Unlikely Survivor: 1987 Oldsmobile Toronado Trofeo

Here’s a car we haven’t seen in condition like this in ages: an all-original 1987 Oldsmobile Toronado Trofeo coupe, with the upgraded FE3 suspension, digital gauge cluster, and leather seats. The seller notes it was sitting for several years when he found it, but that it currently runs and drives quite well. Mileage is just under 90,000 and it honestly presents way better than that. Little details, like the original factory windshield still being installed, point to a car that’s been loved. Find the Oldsmobile here on eBay with no reserve and bidding currently at a measly $2,807.

This is the precursor to perhaps the more recognized Trofeo that featured more curves and styling enhancements. This example ends abruptly out back, with a noticeable drop as the taillights and rear bumper come into the picture. Regardless, it’s a still a dramatic departure from other GM cars of the era, and I’ve always liked the looks – but I also came of age when these cars were new and different, so I’m influenced a bit by nostalgia. The mesh wheels look to be in fine shape, and the noticeably rumbly factory exhaust remains in place – the 3800 V6 wasn’t exotic, but it had a kick-ass exhaust note.

The seller notes that despite sitting for a spell, the engine fires up and drives with ease, and the standard automatic transmission shifts effortlessly through the gears. He does recommend some basic tune-up work along the lines of plug wires and fuel injection service to smooth out the idle, but would still get in and drive the car anywhere. The engine bay itself is quite clean, with no obvious signs of neglect or modifications. When these were reviewed as new cars, the performance was underwhelming but the handling provided by the FE3 suspension was praised as being quite responsive without sacrificing ride quality.

The interior is a definitely highlight, as the leather seats and carpeting both appear to be in mint condition. The dash shows no signs of cracking, either. However, there are some function-related issues mentioned, as the seller has identified a circuit-based issue that rendered the interior lights, vanity lights, power door locks, and power mirrors useless, and separate from that the power antenna, factory cassette deck, and power fuel door release are all in-op at the moment. Minor fixes for sure, and ones that you can live with in a no reserve listing like this. Will these ever be collectible? Hard to say, but I love seeing one this nicely preserved.

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  1. Fred W

    Really attractive styling for the era, to my eyes anyway

    Like 10
    • Car Nut Tacoma

      I agree. I’ve never owned, or driven one. But I found this year of Toronado the best looking I’ve ever seen.

  2. DrillnFill

    Nice looking Olds, but I hope there’s another way for the fuel filler door to open besides the power opener, otherwise it might be a short test drive :)

    Like 1
    • Ralph

      There is a manual popper in the trunk.

      Like 2
  3. Gregory Wilkins

    I know there are many who think these are poor examples of luxury, but I owned one of these and it was probably one of the best cars I’ve ever owned. Sold it at 249K and the only thing I replaces was the harmonic balancer. Sweet, smooth, fantastic seats, and decent mileage.

    Like 8
  4. Superdessucke

    I think it looks like a stunted runt of a Tornado. The 1990 refresh made the car look much better.

  5. PaulG

    Nice car at a reasonable price, but don’t kid yourself that the electrical issues are easily resolved. If you can’t track it down and fix it yourself, the $$ could easily turn into $$$$…

    Like 6
  6. Jrp

    Jeff, are you saying it takes more than 33 years to install a windshield in one of these cars? That is the way you worded it. I know a guy that could probably remove and replace this particular windshield in less than 45 minutes. Just rattling your chain. Maybe you meant the original windshield is still in place. Nice find.

    Like 1

    Visually pleasant car…from an era of (mostly) eyesores.

    Like 4
  8. JoeNYWF64

    A front wheel drive car whose daddy 20 years ago had a FLAT floor.
    I guess this one can’t have that because of the cat converter.
    All that computer power & the aux gages give no specific NUMBERS on the readouts. No tach?
    Roof could be lower.
    Kewl shifter.

    Like 1
    • Ralph

      The lower part of the instrument cluster where it reads “Toronado” is a selectable display, it can display a tach, other engine stats and MPG, range, etc.

      Like 1
  9. CCFisher

    The biggest problem with these cars back in the day is that the Calais was sitting on the same showroom floor, with a very similar profile and proportions, for half the price. I recall a magazine article that said something to the effect that buyers didn’t understand why they should pay so much money for a car that looks just like the one they bought their granddaughter for graduation.

    In addition to keeping the exhaust out of harm’s way, the tunnel down the middle provided stiffness for the unitized body.

    Like 3
  10. Achman

    Great seats, nice styling, decent handling and a bulletproof torquey v6. One of the best engines they ever made, seriously. Runs forever, smooth, good highway mileage. This is a freeway eater. Nice car.

    Like 4
  11. JCA

    “Mint carpet” is a bit of a stretch. Looks faded and worn out in the pics. That said, the car is priced accordingly and would probably last if you don’t mind being seen in it

    Like 1
  12. Ralph

    The only way it could be better if it was an 88-89 model with the steering wheel radio and climate controls with the optional color VIC touch screen unit.

    The 86-89 Toronado suffered the least styling wise compared to the other downsized 1986 E/K cars like the Toronado and Riviera because it dumped most of the “traditional” fogey styling cues that the Riv and Eldo hung on to, it looked the most modern out of the 3.

    Like 1
  13. theGasHole

    Probably will never hit real “collector” status in any sense of the word, but as a child of the 80’s I always thought these were nice looking and cool cars. I briefly had a rare Touring Sedan, basically the 4 door version of this car, and it was a blast as well. Really don’t see these Trofeo’s around anymore…..anyone recall the commercial for these which had Harry Belafonte singing “Trofeo” instead of “Day-o”?

    Like 2
  14. George Mattar

    My dad bought a new blue on blue 88 Trofeo. Drove it 100,000 miles. Routine maintenance and the only problem was a bad can sensor. I kept it waxed for him. He sold it to me for $2,000 in 1996. I added 140,000 miles. Put in a steering rack to solve GM morming sickness, two mufflers, NOS GM, and tires. The computer quit on Route 80. Never any other mechanical issues. Super comfortable. Super gas mileage. If the retards at GM still made cars like this.we would see fewer Jap garbage junk on the roads. Young kids even dug my car. Sadly, at 240,900 miles a giant deer ran in front of the car at 70 mph on I 84 in NY. Kaboom. Could not find sheet metal because none were in junk yards. Probably my favorite car and I have owned more than 40. Damn I wish the auctuon wasn’t over. I still have NOS parts for this in my attic.

    Like 2
  15. JOEL Brattain

    Wow time flies as we know.
    From 1987-89
    I worked at a GM dealership in Levelland Texas – I started by detailing cars and one point was in charge of inspecting as delivered which meant driving them after truck unload. I loved these cars relative to the times. They were sharpest in Black inside and out. Awesome front seats, sunroof, stereo.
    Always a front drive hater but this car along with the Beretta – Olds quad four – Daytona Turbo Z.

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