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Vehicle to be offered for Auction sale June 10th – 12th, 2016 at Russo and Steele’s 4th Annual Newport Beach, California Auction. Please contact us for more information.
While Oldsmobile created what many believe to have been the first muscle car in 1949 by dropping its powerful, all-new “Rocket” overhead-valve V-8 engine into the midsize 88 chassis, the upscale GM Division did not return to the concept until 1964. Encouraged by the success of Pontiac’s GTO option, Oldsmobile engineers developed the RPO B09 “Police Apprehender Pursuit” option package for the new F-85 Cutlass in 1964 with the resulting “442” nameplate heralding its four-barrel carburetor, four-speed manual transmission, and dual exhaust system.
For 1965, the 442 option returned with a new 400 cubic inch engine, and while its initial 345 hp output was competitive with the GTO, the balance and excellent handling of the 442 gained equal praise in contemporary road tests. Sales rose steadily through the 1960s, thanks to stronger marketing and the growing reputation of this true “gentleman’s hot rod,” which was described by Motor Trend as “…the subtle man’s GTO.” In recognition of its sales success, the 442 gained unique series status within the Oldsmobile line-up for 1968 through 1971.
A major restyling for 1968 introduced a handsome aircraft fuselage-inspired design theme including a long hood and short rear deck that continued through 1972. Detail revisions for 1969 updated the grille to a more distinct twin-element design, vent windows were deleted from the Holiday Coupe and Convertible body styles, a steering-column lock debuted, and front-seat head rests were now standard. The optional front-disc brakes were equipped with updated single-piston calipers, and exhaust manifolds were tuned for improved performance. Accordingly, these 442s, and particularly those from 1968 and 1969, remain highly prized today for their clean styling and unadulterated performance levels.
Powered by a 350 “Rocket” V-8 engine matched to a Turbo 350 automatic transmission, this 1969 Olds 442 Tribute is equipped with power steering, power brakes, and power windows. Additional highlights include a new interior, new custom paint, new wheels and tires, and a new muffler system.