1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

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1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

Postby cammerjeff » Sun Jul 19, 2015 2:22 pm

Well we took our 78 Catalina Safari to our local POCI annual car show yesterday. And met a Retired GM interior Designer and after looking over our wagon he asked if I would be interested in Dealer Edition of the Pontiac Products Manual for 1978? I said sure and he said he would return in a few minutes with it. Well 30 minutes later he was back with it and would not take any cash for it, so I convinced him to let me buy him lunch. Great Guy. He worked at the Warren Tech center for 30 years, and just before he retired they were throwing out a lot of the old copies of manuals they had kept for years so he took a lot of stuff he could carry home. This manual has all the Distribution Bulletins up to 3-1-78, along with the marketing ideas of the time.
Things I found odd, in this manual the Sunbird is referred to as a "S" Type, I have never seen that before. And that the 305 V-8 was not available on the sunbird at the start of the Model year, and that the options availability was Undetermined as of 7-19-77. And the engine chart does not show a V-8 available for the Sunbird Safari wagon. So this is some more evidence that there were no Factory 1978 Sunbird V-8 wagons built.
If anyone is interested I will post more pages from it when I have more time. And to think I wasn't going to go to this Show! As I got off of work at 3:45am Saturday morning and only got about an hour of sleep before making the hour drive to the show. Good day, saw a lot of nice Pontiac's and bought a set of 1978 Michigan Bicentenial Plates with 78 Tags on them so I can register the Wagon as a Classic.
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Jeff R

78 Sunbird Safari Wagon, 3.8 N/A, 1971 Catalina Freeway Enforcer
77 Astre Formula, some day soon powered by a 215 Buick V-8
1973 4-speed Lemans Safari STOCK!!!!! 1978 Catalina Safari
1969 Firebird Sprint 301 ci OHC6, T-5, 4.10 12 bolt posi
2006 Mallet Solstice, 6.0 LS2, 6-speed manual
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1978 Pontiac Sunbird Safari Wagon


Re: 1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

Postby stage169 » Sun Jul 19, 2015 7:40 pm

How cool is that! When you get the chance show what you can! I've heard more stories of stuff found in the trash that way, at least he saw an opportunity to save some. I bet he feels good that it has gone to someone who appreciates it!

That raps up the D98 stripe option thanks. I thought maybe I had seen the "S" so I checked the option reports. 79 shows Sunbird's as "S" cars and then in 80 Sunbird's are "H" cars. :? This pic is of 76. Brian
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Re: 1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

Postby cammerjeff » Thu Jul 23, 2015 10:31 pm

Brian, That is interesting that the internally Pontiac referred to the Sunbird as "S" type in 78 and 79 after the Vega/Astre were canceled. But returned to calling them "H" cars in 1980. Here are a few more pages. I will try to upload all the Sunbird related info, including the Rah Rah Marketing speel. Here are the nest set of pages.
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Jeff R

78 Sunbird Safari Wagon, 3.8 N/A, 1971 Catalina Freeway Enforcer
77 Astre Formula, some day soon powered by a 215 Buick V-8
1973 4-speed Lemans Safari STOCK!!!!! 1978 Catalina Safari
1969 Firebird Sprint 301 ci OHC6, T-5, 4.10 12 bolt posi
2006 Mallet Solstice, 6.0 LS2, 6-speed manual
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1978 Pontiac Sunbird Safari Wagon

Re: 1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

Postby cammerjeff » Thu Jul 23, 2015 10:55 pm

The Next 5 Sunbird related Pages, I keep forgetting that the Sunbird HB was mid year addition in 78, so very little info on them in this early edition.
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Jeff R

78 Sunbird Safari Wagon, 3.8 N/A, 1971 Catalina Freeway Enforcer
77 Astre Formula, some day soon powered by a 215 Buick V-8
1973 4-speed Lemans Safari STOCK!!!!! 1978 Catalina Safari
1969 Firebird Sprint 301 ci OHC6, T-5, 4.10 12 bolt posi
2006 Mallet Solstice, 6.0 LS2, 6-speed manual
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1978 Pontiac Sunbird Safari Wagon

Re: 1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

Postby cammerjeff » Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:07 pm

The next 5, I see they just use 1 Snowflake wheel Picture thru out the book, It is the wheel that would be used on Non H or F body cars, 5 Lug nuts make it a 14" or 15" wheel, and the arrowhead center cap make it for any body type but the Firebirds.
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Jeff R

78 Sunbird Safari Wagon, 3.8 N/A, 1971 Catalina Freeway Enforcer
77 Astre Formula, some day soon powered by a 215 Buick V-8
1973 4-speed Lemans Safari STOCK!!!!! 1978 Catalina Safari
1969 Firebird Sprint 301 ci OHC6, T-5, 4.10 12 bolt posi
2006 Mallet Solstice, 6.0 LS2, 6-speed manual
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1978 Pontiac Sunbird Safari Wagon

Re: 1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

Postby cammerjeff » Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:16 pm

I have never claimed to be a Sunbird expert, my area of knowlage is the Astre and Sunbird Wagons. So I am learning quite a bit about Sunbird Interior options. I never knew the multi Color interior was available in Sunbirds, I don't recall seeing them equipped that way. Also I thought the Optional Luxury Bucket seats were a Starfire and Skyhawk thing.
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Jeff R

78 Sunbird Safari Wagon, 3.8 N/A, 1971 Catalina Freeway Enforcer
77 Astre Formula, some day soon powered by a 215 Buick V-8
1973 4-speed Lemans Safari STOCK!!!!! 1978 Catalina Safari
1969 Firebird Sprint 301 ci OHC6, T-5, 4.10 12 bolt posi
2006 Mallet Solstice, 6.0 LS2, 6-speed manual
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1978 Pontiac Sunbird Safari Wagon

Re: 1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

Postby cammerjeff » Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:25 pm

The Second Picture says Safari Wide Body Stripe UPC D85 Vinyle
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Jeff R

78 Sunbird Safari Wagon, 3.8 N/A, 1971 Catalina Freeway Enforcer
77 Astre Formula, some day soon powered by a 215 Buick V-8
1973 4-speed Lemans Safari STOCK!!!!! 1978 Catalina Safari
1969 Firebird Sprint 301 ci OHC6, T-5, 4.10 12 bolt posi
2006 Mallet Solstice, 6.0 LS2, 6-speed manual
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1978 Pontiac Sunbird Safari Wagon

Re: 1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

Postby cammerjeff » Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:36 pm

5 More, If any one wants a close up of any thing posted just ask and I will get to it.
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Jeff R

78 Sunbird Safari Wagon, 3.8 N/A, 1971 Catalina Freeway Enforcer
77 Astre Formula, some day soon powered by a 215 Buick V-8
1973 4-speed Lemans Safari STOCK!!!!! 1978 Catalina Safari
1969 Firebird Sprint 301 ci OHC6, T-5, 4.10 12 bolt posi
2006 Mallet Solstice, 6.0 LS2, 6-speed manual
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1978 Pontiac Sunbird Safari Wagon

Re: 1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

Postby cammerjeff » Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:49 pm

5 more, I wonder how late in the model year the 305 engine did become available?
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Jeff R

78 Sunbird Safari Wagon, 3.8 N/A, 1971 Catalina Freeway Enforcer
77 Astre Formula, some day soon powered by a 215 Buick V-8
1973 4-speed Lemans Safari STOCK!!!!! 1978 Catalina Safari
1969 Firebird Sprint 301 ci OHC6, T-5, 4.10 12 bolt posi
2006 Mallet Solstice, 6.0 LS2, 6-speed manual
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1978 Pontiac Sunbird Safari Wagon

Re: 1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

Postby cammerjeff » Thu Jul 23, 2015 11:59 pm

I have included Pic's 2 and 4 of this set so the Distrabution Bullitin release date could be seen, the Sunbird info is on the back side, and is on pictures 3 and 5.
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Jeff R

78 Sunbird Safari Wagon, 3.8 N/A, 1971 Catalina Freeway Enforcer
77 Astre Formula, some day soon powered by a 215 Buick V-8
1973 4-speed Lemans Safari STOCK!!!!! 1978 Catalina Safari
1969 Firebird Sprint 301 ci OHC6, T-5, 4.10 12 bolt posi
2006 Mallet Solstice, 6.0 LS2, 6-speed manual
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1978 Pontiac Sunbird Safari Wagon

Re: 1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

Postby cammerjeff » Fri Jul 24, 2015 12:08 am

More Bullitins
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Jeff R

78 Sunbird Safari Wagon, 3.8 N/A, 1971 Catalina Freeway Enforcer
77 Astre Formula, some day soon powered by a 215 Buick V-8
1973 4-speed Lemans Safari STOCK!!!!! 1978 Catalina Safari
1969 Firebird Sprint 301 ci OHC6, T-5, 4.10 12 bolt posi
2006 Mallet Solstice, 6.0 LS2, 6-speed manual
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1978 Pontiac Sunbird Safari Wagon

Re: 1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

Postby cammerjeff » Fri Jul 24, 2015 12:15 am

Some Engine Type Info
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Jeff R

78 Sunbird Safari Wagon, 3.8 N/A, 1971 Catalina Freeway Enforcer
77 Astre Formula, some day soon powered by a 215 Buick V-8
1973 4-speed Lemans Safari STOCK!!!!! 1978 Catalina Safari
1969 Firebird Sprint 301 ci OHC6, T-5, 4.10 12 bolt posi
2006 Mallet Solstice, 6.0 LS2, 6-speed manual
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1978 Pontiac Sunbird Safari Wagon

Re: 1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

Postby cammerjeff » Fri Jul 24, 2015 12:21 am

From these final 2 documents of the day, it looks like a Buick 350 V-8 only cost GM about $80 more to make than a 231 V-6, I would have figured the diferance would be quite a bit more
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Jeff R

78 Sunbird Safari Wagon, 3.8 N/A, 1971 Catalina Freeway Enforcer
77 Astre Formula, some day soon powered by a 215 Buick V-8
1973 4-speed Lemans Safari STOCK!!!!! 1978 Catalina Safari
1969 Firebird Sprint 301 ci OHC6, T-5, 4.10 12 bolt posi
2006 Mallet Solstice, 6.0 LS2, 6-speed manual
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1978 Pontiac Sunbird Safari Wagon

Re: 1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

Postby marco_1978_spyder » Fri Jul 24, 2015 5:15 pm

cammerjeff wrote:The Next 5 Sunbird related Pages, I keep forgetting that the Sunbird HB was mid year addition in 78, so very little info on them in this early edition.


This is news to me, they had Sunbird Hatchbacks in 1977, wouldn't it have been a carry over? It was new to Lordstown for 78... and they did focus on coupes first.

Super Juicy info... so no worries.. I see now that the E designation.. ie; "2E27A8U543210" is for an economy model, makes sense. They added the E designation to the base model hatchback in 1980.
1978 Monza Spyder V8 4speed, posi
1978 Sunbird Formula V6, 5 Speed, Hatchback
1980 Sunbird Hatchback 4cyl, 4spd.
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Re: 1978 Pontiac Dealer Ordering Book

Postby stage169 » Fri Jul 24, 2015 6:15 pm

cammerjeff wrote:I wonder how late in the model year the 305 engine did become available?


Not sure but by the number made it was probably just short of not happening at all (481).

Cool stuff Jeff thanks for posting!
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