The Ventura series was introduced midway through the 1971 model year as the Ventura II. The car was basically a Chevrolet Nova with Pontiac trim, part of a series of automotive sameness that also included the Oldsmobile Omega and Buick Apollo. The hatchback models were introduced with the 1973 models, when Pontiac dropped the "II" and simply called the car the Ventura. In addition to the hatchback coupe, Venturas also were offered in a two-door notchback coupe and a four-door notchback sedan. The top-of-the-line Ventura Custom came with deluxe wheel covers, a carpeted cargo area, fold-down rear seats and a space-saver spare tire. The base car came with a six-cylinder engine, but Ventura buyers were offered the option of several V-8s. Although the Ventura was an ugly stepsister of sorts in a line that included such models as the Grand Prix and the Firebird, Pontiac sold 96,500 of them in 1973.

THE SPECS

Price $2,721

Engine 250-cubic-inch

straight six

Horsepower 100 at 3,600 rpm

Wheelbase 111 inches

Passenger capacity 5

HISTORICAL FACTS

Year 1973

President Richard M. Nixon

Median family income $12,051

Dow Jones industrial average (year-end) 850.85

Academy Award movie "The Sting"

Milestone Median price of

single-family home is

$28,900