EXCLUSIVE: 1970 Olds Toronado With 11k Miles!

After being parked for most of its life, this Toronado is still in great shape. Reader Tedd Z has been tasked by the owner to find a new home for it and given how well it cleaned up, we don’t think it will be that difficult! Tedd hasn’t attempted to start it, but the engine turns over. With a $5,000 or best offer asking price, it seems like a great deal, so take a closer look and use the form below to contact Tedd!

What Makes It Special? This is a one owner, 11,573 mile, barn find Toronado. It offers front-wheel drive, power brakes with front discs, and with what we believe to be its original Olds 455 big block, mated to an automatic 3-speed transmission. The original owner purchased it new in 1970, drove it sparingly for several years, and then passed away. His wife, at the time, placed the car in storage in a garage around 1978. The car’s last registration and inspection were done in early 1977. Decades later the present owner of the property/garage had the car removed to gain use of the space. Since it had not been registered for over 40 years the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation has lost all record of the vehicle, license plate, title, and inspection. PENNDOT has told us that they do not hold records for that long on unregistered vehicles. At that point, we had it processed as an abandoned vehicle and a new Pennsylvania title was issued in the present owner’s name. The new title will note the car as formerly abandoned but it will not show it as reconstructed (R), nor will it show as salvage. The titles branded section is blank as you can see in the photo provided. The owner, a family friend, has asked us to represent the car for her at auction and to handle the sales transaction.

While the mileage can not officially be verified, we do not doubt that the odometer is correct. (showing 11,573 miles) The photo of the back of the inspection sticker has a milage reading of 11,471, just 100 miles less than the odometer. Plus, the overall condition of the car reflects this milage. There is little to no wear on the gas and brake pedals, or carpeting, the large original floor mat that highlights the Toronados flat floor, is in like-new condition. The driver’s seat and back seats show no sag or wear, and the headliner is in great shape as well. The large doors show no sag at all (as is common). There are no wiper marks or stone chips on the windshield, and the overall great condition of the vinyl roof all speak to the reported 11,000 miles being true. The condition of the car is as it was the day it was pulled from the storage area after 41 years. The condition of the paint, seen in the images provided are most likely from things being stored on it and leaned against it.

Body Condition: Walking around the car you’ll quickly notice how solid everything is, especially solid is the low areas of the body panels, all around the car (areas which show the first signs of trouble, here in the northeast). The doors are heavy and solid yet show no signs of sag. There are 2 areas of the hood that we have highlighted with photos that show some surface rusting, it appears to be from something stored on top of the hood. The area behind the driver’s door and before the wheel well, just above the mid-body style line is an area about one-foot square that shows some paint failure. You will find a close up of that area provided with the photos. There are small chips and scratches around the car as would be expected for something forty-nine years old and stored for four decades, and the passenger’s door glass is missing, but overall it presents as a really fantastic starting point for easy refurbishment.
The underside is solid, but shows surface rust, as you’ll see in the gallery. The is NO rust-thru detected anywhere. The condition of the underside clearly has benefitted from a complete factory undercoating. Again, we believe the surface rusting comes more from the extended storage, more than anything else. The exhaust system was rusted and has been removed. The car will be available for interested parties to inspect.

Mechanical Condition: What we have done to the car: Once we pulled it from storage the extent of work we’ve done has been minimal. We’ve washed and cleaned it up inside and out, changed the tires so they would hold air, and verified that the engine wasn’t frozen. There has been no attempt to start the motor, just manually turning it to make sure it was free. The interior was wiped down and vacuumed out and the seats, rug, door panels and headliner really present well. There wasn’t a key provided with the car, so we purchased and replaced the tumbler, and that’s all.

Tedd has done a great job presenting this Toronado, with lots of info and photos! The title situation is a bit of a bummer, but really shouldn’t be an issue. We would still recommend checking with your local DMV just to be sure. If it were closer to Idaho, we would be seriously tempted by this one! Take a closer look at it and be sure to make an offer on this great American classic.

  • Asking Price: $5,000 OBO
  • Location: Hazleton, Pennsylvania
  • Mileage: 11,000
  • Title Status: Clean
  • VIN: 394870M615707

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  1. ccrvtt

    $5,000 is a steal. This will be gone within a few days. If you want it you need to act fast. This is the quintessential barn find.

    Like 16
  2. lc

    Perhaps odd with such low mileage that it does not have WW tires from new. Then again maybe not. It is a neat American exotic cruiser!

    Like 3
  3. Skorzeny

    Even back then people hated whitewalls…

    Like 6
    • ccrvtt

      Actually people ‘back then’ loved whitewalls. This car undoubtedly came with them. The ad states that the tires were replaced for safety and to get a set that would hold air.

      Having grown up in the era of wide whites, narrow whites, white stripes, red lines, blue streaks, and raised white letter tires I tend to look for them on certain cars from that era.

      Not making a value judgement here as blackwalls are a matter of taste. I’m more comfortable seeing redlines on a ’67 Corvette or RWLs on a ’79 Trans Am.

      Like 12
  4. Robert White


    Excellent Barn Find. A great deal IMHO but then again there is always the gasoline conundrum on costs if the car is driven for any length of miles. Today, they would put a diesel engine in it just to save on fuel costs.

    Nice car for sure.


    Like 1
    • Dave

      Gas was cheap when this was new. Equipped with a premium fuel only engine you’ll need octane booster and valve lubricant to drive it without damaging it. Using it as a daily driver is like using Scotch as paint thinner anyway.

      Like 6
      • Jack

        Premium leaded fuel. This car would have to be converted to run on non-lead fuel. My parent had a 68 Toronado… great memories. Fast car on the highway.

        Like 1
      • Jonathan Q Higgins

        Depends on the scotch. Some scotch is only good for paint thinner

        Like 6
      • BRAKTRCR

        My 66 is premium only, with the hardened seats on the valve job, it runs fine on modern premium. I forget the compression ratio… I think 10.5 to 1, or 10.8 to 1
        This is a nice car, shouldn’t be too hard to get it running. They are easy to work on.

  5. JOHN Member

    I like the comment the passenger window is “missing” Is it stuck in the track? Does the door rattle with broken glass? Bizarre, but with old cars lots of bizarre things happen. That price is a steal… I’d love to find one that I would not feel bad about yanking the drivetrain out of. This one is way too nice to trash.

    Like 4
  6. Joe

    Overall the car looks very good however why would the battery cables be replaced after only 11,000 miles, I could be wrong but those are not molded battery cables that came with the 1970 GM cars. They look like the inexpensive ones you buy at your local auto parts store . And that engine bay sure looks ran more than 11,000 miles.. Very nice car though and I agree it’s a good price!

    Like 2
    • JOHN Member

      It’s possible the cables themselves are original, but GM used the “SPRING-RING” battery terminals in that era, and they were known to be a bit troublesome. The battery terminals on this car are the extremely common (and cheap) clamp on type, cut the old terminals off, strip the insulation back, and clamp it together and bolt them on. Without an eyeball on the cables it’s hard to tell if they were the originals. From what I remember, not all positive cables were red on all applications. Most were, but I’m pretty certain some were not. But again, $5,000 OBO is a steal in my book!

      Like 3
      • scottymac

        As well as spring-ring, this is the era GM was using side mount batteries. It’s possible the cables were changed during the car’s 7 year driving history when the battery needed replaced, and the owner chose a more common top mount battery.

        Toros never turned my crank, but a ’70 GT (one year only model?) with a W-34 might be fun, if you could hold on to the steering wheel!


        Like 1
      • Jack

        0-60 MPH: 7.7 seconds
        1/4-mile ET: 15.7 seconds @ 89.9 MPH

        Not bad for a 4,500 lbs car.

        Like 6
  7. David Rhoces

    I agree with Joe ….good price but 11,000 mi ? ? ?

    • RandyF

      The PA Inspection Sticker photos say January 1978 on the front and 11,471 miles on the back. Combine that with a car that lived totally in the Northeast – I actually believe it!

      Sounds like a steal at 5 grand!

      Like 1
  8. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry Member

    Have contacted seller about buying this car.
    God bless America

    Like 5
  9. Tom

    Nice find, but lacking the “deluxe interior”, and in arguably the worst color for these cars, it’s not going to be terribly valuable even restored. Would make a great drivetrain donor for a special project though…

  10. TeddZ, Seller

    Thanks for the interest in my car. The missing window was actually broken but was vacuumed up & no glass seems to be in the door. As far as the mileage is concerned I have spoken to people who the original owner back then and they assured me it was mainly a Sunday driver with occasional trips now & then. The condition of the interior, no door sag, no foot wear, and the miles on back of the inspection sticker reassures me the odometer is correct.

    Like 5
  11. jeff51 Member

    Like my dog says, Ruff Ruff. 111k, not 11k. But, worth $5000.

  12. Gary

    I’m thinking miles are correct. It has the original style hose clamps.

    Like 3
  13. TimM

    What a find for a car on the ice coast!! I believe the miles to be correct or it would be rusted with 111,000 miles on it especially cause these were one of the best handling cars in the snow made up to this point in time!!! That 455 and front wheel drive would torque you out of anywhere!!!!

    Like 3
  14. Pete in PA

    I have no doubt that the 11k miles are correct and that $5k is a great price IF you’re looking for such a car. IMO that’s a face only a mother could love, the color combo is too blah, and couldn’t GM have done a better job with the power window switches? Talked about kludged-on…
    I prefer the styling of the earlier and the later Toros. I owned both a 71 and a 73 and wow those cars could fly for being so large. They’d also drain the tank unbelievably fast. I’m talking single digit mileage if you weren’t careful. Comfortron a/c system on my 73 would blow so cold it hurt. Unbelievable.
    Hope this one goes to a good home.

    Like 2
  15. Duaney

    Pennsylvania is a horrible place to store a car, (all the rust on components under hood), too bad it wasn’t in a heated and dehumidified environment. In the west, stored outside, the engine compartment would have no rust. Nice car though, should clean up to be nice again.

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