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Sebring Sunchaser article from August 1995 edition of GM Collector's Guide

Back in the wonderfully psychedelic world of 1970, Oldsmobile (and most all car makers for that matter) were more than willing to sell their customers whatever color car they wanted. If you wanted a pink car with a blue interior, by God they'd build it for you. Nowadays, it seems we get to choose from shades of mauve to chartreuse.

Thank heavens machines like the 442 illustrated here still exist to show us that once there were different colors on the color charts, and not merely page after page of variations of the same color. Baby, if you can't see this thing coming, then you need a serious eye examination immediately!

Dennis Belfi of Clifton, New Jersey, owns this magnificant creature, and it is magnificant for a number of reasons. For you died-in -the wool Oldsmobile fanatics, you've already noticed a thing or two about this car, but we'll go over it carefully.

Dennis has been a dvotee of the oldsmobile marque for several years now, and runs a small Olds restoration parts business. Back in 1985, however, he came across an ad for this convertible. The car was residing in Maryland, and sounded like the ultimate convertible from 1970. He knew he had to have it.

The 442 was a typically scrufty 25-year-old car. Dennis decided to embark on a complete ground-up restoration of the car to bring it back to like-new condition. This was no small task, taking a full four years to complete! S & R Auto Body and Metro Motors, both of Lodi, New Jersey, handled the straightening of the old body and applying multiple coats of the factory Sebring Yellow paint.

Sebring Yellow is not a very common color on 1970 442s, and this car's white interior and white top go a long way toward accenting the unusual color. To set the yellow off even more, white stripes top the optional W-25 fiberglass hood and subtle white pinstripes grace each side. This thing looks like it just rolled out of a Doris Day movie!

Don't let the soft exterior fool you, though. Just like a Venus Flytrap, this seemingly harmless converible packs a lethal punch. Under the hood is the original 365 horsepower 455 inch powerplant which has been treated to a few internal Mondello Performance goodies. Included are notched connecting rods, forged TRW pistons, a cross-drilled steel crankshaft, steel roller-tip rockers, and an Engle .512 lift/274 duration camshaft. It's a mover, ladies and gents!

This monster motor is backed up by a factory Hurst stirred four-speed transmission and then power is fed to a rare Olds 12-bolt 3:42 positraction rear with the ultra-cool W-27 aluminum cover on it. Is this thing built for fun driving or what?

Let's not neglect our comfort while whizzing down the road though. Very rare, this car has air conditioning. It also has power windows, power door locks, power trunk release, a tilt steering column, the Rally Pak guage cluster, and an electically adjusted driver's side bucket seat! Of course, power steering and power disc brakes are on board as well. To round out the nearly full option sheet is an AM/FM Stereo with an under-dash 8-track tape player so you can listen to the Partridge Family, mind you....in fact, forget we even mentioned that. The point of the whole thing is, somebody really ran amuck with the option books on this beauty.

Dennis' rear convertible is one of only 549 built in 1970 with the four-speed stick. You can imagine how many of those 549 cars were as well equipped as this. It certainly has to be one of the most heavily optioned '70 442 ragtops still around.

Don't get the idea that after four years of working on this car, Dennis doesn't get it out and enjoy it either. He drives his pale yellow Olds on a very regular basis and to all of the many car shows it attends-no trailers for this splendid driver.

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