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GTA DOCUMENTATION/RESEARCH Want to ask about your GTA's documentation, build codes, or other historical data? Then post it HERE!

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Old 01-02-2010   #1
JML
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Just joined

Hello everyone,

Just joined, but first off I want to add that unfortunately I currently don't have GTA of my own- well, in 1:18 form.

I've really begun to love this car, for its beauty and balance, but since my passion for it is fairly new, I don't know much about it. I don't know if everyone here has a GTA and this site is only for existing owners, so I hope I'm posting this in the right place.

But, perhaps you guys could help me get started, and give me a few tips on which GTA is the one to buy. I'm currently a student, so cash flow is minimal, but I am determined to have this car.

And, my first noob question is- how was the standard gearbox for the GTA? and in what years was it offered?

Last edited by JML; 01-02-2010 at 03:51 PM.
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Old 01-02-2010   #2
Y84
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GTA Year: 1988
GTA Engine: 350 TPI Automatic
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Welcome to The GTA Source Page.

The 5-speed was only available behind the 5.0L/305 engine.

Make sure to browse around the rest of the website, as there's a lot of information as well as authentication tips that you might want to be aware of if you're shopping for a GTA:

http://www.gtasourcepage.com

Quote:
Originally Posted by JML View Post
Hello everyone,

Just joined, but first off I want to add that unfortunately I currently don't have GTA of my own- well, in 1:18 form.

I've really begun to love this car, for its beauty and balance, but since my passion for it is fairly new, I don't know much about it. I don't know if everyone here has a GTA and this site is only for existing owners, so I hope I'm posting this in the right place.

But, perhaps you guys could help me get started, and give me a few tips on which GTA is the one to buy. I'm currently a student, so cash flow is minimal, but I am determined to have this car.

And, my first noob question is- how was the standard gearbox for the GTA? and in what years was it offered?
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Old 01-02-2010   #3
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Welcome to the site as well. The only important point is enjoyment of the cars - current or future owner.

For me, the standard tranny is the only way to go.

Regarding the 5-speed, I can't speak of longevity when coupled to the 5 litre as I only have 160,000 km on the one car. On the other hand, with my V6 5-speed Firebird, I got about 350,000 km before I had the transmission rebuilt as I was losing the syncro to shift from third to fourth gear.
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Old 01-02-2010   #4
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The 305, how good of an engine is it? I don't know if my research is entirely accurate, but 5.0's hp numbers range between 130-150, which means it will require a lot of mods to bring it up to speed- idk how the aftermarket for it is either. Thing is, I really want a manual transmission- or is there another possibility of doing like...a transmission swap for the GTAs equipped with the 350?

If the 305 is popular and the performance parts are available, I think I just found my desired combination.
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Old 01-02-2010   #5
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The 305, how good of an engine is it? I don't know if my research is entirely accurate, but 5.0's hp numbers range between 130-150, which means it will require a lot of mods to bring it up to speed- idk how the aftermarket for it is either. Thing is, I really want a manual transmission- or is there another possibility of doing like...a transmission swap for the GTAs equipped with the 350?

If the 305 is popular and the performance parts are available, I think I just found my desired combination.
You are a little low on the HP ratings. The GTA had the LB9 Tuned-Port Injected 5.0L. HP ranged from 190-230. The numbers you cited sound like the Throttle-body injected 5.0 engines which were not available in the GTA.
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Old 01-02-2010   #6
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Quote:
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You are a little low on the HP ratings. The GTA had the LB9 Tuned-Port Injected 5.0L. HP ranged from 190-230. The numbers you cited sound like the Throttle-body injected 5.0 engines which were not available in the GTA.
That sounds a lot better, much healthier numbers. But is it as easy to tune as the 5.7?

I'm sorry for the silly questions, I should do a lot more reading.
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Old 01-03-2010   #7
FearThisGTA
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GTA Year: 1991
GTA Engine: 350 TPI Automatic
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Welcome to the site/club, and yes for the most part the 305 is as easy to tune as the 350, imho though, I would at least do a motor swap, put the 305 up( in case you want to restore it to original later), and then md the crap out of the 350. BUT, thats just me...
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Old 01-03-2010   #8
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That sounds a lot better, much healthier numbers. But is it as easy to tune as the 5.7?

I'm sorry for the silly questions, I should do a lot more reading.
Depends on the year and your knowledge of computer tuning.

You can squeeze a few more horses out of the stock chip on both the 305 and 350, but you can't really beat it for driveability.

Tuning is best done on a dyno with a wideband 02 sensor in both the left and right banks of the engine to see what the engine is really doing.

Then, you get a proper chip programmed to the specifics of the engine. Its expensive but when done right, it improves gas mileage, performance and driveability.
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Old 01-03-2010   #9
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Well, it's good to know the GTA is mod-friendly, and I wouldn't doubt that you need precision tools to figure out what's going on under the hood.
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Old 01-03-2010   #10
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GTA Year: 1988
GTA Engine: 350 TPI Automatic
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First up, welcome to The Source Page. I hope you find the site to be helpful in every way you use it.

Always remember that the only "dumb" or "strange" or "odd" question you have.... is the one that you do not ask. That's what all this is here for in the first place.
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Old 01-04-2010   #11
cody1989GTA
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GTA Year: 1989
GTA Engine: 350 TPI Automatic
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are u wanting a 5 speed or automatic?? this will help u decide what motor u choose in ur first GTA. Please look through the authenticy page. Alot of people selling regular trans ams saying they are true GTA. tHE MOST IMPORTANT THING TO REMEMBER.....Y84(TRUE GTA CODE)

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Old 01-04-2010   #12
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Most basic GTA info two engine choices that being the TPI 305 and the TPI 350, the 305s you could get in any year with a manual and t-tops. The 350 only came with an auto and not all years could be had with T-tops.

All had the same gold lace wheels. The 20th Anniversary Trans Am which has a turbo V6 is also considered a GTA and has the same options.

GTAs also do not have the fender vent as other 82-90 trans ams did. Most are easily identified by the badging.

Theres several other little differences but thats the basics. The 305 can be made to have respectable power it just takes ALOT more time and money. Out of the box stock they are pathetically slow though. The 350 is the better engine to make power with.
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Old 01-04-2010   #13
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welcome to the forums!
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Old 01-04-2010   #14
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GTA Year: 1989
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the 305 TPI is not weak by any means , i own a 350 TPI... but shifting gears would be fun. The 350 is the way to go with making power if thats what u are into. Before u decide to buy please let us help u deicide if it is a good buy.. RPO codes should be under center console. y84 code should be there.
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Old 01-06-2010   #15
JML
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Quote:
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are u wanting a 5 speed or automatic?? this will help u decide what motor u choose in ur first GTA. Please look through the authenticy page. Alot of people selling regular trans ams saying they are true GTA. tHE MOST IMPORTANT THING TO REMEMBER.....Y84(TRUE GTA CODE)
I currently own a 2000 Impala, it's got the usual 4-speed automatic- and it's fine, I don't want to go in start-stop traffic with a manual anyway, it demeans the purpose- but, I badly want a manual gearbox so I can practice my ability to drive clutch- which is why I would of wanted the 5-speed manual.

But seeing that it comes with a weak motor (which seems to need a lot of work to bring it to speed) well, at lot more than the 350- then that's bit disappointing, why didn't they put the 305 with the automatic and the 350 with the standard? was it a matter of reliability on behalf of the gearbox itself?

I do know the 5.7 is a popular motor, and as I said, I'm a student, and will be for the next 2 years- so, I can't really afford to rebuild an entire engine (as much as I'd love to)- more like, update an existing one, which is why I still want the 350. Someone suggested a swap, but I don't have the knowledge, the place, the people, nor the money to do that-

Also, I thank you all for your advice and info, it helps me out a LOT- I didn't know there were ppl out there who change regular trans ams to look like GTA's...that's messed up. Can someone give me the link to the authenticity page? I want to do further reading into the matter-

Btw- I see this a lot- "TPI" what does that stand for?

-I would also like to add that I personally love the digital dashes- it's another one of the things I love about this car- so futuristic and alluring. I don't know if I asked this previously, but what year is the "preffered" year of the GTA? To be honest, I am aiming for the 88' (the year when I was born-since, I'm melodramatic like that)- and I've also read somewhere (dunno if I read it correctly) but 88' was the year all the awesome options became available for the GTA, the digital dash being one of them- Add the T-top and I'm in love.

Last edited by JML; 01-06-2010 at 01:51 PM.
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Old 01-06-2010   #16
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Btw- I see this a lot- "TPI" what does that stand for?

I don't know if I asked this previously, but what year is the "preffered" year of the GTA?
TPI = tuned port injection (i.e. one injector per cylinder)

Regarding "preferred" year for a GTA - any year is preferred over not having a GTA. As far as special years - I think each GTA of any year is special to their owners (no flame wars here
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Old 01-06-2010   #17
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TPI = tuned port injection (i.e. one injector per cylinder)

Regarding "preferred" year for a GTA - any year is preferred over not having a GTA. As far as special years - I think each GTA of any year is special to their owners (no flame wars here
By all means, I understand that, I'm sorry if my question was instigative- And you're right, it's a matter of choice, as the GTA model had a lot of variety to it-

Did the 350 change at all throughout over the GTA's production years?
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Old 01-06-2010   #18
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I didn't want to start a separate thread on this- but after doing some reading, the stance on the digital dash seems to be 50-50. I know the ones used in the Corvettes had many issues, heard a lot of bad things about them- As I mentioned earlier, I really love the look of it, looks really cool, blends in with the car very nicely. But is it so unreliable that I will like...suddenly lose my ability to see my speed? my gas? temperature levels?- also, seeing that it is fairly old technology, some have said it will be increasingly difficult to repair/replace the digital dash.

I don't really seek too much practicability, after all, if I would get a GTA it would be my special car- I got my dd car. So if the visibility of these digital dashes is the main issue, then I'll gladly accept it as an option.

I see the GTA as a really cool car, it doesn't need to be too practical, just reliable enough to get me around and just give me enough time to enjoy it. For example, look at the 80s' Lamborghini Countach- it's suspension was hard, u had no rear visibility, clutch was from a V12 truck, and benzine would leak into the cabin, slowly asphyxiating the driver. But, my God it was a beautiful car.
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Old 01-07-2010   #19
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The WC T5 manual transmission and the standard T5 transmission will not hold up to the torque that the 350 produces. They should have put the T56 into it. Though, the T5 can be built to withstand higher torque and horse power ratings it will cost. The T5 usually grenades 1st-3rd gears behind a mildly modified 350.

Dont discount the 305. Theres a guy in my car club that runs 11 seconds on his 305. Then again it's also got 2 turbos on it and a big f-off carb.

The digital dash is fragile is all I can say. It works fine, the speedo at low speeds is not accurate. It will not read some of the lower speeds things like that. The lighting behind it can be an issue depending on exterior lighting conditions. But overall it's just fine. I don't like the colours or the light bulbs, and will be swapping to an LED system in the future and changing some of the plastic colour changer inserts in behind the glass LCDs.

Finding parts and replacement parts if somethign does break is a real pain.

The other part of the digital dash that can cause issues and i've read a lot about was the push button heater controls. The resistor packs that control the fan speeds at the console burn out often.

Other than that, its late 80s technology which could easily be brought up to today's standards with a little work and some PCBs or ICs.
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Old 01-08-2010   #20
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If you want the digital dash, that will limit you to 88 and 89. If you want t-tops, that will also play into it. T-tops were only available with the 305 in 1988. The digital dash in my GTA actually functions perfectly. The more you mess with the wiring in the rest of the car, the more you risk messing up the digital dash. The odometer was messed up at first, but once we put the wiring right in the rest of the car, it worked perfectly.

And please do not discount the 305. The 305 Automatic actually has 295 ft-lb of torque. Horsepower isn't as good, but the torque on a 305 is nothing to sneeze at. I have a '95 V6 and it outruns that just fine.
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