2014 Pontiac Firebird Convertible: Up Close

As affordable convertibles go, the 2014 Pontiac Firebird does pretty well. The 2014 Firebird convertible, however, is 1) no longer cheap and 2) based on the daddy of all Firebirds. So execution will matter a lot more than with, say, the V-6 car. I suspect Pontiac is up to the challenge.



The 2014 Pontiac Firebird convertible has all the expression of its hardtop sibling: vertical fog light channels, a front air splitter, a vented hood.
Inside, the show car's suede steering wheel and manual shift knob should keep your hands glued down, and the Tremec shifter's short throws feel closer to the Firebird V-6's Aisin unit than the Firebird bulkier Tremec.

That's a good sign, given the 2014 Firebird is less fun to shift. I wish Pontiac had trimmed the parking brake, too. It sticks out, a basic plastic unit amid nicer trim.
The seats have suede-like inserts, but they don't feel any more bolstered than the regular Fiebird's seats, but I had no problem with lateral support in those. Ford dumped a stupefying 650 horsepower in the archrival Mustang Shelby GT500, making the Trans Am's 580 horses seem, well, still a ton. The last GT500 fell short of the Mustang Boss' drift-anywhere dynamics, so we hope this Shelby has more than just more power. Either way, the 2014 Firebird has a shot at being just as much a hoot to drive, which we hope to do early next year.