While Oldsmobile is believed to have created the first “muscle car” in 1949, it was not until 1964 that it returned to the concept, encouraged by the success of Pontiac’s GTO option. Oldsmobile was in fact the first GM division to follow Pontiac’s lead and began in 1964 with the $136 RPO B09 option package, also known as the “Police Apprehender Pursuit” package on the new F-85 Cutlass intermediates. Logically, the 442 nameplate signified the car’s 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. Thanks to strong marketing, sales rose steadily through the 1960s. The 442 gained series status within the Oldsmobile lineup for 1968 through 1971. A major restyling for 1968 introduced a handsome new design theme that continued through 1972. These 442s, particularly those from 1968 and 1969, are especially prized for their clean styling.
This car was auctioned off by RM Auctions in October of 2010 at the Hershey Lodge, Hershey, Pennsylvania and in November of 2010 at the Robson Estate, Gainesville, Georgia.
400 cu. in. V-8 engine, four-barrel carburetor, Turbo-Hydramatic 400 three-speed automatic transmission, independent front suspension with unequal-length A-arms, coil springs and anti-roll bar, four-link rear suspension with coil springs and stabilizer bar, and front disc, rear drum hydraulic brakes. Wheelbase: 112".
Source: RM Auctions
Photo Credit: Copyright Darin Schnabel