A slanted-front facelift occurred in 1977. Early 1977-built versions were supplied with an off-center scoop. Another production change was that early W72 cars came with the standard 180 hp air cleaner.
Pontiac offered the T/A 400 cu in (6.6 L) with a single 4-barrel Rochester Quadrajet carburetor RPO W72 rated at 200 bhp (203 PS; 149 kW) at 3600 rpm and a maximum torque of 325 lb⋅ft (441 N⋅m) at 2400 rpm, as opposed to the regular 6.6 Litre 400 (RPO L78) rated at 180 hp (134 kW). The T/A 6.6 equipped engines had chrome valve covers, while the base 400 engines had painted valve covers. In addition, California and high-altitude cars received the Olds 403 engine, which offered a slightly higher compression ratio and a more usable torque band than the Pontiac engines of 1977.
From 1977 to 1981, the Firebird used four square headlamps, while the Camaro continued to retain the two round headlights that had been shared by both second-generation designs. The 1977 Trans-Am Special Edition became famous after being featured in Smokey and the Bandit. The 1980 Turbo model was used for Smokey and the Bandit II.