The 1960s Oldsmobile Toronado was an American icon. Keep reading and check out more details that Giro dos Motores has prepared below!
When we think of the American four-wheel icons of the second half of the 1960s, the first examples that come to mind are the muscle cars. cars powerhouse of the decade. Like most American manufacturers, Oldsmobile was heavily involved in this market segment.
While most would agree that Pontiac was responsible for starting the muscle car craze with its GTO in 1964, the Oldsmobile and its 442 was a worthy rival that appeared as an option for the Cutlass lineup during the same model year.
In addition to offering a muscle car from the start, the now defunct division of GM was at the forefront of innovation during the 1960s. with its new front-wheel drive system.
The story of the Oldsmobile Toronado began in 1962, when the division's assistant chief designer, David R. North, created some interesting sketches for what was initially a luxury compact car.
As I mentioned, the first-generation Oldsmobile Toronado was a muscle car in disguise. Under the hood, it initially came with a 7.0 liter Super Rocket V8 that could produce 385 hp (390 ps) and 644 Nm of torque. From 1968 to 1970, the model received a 7.5-liter V8 with a nominal power of 375 hp (380 hp) or 400 hp (405 hp) with the W-34 option and no less than 690 hp.
With stunning styling and an innovative drivetrain, the Oldsmobile Toronado hit the streets during the 1966 model year and was an immediate hit. Oldsmobile managed to sell around 41,000 units, which made the new model one of GM's most successful intermediates of the year.
The public, as well as the automotive press, were delighted with the new model. In a test run by Car and Driver magazine, journalists were quick to point out that the Oldsmobile Toronado could only accelerate to 60 mph (97 km/h) from a standstill in 8.6 seconds, but that modest number could be quickly forgotten thanks to the refined handling. They went so far as to call it the fastest cornering American-built mid-range that money could buy at the time.
MotorTrend, another prestigious publication, has also tested the Oldsmobile Toronado several times. At the end of the year, the magazine even gave the new Olds the Car of the Year award. Also impressive, the Oldsmobile Toronado finished third in the European Car of the Year rankings, becoming only the second American vehicle nominated for this accolade – following the Mustang's third-place finish the year before.
Although it was a success in its first year on the market, sales dropped by about 50% in 1967, mainly due to the introduction of the FWD El Dorado from cadillac. Things didn't improve in 1968, despite the addition of the mighty 455 V8, and by the end of 1970 - the final year for the first generation model - sales plummeted to an all-time low.