Remember the early Nova hatchbacks? They didn’t sell very well, probably because the hatch cost $150 more ($810 in 2011 dollars) than the Nova coupe with a traditional trunk. I can’t remember the last time I saw one, and I wouldn’t have noticed this one in my local self-service yard, had it not been for the sharp eyes of the Tetanus Neon LeMons team co-captains, visiting Denver from Houston and stopping at the junkyard on their way to the airport for some Neon throttle-body shopping.
This car, while reasonably rust-free, is probably too beat to have been worth restoring; while the Nova hatches of this era are rare, they aren’t worth enough to warrant pouring lots of money into a project car.
The 307 small-block-Chevy was the standard V8 available with the ’73 Nova, although there’s no telling how many engine swaps this car endured during its nearly four decades on the road.
This car was surrounded by a moat of icky, oily mud (Denver is in the grip of an unseasonably wet and humid July), so I wasn’t motivated to climb into (or under) the car and check for the presence of a Powerglide transmission. ’73 was the last year of the ol’ two-speed automatic in the Nova, which would make a Powerglide-equipped hatchback an interesting mix of 1950s transmission and 1980s body style.
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