1975 Chevrolet Monza 2+2 With Factory V8!

This 1975 Chevrolet Monza 2+2 with a factory 262 V8 in original and nice condition has to be fairly rare, doesn’t it? We have seen a few of them ramble through here over the years and it seems like owners seem to modify them more often than not. The seller has this nice example listed here on eBay in Pearland, Texas, a great town near Houston. They have a healthy buy-it-now price of $9,500 listed, or you can make an offer.

The Monza was made for model years 1975 through 1980 and they came in a dizzying array of body styles and looks. There was a fastback 2+2, a Towne Coupe, even a wagon that looked suspiciously like a Chevy Vega. I love that Chevrolet either thoroughly thought out all of these designs and styles and made a conscious decision to offer seemingly totally unrelated cars with the same name, or they just threw their hands in the air and let one of the interns come up with a plan for the Monza. They had either four square headlights or two round headlights and different grills and they were just a random mixed bag of coolness.

If this Monza had a 4-speed it would check almost every box for me. It’s small, it’s orange, it has a V8, and it’s rarely seen today. The fastback 2+2 is actually my least favorite design of the bunch but as always, I like every vehicle ever made so I can appreciate the work that went into styling and engineering every vehicle ever made, from a Comuta-Car to a new Maybach. Although truthfully, I’d rather have a Comuta-Car than a Maybach, but that’s just me. This car has a rebuilt carb, new shocks, muffler, tune-up, and more.

The interior will need some work but seats are easy and as long as the dash isn’t cracked or there are any hard-to-find missing pieces, it would be a fun project to bring this Monza back to like-new condition again. The back seat looks like new and it’s a good sign that the underside looks solid. The rear cargo area looks good and it appears to come with a couple of extra wheel covers which is nice. They say that the AC and heat aren’t working so hopefully that isn’t a huge issue. I would never drive this car in the winter so heat wouldn’t be needed and I grew up with vehicles without AC so I can take it or leave it.

The big deal with this car, other than its overall nice condition, is the 262 V8. Ok, a 262 wouldn’t normally be considered a monster engine but when it’s shoehorned into a 15-foot 2,800-pound car, it’s a fairly big deal. It only had 110 horsepower by 1975 but with 195 ft-lb of torque, you’d be scootin’ to 60 mph in… well, in longer than it takes a Prius to do that in, but you’d look much cooler in this car. Let’s hear those Monza V8 stories!

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Comments

  1. Fahrvergnugen Fahrvergnugen Member

    If this thing has a 350, it’s not stock. The only V8 I knew of was a 260 though later models came with a 305.
    I had a red/red 2+2 with the Vega engine and a 4 speed. Could only burn rubber if / when I used an accelerant.

    Like 5
    • Scotty Gilbertson Staff

      Fahrvergnugen, cars in California and high-altitude areas could have received a 350 V8 in order to meet emissions regulations. In 1976, the 305 replaced the 350, so the 350 was actually available in 1975.

      Like 6
      • Greg Weisenberger

        Actually the 262 replaced the 350 for 76

        Like 2
      • CJinSD

        I read in the Car and Driver introductory review of the Monza that the 350 was going to be offered to homologate the engine for FIA GT competition. The Monzas in IMSA’s All American GT form could be finessed into FIA sanctioned races with a few changes provided they homologated the engine by offering it to at least a few customers.

    • Jim

      The add says 262 engine, that was the original V8 offered in 1975

      Like 5
      • Jim

        The California edition could be had with a 350 V8 i 1975

        Like 5
    • George Smith

      I had a 79 monza so I found a 1980 spyder last year. It now has a 350 small block and a 5 speed. Frame connectors and custom exhaust. S 10 front spindles and rear axles so I can run 15 inch tires. With more than 300hp, and its light weight, it’s really quick.

      Like 3
    • Guy

      The monza did come with a 350 but only in ca.and only automatic the other v8 options were the 4.3 which is a 262 cid or a 5.0305cid both the 5.0&4.3 could come with 4speed or automatic

      Like 1
    • Tom

      My brother had a new ‘75 Towne Coupe with a 262, 4 speed and F-41 suspension with a posi rear end. I was 13 at the time and I wanted that car in the worst way! I did get to drive it to a job interview when I was 16 but unfortunately he sold it long before I had any money to buy a car. In my mind back then, these were the equivalent to a factory V8 Vega, super cool!
      His car had 4.3 V8 badges on the front fenders and it was a 262 small block Chevy engine. The 260 was a small block Olds V8 and I don’t recall if they ever made it into the Starfire, Oldsmobile’s version of the Monza 2+2.
      My girlfriend’s (now wife of 35 years) first car was a ‘76 Olds Starfire with a a 3.8 odd fire Buick V6 and a 4 speed. Now that’s another story! With the back seat folded down those cars had a surprising amount of “cargo room” in the back :)

      Like 2
      • John Oliveri

        When you say cargo room, you mean room for a young couple to navigate thru the enjoyment of each others company I’m assuming, my brother had a 260 Oldsmobile motor in his 77 Delta 88, blew up with like 40k on it

    • Robert Spinello

      Wrong. It’s a 262 110-hp.V8. It was a Monza / Nova option 1975-1976. The 305 replaced it in 1977. The 350 125-hp V8 was a ’75 Monza option in Calif only and 3,500 were built.

  2. Big_Fun Member

    The VIN decodes out to a 262 cid (4.3 L) V8…

    Like 7
  3. Big_Fun Member

    The VIN decodes out to a 262 cid (4.3 L) V8…
    I’ll see if I can find the weight difference between the 262 and the 350 (if any) 110 hp vs. 145 hp. Of course, its all about the torque. Any the Chevy small block is pretty easy to upgrade…

    Like 7
  4. Scotty Gilbertson Staff

    Thanks, gents! I misread the VIN, thanks very much for the clarification!

    Like 2
  5. Moparman Member

    I nearly bought one of these in 76; it was ordered by a customer who turned it down. He’d requested a full size spare, and it was bolted down in the rear hatch area (It wouldn’t fit the spare tire well). That made it a no go for me! I could be tempted by this one, but I’m already downsizing! GLWTA!! :-)

    Like 1
    • JoeNYWF64

      How bout many new cars that have NO spare tire at all! For 20 or 30 grand! Or real bumpers, if you ask me. Or 2 doors. Or good visibility outward. I could go on. lol

      Like 3
  6. Howard A Member

    Grabbing Scotty by the neck, NO YOU DON’T WANT ONE,,,sorry, they were poor cars. My ex-wife had a like new ’77 V8 automatic when I met her. While the 305 was a bit of an upgrade( the 262 requires lifting the motor off it’s mounts to change plugs) it was a miserable car. Oh sure, power to pass, but failed in every other respect. Front heavy, lousy handling, so-so brakes, poor mileage, the V8 had no business in a car like this. It’s saving grace was it was a hatchback. The Buick,Olds, Pontiac V6’s were much better, and rust. These had nothing on the Asian rusters, that’s for sure. Knowing what I know, I’d gladly pass on another one.

    Like 9
    • Scotty Gilbertson Staff

      Ha, you know me, Howard, I like my vehicles on the high-maintenance side.

      Like 6
    • Tony Primo

      C’mon Howard, Scotty is 6 feet 5 inches tall. How are you going to grab him by the neck, do you keep a step stool in your truck?

      Like 3
      • Howard A Member

        Figure of speech, Tony. Scotty is my best friend, and we communicate “off the record” on a myriad of subjects, of which he’s incredibly in tune to, almost daily. It sucks I’m 1200 miles away from him. He’s had some neat cars, this, unfortunately, would not be one of them.

    • Angrymike

      I was going to comment, you don’t want to change plugs on these. I worked at a gas station in the early 80’s, my boss had me try to change plugs on one of these without telling me it would have to be lifted. It’s impossible to get to the rear plugs without lifting, even with my 17 years old skinny arms.

      Like 3
  7. Vegaman Dan

    I’d be tempted to swap out the V8 for a 4.3L V6 honestly. Better weight on the front end, more space to work with, and the 4.3L is a torque monster for its size.

    Like 6
    • Mark

      I’m just not understanding why anyone would put money into a car like this….for the same money you can buy a pretty nice X3 corvette which beats this car in every single aspect.

      Like 1
    • John

      Especially one out of a Typhoon!

    • Bill Hall

      A 4.3 is a 35o missing a couple of cylinders

      • Jim

        4.3 V6 is like 350 minus 2 cylinders, same bore and stroke . A 4.3 V8 is not the same as a 350 V8 it has a smaller bore and shorter stroke.

        Like 2
  8. John M Cervini

    If I recall correctly,these were developed for the 50 million dollar project that GM was working on at the time,the rotary Wankel engine,which never saw production.

    Like 5
    • yes300ed

      You are correct. It was a giant 206 CID rotary. Engine was suppose to go in the AMC Pacer as well. I think GM built about 50 of them.

      Like 1
    • That AMC Guy

      Yes, I have a Popular Science magazine that pictures one of these on the front cover, hailing it as the new Wankel-engined car from GM.

      Like 2
      • yes300ed

        If I remember correctly, GM was working with Mazda. Mazda was using a thermal reactor and GM wanted catalytic converters. GM was warned about cracking the rotor housings. Mazda was right!

  9. CJinSD

    There are kits for RWD K-series Honda conversions, at least for mating one to longitudinal transmissions. Double the power, take the weight off the nose, and make room under the hood for maintenance in one move. You’d end up with a car that weighs 2,600 pounds and handles as well as a Vega.

    Like 2
    • John

      Ha ha, that last part is a joke, right?!

      Like 1
      • CJinSD

        Sort of. The Monza was so much heavier than the Vega and its suspension was compromised to achieve some semblance of ride isolation and harshness reduction that handling like a Vega would be a huge improvement. I was wrong anyway, as the K-Monza would still weigh at least 3,000 pounds.

        I was reading about this car’s development earlier today. It had issues built in that were drowned out of discussions through the years by its more dramatic failings. Still, this is a heavy car with Vega wheel wells that dictated 13 inch load range C tires, one budgetary decision that pretty much doomed the every single car produced to be a lackluster performer.

  10. Gremlin X

    The 262 was a heavy emissions laden lump of coal. It weighed about 250 pounds more than the standard 4-cylinder for 20 more horsepower. Wasn’t worth it then, isn’t worth it now. Later 305 cars are a bit better.

  11. Bob C.

    Its cousins, the Buick Skyhawk and Olds Starfire both had the 3.8 v6. I think that engine would have been a better choice, but Chevy had to be different.

    Like 2
  12. JimmyJ

    In BC we called them 267s. They still suck thats just what we called em😀

  13. Popawfox

    I had a 75 Monza with the 262 and automatic transmission in 1982. Gave $1050 for it with 60, 000 miles. Looked exactly like this one. It was a fairly good car. I enlisted in the Army in Feb 83. Changed spark plugs in the base parking lot. Had to crawl under the car to get some of them. Pretty tight squeeze. But I didnt have to lift the engine! Wouldn’t want to do it now though. Ended up trading it and $2,000 for a “cherry” white 1975 Hurst\Olds. Still have the Olds! $9500 for THIS car! Not a chance in…well you know.

    Like 1
    • Jim

      Interesting story. I bought a new Monza in 78,4 cylinder, 4 speed. Wanted a new V8 Spyder in 80,no more V8’s offered in 80. Eventually bought a 75 262,4 speed, still have it with a 383,4L60E in it now. Fun to drive car.

      Like 5
      • Jack M.

        Nice that someone can see beyond the 262. Any small block Chevy from 1955 up can fit in this car. Too heavy? Just add aluminum heads, intake, carburetor, water pump and radiator. You will have yourself a nice handling little rocket.

        Like 5
  14. Chris

    I had a 75 Chevy Vega . I was young awesome car midnight black with red & blue stripes . This was a cool sleeper but got me in lots of trouble. It was a 73 factory small block 350 . Some one hit the car ,I kept it & sold it , then the new owner put it into a pole

  15. John Womer

    Isn’t that the car that requires lifting the engine with a hoist to when changing the spark plugs?

    Like 1
    • Jim

      No.
      On V8 with AC you might need to take 3 bolts loose on the motor mount which are easy to get to and jack that side of the motor up. I’m not sure. I have a Monza with aftermarket AC ,383 engine and I do all plugs just by leaning over the fenders

  16. S

    The 262 V8 was a 1 year only engine – 1975. I remember we had one in a 75 Chevy Nova in shop class years ago. I think it would be very hard to find certain parts for this. This is not the same engine as the 267 V8 offered in Monte Carlos in the 1978-80 time period, and its definitely not the same as the 260 V8 offered in Cutlasses, as that’s an Oldsmobile engine. That said, this is a pretty cool looking car. I like the orange. But wouldn’t pay the asking price with a torn up front seat, sun damaged top of the back seat, and the a/c and heat not working. $9500 sounds ridiculous to me unless it was perfect.

    Like 2
  17. Fred smith

    I had a 75 with a Four-cylinder engine. It overheated all the time. It was the first car I own when I was 18 years old.

  18. Maestro1 Member

    I had one. Bought brand new in Monterey California. Black with red interior. Intendically equipped. The car was nose heavy, overpowered, lousy brakes, nothing to admire except straight line grunt and body design. Bob C. has it right. The V6 would have been perfect and changed the character of the car. I sold it to a neighbor after lengthy explanations of why the car is marginal as a V-8, he gave it to his son, who drove it through school and loved the car.

    Like 1
  19. Michael Atlas

    My first car was a used 75 Buick Skyhawk with the 231 V6..Great car, solid and plenty quick for a 16 year old..

  20. Joe P. Member

    I had one. Ordered new, Blue, black interior, 2+2, V8, 4 speed. It was delayed because Saginaw employees were on strike, so they couldn’t get the manual transmission. I had been a Chevy Guy up till then. 64 Nova, 66 Impala. This car and my give them one more chance car, the Citation X11, killed it for me for a long while. Went foreign for a number of years: Datsun, Honda, Nissan, Lexus, Toyota, before going back to Chevy. The Monza started falling apart fairly early. It had an electric gas pump in the tank . . . Who thought that was a good idea? It died on a trip. Had to drop the gas tank to replace. The doors wouldn’t close tight without much effort, the gas shocks to help raise the hatchback lids just basically imploded . . . Piece of junk.

    Like 1
    • Jim

      Car manufacturers have been putting the fuel pump in the gas tanks for years because it last longer and runs cooler and this is especially good for fuel injection

      • JoeNYWF64

        But only a few car makers bother(ed) to put an access panel in the trunk or hatchback area, so you didn’t have to drop the tank.
        & when those pumps go – it’s time for a tow!
        I have replaced a $15 mechanical fuel pump on the side of the road – always carry a spare in the trunk.

  21. Doc Member

    High school friend bought the monza mirage V8 on 13 inch tires with an open rear. That car could burn some rubber!!!

  22. JCA

    It says right in the linked advertising brochure that the available small V8 was “designed for economy”. And Road & Track clocked this V8 model 0-60 at 13.4 seconds. With numbers like that, why would anyone order this anemic V8? I think the 4cyl/manual combo was probably the better choice back then.

    Like 1
  23. Ray

    I had a 305 2+2 in college. Loved that car then! Would never get another as a V8 should have never been in that car. Chevy basically stuck a V8 in a Vega meant for a 4 or 6 cylinder engine, transmission, clutch, brakes, shocks,,, Not only were the plugs hard to replace; I replaced the clutch twice in 2 years before putting in a racing clutch. The good thing I remember was that it was fast as “…” off the line;

    A Trans AM full of kids once pulled up next to me wanting to race! When the light changed, I blew them off the line and my radar detector went off! A down shifted (so they won’t see the brakes) and let them speed pass, all cheering, until they got a ticket as I slowly drove past!

    Like 3
  24. Steve Williams

    I had a 1976 Towne couple with the V8. The only way to change the rear four spark plugs was to pull the motor out of the car.

  25. PRA4SNW PRA4SNW Member

    My older cousin bought one just like this in ’75, same color and all.
    I remember my 14 year old self thinking how cool looking it was and loved going for a ride in it.

    Like 1
  26. Murray

    I bought a new Monza with the 3.8L V6 and 4 speed standard transmission in 1980 for $8,000. It had the ‘Merlot’ paint (burgundy). I loved how it looked but I knew I had made a mistake as soon as I got it on the highway. It redlined at 110 km/h. I had to have the engine rebuilt 3 years later and the mechanic installed a kit on the oil pump to increase the volume flow so that I didn’t need to rebuild it again down the road. Biggest lemon I have ever owned or driven, but it sure looked nice.

  27. George Smith

    I bought the 1979 new with a V6 and 4 speed. Put a 450 cfm Holley 4 barrel. Got better mileage and was a lot quicker. Nothing like my 1980 but fun. I don’t worry about the mileage on the1980.

  28. John Oliveri

    My brothers girlfriend had a 76, I was under the impression it was a 305, it it could’ve been a 260, long time ago, I remember cruising around Staten Island in it, playing the 8 track, I was 15 in76 so that was a lotta fun,

    Like 1
  29. Paul L Windish

    I bought a ’75 Monza 2+2 with the 262 and automatic, no air, new in early ’75. I enjoyed the car during the time I had it. As I recall, I had it around 4 years, putting around 80,000 miles on it. I had a pop up sunroof installed and it really helped with the cabin airflow in summer, but it needed more than tinted glass to shade the sun beating in on me in sunny weather. It was peppy with the 262, but a real pain in the butt for mechanics to change the plugs as one plug was right up against the frame. At 80,000 miles the front suspension was shot and we ended up trading it for a new ’79 Chevy pickup that we ordered with the 350 Olds diesel engine, btw, the last GM made vehicle I ever bought. I do presently have two Chevy powered Avantis, a ’76 with the 400 and a 200R4 trans and an ’89 convertible that is 383 powered on a shortened Caprice frame/suspension.

    Like 1
  30. Slickimp

    Wow how did you like that diesel , windish ? Any way my friends dad had one back in the day v8 4 speed with 4 guys in there his dad was driving got 3 gear cherp out of it 3 out of the 4 were big guys thought it was pretty good. Thats my monza story

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