Some of you aren't going to understand the appeal of this 1989
Oldsmobile Toronado, but for you Oldsmobile guys and collectors,
it's a very rare find. Showing just 29,713 actual miles, it's the
last gasp for Oldsmobile's personal luxury coupe and as you'll find
out, it's still a pretty darned good car.
The styling was familiar, being the same platform on which the downsized Buick Riviera and Cadillac Eldorado also lived, but that shouldn't be a surprise; those three had been sharing almost since the Toro's debut in 1966. But the Olds had a unique look that's arguably the most appealing of the three, with cool hidden headlights up front and a single full-width taillight in back, so it's easy to see coming or going. The medium blue paint is probably an older respray, possibly original, it's hard to say for sure. There are a few signs of age, but no dents or bodywork and with so few miles and having lived in a warm climate, it isn't a rust bucket, either. Plastic parts like the front lower valence, bumper fillers, and lenses are likewise in great shape, suggesting a car that has also lived out of the elements. A single gold pinstripe defines the car's unique kick-up behind the greenhouse, but that's about it for extraneous ornamentation. The Olds wants to keep a low profile.
Inside, it's typical GM luxury from the 1980s: plush bucket seats, comfortable velour upholstery, and lots of buttons and gadgets. We love seeing the horseshoe shifter make a comeback here and with the benefit of hindsight, we realize that digital dashboards are just plain cool. Remarkably, it's all working properly and the display is bright and crisp, a hallmark of Oldsmobile's attempts to become the "tech" division during the rebranding frenzy of the late 1980s. As the top-of-the-line model, the Toronado received just about every upgrade imaginable, from automatic climate control to power locks, windows, seats, and mirrors, to a decent-sounding AM/FM/cassette stereo system. The A/C blows cold and still uses good old R12 refrigerant, there's almost no wear on the seats, and even the carpets look quite fresh; someone really took care of this car! It's also quite comfortable, so you can settle in for a road trip, which is really the Toro's strong suit. It's even got a good-sized trunk that's quite nicely finished.
All Toronados received GM's corporate 3800 V6, which, as the name would imply, displaces 3.8 liters. Torquey, smooth, and remarkably fuel efficient, these engines are legendary for their durability. With a modicum of care, it should outlast us all. Clearly, the first three owners have given you a good head start, because the engine bay is quite tidy and totally original save for routine service parts. It's worth noting that this was one of the earliest applications of distributorless ignition technology, which every car uses today. It starts quickly and easily, idles smoothly, and pulls the coupe around with ease, making it very easy to live with. The 4-speed automatic transmission was the only choice, and it, too, is unobtrusive in its job and with a towering overdrive gear, it's possible to get more than 25 MPG, too. The Toronado got a fully independent suspension, too, so it's athletic and comfortable, and yes, that's a Corvette-style transverse leaf spring in back. 4-wheel discs and 15-inch alloy wheels with 215/70/15 radials are an appropriate look.
Clean, well-maintained, and low-mileage and low-ownership, this Toronado is an inexpensive trip back to the '80s when interesting cars were still available in showrooms. Call today!