What Makes The 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 A Cool And Affordable Classic..

Let's take a look at the 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass 442, and discover what makes it such a highly collectible and reasonably priced classic car.

For decades, the Oldsmobile Cutlass epitomized the best of the American muscle car culture and captivated a lot of enthusiasts across the country. As a muscle car aimed towards middle-class consumers, the Oldsmobile was one of the best-selling cars in America and maintained a high reputation throughout its lifespan.

After receiving both cosmetic upgrades and gaining more power in the second generation, which ran from 1968 through 1972, the third-generation Cutlass made its debut in 1973. This new iteration saw the Cutlass grow in size. It also had a sleeker and more modern outlook, with an enhanced grille, a new bumper, and other aesthetic features.

With a limited number of models produced in 1973, the Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 is a rare and sought-after classic car. Whether you’re an enthusiast or you simply appreciate classic American muscle car designs, the Cutlass 442 is one breed that will surely sweep you off your feet.

The Classic 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 Still Looks Sleek And Sporty

The 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 stood out for its distinctive, muscular look, which featured sharp lines and one of the longest hoods ever made. Designed to look fast and powerful, the Oldsmobile Cutlass took the cake with its styling that still holds up well to this day. With a 207-inch length and a 76.5-inch width, the Cutlass 442 was larger than most muscle cars of the era, such as the Ford Mustang Mach 1, the Pontiac GTO, and the Chevrolet Camaro lineup, to name a few.

Due to uncertainty around upcoming bumper restrictions and the UAW strike in 1970–1971, the Colonnade A-bodies, were initially scheduled for the '72 model year. Those delays had them introduced in the 1973 model year. Slow-moving convertibles were not an option for this generation, but coupes with their five-foot-long doors, downward-sloping belt line that increased the amount of glass, and slanted B-pillar allowed for some of the open-aired hardtop appeals of earlier versions. It was nearly like having a real pillarless hardtop when you rolled down the window.

Its large grille had this special design that blended excellently with the round headlights, the indicators at the bottom, and the slightly curved hood. Overall, this gave the Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 a bold, intimidating finish. But, despite having the same 112-inch wheelbase, the 1973 Cutlass S coupe added 300 lbs over the 1972 model. Its total curb weight came at 4,175 lbs.

The 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 Has A Decent Performance

Standard on the 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass was the 350-cubic-inch "Rocket V8", and compared to the 445-cubic-inch V8, the 350 rocket V8 only delivered up to 180 horsepower.

Power-thirsty gearheads fell in love with the 1973 Cutlass 442’s potent engine: a 455-cubic-inch V8 engine. Churning out an impressive 250 horsepower and 370 lb-ft of torque, the 455 was one of the largest and most powerful engines available at the time. And thanks to its good power output, the 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass could go from a standstill to 60 mph in under 7 seconds, and up to a quarter-mile in 15.4 seconds, before topping out at 115 mph.

On the transmission choices, you could get a 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 with a standard three-speed manual or the optional four-speed manual transmission.

The 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 Is A Rare And Valuable Car

In the 1973 model year, the Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 had a base price of around $3,159. But, despite the lack of sales, Oldsmobile sold at least 10,000 Cutlass 442s that year.

Compared to other muscle cars of the year, that was a very low sales figure. And because of that, the 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 is among the rarest classic Oldsmobiles out there, which makes it an excellent collectible.

In general, Oldsmobiles aren’t as pricey as other classic muscle cars like, say, the Mustangs. Today, you can buy an Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 at an average price average of $13,200. This makes it cheaper than a Chevrolet Camaro Z28 from the same model year. Some well-preserved 442s can go for as high as $58,591. The Oldsmobile, like many muscle cars, continues to gain value with time.

The 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass Has A Pop Culture Appeal

Aside from dominating the roads, the Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 also made a few Hollywood visits, where it appeared in movies and TV shows, including The Dukes of Hazzard, as well as Two-Lane Blacktop.

Plus, its appearance in Smokey and the Bandit, alongside the 1977 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am, further cemented the Oldsmobile Cutlass’ status as a cool American muscle car.

Final Thoughts On The 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass 442

The 1973 Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 earned its place in automotive history as an iconic example of the muscle car era. Thanks to its sleek and sporty design, powerful performance, rarity, and pop culture appeal, the Oldsmobile is a beloved and sought-after collectible.

The Oldsmobile Cutlass 442 will always remain recognized and valued by auto aficionados for its stance and impact in the history of American muscle cars.

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