The 1972 Torino interiors have been upgraded thoroughly the dash boards this year are constructed from ABS plastic to a great extent. The basic instrument cluster is arranged in five identical round pods; the far left – far right are the “Directair” vent, second from left fuel temperature gauges, central speedometer, the fourth could hold a clock in the standard package. An updown cluster is available on the V8 engines with three equal pods centered above and behind the steering column; in the middle is the pod holding the speedometer /odometer and the tachometer to the right, while on the far left the “Directair” vent. Five smaller equal sized pods on the right, close to the dash boards center hold the other gauges and a clock. The stock bench seat in ‘72 has the comfort weave knitted nylon covering for durability as well as offering breathability with an option of choosing the six position setting power bench or the basic four position manual type. The bench seat also sports an integral head rest, at least for the outer positions, and of course the optional high back buckets have the head rest built in.
The longer, lower, and wider ’72 Torino two door versions are on a 114 inch wheel base while the four door and wagon varieties use a 118 inch wheel base. The body on the four door models is five inches longer while the two door units are one inch longer. All the models have added pounds this year; a two door the weight increase is nominal, but much more significant for the four door and the wagon versions.
The base power for the Gran Torino Squire and Gran Torino Sport is the small block 302 cu in V8 with a two barrel while the remainder of the fleet the base engine is the inline 250 cu in six but the 302 is offered optionally. Other engine options are the Windsor 351 cu in with a two barrel or the “Cobra Jet” option-a Cleveland 351 cu in with a four barrel. The engine could optionally have a750 CFI Motorcraft four barrel but the 351 is modified this year with a special intake manifold, racing camshaft, 4-bolt main bearing caps, special valve springs and dampers, as well, it is the only engine with duel; exhaust pipes. The 351 CJ with a four speed on a fastback design will do 0-60mph in 6.8 seconds.
There were also two other engines that could be ordered; the 335series 400 cu in with a two barrel-new to the Torino and a 429 cu in with a four barrel is another option for power. This newly designed 429 is a high torque but low revving engine different from the high performance variety from earlier years. The EPA regulations are getting stronger each year and low lead, low octane fuel is also anti-productive for high performance engines although there has also been the switch from brake horse power to net horse power rating system which makes the power look even lesser than it actually is. Three on the tree is basic equipment on all models except with the large V8 power then the Cruis-o-Matic or a four speed are the only optional choices.
The ’72 Torino got good response from the public and the press with the car chosen as “best buy” of the year by Consumer Guide. A ’72 Torino Sport fast back was a main player in the movie Gran Torino which was directed by and co-starred Clint Eastwood