Original Owner! 1970 Oldsmobile Cutlass Rallye 350

A handful of muscle cars reveal their identity from across a football field, and this 1970 Oldsmobile Cutlass Rallye 350 makes the short list. I remember when you could buy these cars for $3500 a few times a year, but Oldsmobile only made 3547 copies, all in Sebring Yellow (thanks to hemmings.com for some details), and their stock has risen from eyesore to narrow appeal to collectible. This never-restored example could be yours; simply cast the final bid here on eBay, where a $27,000 opening bid will get the ball rolling.

Don’t care much for yellow? This Oldsmobile may not be the ride for you. Same goes if you’re looking to bootleg liquor or engage in other activities requiring a low visible profile. In addition to the dipped-in-yellow treatment, these cars got some attractive Rallye only striping.

Beyond their unique cosmetic treatment, the Rallye 350 obligated option package W-45 (blackwall tires and W-25 fiberglass hood), L74 350 V8 engine, custom steering wheel, sport mirrors, FE2 Rallye suspension, dual exhaust, and W35 rear deck air spoiler.

Oldsmobile marketed the Rallye as a flashy low-budget performance package akin to Plymouth’s Road Runner, and the L74 code 350 proved a highly potent example of GM’s 350 cid V8 engines. Only a few years after “350” sounded like impressive displacement, these motors played second-fiddle to GM’s 454 and 455 cubic inch monsters. However, with 310 horsepower and a stout 390 lb-ft of torque, the Rallye 350 delivered plenty of punch. This one appears to have kept most of its factory doo-dads like the specific air cleaner housing, parts that often went missing sometime between year one and the late 1980s when folks started to see muscle cars as something special again. What do you think of this screaming yellow special?

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Comments

  1. Angrymike

    One of my sister’s boyfriend’s had one of these, but he didn’t like 11 year olds, so no ride for me. I concur that these were a bit to flashy for me, even at 11. I wonder if he kept it, it was the only one I saw in NE Ohio.

  2. Steve R

    I hope the seller gets his price.

    Steve R

  3. Ryan

    My Dad loves Cutlasses, this one looks in decent shape, and I love yellow what an awesome car!

  4. Mark S.

    I am very partial to Oldsmobiles. Not so much this screaming yellow example.

  5. John D

    Seems priced to perfection. Or maybe a little beyond . . .

    Like 1
  6. edh

    Where is the gear selector?

    • Wheelman

      It’s a black column mount blends in real good with the dash

    • Mark

      The gear selector is mounted inside the cluster under the speedometer!

  7. Sanity Factor

    442 clones are dime a dozen…i would think being original this would
    be worth more

  8. KEN TILLY

    Never ever would I buy a yellow car even if I had the money! Once bitten, twice shy!

  9. Miguel

    If I remember correctly, this car was brought out to fool the insurance man. It had what the 442 had, almost, but it flew under the radar for insurances purposes.

    • Beatnik Bedouin

      You are correct, Miguel. GM’s divisions had created a series of models that offered reasonable performance, but were considered ‘low risk’ by insurance companies of the day.

      I think Car Craft magazine ran a story on ‘Junior Supercars’ back in 1970.

      • diehardchevy

        True , Chevrolet did the same with the Nova and the Malibu ( heavy chevy).

  10. Suttree

    A trendsetter. A few years ahead on the monochromatic color scheme. I like these cars.

  11. Gunner

    Always liked the Rallye 350, and the yellow. This one has been well taken care of. I wonder what the difference is between the L74 350 and the “Ram Rod” 350?

  12. Pete Christensen

    I always thought that Olds and Pontiac were a step up from Most Chevies 👍🏻

    • EdP

      Olds was a step up from Pontiac. Pontiac was a step up from Chevy.

    • ctmphrs

      Except in performance.

  13. Steve A.

    Screaming Yellow Zonkers!!!

  14. EJB

    Yellow on the right car is nice (my Mustang is yellow).

    Somehow the yellow bumpers on this seem out of place. Maybe it’s because I’m used to big chrome bumpers on Olds Cutlasses.

    I still dig the car though.

  15. irocrobb

    I have a old magazine around here somewhere from 1970 when they tested one new and were really impressed. Also remember them stating it was a bargain of a price compared to other performance cars at that time. I like it !

  16. Brian Sawdo

    Oh man, I sold a 1961 Oldmoblile Dynamic 88 two door to my buddy in hopes of buying one of these a guy had in Ohio. He only wanted $1400 for it. I had sombody check it out for me and aside of having a non original engine and a wing from a GTO that it was a real Rallye 350. Sadly my better half talked me out of it. Not too many deals popping up anymore like that.

    • Had One

      Your better half did you a HUGE favor. I remember hearing barking dogs every time I passed a Camaro. In fact, it would get up to about 85 mph on the highway, then the fun began… watching the gas gauge drop with no sensation of increased speed. The speedo wouldn’t lie. You just burned more gas as you watched the tail lights leave you way behind. No redeemning value other than a testament to what GM could do on its Worst day.

  17. moosie Craig M. Bryda Member

    I remember hearing that the motor in these received “Special Attention” when they were assembled. ???

    • JOHN Member

      Oldsmobiles in the “W” series of options were what they called “Select-Fit” engines, parts were selected to match tolerances as close as possible, some even called it factory blueprinting. It was advertised heavily starting in 1969 with the introduction of the advertising campaign starring Dr. Oldsmobile, I have several print ads starring the mad Dr from 1969 and 1970 for the W series cars. Fun advertising!

  18. Gus

    These cars looked good on the street, much better imho than the heavy chevys and were faster. Also I think Pontiacs verison was called T-36 (maybe).

    • JOHN Member

      Close! Pontiac had the T-37.

  19. EHide Behind

    These were the sa.e as 442 , with smaller motor, and more nd .than just a step above a run of mill gutless cutless.
    Two options on 350, and yes ram air was an option, same as on 442, from under front bumper.
    As heavy as SS chefs due to better insulation upholstery and interior panels. Did away because of suspe soon to wallow ride of sticker cutless. Dr. Oldsmobile built a darn fine auto
    Goats had orange Judge and sold had yellow Cutless.
    No slouch but not overly fast 1/4 more a nice driver, from rolling start light to light.
    The auto everyone knew you could not afford real muscle, just look muscular.

  20. john patterson

    was my first new car i loved it but i am a little twisted i have owned 5 bright yellow cars .i liked the car a great deal an yes i bought because it was built to make the Ins. co. happy .i was going to buy a dan gurney ARA cuda but my Ins.would for a year be as much as the car.ya my lince was not in good shape LOL

  21. Dusty

    I don’t see the attraction …. this is not a muscle car …. and I hope he doesn’t get what he is asking …. would cost more than that to restore it

    Like 1
  22. Jubjub

    Sweet. This era of Cutlass was probably the high water mark for GM building a truly decent car. To think of the disappointment and unmet expectation buyers were met with when these were traded in. Always liked the Rally 350. Looks even better without the wheel trim rings.

  23. EHide Behind

    OT A MUS LE CAR? COMPARED TO THE TANKS MOM DAD DROVE WITH SLUSH BOX A D ITTY BITY 8 OR 6 BANGERS, THEZE WERE MUSCLE CARS.
    COMPAREX TO SH.. PUT OUT FOR NEXT 10 YEARS, THESE WERE MUSCLE CARS.
    COMPAREX TO EGG SHELL ENTRY LEVEL TODAY THESE ARE MUSCLE CARS.
    LOOK AT NU.BERS OF REAL MUSCLE CARS SOLD, WAY MORE 383 Roadrun ers than hemisphere of any sort. EWe had lot of goodies buying them to impress but hArdly if e Dr rCex them seriosly.
    Market hype a d all zored heavy hitters pro st more look a lime but gutless family or youths first new car. l.p.pthese drove better, were faster and more comfortable than any 1950s classics.As a good sufficiently powerfull auto that could hold respect on street they were fine. Most people in up to college were driving mom and dad’s autos or ideas of a good used safe economical tank.

  24. SEAN C

    i have one , gets more compliments then my 442 , drives nice , just a dressed up cutlass , 350 cid / 310 h.p. , dealers had hard time selling them new , they would resort to putting chrome bumpers & trim rings on them to mellow them out . was said to be the most common oldsmobile muscle car to be found in the junk yards because they were more of a sales gimmick , now people want them & the prices are on the rise

  25. Gregg

    I traded a 77 monza twn coupe straight across for the 70 rallye 350 back when I was a senior in high school 1980. One of dumbest things I ever did was to sell it. One of many I let go of before I would ever know the value of what I had. Sad !

  26. Schane Thomas

    I have loved these cars for many years. Back in the late 80’s and early 90’s there was a Twin to this one running around in the Northeast Texas area’s of Richardson and Plano Texas. I used to see it on my way home from work and on my days off. Beautiful Cars.

  27. Miguel

    This is funny, I was reading a February 1970 Motor Trend last night and came across this article.

  28. Miguel

    Page 2

  29. Miguel

    Page 3

  30. Chris

    I own one also its a 24k original survivor. Its a factory a/c bucket seat Hurst Dual gate car. Heres a pic thanks.

    Like 2
    • Suttree

      The looks of these cars hold up well even decades later. Yours is a fine example. I like it.

  31. JOHN Member

    I am a long-time Olds enthusiast, starting with my 1st, a 69 442 convert, many, many since. The Rallye 350 was a polarizing design, the urethane painted bumpers made you either love them or hate them. Aside from the paint, this is a 442 with a Cutlass engine. Same HD suspension, the W-27 hood, even the notched 442 style bumper. If it had the W-31 engine, it would have really been something. They were difficult to sell, many dealers actually swapped out the urethane painted bumpers for the chrome bumpers to move them.

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