Last One Built: 1966 Oldsmobile Toronado

The Oldsmobile Toronado was the first American-made car with front-wheel-drive since the Cord 812 of 1937. It was launched in 1966 to join the personal car market that the Ford Thunderbird made popular. It would share its platform with the Buick Riviera and Cadillac Eldorado, although only the latter had FWD, too (the Caddy came out a year after the Toronado, the Riviera three years before). The seller offers this first-year edition that turned out to be the last one built for the model year, as we’re told. It runs and drives great but is going to need body and interior work. The car resides in Portland, Oregon and is available here on craigslist for $6,000. Thanks, local_sheriff, for sending this tip our way!

Originally, the brains at Oldsmobile had envisioned a smaller car than what finally came about, but GM corporate brass had other ideas, coming up with the Riviera-Toronado-Eldorado trifecta instead. The car was designed such that the steering and the driving would be coordinating a lot of horsepower and torque. To be sure it all worked well, engineers tested the Toronado’s powertrain for more than a million miles. GMCs later line of motorhomes used a similar version of the Toronado drivetrain. In its first year, the Toronado received Motor Trend’s Car of the Year Award and Car Life’s Award for Engineering Excellence. They also sold nearly 41,000 copies.

The body on this ’66 Toronado looks good enough, excepting a little dent here and there. Rust does not appear to be an issue, so a little metal work and some new paint would make the old girl look like new again. That’s after you’ve sorted out why the hidden headlights don’t stay hidden at the same time! We’re told the interior needs some attention, including carpeting, but no photos are provided to gauge what we’re talking about. The car has traveled about 70,000 miles and needs no mechanical attention, as we understand it. There are extra parts stored in the trunk, but we don’t have any photos there, either. The car is currently serving as a daily driver, so that provides comfort.

These big cars were powered by the largest displacement engine that GM offered at the time, a 425 cubic inch V-8. With a 4-barrel carb, these motors were good for 385 hp, which means a big, heavy car like this could still pour on the coal. The seller’s Hagerty resale values don’t quite jive with what we found. In fair condition, $7,400 and when fixed up, $40,000. So, with the asking price the seller has picked, there’s room to get done what needs getting done. And the seller would consider partial trades with cash, including other running vehicles, outboard motors, boats, and generators.

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Comments

  1. Fahrvergnugen Fahrvergnugen Member

    I remember the first one I saw, early 70’s as an impressionable teen – it was repainted in Hugger Orange – wow was that a color with POP and a car with BOOM! Just gorgeous. Too bad no pics of the inter, tho.

    Like 3
  2. Sam61

    Every car needs a nick name….I name thee “winky”

    Like 21
  3. Eric Johnson

    “These big cars were powered by the largest displacement engine that GM offered at the time, a 425 cubic inch V-8.” Except for the Chevrolet 427 and the Cadillac 429 are two that would be larger.

    Like 8
    • Don P

      Was 425 a typo? Thought these has a 455.

      • Joe Padavano

        1966-67 were 425. The 455 didn’t come out until the 1968 model year.

        Like 3
  4. Holstein66 Member

    Growing up my dad loved Oldsmobiles and still does. We had a ’72 Toronado with the 455. That car was cool, brown with white interior. Along with that, we also had 3 Delta 88’s! Funny thing was my parents were the only ones who could drive :)

    Like 1
    • Rich

      Question? Are you Steve H, from E.P., Co? Just wondering.

      Like 2
  5. Ted M

    Who remembers whe Mannix first came on TV he had a 66 or 67 Tornado convertible! One ugly car!

    Like 2
    • ADM

      That car was customized by George Barris, and the last time I read about it, it was in CT. Yes, I agree it was fugly. However, I think Olds copied the front end, to some extent, for the ’70 Toronado.

      Like 1
  6. Rich

    These were very cool cars. Wish I could bite on this deal, but not enough info, photos to make a decent judgement. That is a shame. I recall a well running example would easily light up the front tires when asked to.

    Like 1
  7. Miguel

    Does the car being the last off the line for the model year give it any extra value?

    I understand the car drives, but it seems a bit high for all the work it needs and his Hagerty valuation is a little off. Number 4 condition comes in at $7400.00.

    • Superdessucke

      Considering the ’67 was pretty much identical to the ’66 saving a new grill, I wouldn’t think so. If anything, a ’67 would be more valuable because it’s more rare and had (optional) disc brakes.

  8. Joe Padavano

    So, exactly zero proof of the “last one built” claim…

    Like 2
  9. Leo

    My father had one of these. A huge amount of power — and awful gas mileage. However, it did get a lot of looks and it was fun to drive.

    Like 1
  10. Phil G

    I drove a ’68 for less than a year. Indeed, a ‘big, heavy car’. Very comfy, a rolling sofa with the flat front floor, and the giant doors . With the 455, was it easy to chirp the front tires, but not a car that was easy on front tires, or gas for that matter.

    Like 1
  11. carl pederson

    I saw one in Sandpoint Idaho years ago that had laker side pipes and a hole thru the hood with a dual 4 barrel tunnel ram.

    It also had studded snow tires on the rear and chains on the front. Only thing missing was a plow….That was one bad ass Toro!!!

    Like 2
  12. JoeNYWF64

    Can you easily raise & lower those popup headlites manually by hand w/o having to repair the electricals?
    I think this car has 4 snow tires mounted.
    If you try to “light up” STUDDED(not here) snows, are there sparks & road damage? lol

    Like 1
  13. 1-MAC

    HAd a 66 the best road car ever Rock solid at 85 with 2 ply tires. Imagine what it would do with radials and good shocks. Bulletproof car and you get a lot of car that will last a very long time with care. Wish I still had mone.

    Like 1
    • JoeNYWF64

      Except for the front end components.

  14. randy simon Member

    Seller is unresponsive.

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