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Hagerty Employee

Successfully Slimmed: 1979 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme Brougham Coupe

If you've kept up with my myriad Brougham Era related posts, you know that I'm a big fan of the now-extinct American personal luxury coupe. So it will come as no surprise that I perked up when I saw this one advertised on Seattle Craigslist several months ago.
Pit Crew

What a bargain, I agree. In 1978 I was growing into adulthood. Came "this close" to buying a '77 (pre-downsizing) with everything on it from a friend at work. Another friend had a '79 just like the green one, but in metallic red. Nice! Seeing this very clean green machine brought back good memories of old friends at a different time.

Thank you for this. I had a '79 Brougham that I loved, whose 260 V-8 died at 175,000 miles
after many happy miles. I want another one. I am on the Left Coast so California cars would be great. So as soon as I get more room I'll get serious about it.
Thanks for this.Happy Holidays and stay well.
Advanced Driver

I had a 1978, 260 V8, Console shifter, silver, with a red interior. That was a really, really nice car. The 78 also had the Oldsmobile "Rocket" silhouette in the middle of the chrome piece of each tail light lens, which was kind of a cool look. The ride was nice, not a lot of power, but actually got good mileage. I traded it in on my first "new" car, 1984 Mustang 20th Anniversary model that I still have today. Later I also had an 80 Cutlass but was not as nice as the 78.
Advanced Driver

Never owned, but drove many of these and their corporate siblings. Really nice to sit in, drive, and look at. The V6 was an engine to avoid, rough running, slow, and it suffered from durability issues with the timing chain. The V8s were great, and the 260 would beat the V6 in fuel economy. A weak spot for all of them was the so-called “Chevette transmission”, the THM 200. I think the big V8 was equipped with the more durable THM 350 (that was the case with my sister’s car anyway).
Truthfully, I can’t understand why these cars don’t drag in more $. They really were a high point in the malaise era and deserve much more attention than they get.

My mother had a Delta 88 in a similar shade of green. She sold it to a local some years later and it became one of those neighborhood cars that kept changing hands around town. That car lived a long life of many owners, but that shade of green was unmistakable.
Intermediate Driver

That was in a time capsule for sure. I had a 77 Cutlass Supreme Brougham. Firethorne Red. Fabulous car. I personally like the pre downsized years best. Did a lot of crusing in that car. The body change somewhat again around 80 or 81. Those were pretty sharp. Friend of mine had one of those.

That green would really show the rust lol

Loved my 79 Brougham in Light Blue with a sunroof and the big V8 (4.3L). Got totaled by a semi. A true American Personal Luxury Car.

I remember this car fondly during my late 70s-early 80's youth. They were everywhere, and when I close my eyes to see them, for some reason they're always in a chestnut brown color. I always imagined these as the "tween years" luxury coupes. They replaced the big colonnade cars, but for only 3 scant years until they were in turn replaced by slightly larger and better proportioned variants. This car was probably the best looking of all its shared platform cousins (Grand Prix, Monte Carlo, and Regal). I remain just slightly more partial to the Regal for its crazy for the time turbo motor and hood scoop. Its worth mentioning that there was a Hurst Olds version of this car available for 1979 powered by "rocket 350". I think that was the only year though.

As a matter of interest, an Olds 455 bolts in and requires minor massaging of the A/C housing in the engine bay.
Canada received Hyundai products starting in 1983. Like most dealers our profit makers were used cars. The diesel Oldsmobile Cutlass was a $100 car once the engine went poof. We bought these and kept reserves. The gas V8 bolted right in, the larger cubic capacity motors have a higher deck height hence the A/C box mod. They never lasted long on the lot. One of our mechanics had a '78 Chevelle that we stuck an enhanced 454 and 4 speed in. That was when we discovered the frame weakness issue. '66 Nova L79 2dr coupe all over again!
Thirty five plus years back you could do that, we even sold numerous used Fieros, no, really. The new Hyundai had points and condensers back then. America missed all that.

455? NOW you're talking!

Now that's a color combo you will never see again. The 70's were a weird time for sure. The sofa in the back is hilarious.

That 4.3 would be a deal-killer for me. A cousin bought one of these Cutlasses new, and it was lame, with slow acceleration (even for the 1970's), and a top speed of - maybe - 80; my 1969 Beetle would do 78! With the 5.0 V8, well, then it could be a nice little coupe. As for this one, though, that pale green sure is bland. A light/medium blue was available about then (that is what my cousin had), and it would look good with a blue interior of the type show here in green.

What a beauty!
Pit Crew

Great price, i had a 1978 with t tops. Loved that car....