Carmine Red, is all one color. The Yellowbird continued to borrow the gold accents from the Trans Am Special Edition, which included a new engine-turned gold shift plate in 1980. This item is very popular with Bandit Trans Am owners, and many have added it to earlier models. As you can see, Camel Tan interior looks mighty fine with the special gold accents. Everything in the interior was now gold, and harmonized better than the earlier models.

The Yellowbird was the first in the series to have its steering wheel shared with other models. By now, it was common for Bandit Trans Ams to have tan steering wheels with gold spokes, the same wheel having been used on all the 1978 Gold Editions (all of which looked mighty fine as well). According to several books on Firebirds, the gold spokes were discontinued on November 20th, 1979, and this Yellowbird has the later black-spoked tan wheel.

You might not notice it, but this particular car has fuzz-upholstered kick panels that are not original. It only has about 28,000 miles on it in these photos, but in Florida, that was enough to fry the tan plastic, so the owner had it all covered.


Pontiac chose unique colors for the Yellowbird that weren't used on other Firebirds. In fact, the Pontiac shop manual marks them "Yellowbird only", indicating these colors weren't used on any other Pontiacs. Code 56 was the main color, and Code 37 was the accent.

yellowbird decals

Yellowbird Decal Placement information sheet. Special Thanks to Heiko Kraatz of Bandit Trans-Am.

yellowbird decals2

Yellowbird Stripe Part Numbers, thanks to Heiko Kraatz of Bandit Trans-Am.


Here's a memo from Pontiac entitled "What is a Yellow Bird?". Read it! Pontiac claims "The Yellow Bird should be very appealing to female prospects."

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