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Alley Find! 1970 Oldsmobile 4-4-2 W-30 Convertible

Rescued from a Philadelphia alley, this 1970 Oldsmobile 4-4-2 W-30 convertible in Souderton, Pennsylvania will need a tremendous amount of further rescuing, but it retains a host of original or correct parts. The listing here on eBay includes a thorough break-down of what has been documented. More than 25 bids have pushed the market value beyond $20,000.

The mighty 455 cid (7.5L) V8 gained a dealer-sourced replacement short-block, and it’s disassembled (mocked up here for pictures). The seller decoded the original Oldsmobile 455 aluminum intake, distributor, fresh-air assembly, and camshaft. Non-original parts include the carburetor and TH400 automatic transmission. When it comes to interesting features, red fender liners certainly add style. While the seller claims the left one has been replaced with a normal black liner, anyone with experience identifying parts (left and right always mean “as the car goes down the road”) would assume the opposite. Oldsmobile rated the 4-4-2’s new-for-1970 455 at 370 HP and an even 500 lb-ft of torque. That, my friends, will get you to the church on time.

Years ago I bought a car that had endured daily parking in a Philadelphia alley. let’s just say it could be worse than what you see here. It looks like the darker green panels may have been re-sprayed at some point then left to weather a second time. The combination of Sherwood Green with gold top and gold interior may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it won’t go unnoticed.

Like the rest of the car, the interior has avoided having its parts scavenged, but nearly every surface will need to be refurbished or replaced. A host of options let you style your 4-4-2 to suit your individual tastes. What’s your best guess for the winning bid?


  1. Avatar photo TCOPPS Member

    Best thing to ever come out of a Philadelphia Alley…and complete at that!

    Like 6
    • Avatar photo Brian K

      I love this car. Hope it gets restored.

      Like 1
    • Avatar photo 36 Packard

      For sure. Last time I was in Philly.all I remember about the alleyways are that they mostly smelled like pee, esp in the Italian district. Wonder what the flipper coughed up for this, I bet a lot less then what the current bid is. Not a bad profit for something that probably smells like Italian pee.

      Like 4
      • Avatar photo Dracula

        I just love eating Italian! Reminds me of all the fun nights I had in Rome, roaming the streets, dodging those little Fiats, but even with that frustration, ahh the fine cuisine!

        Like 1
    • Avatar photo Jay

      The red inner fenders were part of a W-30 option available in 1970.

      Like 0
  2. Avatar photo stillrunners

    Somebody grab and help this old 442….it’s special !

    Like 6
  3. Avatar photo J_Paul Member

    Damn, will this be stunning once restored.

    Like 6
    • Avatar photo Terry L McNutt

      Saw one online in great condition for $28,000. Not worth restoring. Will cost $50,000 unless you do everything. Then you have a $75,000 car worth $40,000.

      Like 4
      • Avatar photo Chris

        The guy selling this 442 is one of the guys that runs Thornton’s restorations in PA. Jeff Thornton. They’re a major Olds 442 restoration & reproduction Olds parts shop in Quaker town PA that do award winning restorations on all kinds of muscle cars but Oldsmobile are their specialty. Not sure why they aren’t taking this one on but its one bad azz 442 W machine with great colors & well deserving of a full resto. Maybe because its got a factory replacement block & non matching # trans the money isnt there for them to do a full resto themselves. Just a guess on my part why they dont restore it but good luck to all involved.

        Like 0
  4. Avatar photo Mountainwoodie

    Am I wrong to think all W-30’s had red fender liners?

    Had a history teacher in high school who had a green 442 convertible also.I thought it strange at the time, as he seemed so old! :)

    He probably was in his mid forties. Kids……

    Somebody will rescue this.

    Like 4
  5. Avatar photo Will Fox

    THIS is a find, and considering it sat in an alley for God-knows how long, it’s still very much there!! These are thankfully, like Chevelles in that there is a healthy number of replacement parts now made for these. Knowing a few Olds club member myself, I can tell you there are PLENTY of members willing to help technically on restoring this baby correctly. No “rest-mod” please; this is rare enough that it really does call for a frame-off done to it, PLEASE.

    Like 1
  6. Avatar photo ccrvtt

    There’s a LOT of work to be done here, but fully restored it would be worth over 6 figures. I personally like the color combo. You don’t see too many like it anymore.

    The seller has done an admirable job of providing honest photo documentation. Even with all its issues I hope someone can find a way to bring it back.

    Hope it’s a BF person and they post pictures when it’s done.

    Like 2
  7. Avatar photo John M.

    More than 3 days are left in the auction and the bidding has topped $20 grand. This Olds is stealing a whole lot of hearts. She’ll be transformed from an ugly duckling into a graceful swan in no time by the right shop.

    Like 3
  8. Avatar photo MRX W30

    Sorry guys everything here points to cutlass that’s why Thornton didn’t touch it
    Here a few early indicators very few w30 convertibles to start when w30 especially 70 every one had a dual gate aluminum intake f heads
    Internal high lift cam and bigger jets in the carb
    The last tell tail is and open diff with highway gears should have 355 373 393 433 or 500 this is a bullet across the intersection but revs out a 65 mph
    This is most likely a 442 with all the w25 options I should know I have one
    This is a 100k car when finished and nothing wrong with up grading to a w30 but a true documented w30 70 converable would be more like 150 if it had the aluminium diff who know shy the limit
    The guy who said it wasn’t worth while is dead wrong 50 k in would net you 100 k out

    Like 0

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