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Image: 1973 Lincoln Continental Production Numbers Specifications
PRODUCTION NUMBERS
INTRODUCTION DATE:
September 22, 1972
TOTAL PRODUCTION:
58,636
TOP LINE: BODY CODE/MODEL NAME/BASE PRICE
BOTTOM LINE: WEIGHT/PRODUCTION
81 - Style 65A Lincoln Continental Coupé $7230
Weight: 5,214 Built: 13,348
82 - Style 53A Lincoln Continental Sedan $7474
Weight: 5,253 Built: 45,288
Weight: Town Coupé—5243 lbs.; Town Car—5282 lbs.
SPECIFICATIONS
ENGINE CODE
ENGINE DETAILS
A 460 CID 4V V-8
Bore and Stroke: 4.36" x 3.85"
Compression Ratio: 8.5:1
SAE Net Horsepower: 212 @ 4400 rpm
Torque: 342 ft.-lb. @ 2600 rpm
Carburetor: Motorcraft 4-barrel
TRANSMISSION CODE
TRANSMISSION DESCRIPTION
U SelectShift Automatic (C6)
REAR AXLE CODE
REAR AXLE RATIO
2
K
6
O
2.75:1
2.75:1 (Traction-Lok)
3.00:1 (Optional)
3.00:1 (Optional; Traction-Lok)
TIRE SIZE
BRAKES
255-15
Standard tire: "Premium quality" steel-belted radial ply WSW 3/8"
Dual hydraulic system
11.7" Power ventilated front disc
11" Finned and flared rear drum
Self adjusting
Sure-Track Brake System optional
WHEELBASE
DIMENSIONS
127.0 inches
Front Tread: 64.3 inches
Rear Tread: 64.3 inches
Steering Ratio: 17.1
Exterior:
Length: 229.9 inches
Width: 79.6 inches
Height: 54.5 inches (Coupé)
55.5 inches (Sedan)
Trunk: 18.1 cubic feet
Ground clearance: 5.3"
Interior (Coupé - F/R):
Head Room: 38.4"/37.5"
Leg Room: 41.7"/38.8"
Shoulder Room: 61.8'"/60.8"
Hip Room: 62.3"/61.4"
Interior (Sedan - F/R):
Head Room: 38.8"/38.1"
Leg Room: 41.7"/41.9"
Shoulder Room: 61.8'"/61.6"
Hip Room: 62.3"/62.3"
SPECIFICATIONS
CAPACITIES
Fuel Tank: 23.0 gallons
Fuel required: Regular (research octane rating of at least 91)
Cooling System: 19.5 quarts
Engine Oil: 5 qts. (including oil filter)
Power Steering: 3.9 pts.
Rear Axle: 5.0 pts.
SPECIAL NOTES
1973 saw a sales increase of 12,667 cars over 1972, an increase of 28% and the best sales year ever for the Lincoln.

Lincoln announced that its 1973 models were even quieter than the 1972 models.
New for 1973:
- Optional AM/FM stereo radio with integral stereo tape player.
- Energy-absorbing front bumper system.
- Town Coupé introduced as new production model.
- "CONTINENTAL" block lettering above grille.
- Lincoln script above left headlight cover.
Image: 1973 Lincoln Continental Coupe

Above: 1973 Lincoln Continental Coupé in White with optional White vinyl roof and leather seating surfaces.The luxury wheel covers shown are also optional.

The 1973 model year was a good one for Lincoln. Sales of 58,636 Lincolns were an increase of 12,667 cars over 1972, which represents a 28 percent improvement. Styling was mostly carryover, and visible changes were few. 1973 was a record setting year for the U.S. automobile industry, and it would need that as the next year wouldn't be as generous. The auto industry was not hit by the 1973 oil crisis until October 1973, and by that time most new 1973 models had been sold, so the brunt of the impact of the oil crisis impacted the 1974 models. What about the 1973 Continentals made them so popular? It's likely that some customers came in to look at the Mark IV, which was outselling the Continental Sedan and Coupé in big numbers at the time, (69,437 Mark IVs were built in 1973), and instead drove away in one of the less expensive Continental Sedans or Coupés, prices of which started at better than $1,500 less than a Mark.

Lincoln's chief competitor, Cadillac, had a record year in 1973, passing the 300,000 sales mark for the first time ever. It also built its five-millionth car during the year. Cadillac didn't stick with its policy of major styling changes every two years. If it had, the 1973 models would have been an all-new design, as the most recent body style had been introduced in 1971. Instead, it relied on heavily restyled front and rear bumpers, a new grille, new chrome headlamp housing assemblies, and new tail lamps in the rear.

Cadillac would undergo extensive styling changes inside and out, as would Lincoln. Of course, auto makers were expecting another record breaking year in 1974, and that wasn't going to happen.

Lincoln finally offered an AM/FM stereo radio with stereo tape system combination sound system for 1973. This had been available on Cadillac since 1967, with the AM/FM stereo unit in the instrument panel and the tape player mounted underneath. An all-in-one unit was available on many GM cars in 1971, but Ford was running a bit behind GM and didn't offer this combination until 1973. The sound quality of the system was quite good for its time, and featured four speakers—two in front mounted in the lower front area of each front door panel, and two in the rear, in each corner of the package tray below the rear window. Placing he front speakers in the door panels allowed them to resonate through the door cavity, and gave them more dimension than instrument panel top-mounted speakers.

Image: 1973 Lincoln Continental instrument panel

The same instrument panel introduced in 1970 continued to be used in 1973 left). Lincoln seemed to bounce back and forth on instrument panel designs over the years. For 1961-1963, the instrument panel created two clusters, one in front of the driver, and another in front of the passenger. A redesign for 1964-1965 introduced the linear panel, which stretched across the car from one end to the other, allowing front seat passenger access to shared controls like the radio, antenna, map light, and heater. The new restyle for 1966 introduced another panel that clustered everything in front of the driver, and was used through 1969. For 1970, once again, the panel stretched all the way across the car and allowed for easier access to some controls by passengers.