Junkyard Gem: 1977 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme Brougham Coupe

The General put the Oldsmobile Division’s head on the chopping block in 2004, which makes it hard to believe that the Olds Cutlass spent most of the middle-to-late 1970s at or near the top of the best-selling car charts in North America. In 1975 and 1976, the sharp-looking Cutlass stood proudly at #1 on the American sales charts, dropping to #2 in 1977 but with GM still moving better than a half-million Cuttys out of the showrooms that year. Today’s Junkyard Gem is one of those ’77s, a sporty Supreme Brougham Coupe that got wrecked in Colorado at age 44.

The Cutlass lived on the aging 1964 A-body platform, making it a sibling to the Chevrolet Malibu, Pontiac Grand Prix, and Buick Century (among others) in 1977, and the direct descendant of such muscle-car classics as the Pontiac GTO, Buick GS, and all those crazy big-block Chevy Chevelles. Fuel prices had stabilized a bit, a few years after the 1973 oil crisis, so Americans felt more confident buying traditional midsize cars instead of tiny Vegas, Pintos, and Colts. Of course, gas lines would return soon enough, but by then the Cutlass and its close relatives had been downsized.

I think the Cutlass was the best-looking of all the GM A-Body cars of 1975-1977; in fact, it was one of the best-looking cars Detroit offered during the period, and plenty of car shoppers agreed with that assessment back then. It was a comfortable, roomy rear-wheel-drive machine full of tried-and-true engineering, and so its success was no surprise.

So why is this one in a Denver-area car graveyard? Here’s why.

It got hit very hard in the left rear corner, bending the frame beyond the point of being worth repairing. By the time I got to it, the engine and transmission were gone, but most of the Cutlass Supremes got the optional Olds 350-cubic-inch (5.7-liter) V8 rather than the base 3.8-liter Buick V6 or the one-small-step-up Olds 260 V8.

Oldsmobile called these opulent seats the “loose cushion” style, and this car has a nice blue/gold interior color combination.

The Brougham package got you… well, just more class.

The Cutlass got smaller in the 1978 model year, but still kept its second-place spot in the charts with more than a half-million cars sold. The Cutlass Supreme survived all the way through 1997, with the regular Cutlass lasting another two years, but it would never regain the sales dominance it owned during the 1970s.

Can we build one for you?


Perfect for a man of your position!

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