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60s-70s big Chevrolets vs. big Fords



  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    ...on a website, and the Caddy 500 had 380 ft-lb of torque! Anybody know what an Olds or Buick 455 had by that time?

    Oh yeah, Lemko, if you've never seen it before, check out this website:

    The guy who put it together is a real Cadillac nut, and has tons of pictures, info and tidbits on it.

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,604
    I drove a '76 Eldo earlier this year for a couple hundred miles. I think 60s Chevies were much better in every respect.

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  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    ...anybody know how fast a '77-'79 DeVille with the 425 would do 0-60? I vaguely remember Motortrend's 1977 Car of the Year, a '77 Caprice with a 350, doing it in 10.8 seconds.

    I wonder if any of GM's downsized full-sizers in the late '70's would've been able to break the 10-second barrier? My guess is that a Catalina with a 400 or an Olds Delta with a 403 might have the best shot. But then they tended to play with gearing back then, to give weaker engines an advantage, and hold back the bigger engines in a lame attempt at improving fuel economy.
  • ab348ab348 Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, CanadaPosts: 6,411
    Yeah, my '79 Electra has the 403 but a 2.41 rear gear. Off-the-line acceleration isn't it's strong suit.

    In '77 and '78 you could order a base Delta 88 coupe (lightest model) with the 403. Assuming you could order an optional rear gear, that probably moved out reasonably well.

    2017 Cadillac ATS Performance Premium 3.6, 1968 Oldsmobile Cutlass S Holiday Coupe

  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    I've noticed that in some cars, to compensate for a tall rear gear, they put a shorter ratio for first gear in the transmission.

    Let's suppose you had one car with a 2.94 rear and 2.45 first gear, and another with a 2.45 rear end but a 2.94 first gear. All other things being equal, should they both take off about the same? At least until they hit 2nd gear?

    I think first gear on most GM trannies was 2.48:1, until they came out with really tall rear gearing. Then they went to a 2.73 first gear. At least, I've seen both first gears mentioned on that Caddy website I posted earlier. They also listed a variety of rear ends, from something like a 2.24 on up to a 3.08.

    I'd imagine if you could get a 2.73 first gear with a 3.08 rear end, your typical smogged '70's cruiser wouldn't be too bad, would it?
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,604
    A '77 Deville would probably be right around there, 0-60 in anywhere from 10 to 12 seconds. It's horrifying to contemplate, but a '77 Deville would probably beat a '75 Camaro 350.

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  • grbeckgrbeck Posts: 2,361
    I don't know what the gearing was, but my parents' 1976 Oldsmobile Delta 88 had a 350 V-8. That car was a dog in the acceleration department (although it was very reliable). They traded it in on a 1982 Oldsmobile Delta 88 that was just as slow. (I think it had the 307 V-8; it definitely was not equipped with a V-6 or the infamous diesel.) People say, "They don't make them like they used to." When it comes to cars of the mid- to late-1970s and early 1980s, I say, "Thank goodness!"
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    ...but then again, Olds was still offering that little 260 V-8 that had all of 100 hp in 1982. I'm sure a few of those found their way into the Deltas!

    A friend of mine used to have an '82 Cutlass Supreme sedan, with the 260 V-8 and the 3-speed automatic. One night we did a little drag race out on the highway, when I had my '86 Monte with a 305 and 4-speed automatic. I was actually suprised at how well that Cutlass did. My Monte was still faster, but not as much faster as you would think, considering they both weighed about the same yet the Monte had 50 more hp (dunno about torque though...I think the 305 had 245 but I don't know about the 260...maybe 210-220 ft-lb?)
  • the 390 that was first put into the Mustangs had the simple problem of being strangled off.........small carb,restrictive exhaust,lose those two, and the 4bbl 390 WAS a good runner............remember, they were rated at 300+ hp
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 11,860
    wadda you think?

    1969 caprice
    2017 Ford Fusion SE 2014 Ford F-150 FX4
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,604
    I think we voted already that the seller is delirious and watching too much television.

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  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 11,860
    ok simon, it's not making the next round! :)
    2017 Ford Fusion SE 2014 Ford F-150 FX4
  • cptchetcocptchetco Posts: 32
    As Ken mentioned, it was not unusual for Ford up to the early 70s, to sell cars with too small a carburator and exhaust. I understand the purpose of this, and it goes back to the Flatheads, was to allow torque in the regularly usuable speed ranges, and under tax the engines (so the don't work as hard at high power settings) to extend their usefull life.

    It not only worked, it made them very easy to "hop-up"
  • datbadatba Posts: 3
    i have a question? i have a 71 monterey with a 450 V8 in it... it runs good, its completely stock and clean. but how much are they worth?
  • andre1969andre1969 Posts: 23,040
    Are you sure that's not a 429? I just looked in my old car book, and it shows a 429 as being the biggest engine in 1971, although a 460 was first available for 1972.

    My book also shows 3 different 429's being available for the Monterrey: a 320 hp version, 360, and 370.

    What body style is it? And is it a Monterrey or Monterrey Custom?
  • I grew up with 60s and 70 Fords and Chevys. My dad worked for Ford in the 70s and my mom worked for a GM leasing agency and got a free lease car every six months. I had a 78 Ford Granada that I love. But, honestly, I would never own a big car like that ever again. It was so hard to park and even to drive with its wide turning radius.

    But, I tell you, I haven't really found affordable cars that have the kind of torque and horsepower as those old tanks.
  • hpmctorquehpmctorque Posts: 4,600
    "But, I tell you, I haven't really found affordable cars that have the kind of torque and horsepower as those old tanks."

    Modern affordable cars may or may not have less horsepower than the old Detroit tanks, after you account for the changes in how horsepower was calculated then versus today, but modern cars tend to develop their horsepower at higher rpm than the old ones. I agree that the old barges tended to have more torque, especially at low speeds, than the new cars. The fact that new transmissions have more gears than the old ones is a compensating factor. In addition, the new cars tend to be lighter than the old ones you refer to, but maybe not all that much lighter, due to all the new safety and emissions regulations. Lastly, modern cars are much more aerodynamic than the old ones, but the benefit of this is minimal in accelerating from stop sign. The upshot, though, is that a new four cylinder Accord/Altima/Camry/Fusion/Malibu can probably out-accelerate an old Fury/Galaxie/Granada/Impala/or whatever by a comfortable margin, and V6 versions of the '08 cars would absolutely blow the old ones away. Even the old cars with the big engine options wouldn't stand a chance against the new V6s.

    The old cars felt faster than what they actually were, compared to newer cars, because of the sounds they made, and the fact that the back of the car went down and the hood came up more under hard acceleration. This contributed to the feeling of quick acceleration.

    Can anyone help with horsepower (after conversion to the new way of calculating) and torque (including rpms, if possible) comparisons?
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