Australian Car Spotters Guide - 1973

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1974 Chrysler VJ Valiant

Chrysler Valiant VJ

  Also see: Chrysler Valiant Car Reviews and VJ Valiant Specifications
By the time of the release of the VJ Valiant, Chrysler’s market share was in its fourth consecutive year of decline. There was therefore much pressure on the stylists to ensure the face-lifted VJ arrested the decline. The new look was heralded by Chrysler as being “Years ahead of its time”, it clearly wasn’t, but the question of whether it could around the flagging fortunes of Chrysler in Australia remained. The VJ’s sheet metal remained unchanged over the outgoing VH, styling changes being restricted to a grille makeover, round headlights and revamped tail lights.
1973 Ford Falcon XA Station Wagon

Ford Falcon XA

  Also see: Ford Falcon XK to XC Car Reviews and Falcon XA Specifications
The XA sported arguably the boldest design of any Falcon model to date. There were a plethora of body and engine choices on offer; the range started with the Falcon, then Falcon 500, Futura, Fairmont, and the mighty GT. The station wagon versions used a longer wheelbase than the sedans, affording an even greater load space, but were only available in Falcon, Falcon 500 and Fairmont levels of trim. Uniquely, the wagon's tailgate could be opened either down-wards or to one side.
1973 Ford Falcon XB Sedan

Ford Falcon XB

  Also see: Ford Falcon XK to XC Car Reviews and Falcon XB Specifications
The XB featured a slight restyle of the previous model, featuring a cleaner but more aggressive front end with a forward sloping bonnet complete with power bulge, and a wide set, 'egg-crate' split grille. The design was very reminiscent of the 1971-73 US Mustangs, and by re-working the XA's sleek lines and fitting different bumpers the car presented with a far more masculine style. In fact, the three Australian engineers who had travelled to the US to develop the XA, claimed that it had found its ultimate expression with the XB - high praise indeed.

1973 Ford ZG Fairlane

ZG Fairlane

  Also see: Ford Fairlane Car Reviews and ZG Fairlane Specifications
The ZG marked yet another gentle revision of its predecessor with a bolder, four horizontal bar grille and tail lamp tweaks. As was usual for a mid-life facelift, the mechanicals were to recieve the majority of attention, and so it was with the ZG, Ford opting to fit heavier duty shock absorbers and a slightly higher ride height for both improved handling and a softer ride. While much of the media attention was concerned with the energy crisis (and their dislike of anything V8), the public were becoming increasingly concerned with safety.
1973 Holden HQ Kingswood Sedan and Wagon

Holden HQ


Also see: Holden HK to WB Car Reviews and Holden HQ Specifications

The HQ had a huge model range which included: Belmont Sedan, Belmont Station Wagon, Belmont Panel Van, Belmont Utility, Kingswood Sedan, Kingswood Station Wagon, Kingswood Utility, SS Sedan, Premier Sedan, Premier Station Wagon, Holden Chassis and Cab, Monaro Coupe, Monaro GTS Coupe, Monaro GTS 350 Coupe, Monaro LS ('Luxury Sports') Coupe, Monaro GTS Sedan, Statesman Sedan and Statesman De-Ville Sedan.
1973 Leyland P76 Sedan

Leyland P76


Also see: Leyland Australia Car Reviews

The P76 was launched in 1973 by BMC-Leyland in an attempt to break into the lucrative "Family Car" segment being held firmly by the 'Big Three', GM Holden with the Kingswood, Ford with the Falcon and Chrysler with the Valiant. In the past, BMC had enjoyed success with its English imports such as the Austin, Morris and course the ever popular Mini. But in the changing times of the early '70's, most Australians wanted a large family sized car in their garage, and this was being reflected in declining sales of BMC's traditional products. Leyland set about developing a car specifically designed for the tough and harsh Aussie climate - and just as unforgiving roads!
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