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Oldsmobile was a leader and innovator of automobiles and advanced technology amongst the GM fleet.
The first 442 was introduced in midyear 1964 with the B-09 police pursuit package option available on the Cutlass line. 4-4-2 designated, 4 barrel carburetor, 4 speed transmission and dual exhaust. The Oldsmobile 442 quickly earned its reputation as the Gentleman’s Muscle car.
The top dog engine option for the 442 was option code W-30 and was introduced in 1966 as technically a Drag Race Option Package with only 54 being produced that year. All W-30 optioned 442s, for all years, were built at the Lansing Michigan plant.
The 442 became its own model in 1968 and the VIN number of the car will designate that it is indeed a true 442 from 1968 up to and including 1971.
For the 1969 model year Oldsmobile Division featured Dr. Oldsmobile and his crew in advertisements to promote the special W-Machines. Dr. Oldsmobile was a parity of Dr. Frankenstein and became a popular and colorful cult character during the Muscle Car Era.
The W-30 option on a 442 added some very impressive performance options on top of all the standard 442 goodies.
Forced Air Induction scoops under the front Bumper
Special “D” coded Hi-Performance Heads
Heavy Duty Radiator.
Red Plastic Inner Fender Wells
Special 328 degree camshaft (available only with the 4 speed option !)
Painted Hood stripes
There were a total of 29,839 442’s produced in 1969
Of those only 1,389 were ordered with the W-30 option and of those 1,063 were W-30, 4 speeds, based on Historical records provided by the Oldsmobile Heritage Foundation.
GM of Canada archives document that only 47, 442’s were exported into Canada for the 1969 model year. It is not known exactly how many of these 442s were optioned as W-30s and/or 4 speed, but the number would be very small.
The featured 442 is from the prominent and well known “Back-in-Black Collection”, in Southern California. This Collection features some of the most significant and powerful Muscle cars know to man kind, with a focus on the most sinister of all muscle car colors……BLACK!
The featured 442 is indeed a documented,(GM of Canada) real deal W-30, 4 speed, with numbers matching engine, in the original color of code “10” Ebony Black, with red bucket seat interior and crimson stripes. It is the only such optioned W-30 coupe, known to exist with full documentation, as to the status of every option and color code.
Please note: that a broad cast card for a 1969 W-30 will help to document the engine option, but it does not document the transmission and/ or rear gear as well as all other options. A window sticker, a build sheet (not usually found in Lansing Michigan built W-30s) or Bullet Proof GM of Canada documentation is required to substantiate such claims.
The “Back in Black” collection commissioned Stefano Bimbi to inspect this W-30. It earned a certificate of authenticity from the NicKey Registry, Inc. which states that the VIN tag and Trim Tag are authentic and that car has not been rebodied as well as the fact the the casting of the engine and VIN derivative stamped into the block are correct.