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One-Owner 454 V8: 1973 Chevrolet Monte Carlo

Already a popular car, the Chevy Monte Carlo took off with the redesign of 1973. All of GM’s intermediate cars got a new platform that adopted Colonnade styling with a pillared roofline but frameless door glass. Sales shot to more than 250,000 copies in 1973 and again to 300,000 in 1974, bucking the negative big car trend in the wake of the OPEC oil embargo. This single-owner ’73 Landau has been kept inside for more than 20 years and is a restoration the seller acknowledges will never get done on his watch. With its original 454 big-block V8, the Chevy waits patiently in a storage building in Elbert, Colorado, and is available here on eBay where the current bid of $5,700 has not triggered the seller’s reserve.

The 1973 Monte Carlo was named Motor Trend’s “Car of the Year” which is based on the best new or significantly refreshed automobile in a given model year (two categories: domestic and imported). Besides the newly mandated 5-mph front bumpers, new features included standard radial tires and a wrap-around cockpit-style interior with one-piece swiveling bucket seats. New for ’73 was the Monte Carlo Landau, like the seller’s car, which was an “S” model with a rear quarter Landau vinyl roof, Turbine II wheels, and exterior sport mirrors. While most Monte Carlo’s came with a 350 cubic-inch V8, the big block 454 was available with or without the SS designation. We don’t know how many Landaus came with that motor, but considering that the SS 454 was not a big seller, sales may have been minimal, possibly making the seller’s Monte Carlo rare today.

As a one-owner car with 150,000 miles that been stored for two decades, this Chevy must have been a daily driver at one time. We’re told it’s never been in an accident, but the paint has long since faded away, there is some visible rust, the landau top was removed, and the area finished in primer grey. So, the buyer should factor in enough funds to keep the body shop man busy for a while. The interior is original and there are signs of wear, at least on the driver’s swivel bucket, carpeting, and dash pad.

The factory 454 and TH-400 automatic transmission were both rebuilt before the Monte went into storage, but that’s been 20 years now. The seller had the car running recently and it’s cautiously drivable. The engine is fine, but the tranny leaks, no doubt due to seals drying out. The posi-traction rear end will need some work as we’re told something’s “just not right” back there. The brakes were redone more recently. These big Chevy engines were on their way out in the mid-1970s, with this one rated at just 245 SAE net hp when new. The A/C compressor has no belt on it, suggesting it’s inoperable now. If you want the car delivered, talk turkey with the seller and he might bring it to you.


  1. Andy

    Trade a 85 Cadillac coupe DeVille 63 000 original miles red leather interior new radiator master cylinder Toyo tires and no rust email me

    • Russ Dixon Russ Dixon Staff

      Andy, you need to contact the seller through his ad. We’re just reviewing the automobile and have no involvement with it.

      Like 13
    • Daniel

      Classic Andy

      Like 5
  2. CCFisher

    Seems like a lot of money for a 1975 Monte Carlo that needs basically everything and appears to be missing some hard-to-find parts.

    Like 4
  3. Stan

    Great cars with the big block 375ft/lbs. This Monte came w an optional 3.42 gear v standard 2.73..a substantial upgrade. Since this rearend needs to be cracked open anyway, equipping w 3.42 seems automatic.

  4. 433jeff

    This may be the most comfortable car ive ever been in, its a tossup between the 73 monte with bench seat and the 89 te wagon Mercedes. I think this is the first time ove heard about the 73 SS, so how many were made?

    Like 1
    • bikefixr

      Not an SS. There were no SS’s in ’72 forward.

      Like 2
  5. Larry D

    You wrote: “I think this is the first time ove heard about the 73 SS, so how many were made?”

    Me too because they never made them. The SS 454 was available on Monte Carlos in 1970 and 71 and dropped after that due to slow sales.

    They did make 454-engined Monte Carlos in 1973 but not as the SS option.

    Like 3
  6. R.Lee

    I am 2nd owner 75,000 mile triple black fully optioned 1973 COPO Monte Carlo S Landau. 454 Turbo 400 3.73 Positraction Buckets power AC with 500 HP on tap with my spare 454 4 bolt. The original LS3 is on the pallet rack and maybe one day they will be reunited, but not by me.

    These cars I have been driving for 40+ years. I would buy these cars for 600 to 1,000 and either I rebuilt and sold them or they became stock cars. I would buy the 73 4 5 cars with the 454 or 400 small block.

    Although this Green car looks complete it has rust in the usual places. The wheel trim and lower rocker trim panels are most probably hiding rust behind them. Landau tops normally do not get rust under, but the full vinyl tops do.

    73 is a one year car as the rear bumper does not have the 5mph bumper shocks. The tucked in rear bumper makes the rear sexy on these cars. N50’s fit no problem.

    If car runs and drives I would look it over in person before I would give 8K.

    Not many of these cars are left as most did not make the salvage yard and went straight to the dirt tracks across America. And these Monte’s ruled Nascar until 81′. Then Monte was alone until they fought Aero ThunderBirds from 83′ on.

    Probably one of the most underrated cars in the collector market. I see these car doubling in price in the next 5 years.

    Like 2
  7. John Oliveri

    There were 2 models of Monte Carlos after 72, beginning in 73, a regular no frills no bumper rubber, chrome mirror plain Jane, and the Landau edition, which had the dual sport mirrors, rub strips, Landau wheels

  8. R.Lee

    I love these cars so much, rarely do I post twice. I would buy this car if it was closer. No SS cars were made, and either S or Landau unless you have a COPO car.

    Build sheet will tell the tale with the 73′ Monte as the 454 cars are rare indeed. Looks like the Light Green Poly car and the Dark Green interior. I may have the only pair of NOS rear quarters on the planet.

    Like 2
    • Larry D

      A build sheet isn’t necessary since the 5th character in the VIN tells what engine the car came with.

    • Mike

      Do you still have your ¼ panels?, are they for sale?

  9. Stevieg Member

    I had a friend that had one of these but with the 350. He was the original owner for that one. He offered to sell it to me in the late 1980’s for $500. I thought it was too much money back then lol. Wow, was that stupid!

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