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1967 Oldsmobile Cutlass 4-4-2 W-30


©2007 Publications International, Ltd. Car and Driver called the W-30 "the best handling car of its type we've ever tested." See more muscle car pictures.

Olds called its 1967 sporty cars the "Youngmobiles" and advertised them accordingly. Tires were "boots," styling was "with it," and the Oldsmobile Cutlass 4-4-2 W-30 was "the sweetest, neatest, completest anti-boredom bundle on rubber!" One ad touted the 4-4-2 as "Keeper of the Cool." That was quite accurate in the case of muscle cars with the W-30 performance package.

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Olds quietly shipped 54 of the setups in '66 but gave the W-30 Force-Air-Induction System more play for '67. Of 24,829 4-4-2s built that year, about 500 got the $300 option. The original W-30 application was for the 360-bhp tri-carb engine, but GM restricted multicarb outfits to the Corvette in '67. All 4-4-2s now had the four-barrel 400-cid V-8, which retained its 350-bhp rating even in W-30 form -- though power and torque peaked 400 rpm higher in W-30s.

©2007 Publications International, Ltd. With Tri-Power outlawed by GM, all 4-4-2s used a four-barrel 400-cid V-8, and some got the dealer-installed W-30 system.

The W-30 induction system was more efficient than scoops that simply captured air running over the hood. It drew cold air from unobtrusive inlets above and below the parking lights and then ran it through two five-inch flexible tubes to a specially stamped air cleaner. Location of the inlets and arrangement of the ducting created a pressurizing effect.

©2007 Publications International, Ltd. Scoops in the W-30's headlight housing fed air to the carb through five-inch fabric tubes.

To make room for the tubes, the battery was relocated to the trunk, which also helped weight distribution. W-30 engines weren't ignored, gaining a hotter cam, stronger valve springs, and higher oil pressure.

Newly optional front disc brakes enhanced road manners that already were tops in the muscle-car field. Car and Driver flat called it "the best handling car of its type we've ever tested."

©2007 Publications International, Ltd. All 4-4-2s had bucket seats; this one was built with the optional three-speed Hydra-matic automatic.

The optional two-speed automatic transmission was replaced by a more-responsive Hydra-matic three-speed tuned for high-rpm upshifts, cars with the optional 3.42:1 and 3.91:1 gears got a new, high-capacity rear axle, and durability of the optional Anti-Spin diff was improved.

As for the W-30 package, the name may have been merely an order code, but it soon became slang for the ultimate 4-4-2.

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