Jay Leno possesses an incredible amount of automotive knowledge, so it's intriguing when a vehicle he's not familiar with rolls into the garage. In this video, he checks out a rare 1991 Oldsmobile Calais Quad 442 W-41. If you don't know about this model either, don't be embarrassed because there are only 200 of them out there.
Before checking out the Calais, Jay talks to its owner, Jeff Szafraniec, about a very special engine that he owns. The powerplant is an experimental version of the Oldsmobile Quad 4 mill. The twin-turbo 2.0-liter makes 1,170 horsepower (873 kilowatts). The output would be impressive enough today, but this one is from 1985.
Szafraniec believes he's the only private individual to own one of these experimental engines. Two of them are at the R.E. Olds Transportation Museum in Lansing, Michigan.
Szafraniec also brings two examples of the Calais with the non-turbocharged, 2.3-liter, production-spec version of the high-output Quad 4. The roadgoing variant makes 190 hp (142 kW). He also has a race car with around 240 hp (179 kW) thanks to parts like a different crank and connecting rods.
To put things into perspective, the Calais was Oldsmobile's entry-level model in 1991. While the one in this video was the range-topping variant in the range, the base version made just 110 hp (82 kW).
Also, Oldsmobile wasn't a performance-oriented brand at this point in its history. The racing version of the Calais Quad 442 W-41 found success on the track, but the one for customers sat at dealerships, according to Szafraniec.
On the road, this high-output Quad 4 sounds amazing. The noise seems a lot more growly than you'd expect from a 2.3-liter four-cylinder. Even Leno says that he is purposely keeping it in a lower gear to enjoy the exhaust note.