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One of the largest contributors to the '82 Firebird's dramatic improvement in serviceability was the incorporation of the revised MacPherson strut front suspension and the utilization of a unitized body design. Elimination of the upper control arms of last year's conventional front suspension, and outboard mounting of the shock absorbers in the integral strut towers, provide an additional four to five inches of usable space on either side of the '82 Firebird's engine compartment. The resulting easy accessibility of under-hood components provides a tremendous improvement in labor time studies for air conditioning and heater related components, and all engine compartment service procedures.

Specific engine compartment serviceability improvements include:

    Pneumatic (gas) struts on either side of the hood that are lighter and more space efficient, and provide easier, more precise operation than the counterbalancing springs they replace. The hood opens 73° for easy access to all engine compartment components.

    The horizontally split evaporator case has been located for optimum accessibility and easy removal evaporator core.

   The heater and air conditioner blower motor can now De removed by unfastening 5 bolts, instead of removing fie fender.

   A heater hose that was completely hidden by engine components on earlier Firebirds has been relocated a-ld is now totally accessible from above.

   The air conditioning condenser can now be exposed for service by loosening the radiator support bolts and pushing the radiator back ... instead of disconnecting and removing the radiator.

   The power antenna can now be serviced from inside the engine compartment without removing major components or body panels.

   The MacPherson struts themselves have been engineered for easy serviceability, with L-shaped slots in the strut and mounting bracket allowing full caster and camber adjustment from above,

   The location and access of such routinely serviced features as spark plugs, oil—filter, drain plug and dipstick, and automatic transmission fluid dipstick, were given particular attention to assure that these regularly serviced items would be in the best position for easy accessibility,

  The thermostat of the L4 engine is located inside an assembly that looks and is serviced much like a small radiator cap. Located on the side of the engine, the cap can be easily removed, the thermostat replaced and the cap put back in place in a matter of seconds. Flushing the cooling system is also easier because the cap can be installed with the thermostat removed, eliminating the need to run the engine for a period of time to get the thermostat to open and allowing topping off the system in just a few minutes.

   All engine and accessory belts can be adjusted for proper tension from above.

   Translucent reservoirs allow quick verification of proper windshield wiper ... engine coolant and with the L4 engine, power steering fluid levels, Even the brake master cylinder features translucent windows for easy checking of proper brake fluid level.

The Firebird's engine compartment wasn't the only area scrutinized in an effort to achieve total serviceability. A number of other Firebird design improvements will reduce service downtime and expense for '82 Firebird value that extends far beyond the date of sale.

   Controls for the heater, air conditioning, electric mirrors and power windows are all located in the console and can be easily serviced by removing only the trim plate.

   The temperature control doors for the heater and air conditioning controls are self-adjusting.

   All instrument panel bulbs, switches and gages—including speedometer and tachometer—are front-loaded and can be serviced or replaced by simply removing the IP trim plate.

  The dual front radio speakers are top-loaded in the dash for easy access.

  The fuse panel is located to the lower left of the steering column and is hinged, to flip down for easy fuse replacement.

   A flip-down "convenience center," located to the right of the steering column, is part of the IP harness. This molded plastic unit holds the horn relay, rear window defogger, tone generator, hazard flasher and choke relay (for other than EFI-equipped engines), to provide ready serviceability of these °Mimes hard-to-reach components.

  Every connector in the Firebird's electrical system features a positive lock/easy release design that facilitates servicing and effectively locks out dirt and moisture. Additionally, every connector has a different male/ female plug configuration that speeds electrical system assembly and eliminates improper connections.

  Unique to Pontiac 's "F" car, the Firebird features a right-hand lower IP trim plate that can be removed in only a few seconds, providing quick accessibility to the ECM and a number of other emission control elements.

  The ECM includes a self-diagnostic feature that allows servicing in the field, replacing the dwell meter test of the 1981 system.

   The tail lamps are serviceable from inside the trunk. The carpet trim pulls back to reveal finger-operated wing-nut type screws that release the front-loaded tail lamp assemblies for quick easy servicing.

  Unlike much of the competition, all '82 Firebird control arm bushings are designed to allow removal and replacement.

The recommended maintenance intervals for the '82 Firebirds are few and far between, to keep them out of the dealership and on the street.

  Oil change and chassis lubrication is recommended every 7,500 miles or 12 months.

  Oil filter replacement is recommended every other oil change if mileage determines interval, every oil change if time determines interval.

  Tune-ups, including spark plug and air filter replacement, are recommended every 30,000 miles.

   Automatic transmission fluid and filter servicing is recommended every 100,000 miles.

Comprehensive warranty coverage can be regarded as a good indication of a company's belief in its product's reliability, durability and expected longevity. Pontiac 's warranty coverage for the 1982 Firebirds reflects a strong commitment to quality that lasts.

  The standard new car warranty covers the Firebirds for the first 12 months or 12,000 miles of operation.

   The standard extended powertrain warranty covers any defects in the Firebird's powertrain for 24 months or 24,000 miles, minus a $100 deductible after the first 12 months or 12,000 miles.

  The standard rust perforation warranty covers the Firebirds against any kind of rust perforation for a period of 3 years.

  The emission components warranty covers any defects in the Firebird's—C3 system, catalytic converter, EFI or carburetor parts, and a number of other emission control related parts for a period of 5 years or 50,000 miles.

-The 1982 Firebird Book, 11/81