Larry McIntyre’s first car was a 1970 Pontiac Firebird, green with green interior. He was 16 years old in 1978 and his mother paid $500 for the car. Over the next two years Larry had the car modified with Trans Am fender flares, rear spoiler, cut down L88 hood scoop cut in half and mounted like a Trans Am shaker, chrome side pipes, Craiger mag wheels with white letter 70’s on the front and 60’s on the back. The car was topped off with air shocks and yellow traction bars. The car was painted with a gold Amber-Flint aircraft gold paint and tinted windows.
The interior was dyed black. (which did not work well with the 70’s white bell-bottom pants) The car had the word “Gold Dust” hand painted across rear spoiler. He even had a gold silk jacket with “Gold Dust” embroidered across the back.
Smokey and the Bandit was released the year prior to the purchase of “Gold Dust”. Muscle cars, spinning tires, burn-outs, fast cars, CB’s and WWW wrestling were the fad of the late 70’s and early 80’s. Along with disco, roller skating, bell bottom, silk shirts, stack shoes, tube socks, Peter Frampton, Kiss, The Six Million Dollar Manand gas shortages. The Smokey and the Bandit movie in the 70′ was only second to The Star Wars movie. Everyone knew Burnt Reynolds, Sally Fields, Jerry Reed and Jackie Gleason.
In 1980, Larry’s farther co-signed for him to purchase a 1978 Pontiac Trans Am. It was a beautiful brown model with the gold bird and pinstripes. And Larry drove it like a Bandit. Many “laying drag” tickets to prove it. It was his pride and joy and he loved that iconic car… even if it wasn’t black. In 1981 Larry traded his Trans Am payment for baby diaper and formula. It was a sad day, but the joy a new baby girl, was greater than a car. In 2007, Larry started saving a small portion of his paycheck for his dream car. In January, 2018, Larry was discussing a ground up build on a 1977 Trans Am on a donor car in Washington. When the cost of the build quote past the $80,000 mark without bring completed, the idea was put on hold.In April of 2018, Larry stumbled across a You Tube video for a $70,000.
1977-1978 Bandit Car (use link to 2nd video on main page) with the original engine, a Butler build, he was excited. Negotiations and pictures were exchanged for the next week and an agreement was made and arrangements were made to travel to Trans AM Specialties in Miami, Florida to pick up the car. On the way back, the Bandit Mod’s first car show in Orlando in the month of April. The week-end Van Diesel day viewed his “Fast & Furious” ride.
Since then the car has it’s home in Acworth, Georgia. It has it’s own garage and a new black Bandit trailer to ride in to the shows.
We’ve been fortune to show it 5 times and bring home 3 trophies. The best part about showing the Bandit and bringing back the memories of the 70’s. Young adults and children love the care, but the 70’s and 80’s crowd love it the most. A trip down memory lane remembering high school football games, dates, cruises and best friends. Conversations bring back the past for those that grew up in the smokey and the bandit days and for a few minutes… they are 18 all over again.
Driving locally to Sunday diner, drivers throw thumbs up, beep the horn and yell out the window, “nice car” or “go Bandit”. This is why Larry has the passion to relate with this car. Larry is a former New Hope, Paulding County Volunteer Fire Chief, a Paulding Leadership III graduate and a Paulding business owner for over 27 years. Larry has been awarded the metal honor by the Atlanta Police Department and has a “Larry McIntyre Day” declared by the City of Atlanta for saving the life of an Atlanta police officer. Larry attended Riverside Military Academy in Hollywood, Florida and Gainesville, Georgia. He obtained his Georgia Law enforcement license at Altlanta Area Tech. Later, Larry was employed by KRGR Kroger Radio and then Cox Communications. Larry, his Wife Arden and their children moved to Paulding County in 1989 and started their own business while Larry volunteered with Paulding County Fire Department and worked as the Marketing and promotional manager for Charles Hardy at the Hardy Dealerships. Eventually, Larry and Arden’s business, ImagePro grew into a full time successful sign and lighting business that is still in operation today.