AJ's Car of the Day: 1978 Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 "Aeroback" Salon

Car: Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 "Aeroback" Salon

Year: 1978

What makes it special: In 1978 and '79,  the 442 was an option package on the semi-fastback "Aeroback" Oldsmobile Cutlass Salon, which was the low budget version of the Cutlass model.

What made it famous: Actually, the word "infamous" comes to mind. It was NOT well received with the 442 purists, who felt that this was a ruination of the highly coveted Oldsmobile 442. Many considered the Aeroback design to be quite, well....ugly.

Why I would want one: It was offered up with a 305 V8, and a 4-speed Saginaw manual transmission purely for the 305 V8. Plus, it definitely fits the bill for those who "dare to be different" amongst the car crowd. In addition, because they weren't held in high regard, many went the way of the crusher years ago, making them somewhat rare today.

Fun fact: The final use of the 442 name was on the 1990-91 front wheel drive, Quad 442 Cutlass Calais. It featured a 2.3 L , LGO Quad 4-cylinder engine with 4 valves per cylinder and 2 camshafts. ( A far cry from what originated the 442: the configuration of a 4-barrel carb., 4-speed manual transmission, and posi-traction that was set in motion back in 1964.)


Driven by Connecticut International Auto Show