blank 12/02/12 04:22PM 1970 Oldsmobile, 455 V-8, Auto Restoration, Wild About Cars

1970 Oldsmobile 442 Convertible
Marcus Thompson is only the second owner of this long-time daily driver

Finished in a relatively rare Aqua Green with a white top, the car also has a white interior.

Model year 1970 was the height of performance for the 442 with 365 hp available with the base 455 V-8. Marcus Thompson's car, of which he is the second owner, has over 200,000 miles on it, yet it looks like it rolled off the showroom floor yesterday. It was well-used, but well taken care of, by its first owner.

Marcus Thompsonís 1970 442 was ordered from Jones Cadillac-Oldsmobile in Richmond, Virginia in August 1969, and the original purchaser, ďBill,Ē checked off on the order form most of the goodies offered.  These included power windows, seats, brakes, and steering, air-conditioning, sport steering wheel, and rally pack.  The color is the relatively rare code 45 Aspen Green with a white top and white interior.

Bill used the car for years as a daily driver, and when his daughter became old enough to drive, it became her car.  She drove all the way through her college years.  Around 1991, the car hit 200,000 miles, and Bill had it restored.  The work was done by The Vintage Car Shoppe in Durham, North Carolina, where a frame-on restoration took place over most of a year. 

The restoration was to stock specifications, and all items replaced were NOS as, back then, such parts were still relatively easy to come by.  After the restoration, Bill showed the car over much of the eastern U.S. and Canada and won hundreds of awards.

Marcus was introduced to Bill and the car through Marcusís father, who is a motorcycle mechanic and who worked on Billís bikes.  Marcus first saw the car in 2005 and was very interested in it.  Bill wasnít selling then, but in 2008 he decided it was time.  He had Vintage Car go over it once again where it was given most of a new brake system including master cylinder, power booster, brake lines, and calipers as well as an engine cleaning and repainting.  In late 2009, Marcus saw the car again, went back and forth with offers, and finally became the carís second owner on June 10, 2010.

The base price for a Ď70 442 convertible was $3,567, and it came standard with a 455 V-8 putting out 365 hp.  The W30 option package raised that to 370, which was the peak for the entire 442 era.  The 442 became its own series, rather than being an option on the F-85/Cutlass line, in 1968, and, by 1970, it was in the third of the four model years that it would enjoy that status. 

Production, however, was falling, with 2,933 convertibles, 1,688 post coupes, and 14,709 hardtop coupes, for a total of 19,330 442s produced that year.  By comparison, 1969 saw 26,357 442s of all types come off the line, and, in 1968, over 36,000 442s were produced.  To round out the series, 1971 saw only 7,589 442s hit the streets. 

Today, the Olds 442 is one of the most sought-after cars of the muscle-car era, and they routinely bring big money at auctions.  Price guides put the value of a car like Marcusís in the $30,000 to $50,000 range, with many examples bringing considerably more at the big auctions like Barrett-Jackson and Mecum.

As part of an early '90s restoration, the car received several NOS parts, including a new master cylinder and brake booster. In 2008, the engine was repainted.

  • To see the 1970 Oldsmobile 442 and W-30 Brochure, click Here.

  • To see 1970 Oldsmobile performance models Ads, click Here.

  • To See the Oldsmobile Chassis Service Manual, click Here.

This article courtesy of Wild About Cars.

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