Saturday, March 14, 2015

10k: This Is Your Grandpa's Oldsmobile: 1966 Oldsmobile Toronado

Happy Pi Day to all -- a one in a hundred 3.14.15 Pi day.  Enjoy this slice of American apple pie.  With the 1966 launch of the Oldsmobile Toronado, GM started a love affair with full sized front wheel drive luxury cars that almost ended in 2011 with the death of the G-platform (Cadillac DTS, Buick Lucerne) but was kept on life support with Epsilon II based Buick LaCrosse (Cadillac XTS died in 2014).  As everybody moves to rear-drive sport sedans with monster-inspired front grills (What is up with Lexus's latest front ends?? Who or what traumatized those designers when they were children??) the fact is that most aging luxury drivers just want a car they can leisurely putt around in, and will trade power oversteer capabilities for cabin space each and every time.  Find this 1966 Oldsmobile Toronado here on eBay currently bidding for $3,837 reserve-not-met located in San Andreas, CA.

The seller seems to be quite the character -- first he types in ALL CAPS, forgot to change the date on his camera, has a nice gated driveway on a nice sidewalk-free "old money" style street, and he has a few pea-hens out front.  This is not some car flipper who has staged in the car to make it look like an original owner, this is a real old school survivor find complete with black plates.  The seller might not be the original owner,  but you can bet he took good care of it during his time with it, and can probably point you to the original owner.

This Toronado is powered by a 425 cubic inch Oldsmobile Rocket V8, rated at 385 horsepower and 475 ft-lbs of torque (SAE gross).  It will obliterate the front tires on demand and push the 4500 lb Oldsmobile around with verve, but you gotta be willing to burn some crude. 

See another classic big block from the 1960s?


  1. Get face to face with your kink!


  2. Um, K2MC, are your meds wearing off? :-)

    Now, as for this tasty Olds. That is a design that has aged very well. Clean strong lines that you could be happy staring at forever. Too bad about the bits of paint damage. That rear fender looks like it might have been a brake fluid spill. I imagine bidding will have to go up quite a ways before the owner will let this car go.

    I have never driven one of these cars, but I do still own a 1/43 Corgi version from the 1960s, complete with pop up headlights:


    There was even a version in the same colour as the car proposed for sale here.

    1. No, they're just kicking in full force. Wheeeeeee!

      El Jefe said to me that he wants to get more people to play the Thursday Twister. They'll forget about it and just move on and that's just the nature of things unless I remind them. And I see, my friend, that you have only submitted a total of ONE car for the challenge. You're clearly a gearhead like me and I seriously doubt you can't come up with more - for sure! So get on it man!


  3. These can cruise all day at 110 mph like its 60 mph. One of the top car designs ever made. About the new Lexus...they have perfected the " wizard sleeve" front end look.

  4. I love(with a capital L) this body style, but never had any affection for FWD. I don't have the talent or the bank account for a RWD swap so I guess I will appreciate from afar.

  5. Ah, from the Detroit era when anything but straight-line motoring meant front wheel covers zipping over the curb and into oblivion.

    This car wears only the poverty caps, so you might get away with flogging it until the tire bead peels off the rim while trying to keep up with a UPS delivery truck around a cloverleaf.

    They were a pretty design and an interesting technical experiment but if there was ever a vehicle that did not need to be front-wheel drive, it's an eighteen-foot-long, two and a half ton personal-luxury battlecruiser.

  6. I would note that this design pioneered - in a very in-your-face fashion, in fact - the flat-faced wheel arches that've become so much a staple of the modern design trade as cars get taller and fatter and manufacturers try to hide the bulk of the blobs they're creating.

  7. This one big, fast, heavy, comfortable luxury car from an era when "Super" was 49 cents a gallon ( I was pumping gas in '66 so I know). Great cars for covering a lot of distance in complete comfort - if you can afford the gas. Had I the space I'd buy this one simply because I doubt that it's ever going to be worth less.

  8. Always thought this design was ugly as sin.


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