Sunday, November 21, 2010

1973 Pontiac LeMans Sport Coupe

by Chris Hafner on November 16, 2010
Submitted by Richard McCallum

My affection for the 1973 Pontiac LeMans started in 1973, when my kindergarten bus would pass a local business where there was a new 1973 LeMans Sports Coupe parked every day. It was the same color as the one I own now, and with a factory original stripe kit. I lusted after this car every day we passed it.

As a teenager, I dreamed of owning a 1973 LeMans, but instead I ended up with a '73 Ford Maverick. While in college in 1988, I found and bought a 1973 LeMans in Fargo, N.D. for $350. After owning it for a year, I cut the roof off. Happily, it was the drought summer of 1988 in Minnesota; it didn't rain all summer. People loved this car; they thought it was a real convertible.

I won my current LeMans on eBay for $1,200. It had originally had the stripe, but it was painted over. I have been hitting the junk yards in my spare time finding parts and slowly restoring her.

It has a 350-cubic-inch, 2-barrel V-8. It is by no means a performer, but I have always liked the heavily sculpted lines and tapered rear (which prompted my sister to say it looks tapered like a turd). Yes, the styling was controversial; that's probably why I don't see too many '73's around these days. That, or because of the crappy quality!

Actually, it is pretty tight and solid for a 36-year-old car. The only thing I don't like about it are the oversized and clunky 5 mph bumpers.

--Richard McCallum