1974 Oldsmobile Cutlass Reviews

1974 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme 350 Olds from North America

Year of manufacture1974
First year of ownership1988
Most recent year of ownership2009
Engine and transmission 350 Olds Automatic
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
10.0 / 10
Distance when acquired133000 miles
Most recent distance470000 miles
Previous carOldsmobile Cutlass

Summary:

Very solid, reliable car

Faults:

Had transmission rebuilt at 290,000 miles (turbo 350).

Have installed a couple of water pumps over the years.

Batteries every 7 years or so.

One starter in 1999.

Rebuilt original alternator.

General Comments:

This is a heavy, but comfortable midsize car. Originally bought it from my aunt for $700. Had the car repainted, and have used it for a daily driver ever since.

Originally had planned on keeping it for just a little while, while I restored my 66 Pontiac Tempest s/w, but the car grew on me with its rock solid reliability, combined with very smooth ride, and ease of entry and exit you cannot get from any modern car.

The engine is getting tired (with close to 500,000 miles on it), but does not knock or smoke, it has just lost power gradually over the years. I have had a 1969 w-31 350 engine with a milder cam built that is ready to go in when I feel like it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 18th August, 2009

18th Aug 2009, 23:53

Nice car, you rarely see any pre-1976 Colonnade Cutlass's around, I've always been a big fan of the Colonnade cars, I wish America would go back making cars like this again.

1974 Oldsmobile Cutlass 'S' 350 Rocket from North America

Model year1974
Year of manufacture1974
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2005
Engine and transmission 350 Rocket Automatic
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.0 / 10
Distance when acquired167000 kilometres
Most recent distance201000 kilometres
Previous carFord Explorer

Summary:

A good, reliable friend. Not perfect, but close

Faults:

-The upper rad hose blew out twice.

-Other than that only normal maintenance was required. The car did seem to go through rear tires abnormally quick. Maybe driver error???

I replaced the old point distributor with an HEI unit,8.8 wires, re-curve kit, and the car had the factory dual exhaust replaced with aftermarket duals, performance mufflers and an H-pipe. Not a huge horsepower gain on paper I'm sure but feel it big-time on pavement!

General Comments:

Very well built car and extremely reliable considering it's age.

The car handles very well for it's size and weight. Easy to drive and loves to gobble up highway.

I an very impressed with Old's 350 Rocket engine, especially given that this one is the low-comp, smog motor rated at 200hp for '74.

I assume with the exhaust work and modern ignition I added a bit of power but it was pretty much stock from the factory and the car would legitimately do a timed 15.4 - 15.7. Not bad at all for a 4100lb car, low-comp engine with high mileage and bad tires!

This thing actually put you back in the seat, but the gas gauge went with you!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 1st September, 2008

1974 Oldsmobile Cutlass Salon Rocket 350 V8 from North America

Year of manufacture1974
First year of ownership1982
Most recent year of ownership1985
Engine and transmission Rocket 350 V8 Automatic
Performance marks 6 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.0 / 10
Distance when acquired90000 miles
Most recent distance150000 miles

Summary:

Worth every dime!!!

Faults:

I replaced a water pump at 91,000 miles.

I replaced the battery, starter, and alternator at 93,000 miles.

General Comments:

She was a beautifully styled ride, and she floated down the road like a Cadillac, but with a much prettier body and interior.

These cars had plenty of power for the "average Joe," but were definitely not made for scalding the pavement.

The difference between the Cutlass Supreme and Cutlass Salon was primarily the interior package offerings. The Cutlass Salon had reclining lounge "shoulder" seats, meant for comfort during long road trips.

Due to the car's weight (4100 lbs), it was extremely comfortable, yet fast enough to satisfy my appetite for decent performance.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 27th March, 2004

1974 Oldsmobile Cutlass Salon 350 Rocket from North America

Year of manufacture1974
First year of ownership1989
Most recent year of ownership1993
Engine and transmission 350 Rocket Automatic
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.3 / 10
Distance when acquired75000 miles
Most recent distance95000 miles
Previous carPontiac Firebird

Summary:

Well worth the money spent!!

Faults:

When I bought it off the lot for $895, the only thing that was wrong with it was some rust in the rear quarters, and the A/C didn't function.

After a year the starter needed replacement, but it does wear out.

The water pump went out, which took out the fan, radiator, and eventually cracked a head, all of this was my fault. I knew the water pump was about to go and I should have changed it beforehand, lesson learned!

General Comments:

The car bottomed out at a dip in the road and later found the transmission to be cracked. After 2 dud transmissions I put a good rebuilt unit in and all was fine.

I really enjoyed this car as it was my first V8, but with 180 HP, it was no rocket as the engine name implies.

The ride quality and handling was better than some that was 6 years newer, I would love to own another!!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 19th June, 2003

29th Sep 2011, 05:27

I've owned one as well (1994 - 4 door Cutlass), for many years until today. I'm very happy with it. I'm trying to find new door seals (all the rubber parts). Does someone know where to get them?

15th May 2013, 06:40

Sorry, yet isn't the Cutlass with the 350 rocket supposed to make something like 200-220 BHP?

16th May 2013, 10:43

To 15th May 2013, 06:40:

Earlier 350 Olds V8s would do that and better. But by the 1974 model year, that engine was all pigged out by lean carburetion, retarded ignition, exhaust gas recirculation & low compression, so 180 HP was the best that you could expect from it then. The only thing that would help was if you ordered it with dual exhausts, which were still available for that year.

Average review marks: 8.3 / 10, based on 4 reviews