1971 Oldsmobile 442

    The 1971 Oldsmobile 442 was a muscle car produced by the Oldsmobile division of General Motors. The 4-4-2 nomenclature stood for a four-barrel carburetor, four-speed manual transmission, and two exhausts. based on its combination of four-barrel carburetor, four-speed manual transmission, and two exhausts.

    Oldsmobile used hotshot parts previously only available to police departments. But the muscle car era was unmistakably in decline due to rising insurance rates and soaring gas prices. The 442 package had run into the 1971 fuel crisis, federal legislation that curbed 442's power output.

    The car came with only minor modifications from the previous year. But what was 10.5:1 the previous year became 8.5:1, a drop in engine output which affected all of GM's engines as the result of a corporate policy requiring engines to run on lower-octane regular-grade fuel, in preparation for the introduction of the catalytic converter on 1975-model cars.

    1971 Olds 442 W-30

    The interior of the 442 has cheap-looking, wood-grain vinyl dash but had a real race car feel. Bucket seat, custom steering wheel, and Hurst Competition gear shift came as standard. The monster 455cid V8 was stock for that 442 but that would be the swansong year although the 442 had put the Oldsmobile in the muscle-car map.

    The muscle car market segment to which the 442 belonged was disenfranchised by shifting social attitudes, crippling insurance rates, the Clean Air Act and the fuel crisis. The OPEC oil embargo led to price controls and gasoline rationing, as well as higher prices. Muscle cars quickly became unaffordable and impractical for many people.

    1971 Oldsmobile 442

    1971 Oldsmobile 442 Specs

    Production  7,589 (1971)

    Body Styles  Two-door coupe and convertible.

    Construction  Steel body and chassis.

    Engine  455cid V8.

    Power Output  340-350 bhp.

    Transmission  Three-speed manual, optional four-speed manual, or three-speed Turbo Hydra-Matic automatic.

    Suspension Front: coil-springs;  Rear: leaf springs.

    Brakes  Front discs, rear drums.

    Maximum Speed  125 mph

    0-60 mph 6.4 sec

    A.F.C. 10-14 mpg

    1971 Olds 442 Convertible

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