1987 Oldsmobile Calais Supreme 3.0 Liter from North America


This is a great car... but only if you can do the repairs yourself!


Warranty repair - Oil Leak at oil and trans. gasket, rear main seal, timing chain cover.

Replaced alternator 4 times. Always purchase lifetime warranted parts. This saves TONS of money over time!

Replaced starter.

Replaced radiator, upper/lower hoses, thermostat (4 times).

Installed rebuilt motor in 2000.

Replaced entire exhaust system.

Replaced front struts, rear shocks.

Replaced front/rear brakes half a dozen times.

Basically I have owned this car since day one and have done all maintenance and repairs myself. Almost all engine and drive train components have been replaced or repaired.

General Comments:

This is great commuter car. I get 26-27 mpg still after 147k miles. And this is while driving 70-80 mph for 45 or so miles 5 days a week.

For those of you who have the intermittently working dash gages problem. The fix is to scrape clean the contacts. Yes this means taking apart the dash...

The mysterious interior electrical short. Change the cigarette lighter.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th May, 2003

1st Jun 2005, 13:20

I have replaced many valve cover gaskets in just this year.

19th Nov 2006, 22:55

I have had my '87 Calais from zero also, 34-36 mpg, rebuilt the top end after timing gear broke at 130,000 and now just replaced the fuel pump at 180,000. Still does not burn any oil, leaks just a little at oil pump. All the rubber at the doors, plastic emblems etc are deteriorating. Gone through 3 sets of tires, mostly cross country driving and has been a thoroughly great automobile.

1987 Oldsmobile Calais 2-door supreme 2.5 Liter Gasoline I-4 from North America


If you like and respect cars, don't buy this catastrophe


Since I was the 3rd owner of this car, I cannot tell you everything, although I can tell you what went wrong when it was mine.

Alternator broke 3 times.

Alternator belt snapped every 500 miles.

A ridiculously loud obnoxious squealing from somewhere in the engine compartment every time it was fired up.

Shocks went totally flat.

When cold, the car needed extreme force to turn to the left.

When turned to the right, more squealing.

A/C stopped working.


Paint and clear-coat began to chip away and bubble on the hood.

Rust underneath the doors.

Ceiling lining fell so far that it covered the rear window visibility from the driver's seat.

Engine would lock up and stall if forced to travel for more than 50 miles a day (Trust me, this was bad)

Stalled at stoplights after driving for more than 50 miles a total of 68 times in 1 year.

Engine needed turning for at least 10 seconds before the fuel reached the cylinders every time the car was started, I believe it was a fuel pump problem.

General Comments:

This car certainly had character. It was legendary in the high school parking lot. I tried to keep it running, but the car was so bad to me that I just kind of gave up on it. Hear is a run-down:

The Good:

* Car was fairly comfortable for $500 dollars, yeah that's correct.

* Never had any serious problems going to and from work, which was 2 miles away

* Hard metal bumpers could resist bumps while new plastic ones cannot

* Nice exhaust note thanks to the Flow-Master bolted on.

* 140 horsepower in a GM 4 cylinder beat a Volvo 4 cylinder in a race once. Upon the second try it stalled of course.

The Bad:

* Car sucks

* It's ugly

* Engine is poor

* In 1987, GM supposedly attempted to convert to the metric system, but apparently, the factory workers only heard about this after this car's production began. There are bolts in the engine compartment which use standard U.S. measurements, and then there are some which require metric system tools. A stupid, pointless, time consuming lack of engineering skill.

* 0-60 time of approximately 10 seconds

* Topped out at 76 mph on Rt. 91 on a slight downgrade.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 5th March, 2003

8th Mar 2003, 18:41

Well since you are the third owner of this car, I would say by all of your problems I can tell that this car was very poorly maintained in the first place.

Next time you buy a used GM car, make sure that the previous owner had maintained it properly. This means changing the oil, filters, gaskets, seals and other things explained in your manual. If you don't have a manual, you can pick up one cheap at automotive stores or you can pick up one at your nearest GM dealers.

My advice would be to scrap this car and look for another car I would recommend a Chevy, Oldsmobile, Buick or a Honda Car. Good luck in the future.