While General Motors was developing its “compact” cars starting with the Chevrolet Corvair it began to work also on larger cars, the so-called “senior compacts”, at the Buick, Oldsmobile, and Pontiac divisions. Thus the five-meter Cutlass appeared, which belonged to middle-class vehicles according to the American classification of those years.
Source: Wallpaper Flare
The “muscle era” did not last long, but even the most distant people from automotive topics recognize these powerful vehicles’ silhouettes from miles, and the names Ford Mustang, Chevrolet Camaro, or Daytona Shelby still stir the hearts of many boys around the world, regardless of their age, material well-being, and type of activity. This was a reckless time when medium-sized, stylish, and budget automobiles with fantastically powerful engines were dominating the roads. One such sounding name was F85/Cutlass – a small version of the full-size Oldsmobile, designed by Irvin Rybitsky.
Source: Mecum Auctions
The first Cutlass was an experimental sports coupe designed in 1954. Compact, by American standards, it did not receive further development. However, in 1957, a year after the launch of the rear-engined Chevrolet Corvair, GM introduced the so-called “senior compacts”: Oldsmobile F85/Cutlass, Buick Special/Skylark, and Pontiac Tempest. Designed by designer Irwin Rybitsky, the Oldsmobile F 85 was not just a downsized copy of the full-sized Oldsmobiles. It still retained the marks of the rocket age: concave swept sidewalls, rims in the form of turbines, headlights and taillights connected in pairs, a radiator grill with an electric razor structure, and a solid window sill line that replaced the fins. Under the hood, an all-aluminum 3.5-liter Rockette V8 215 engine with 155 hp, borrowed from Buick, was installed as standard. For a surcharge, a version with a 4-barrel carburetor, increased compression ratio, and dual exhaust, with a capacity of 185 hp was offered. From 1961 to 1963, in addition to sedans, a 2-door coupe, 2-door hardtop, and 4-door station wagon were introduced based on A platform. During the second generation production period (1964 to 1967) all previous body styles remained and the new convertible was released. The third generation was produced from 1968 to 1972. A 4-door hardtop was a novelty in the production line.
Source: Mecum Auctions
In 1970, the F-85 received minor changes: the rear lights became vertical. Also, the ignition switch was moved from the dashboard to the steering rack. There was also a steering lock. The 1970 automobile was equipped with a V8 engine with a displacement of 5.7 liters) and was able to develop power up to 370 horsepower, thus becoming the highest-performing Oldsmobile. The length of the vehicle was 5123 mm, the wheelbase was 2845 mm for the coupe, and 2946 mm for the sedan. They were equipped with engines with a volume of 4.1 liters, 5.7 liters, 6.6 liters, and 7.5 liters. The drive was carried out on the rear wheels with a continuous axle. Since the model was considered sporty, the 3-speed manual transmission was offered. As a result, on test dives, the 1970 Cutlass coupe could reach a maximum speed of 201 km/h.
The Cutlass Rallye 350 modification was one of the most unique muscle cars produced in the 1970s. In 1995, it was even recognized as the best in its class for the 1968-1972 period according to the national club of American owners and fans of the brand. The model debuted at the Chicago International Auto Show in February 1970 and was assembled for only one year. In total, only 3267 copies were produced. The vehicle was offered exclusively in yellow coloring, which was complemented by the same color rims.
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