CHEVY MONTE CARLO – Everything You Need to Know | Up to Speed

CHEVY MONTE CARLO – Everything You Need to Know | Up to Speed


– Hey kid, you wanna go fast?
You wanna be real comfortable too?
You wanna be a NASCAR driver?
Well, I got what you need right here.
It’s got two doors, and it’s named after
an administrative area of principality
of Monaco in the south of France.
This is everything you need to know
to get up to speed on
the Chevy Monte Carlo.
Sometimes, you’re just
too tired to do the job,
whether that’s hosting a
show, writing a script,
or washing your car.
But thanks to NOS Energy,
I got that good energy that
helps me get the job done.
♪ Power baby ♪
♪ More power baby ♪
♪ More power baby ♪
♪ More power ♪
– It was the mid-60s and
Chevy was doing well.
With 12 different models for sale,
like the Camaro, Impala, and Malibu,
it seemed like them bow tie
boys and girls had it all.
But the grass ain’t always greener.
Sometimes, it has big yellow spots
where your dog’s been doing his business.
Chevy had a problem, and that problem
was named the Ford Thunderbird.
Ford’s luxury two-door had
been selling well enough
since the mid-50s to force GM brands
like Pontiac and Buick
to respond with cars
like the Grand Prix and the Riviera.
GM brass was stoked, but back at Chevy,
there was another story.
Chevy general manager, Pete Estes,
remember him from the Camaro episode,
he’s literally (bleep) nuts.
He was pissed off.
If Pontiac and Buick were allowed to have
personal luxury cars, why shouldn’t Chevy?
Chevy division sales manager,
Lee Mays, didn’t agree.
He was like, “No means no, Estes.
“Jesus, literally walking out the door.
“I gotta get to a frickin’
recital, don’t you know?”
So there wouldn’t be a Chevy
competitor to the Thunderbird,
not for a few more years.
Then, it was 1968.
John Z. DeLorean, you ever heard of him,
was now the general manager at Chevy.
He was hot off his success at Pontiac
where he made the Grand Prix a
worthy Thunderbird competitor
and helped start the muscle car
wars with the legendary GTO.
DeLorean was a marketing fricking genius,
who knew that making young
people like your brand
was the key to success,
kind of like how the Champion brand
used to be for your Uncle Jeff,
but now Ryan Tuerck wears them
and they sell for 75
bucks at Urban Outfitters.
I bought four.
Tuerck’s cool.
So in walks John DeLorean with that BDE,
and he didn’t get along
with Lee Mays either.
DeLorean goes to the top GM brass and says
that Mays is straight
up getting in the way
of DeLorean’s success.
Mays was reassigned to Buick
general manager shortly after.
Now that he was out, no
more Mays, no more problem.
That’s how you gotta be, man.
If someone’s in the way
of where you gotta be,
get them out of there.
That’s the Kentucky cobra way.
With Mays gone, the Chevy team got to work
on their new personal luxury vehicle,
code name, Concurs.
Here’s how it’s spelled.
That’s how I’m gonna say it.
The car was based off
of GM’s G-body platform.
Coincidentally, the same
as the Pontiac Grand Prix.
To make sure buyers knew that Chevy’s new
personal luxury vehicle was luxurious,
the Concurs team took inspiration
from another one of GM’s luxury cars,
the 1967 Cadillac El Dorado.
And when I say inspiration,
I mean they basically traced the design
and changed a few things
like the headlights.
Cadillac was like, “What the heck, bro?”
But the Concurs team kept working.
They were like, “Don’t even
freaking worry about it, dude.”
They dressed up the recycled bits,
so people wouldn’t feel bad
about dropping more coin
on what was basically
a dressed up Chevelle
wearing a Cadillac fur coat.
Before the Concurs, again how it’s spelled
and how I say it, went on sale,
they gave it a new name.
What better name for a big
bodied coupe built in Detroit
than that of a principality at
the base of the Maritime Alps
nestled in the south of France?
In 1970, General Motors
debuted the all new
Chevy Monte Carlo.
The buzz was undeniable.
Car and Driver said it’s
a composite of Buick,
Oldsmobile, and Cadillac.
That’s what I call high praise.
Along with the base Monte Carlo,
Chevy also made a performance
model with the SS badge,
The main difference
between the base and the SS
was the engine.
The SS was equipped with
a 7.4 liter, 454 V8,
making 360 hrsprs.
To help this beefy boy get around turns,
the SS was outfitted with wider tires
to get the power down
and heavy duty, self-leveling suspension.
To critics, the Monte
Carlo might have been
an odd mish-mash of GM parts and styling,
but to customers, it
was the most affordable
personal luxury car in
America at the time,
and it sold well in the
first two years of its life.
– [Announcer] Monte Carlo, number one
in the personal luxury car field.
– And since the Monte didn’t
have a lot of bespoke parts
that were expensive to make,
it made Chevy a lot of money.
Unfortunately for some fans,
the SS was not here to stay.
Chevy bigwigs thought the
idea of a quick luxury car
was a contradiction and axed
the Monte Carlo SS in 1972.
However, that contradiction
did not stop them
from making the Monte
Carlo custom package,
which was basically an
SS without the badges.
Speaking of badges, Chevy loves them.
And they were so committed
to making the Monte Carlo
a luxury mainstay that
they kept the number
of Chevy badges on the car to a minimum.
– Hey Craig, what is that car over there?
It looks like a Chevy but nice.
– I don’t know, Jerry.
– I guess we’ll never know.
Anyway, we’re late for our
reservation at Applebee’s, whee.
– I’m gonna be frank.
Throughout the rest of the 70s,
the Monte Carlo wasn’t that exciting.
It was making GM money, sure,
and it was getting some
fancier touches along the way.
Engineers fitted the MC with
front seats that could swivel
sideways to make getting
in and out easier.
I would love if seats
swiveled back and forth
that make it easier to get out.
Cut to a super cut of me
getting in and out of cars.
Despite one of the coolest technologies
ever in automotive history,
the old gas crisis hit.
And that wasn’t Chevy’s only problem.
Japanese car makers were
making life hard for Detroit.
Japan’s cars were reliable, economical,
and most importantly, very affordable.
The Monte Carlo was literally
none of those things.
So, (sighs) they would
have to make it smaller.
The third gen Monte was produced
from 1978 all the way to 1980.
That’s 12 whole years, 12
whole years, 12 whole years.
1978 all the way to 1980.
That’s 12 whole years.
The flat grill was familiar
to the Chevy faithful,
but the rest of the car
was downsized and reshaped
into a sleeker form.
It wasn’t a bad car, but the Monte Carlo
had yet to really reach
its full potential.
And this.
Is this where you talk about the part
where the Monte Carlo
reaches its full potential?
Am I really that predictable?
I mean, your content is entertaining,
but let’s be honest, you
really do have a formula.
Well, if you’ve figured out that formula,
feel free to submit to
write for this show.
Go to donutmedia.com, and
then there’s a clicky spot
where it says, “Join the team.”
1981, the Monte Carlo was leaner
and meaner than ever before
and still retained the
signature personal luxury.
There were a ton of choices
when it came to engines.
Buyers could choose from small
V6’s, Oldsmobile 350 diesel,
and even a turbo-charged V6 from Buick.
The variety was proof Chevy
wanted the Monte Carlo
to be the luxury car for everyone.
There was just one problem.
That (bleep) Ford Thunderbird.
For the 1983 NASCAR
season, Ford introduced
a new Thunderbird stock car.
It was a super sleek
and aerodynamic design.
Some people started
calling it the Aero-Bird.
The Aero-Bird would break 200
on an oval on the regular,
and it even set a race
lap record at Talladega
that still stands today, today.
Chevy responded by petitioning NASCAR
to let them run a new
nose on the Monte Carlo
for the 1983 season, which NASCAR allowed.
We got friends at NASCAR.
Shout-out Matt Sommers.
But since it was stock car racing,
that meant the Monte Carlo road car
had to be produced with
the new nose as well,
and that wasn’t all.
Since the Monte Carlo was
now an aerodynamic race car,
it needed
performance to match.
Chevy dropped a 305 cubic
inch V8 under the hood
and brought back a long lost trim level.
Super sport.
Yes, the Monte Carlo SS was back
for the first time in 12 years
and looked better than ever.
The new SS was a huge hit with customers,
outselling the more luxurious LS package
and becoming the most
popular Monte Carlo trim.
It also didn’t hurt that the Monte Carlo
was kicking (bleep) in NASCAR.
That’s what you call kickin’ Nass.
The Monte Carlo was holding
its own against the T-Bird,
but holding its own wasn’t good enough.
As Monte Carlos screamed around the track,
the dramatic drop of the rear window
created a high pressure zone,
which pulled backwards on the car.
If they could make that
angle smoother, the car
would go faster, so that’s what they did.
Chevy engineers made a
three-piece rear window
that significantly decreased
the slope to 25 degrees.
They called it the Aerocoupe.
Chevy had to build 200 of
these things for the public
to meet homologation rules.
So in 1986, that’s what they did.
But something weird happened.
People really liked them.
So in 1987, they didn’t
limit Aerocoupe production
and ended up selling more
than 6000 of them that year.
But wait, what about your friend, Dale?
Dale Earnhardt was a one-time
Winston Cup champion.
He spent the mid-80s behind the wheel
of a Ford Aero-Bird but switched
to a Monte Carlo Aerocoupe
for the 86 season.
Good move, Dale.
He took the blue and
yellow Wrangler Jeans Monte
all the way to the tippity top
and earned his second
championship that year.
The next year, he followed it
up with another championship.
That makes three, which was fitting
because that’s also his number.
Dale’s in your face driving style
and nearly unquenchable need to win
earned him the nickname, The Intimidator.
The intimidation factor
was made official in 1988
when Dale got a new sponsor.
His Monte Carlo went from
the jovial blue and yellow
to a new paint scheme that
truly embodied his nickname.
It was painted black.
If that didn’t make other drivers puh-poo
in their puh-pants, nothing would.
Earnhardt would win
four more championships,
bringing the total to seven.
As the 80s came to an end,
Dale had made the Monte Carlo a legend.
Unfortunately, that wasn’t enough
to justify the car’s
existence in the real world.
Those Japanese cars the
Monte Carlo had downsized
to fight 10 years earlier were getting
really, really, really good.
So 1988 was the last model
year for the Monte Carlo
and would be replaced by the
front wheel drive Lumina.
But this wasn’t the end
for the Monte Carlo.
All right.
By 1995, the Lumina’s image was
very, very, very boring.
So to spice things up, Chevy
renamed the two-door Lumina,
the Monte Carlo.
Whoo, we’re back, baby.
But not really.
The new Monte didn’t
really have anything to do
with the old one.
Aww, man.
Chevy did eventually introduce
a new SS model in 2004
featuring a supercharged
V6, making 240 horsepower.
In an attempt to relive the glory days,
Chevy also released a Dale
Earnhardt edition Monte Carlo,
available in either black for Senior
or red for Junior.
The Earnhardt edition had a bunch
of other NASCAR style touches,
like either Senior or Junior’s
number plastered inside
and some race inspired gauges.
Most importantly, the black one came
with an Intimidator badge on the back.
You could only buy one of those
if you were truly most
definitely doing it for Dale.
Shouts to Cleetus
McFarland, what’s up, man?
I like you a lot.
We should hang out.
The Monte Carlo got its
final refresh in 2006
with its most notable
improvement under the hood.
The Monte Carlo SS was
once again powered by a V8
the first time in 18 years.
That’s right, a V8.
I don’t know, yeah, they do it.
Chevy announced that the Monte
Carlo would be discontinued
for 2007, citing low consumer interest,
i.e., no one cared.
And fears that the Monte might steal sales
from the upcoming Camaro,
which I don’t really follow along with.
I just want to give a quick
shouts to (bleep) helmets,
I’m gonna have to bleep
your name on the episode,
This guy painted this
really cool helmet for me,
and he talked to me about it
and he let me design it with him.
I’m very happy with it,
so check out his Instagram
and his website, I’ll put the
link in the description below.
I love you.

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