Monte Carlo Custom
Award Winning Frame Off Restored Monte Carlo Custom 350
- Frame-off restoration
- Super Chevy award winner
- Original build sheet / invoice
- Original GM 350ci V8
- TH350 automatic transmission
- 12-bolt Posi-traction differential
- Power steering / brakes
- Air conditioning
The Monte Carlo was introduced in 1970 and found its way into over half a million driveways during its first three years of production. It's the car your cooler neighbors had and one, like the 1957 Chevrolet, that wholly embodies the time it was created during. When it came time to restore this award-winning 1972 Monte Carlo Custom, someone obviously felt the tug of nostalgia and went full speed into a frame-off restoration that returned the car to better-than-new condition throughout. Amenities like air conditioning, power steering, power brakes, and an automatic transmission make this a perfect car for long drives while pieces like the original engine, original invoice, and original build sheet are sure to keep the collectors out there happy. Road ready, show ready, and ready to go, you simply won't find more muscle car era sheet metal for the money.
Here's how the original invoice describes the car:
924: 14-14 Pewter Silver
740: Pewter cloth interior
A01: Soft-Ray tinted glass
A51: Strato-bucket front seats
B93: Door edge guards
C50: Rear window defroster
C60: 4-season air conditioning
D34: Visor vanity mirror
D55: Center console
G80: Positraction axle
L48: Turbo-Fire 350 V8
M40: Turbo-Hydramatic transmission
P90: G70x15 belted white stripe tires
T60: Heavy-duty battery
U14: Special instrumentation
U63: AM push-button radio
V01: Heavy-duty radiator
V30: Bumper guards
Z03: Monte Carlo Custom equipment
Those options totaled up to a final price of $4,866.35 which, by today's money, would be roughly $27k. It was definitely on the upper end of average pricing but it netted more than a car – it got you GM's vision of what “personal luxury” should be. Appeal starts on the outside where the elegant Monte Carlo lines display especially well. As mentioned, this was a frame off restoration and one that was very obviously treated as a priority. The factory sheet metal is razor straight and, on panels this long, that matters even more than usual. Fitment is equally nice, easily besting factory efforts of the day. The color sprayed over those panels is Pewter Silver and it's hard to picture a better color for these lines. The paint work is first rate and presents itself well from just about any angle you can come up with.
By 1972, a new body style was on the horizon for the Monte Carlo. GM saw the first generation cars off with a few styling updates which this car wears well. At the front, an egg-crate grille fills in the space between a pair of round headlights while a chrome front bumper caps off the nose. A long hood extends over the engine compartment, drawing the eye towards a greenhouse filled with clean glass and admirable stainless. The profile matches that stainless with full length rocker trim connected by bright wheel moldings. It's a tasteful setup complemented only by chrome door hands, a single painted rear view mirror, and chrome Monte Carlo Custom badges on the C-pillar. Those sloping pillars lead to a decklid borrowed from the Chevelle line which flows into a stainless rear panel. Long vertical taillights cap off the quarters, visually connected through a second chrome bumper with integrated reverse lights. The combination of pieces forms an elegant unified look that presents with more dignity than many products of the muscle car era.
Lift the hood (and this one has some weight to it) to find the original L48 Turbo-Fire 350ci V8 planted firmly between the fenders. It was a mid-grade option for buyers but one that has proven both a reliable companion and a great foundation for high-power builds. This particular 350 wears a 3910010 casting number, January 19th assembly date, and a CKD suffix code that verifies it as a 350 made to live alongside an automatic transmissions. The engine compartment shows exactly as it should – not overdone but not lacking gloss either. A single snorkel air cleaner with a correct 350 decal tucks a single Rochester Quadrajet carburetor below. At either side, stock cast iron heads are topped with Chevy orange valve covers which frame an OEM intake manifold. The front of the engine spins a factory correct alternator alongside an air conditioning compressor and power steering pump while the stock radiator and fan combo keep the small block cool from a mile or so out front. A Delco battery provides cranking power and a period correct look reinforced by GM hoses and factory firewall accessories. Turn the key and small block fires to life without fuss, ready to carry the A-body wherever it needs to go.
Shine a light under the car to find a nicely restored undercarriage. The car appears to have spent some time on the road after restoration, but all efforts were made to keep it clean. The satin black floor pans appear patch free while the orange oil pan and fresh stainless exhaust system contrasts nicely against the dark background. For 1972, GM didn't offer their personal luxury line with manual transmissions so a tried and true TH350 3-speed automatic takes care of all shifting duties. From there, power flows down the driveshaft and back to a factory 12-bolt Positraction rear end. Around the drivetrain, a stock double A-arm setup supports the front end while a factory 4-bar gets a little help from boxed lower control arms and aftermarket helper springs. To maintain a pleasant driving experience, GM installed power steering that pairs well with the power brakes which clamp down on front discs and rear drums. It's a reliable setup and on that you can feel good driving through the modern world with. The dual exhaust system snakes around rear axle, exiting at either side of a new fuel tank. At the corners, the wheel wells are occupied by 15-inch American Racing five-spokes wrapped in white letter BF Goodrich Radial T/As for a classic muscle-car era look.
Now back to that personal luxury thing GM was talking about – it's mostly between the doors. Step inside and you'll be greeted by a comfortable cabin full of amenities that will make this your new favorite cruiser. For starters, the cloth wrapped seats look good, feel great, and are all-day comfortable. Between them, a tapered center console introduces wood grain accents to the cabin while providing some quality real estate for the horseshoe shifter. That wood grain is matched on the instrument bezel which houses a factory tachometer, speedometer, and clock, surrounded by smaller gauges that monitor amps, fuel, and temperature. A double-spoke steering wheel extends beyond the gauges, offering a connection to the front wheels. To the right, a Delco FM stereo provides entertainment while controls for the HVAC system reside just above. If the Delco doesn't cut it, a CD player with remote control is also neatly installed out of sight. From the carpet to the door panels to the headliner, there are some Cadillac-level appointments in this Monte Carlo that drive home the luxury statement. All of it presents with authority and remains, surprisingly, unrestored. Behind the seats, that cavernous trunk is occupied by a covered full size spare parked on top of a correct factory trunk mat.
If you're a number guys, the list of bonus materials should certainly make you smile. The car comes with the original build sheet, original invoice, original owner's manual – even the original wheels are included. You'll also find an assembly manual alongside assorted component manuals. The car has also racked up plenty of accolades which include:
• Featured car at Kewadin Casino's Muscle Car Mania
• Featured vehicle at the St. Ignace Auto Show
• Best Monte Carlo at Maple Grove Super Chevy Show (shown in Super Chevy)
With tons of original equipment, ample documentation, and more options that most early-70s offerings, this Monte Carlo was a strong value in its day and continues to be right into the present. After all, when was the last time you saw this caliber A-body for under $25k? Talk to us now and make space in your garage later – this one won't wait on you.
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