AJ’s Car of the Day: 1963 Oldsmobile Cutlass F-85 Convertible

AJ’s Car of the Day: 1963 Oldsmobile Cutlass F-85 Convertible

Car: Oldsmobile Cutlass F-85 Convertible

Year: 1963

What makes it special: Cutlass was produced by General Motors‘ Oldsmobile division between 1961 and 1999. At its introduction, the Cutlass was Oldsmobile’s smallest model; it began as a unibody compact car, but saw its greatest success as a body-on-frame intermediate. Introduced as the top trim level in Oldsmobile’s compact F-85 line, the Cutlass evolved into a distinct series of its own, spawning numerous variants, including the formidable 4-4-2 muscle car in 1964, premium Cutlass Supreme in 1966, and outright performance Hurst/Olds in 1968, as well as the Vista Cruiser station wagon.

What made it famous: The F-85 was restyled for the 1963 model year, to a crisper, more squared off design than the one of the 1961–62 models. While the wheelbase was unchanged at 112 inches, the new bodywork added 4 inches to the F-85’s rear overhang, increasing overall length to 192.2 inches. Three-row seating was dropped on station wagons. The 215 Jetfire V8 and its turbocharged V8 returned, for what would be its final year. On automatic transmission models only, the compression ratio of the Cutlass engine was raised to 10.75:1, pushing output to 185 hp at 4,800 rpm and 235 lb⋅ft at 3,200 rpm. 

Why I would want one: Actually, had one. The car pictured was my own.

Fun fact: Oldsmobile first used the Cutlass name on an experimental sports coupe designed in 1954. It rode a 110 in wheelbase, and featured a dramatic fastback roofline and stock V8. Its platform was similar to the compact F-85 introduced seven years later.