1971 Chevrolet Monte Carlo

1971 Chevrolet Monte Carlo front
The 1971 Monte Carlo kept the smart, clean lines of the 1970 model.
The 1971 Chevrolet Monte Carlo was not much different from the 1970 Monte Carlo, as expected of an all-new model in its second season: a new grille with a finer mesh pattern, a stand-up hood ornament, and square parking lights to replace the original round units.

Critics often ridiculed the Monte Carlo's instrument panel with its simulated Carpathian burled elm trim, but the interior satisfied many an owner. As the sales brochure noted, "only termites will know the difference." Essentially, though, gauges were Chevelle-based.

Chevrolet insisted that a Monte was "still the only car of its kind made in the U.S.A.," promising solid value, luxury, style, dependability, resale value -- and craftsmanship. In addition to luxury goodies, the options list contained several performance items.

Like other GM models, Monte Carlo suffered in production as a result of a lengthy strike early in the model year. Output dropped just slightly, to 128,600 cars from the prior year's 130,657.

Only 1919 customers elected the SS 454 option, with a 365- or 425-horsepower 454-cubic-inch V-8 engine, heavy-duty springs, automatic level control, G70x15 tires on rally wheels, and black rear trim panel.

Base Monte Carlo engine was the 245-horsepower 350, with a 270-horsepower version and a 300-horse "396" (actually 402-cubic-inch) also available.

­1971 Chevrolet Monte Carlo front
The 1971 Monte Carlo carried SS badging on the black rear trim panel.

1971 Chevrolet Monte Carlo Facts

ModelWeight (lbs.)
Price (new)
Number built
Monte Carlo
3,488
$3416

128,600

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