Profile of the 1972 Chevrolet Monte Carlo
Travel back to the early 1970s and see why the 1972 Chevrolet Monte Carlo was not just a beauty, but also a bargain in its class. Monte Carlo owners had all the luxuries that car buyers refuse to do without.
The 1972 Chevrolet Monte Carlo was considered to be America's most attainable luxury car; however, it was also a very misunderstood vehicle in its class. The problem was that there was not any other car like the Monte Carlo. It never quite fit into a specific category; some thought it was an oversized sports car while others thought it was an undersized luxury car. The truth is it was both. The Monte Carlo didn't have all virtues of a luxury car or a sporty car, but what it did have was the best.
The Monte Carlo was designed to compete with the Ford Thunderbird. Monte Carlo owners referred to their cars as "having their cake and driving it too." The car was a two-door coupe with a Cadillac-like egg crate grille and rear trim molding.
The interior was a Scandinavian style seating that was not unnecessarily ornate. The idea was that it would be clean and uncluttered. The instrument panel had more of a European appeal. The upholstery was available in Black, Blue, Covert, Green, or Pewter with the consumer's choice of cloth or leather. All-vinyl in Black, Covert, or Saddle could be purchased for an additional price. Monte Carlo seats were designed to be like a good mattress to leave you feeling comfortable and refreshed no matter how long you sat in the car. The springs and cushioning in the seats were designed to support the natural weaknesses in your back.
The gauges and controls were accessible to the hand and the eye. The wood grain was specifically chosen to match the interior color scheme of the Monte Carlo. Because Monte Carlo offered a luxury car without the high price that came with owning one, little things were omitted. These omitted items mainly included things of personal preference such as ashtrays and other similar items.
The 1972 Monte Carlo had a wheelbase of 116 inches with a 42-foot turning radius. The cars were 206.5 inches long, 75.6 inches wide, and 52.9 inches in height. The Monte Carlo weighed 3359 pounds (curb weight). The fuel tank capacity was 19 gallons and it had 12.9 cubic feet of usable luggage space.
Engines and transmissions
All Monte Carlos had exhaust emission control and every engine ran efficiently on any regular fuel. There were four engine types available to choose from including the 165-horsepower Turbo-Fire 350 V-8, the 175-horsepower Turbo-Jet 350 V-8, the 240-horsepower Turbo-Jet 400 V-8, and the 270-horsepower Turbo-Jet 454 V-8. Chevrolet offered three different transmissions depending on the engine that was selected: three-speed manual, Powerglide, or the Turbo Hydra-Matic.
The standard Monte Carlo came with a Turbo-Fire V-8 engine. The brake system design was power disc brakes in the front and finned rear brake drums for quick heat dissipation. The brake system also included a dual master cylinder system with a warning light.
Other standard features included variable ratio power steering, deep coil springs, inner fenders to protect outer fenders, long-life exhaust system, flush and dry rocker panels, full wheel covers, steering column lock, steel cargo/luggage barrier, and an advanced body mounting system.
Custom options and accessories
While there were many standard features, Chevrolet was sure to include several other options for those who wanted just a little bit more. Buyers could choose power windows, power door locks, power seat, rear window defroster, remote control outside mirror, air conditioning, tinted windows, center console, deluxe or custom wheel covers, and a sport or Comfortilt steering wheel.
The Monte Carlo Custom packages offered Rally wheels, cruise control, rear fender skirts, custom seat belts and steering wheel, soundproofing, sport suspension, and much more.
Chevrolet believed in putting safety and security first. Standard occupant safety features for the 1972 Monte Carlo included three point seat and shoulder belts for both passenger and driver (with reminder signal), self-adjusting and locking belt retractors, two front seat head restraints, an energy absorbing steering column, an instrument panel and seat back tops (front), passenger guard door locks, safety door latches, hinges, and armrests, a thick laminate contoured windshield, and side guard beams.
Standard accident prevention safety features included side marker lights and reflectors, parking, backup, and four-way hazard lights, directional signals, windshield wipers, washer and defroster combo, starter safety switch, and dual-action safety hood latches.
Standard anti-theft safety features included an anti-theft ignition key warning signal, steering column lock, multiple key combinations, visible vehicle identification, and a tamper-resistant odometer.
Consumers could obtain their personal desired look and feel by choosing from the many options and accessories made available to them. Buyers did not have to settle for less than the best. No doubt this car was a beauty, but beauty is more than skin deep. The standard features alone made the 1972 Monte Carlo more than just another pretty car. The 1972 Monte Carlo gave its owners the big car luxury at an affordable price.