Jay Leno Shows Us Around His 2002 Pontiac Trans-Am WS6: Video15
Jay Leno is the proud owner of some of the most sought-after General Motors vehicles ever built, including a Chevy Corvair Yenko Stinger, 1957 Buick Roadmaster and countless Chevy Corvettes. But for a recent episode of his Jay Leno’s Garage YouTube show, the car-obsessed former talk show host decided to pull out a more obtainable and run-of-the-mill GM product from his personal collection: a 2002 Pontiac Trans-Am WS6.
Leno acquired this Pontiac Trans Am WS6 after he was asked to drive the pace car for the 2002 Daytona 500. GM asked Leno what kind of compensation he would like in exchange for leading the field to green and, being a true car guy, Leno asked if they could just pay him in product. This gave GM the idea to gift Leno one of the limited-edition 2002 Pontiac Trans-Am Daytona 500 pace car models, but he wasn’t interested in putting one of the bright yellow special edition models in his garage.
Instead, Leno had GM deliver him a regular 2002 Pontiac Trans-Am WS6 finished in a more approachable Navy Blue Metallic body color and with a six-speed manual transmission. While Leno certainly has much faster and much more valuable cars in his Los Angeles-based collection, he still has a soft spot for his WS6, affectionately referring to it as a four-seat Corvette. Leno’s WS6 is also bone stock (apart from the Optima battery that he throws in all of his collection cars), as he finds it fun to keep a car exactly how it was when it left the factory. The 5.7L LS1 V8 engine also has plenty of power for Leno’s tastes, pumping out a respectable 325 horsepower and 350 pound-feet of torque.
Check out the video embedded below to learn a bit more about the 2002 Pontiac Trans-Am WS6 and see Leno take his own personal WS6 for a cruise around the sunny streets of LA.
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These cars were awesome and now if you have one with low miles and looks good, they are going for more than what they were new.
First one I have seen with unstained and peeling wheel.
Nice wheels but if you drove them they never lasted even with intense care.
I remember seeing this car in the dealership when it was new. Always a head-turner.
I have an ’01 that I ordered new.It also arrived with the later style wheels. I had the Pontiac dealer swap them for the older style polished WS6 wheels with another one they had on their lot before delivery .Glad I did.!!
Sunset Orange, 6spd, 4,000 miles.
Appearance is subjective, but the ’98-’02 WS6 TA’s were one of the best looking GM vehicles of all time. It looks fast just sitting still. My cousin bought an ’02 brand new back in the day and he still has it to this day. It makes a nice summer cruiser.
We loved our Firebird, miss it, great memories of our 30’s.
I really remember what Jay called the “Chicken Head.” I used to be the only guy around who could put one on without screwing it up. I once watched a dealership tech try to replace one for a customer with a water hose running over the hood to assist installation. He got frustrated and with a fit of temper wadded it up and threw it on the ground. Then, ordered another one, which I offered to put on for him. He took me up on the offer, and soon all the other dealerships around sent them to me to install. Oh, the good old days.
I went with the Camaro SS in 1999. Ordered mine from the dealer with SLP options and Chrome 5 spoke ZR1 wheels in Navy Blue Matellic. I still have it …
It does make for great weekend fun driving.
That initial test drive was a gotcha after waiting all the years to have 300+ hp car that weighed less than 3700 lbs. It had 63k on the clock and never been in the rain as well.
I still get the thumbs up and yes the new Mustang, Camaro, and Challenger, throw a rev wanting to race… unfortunately, I did not keep it stock and installed performance parts to make even more fun to drive.
I was hoping GM would have kept the size and style with the LS3 or the new LT1 455 hp
I still have my wifes 02 WS6 T/A in black, purchased JAN 2002. I inherited it when she got her 2013 SS Camaro. Still runs great with 102,000 miles, & of course a little more maintenance done over the years/miles. Under warranty was the fuel pump, & a gear bearing in the rear end, & then I had to replace the water pump about 3 years ago. Still factory everything else & gets over 20 mpg on the highway. One thing Jay didn’t mention, is that the Pontiac division is gone.
Glad you still have it. So many parts available can still be bought and replaced.
In case you don’t know, go to
Tons of parts and how too’s
Yes have checks those two sites as well as others. The 2002 WS6 T/A with the ram air (even if Jay Leno is not sure about it) has always made me think of those photos I’ve seen of an F-14 Tomcat sitting on a carrier deck at sunset.
Lmao… I was on the Kitty Hawk and flight deck duty for the Yellow gear. Did a West Pac and finished at NAS North Island on Coronado Island. Tom Cats were hot and the Phantom was nearly phased out. I see that carrier view extremely well…
I have the old “Tomcat Sunset” calendar hanging on my office door with that photo and more. My son flew Tomcats before transitioning to the Super Hornet. I did a Tiger Cruise on the last voyage of the Saratoga with the Tomcats on board. When they sunsetted the Tomcat we ordered a lot of the “Last Time, Baby” gear and that calendar. More of those good old days!
Have to say a cliche but “Good times…”
Back when GM had interesting performance cars other than the Vette and Camaro. My friend still has his 1999 Formula bought new with the Ram Air hood with only 30K miles . After they canceled Hummer, Oldsmobile and Pontiac GM started it’s slide into the boredom lineup we now have and it’s looking more likely the Camaro is dead leaving the Vette as the only sports car left followed by a couple of dead men walking last gasp Cadillac sedans. I never thought in 35 plus years of being a car guy that we would ever be at this point.