G-Body Oldsmobile 442 Information

CCC Error Codes    

General Information

This page has the majority of information that I have available on the Olds G-body 442.

In 1983, Oldsmobile resurrected the Hurst/Olds on the modern G-body platform. These cars got a High Output (VIN 9) engine, special transmission, paint scheme, rear deck spoiler, and the vaunted Lightning Rod Shifters. This package was also available in 1984, and was based on the Cutlass Calais.

Starting in 1985, Oldsmobile brought back the 442. This was essentially the Hurst/Olds without the rear spoiler or the Lightning Rod shifters. In 1985 and 1986, the 442 was based on the Cutlass Salon, which was the "high-end" of the Oldsmobile G-body line. In 1987, to reduce the cost of the 442 package, it was offered only on the Cutlass Supreme style. An interesting fact is that a 1987 442 actually cost approximately $500 LESS than a 1986 442.

Production numbers for these "performance" Oldsmobiles were:

1983 Hurst/Olds 3,001
1984 Hurst/Olds 3,500
1985 442 3,000
1986 442 4,273
1987 442 4,208
Total 17,982

Identifying a "real" 442.

There are differences between the years, but some of the things to look for to identify a real 442 (instead of a clone) are:

The eighth digit of the VIN should be "9"
RPO code W42 on the RPO sticker (located in the trunklid)
Dual snorkel air cleaner with a chrome cover
Dual outlet exhaust system.
1987 (Only) will have a 120mph speedometer (non-Canadian cars)
8.5" Ring Gear in 3.73:1 ratio differential (anti-spin optional)

It was not possible to get any Cutlass with the VIN '9' engine without ordering the 442 Appearance and Handling package, so that is probably the most reliable indicator of the cars authenticity.

*Much of the information above can be used to identify 1983-1984 Hurst/Olds as well. The RPO code should be W40 instead of W42. In 1983 the Hurst/Olds did NOT come with the 8.5" ring gear - in 1984 it did.

More information to come:


Copyright 2000-2005 by Mark Tupper. All rights reserved.
Revised: February 21, 2011.