1973 Chevrolet Chevelle and Malibu

1973 Chevrolet Chevelle Malibu Colonnade Coupe
The 1973 Chevrolet Chevelle and Malibu series introduced new
"Colonnade" styling, as seen on this Malibu Colonnade Coupe.

The 1973 Chevrolet Chevelle and Chevrolet Malibu series featured General Motors' all-new midsize -car "Colonnade" styling.

With a semi-fastback roofline that employed arched door frames and a large rear-quarter window the 1973 Chevrolet Chevelle and Malibu models looked considerably different from prior versions, and the long-lived pillarless hardtop coupe body style was gone.

Wheelbases were unchanged at 112 inches for two-door models and 116 inches for four-doors. But bodies were five inches longer and an inch wider. In addition to the new roofline, front and rear ends looked markedly different this year. Every 1973 Chevrolet Chevelle and Chevrolet Malibu came with front disc brakes.

New top-of-the-line Laguna coupes and sedans were added above the Malibu versions and helped move Chevelle marketing upscale. Lagunas had a body-colored urethane plastic front end incorporating a chrome-plated die-cast grille that held round parking lights.

The Laguna was created to compete with other GM A-body intermediates, including the Buick Century, Oldsmobile Cutlass, and Pontiac LeMans -- and also to rival Ford's Gran Torino. Two Laguna station wagons became available: a base model and a Laguna Estate.

A Super Sport coupe remained available, but convertibles departed from the Chevelle line. Shoppers could even get an SS station wagon this year -- with the option of a 454-cubic-inch V-8 engine, no less -- but the mix of sport and utilitarian wagon virtues would last only a single season.

As before, the top SS engine was a 454-cubic-inch V-8, developing 245 horsepower. Regular Chevelles had a standard 250-cubic-inch six or 115-horsepower 307-cubic-inch V-8, but the Laguna carried a 145-horsepower 350-cubic-inch engine with a two-barrel carburetor. That engine and a 175-horsepower step-up version also were available in other Chevelles.

Consumers continued to snap up Chevelles: 327,631 of them in the 1973 model year, plus 59,108 station wagons. The Malibu versions of the Chevelle continued to sell best by a wide margin, but the costlier Laguna coupe and sedan made a respectable showing, with 56,036 going to customers.

Super Sport options went on 28,647 Chevelles, of which 2500 held the big 454-cubic-inch engine -- the last of their breed, as it turned out.

1973 Chevrolet Chevelle Malibu Colonnade Coupe
The new styling on the 1973 Chevrolet Chevelle Malibu
Colonnade Coupe gave the car a semi-fastback roofline
with "formed-in" middle roof pillars.


1973 Chevrolet Chevelle and Malibu Facts
Model
Weight range (lbs.)
Price range (new)
Number built
Chevelle
3,423-3,678 $2,719-$3,203 327,631
Station Wagon
3,849-4,189 $3,106-$3,795 59,108

For more picture-packed articles about Chevys and other great cars, see:
  • Classic Cars: Learn about more than 400 of the world's finest classic and collectible automobiles.
  • Muscle Cars: Look back at tire-smoking Chevys and scores of other machines from the golden age of American high performance.
  • Sports Cars: Discover the pleasure of sports motoring at its purest in these captivating articles on the best sports cars from around the world.
  • Consumer Guide Automotive: Here's your source for news, reviews, prices, fuel-economy and safety information on today's cars, minivans, SUVs, and pickups.
  • Consumer Guide Used Car Search: In the market for a used Chevy or virtually any other pre-owned vehicle? Check out these reports, which include safety recalls and trouble spots.
  • All Chevrolet Malibus: The Chevrolet Malibu nameplate didn't die with the 1983 model. Get the lowdown on the new-age Malibu that launched for 1997 and continues today.
  • How Chevrolet Works: Get the inside story of one of America’s greatest automotive marques in this lavishly illustrated history of Chevrolet, beginning with its founding in 1911.