Only 12 Formula One cars were attracted to the impressive 5-mile circuit of Interlagos near the large Brazilian City of Sao Paulo. The race was organised by the same team who efficiently ran the Formula Two series at the end of last year but, even so, the race did seem to be in doubt in some quarters until only days beforehand. John Player Team Lotus, with the top Brazilian driver on their strength had to take the race seriously and they used it as a test for a brand new Lotus 72D which has been built up during the past couple of months. Numbered 72D/R7, the car was similar to those already raced and if there were any differences they were not noticeable and no one was telling. This was to be driven by Fittipaldi while the team also had R6 for Walker.
The Brabham team brought along their regular two cars, BT34/1 for regular driver Carlos Reutemann from neighbouring Argentina, and BT 33/3 for Emerson Fittipaldi's older brother, Wilson, who was replacing Graham Hill for this occasion. It was not W. Fittipaldi's first Formula One race for it will be remembered he drove an elderly Lotus 49 in the non-championship Argentine GP in 1970. March Engineering brought along their older type 721 for Peterson plus the car that Beuttler drove at Brands, for local top sports car driver, Luiz Bueno who raced in British Formula Ford in 1969.