1973, the full size Fords were the only models to receive significant restyling.
The rest of the Ford lines received only very minor trim updating. More
Federally mandated safety requirements were initiated, in the form of the
massive (and incredibly ugly) 'park bench' safety bumpers. These bumper were
supposed to be able to tolerate direct impact at five miles per hour, with no
resultant damage. Pollution standards were tightened. The existing engines were
further detuned or more emissions equipment was added, making for some of the
poorest performing and least fuel efficient motors ever built. The Arab embargo,
of oil products imported from the Middle East, also brought fuel economy to the
spotlight and manufacturing began striving for improved mileage at the expense
of performance and efficiency.
The Pinto exterior
remained basically the same as in the 1972 model year with the exception of
front and rear bumpers. Front bumper guards were made standard equipment this
year (but deleted in later years). Pinto styles included the two door Runabout,
which had a large hatch with gas operated springs, plus the two door sedan and
station wagon. Because of the bumper design changes, the Pinto was actually
about one and a half inches longer this year although the true body length was
The first oil crisis starts.
Kia begins production of
a gasoline engine for the first time in Korea.
Epochal development of
racing engines with exhaust turbocharging begins at Porsche. Highlight: the
917/30 CanAm Spyder. The Porsche "Longlife Car" study causes a sensation .