Sunday, March 28, 2010

Auction deal: Rare 1970 Oldsmobile Cutlass SX musclecar $600


This rare 1970 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme SX sold for chump change at a recent classic car auction (auction story here). I know about the recession and massive job losses. But the $600, no reserve bid was a steal for a car packing its original 455 cubic inch W-32 power plant. For 1970 models the W-32 Oldsmobile engine provided 365-horsepower and 500-lbs.ft of torque. The pitiful, inoperable condition of the Olds was partly to blame for the lack of attention it received. One lucky, low dough bidder was rewarded for the overall Olds SX ignorance. The new owner towed away one of Oldsmobile’s rarest, most powerful musclecars. I was green with envy.

Recently I discovered how rare Olds SXs were when I saw one in my neighborhood. I thought it was JUST a Cutlass Supreme. The owner quickly let me know that his ’71 Olds SX was more rare than a 1970 Pontiac GTO Judge. He just happens to own a ’70 Judge and a ’71 SX, so he should know. He also revealed why the stealthy Olds SX was developed – as a way to avoid high insurance premiums. Giving customers a Superman engine in Clark Kent’s clothing. I was hooked. My SX sensors were tuned-in and immediately I knew I missed a deal when I saw the bruised, sagging, SX hulk moments after it sold.
Why the disrespect?
Generally, Buicks and Oldsmobiles get zero respect when you combine a need for complete restoration and this minty shade of green. Few know about the Cutlass Supreme SX legend and SX owner Bob Peters is trying to change that. His website SX455.com is collecting a database of SX owners. Peters estimates that 1,025 SXs were built in 1970 with the W-32 engine. Prices on these low production SXs promise to climb. As word spreads and people realize what they passed up at this auction the SX bug may bite. You’ve been warned.

Olds SX numbers
The W-32 (365-horsepower) was the king of the 455 Olds engines in 1970 although L-31 (365-horsepower) and L-33 engines (320-horsepower) were available. According to this Olds 455 site, a total of 6,404 SX coupes, 793 convertibles were built in 1970. 1,820 SX coupes, 357 convertibles were built in 1971. Odds are you won’t find another $600 Cutlass SX this week but good luck trying anyway.

A closer look at this SX’s options
Strato-Bucket seats
Custom Sport steering wheel
Factory a/c
Deluxe interior including wood-grain door panels
D55 woodgrain-ball console shifter
TH400 ‘OG’ code automatic transmission

 This 1970 Cutlass SX had bucket seats, wood-grain door panels, factory a/c

 Yep, that’s the original carburetor!

W-32 455-cubic inch Oldsmobile Cutlass SX engine

 No vinyl top, always a bonus point


 Only missing one center cap



Cut-outs in the bumper for dual exhaust, 4-4-2s and SXs had them  





 Fact: The S in SX should be placed below the second S in Cutlass

Miscellaneous car parts and a life jacket packed in trunk of auction SX

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