The Chevelle, first introduced in the 1964 model year as an intermediate-size Chevrolet subsidiary, eventually became known as the Malibu (which was the model name of its top-line series from early in the game).
In 1973, however, the Malibu was upstaged by a new Chevelle flagship series, the Laguna. Initially, the Laguna included a two-door and a four-door colonnade hardtop, but the following year the four-door was discontinued in favor of the coupe. By 1976, its final year, the price of a Laguna coupe had risen to $5,167 shortly before its discontinuation.
There were also four types of Laguna wagons briefly in the 1973 season. The Estate wagon had woodgrain body panels, while the standard Laguna wagon was ungrained. Two and three seat versions were offered of each.
According to the original 1973 sales catalog, published in the autumn of 1972, the new Laguna series was designed "to rival more expensive cars in its rich interiors, quietness, comfort and security. We designed it with a sleek look--a distinctive front end made of tough, resilient urethane incorporating our new, improved front bumper system. Behind it is a big Turbo-Fire 350-2 V-8, standard."
Because of fuel shortages and price hikes later in 1973, the Laguna V-8 lost much of its sales appeal as buyers began to clamor for gas-sipping four and six-cylinder economy cars.
Now the Laguna appeals to car collectors. Perhaps the most scarce is the 1973 three-seat wagon (standard exterior), of which only 2,200 were produced.