1987 Oldsmobile Calais 4-door base model 2.5 4-Tech 3-sp from North America


Decent, economic, small-sized car, with great performance


I bought it (500 dollars) with major Transmission Problem, knew about it, June 2002, after selling my 1990 Taurus Wagon.

Immediately 1 week after buying, had the 3 speed Automatic Transmission rebuilt, and after that, Transmission ran beautiful, never had another problem.

Also, A/C didn't work when bought, just added freon, and it works since after.

Battery died around 120,000 miles, replaced.

Major tune-up needed also when bought, car ran nice after.

Around 122,000 miles, lock-up clutch in Torque-Converter would not disengage after driving fast then slowing, causing stalling when stopped. Had to switch to N and turn car off for about 5 min, then restart. Replaced under warranty of rebuilt Transmission.

Interior faded really bad because hot Florida sun.

Right-front and left-front CV-Joints made clicking noises everytime car would be turning sharp, never fixed, though never had any problems because of it.

Most interior accessories always were breaking on me, very cheaply made, designed.

Power windows on all 4-doors were very slow going up and down, but all worked.

Around 140,000 miles, two-weeks after driving to and from NY, a 4000 mile total trip, check-engine came on one day at Wal-Mart, and it drove really bad. Took to repair shop, they said ignition-control module went bad. Went to Auto-Zone bought a new one, and new coil packs to go along with it. When trying to take it off, the Crankshaft-Control sensor was like welded inside the engine block, tried careful as possible to take off, and it broke in half inside the engine block and could not be taken off, the car was no longer operable, so I had to junk for $20.

General Comments:

Car had really great acceleration, but terrible top end speed, due to 3 Sp Automatic.

Lack of Overdrive, meant I could not drive safely, engine wise, over 65 MPH. Got real old, especially when driving to Alabama, and New York, from South Florida. Didn't have cruise control either.

Never once broke down and got me stranded.

Made it to Alabama, 2000 mile total and back, and New York 4000 mile total, including the driving I did while there, and never gave me a problem, even though could do no more than 65.

After sitting for more than 2 or more hours in, very uncomfortable. Terrible back seat leg room. Nice sized truck.

One thing extreme about this car, I got unbelievable gas mileage. After doing its major tune-up, I swear, I got around 45 MPG using Super on hiways, for one, could go more than 65. Even around cities, and my lead foot, got great gas mileage.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 19th June, 2004

1987 Oldsmobile Calais 2.5 4-cylinder 151 from North America


Cost effective, comfortable, deathtrap in disguise


Engine died after 50,000 miles - had it replaced.

Oil pump went on the highway at 125,000 - engine parts warped - engine rebuilt.

Starter died - had it replaced.

Alternator died three times.

Rusted out hole in bottom of car lets water come in when rains or street is wet.

Engine stalls on occasion.

Engine locks up after a 30+ mile drive - at all stops or slowdowns. Putting in neutral saves from stalling until you put it back into gear.

Glove compartment box latch broke and eventually I took it all out.

Paint faded in various locations - repainted to match.

It got hit in 2003 - 1200 in damage to the door.

Power steering pump died - replaced and still just as useless.

Piston rings wore out at 130,000 - car smoked like the Marlboro man.

Headliner fabric fell down I had to re-glue it since I couldn't see out the rear.

Wheel wells in the rear rusted through - patched with sealers and rebuilt them to get rid of water leaks in trunk.

Engine won't always start when temperatures change rapidly.

Some loose metal broke inside the car - maybe a spring part - beat up the insides and engine died at 145,000 miles - engine replaced with one from 91 Grand Am.

General Comments:

Other than all went wrong - this car handles well and is a good ride for a local driver.

Occasional trips are OK for this car - but don't think about starting it for at least 1-2 hours once you turn it off and walk away from it.

After my dad (the original owner) gave me this car - it was already on its downhill path - but it sure is still lasting.

Its cheaper to keep alive than to replace. The car is worth 500 right now, but if I got rid of it payments would be horrible - college is coming.

This is the biggest joke car in my high school - but I don't care. It runs great, is roomy and comfortable, stable, and easy to maintain with proper tools and a few swipes of the credit-card here and there.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 1st May, 2004

28th Apr 2005, 13:15

Just one thing I saw on your review... you said the engine locks up after a 30+ mile drive. It's actually the torque converter lock locking it to the transmission. you can unplug the torque converter lock until a new one is installed.