1976 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme: King of the Coupes

Today, the most popular new cars tend towards silver silvermist combover anonymity. Because, as you know, it is much better to have a car that does 17 things crappily rather than one that does one thing very well. But I digress. Things change. It’s a given, especially in the fickle car market. But approximately 45 years ago, the top selling cars in the land of the free were actually attractive. Due to having several in my family when I was a kid, I especially long for the 1976-77 Cutlass Supreme; in all likelihood, so do a number of people, as they set sales records in the ’70s and early ’80s. Luckily, I spotted a primo example at the Oldsmobile Nationals in Brookfield, Wisconsin back in 2015.

1976 Oldsmobile Mid-size and Compact-02-03

We’ve all heard the Colonnade story: In 1973, GM unveiled the new A-bodies. They were new and modern, but were festooned with the first 5-mph safety bumpers. And in certain quarters, draw a serious amount of ire from Monday morning quarterbacks. But at any rate, sporty muscle coupes were on the way out, with the world of Brougham taking over. The Cutlass coupes, in various S, Salon and Supreme forms, did quite well.

But in my opinion, they hit their stride in 1976, when an attractive new face and sheetmetal greeted visitors to Olds showrooms. The smooth sides (sedans and wagons retained the 73-75 fender blisters), quad rectangular lights and waterfall grille all looked great. It was a clean, attractive restyle, what one would call a near-luxury car today. For the up-and-coming young professional to announce his moving up in the world.

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1976 Chevrolet Caprice Estate: Woodie’s Woody

NOTE: Today’s guest post is by Mark Davidson, another ex-Cantankerous Coot commenter whom has migrated over to RG. He is a fellow Broughamophile and some of his other cars include an ’88 Olds Custom Cruiser and a 1959 Super 88. Please give him a warm welcome! -TK

So good evening. Would you like for me to tell you a story over cocktails?

I’ll start out with this. The next block over from the Avenue of the misfit toys where I live, a friend of mine sold a house and behind that house was a ’65 turquoise color Corvair, a ’65 Mercury Monterey breezeway, a Mercedes of sorts and a ’76 Chevrolet Caprice Estate Wagon.

I knew him when he had that wagon on the road and it was gorgeous. As a matter of fact, I would drive by his house in my 1988 Oldsmobile, which I just bought back last September, and do a side-by-side comparison in the middle of the street. I was so envious of Woodie’s wagon.

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1976 Cadillac Sedan de Ville: Firethorn Fantasy

Okay, you know the drill. I like Broughams. I like Nimitz-class 1970s yachts. I like poofy seats, vibrant colors and power everything. And I like Cadillacs. The bigger, the better, as far as I’m concerned.

I’ve written enough about these over the past year that I think we can forgo my usual spiel. Want more?

Then go here,

here…

…and here.

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Glasshouse For Sale: 1976 Chevrolet Impala Landau

I’ve been kind of blowing up RG with Broughams lately. “Klockau, geez man, ANOTHER ’70s tuna boat. Fercryinout loud!” Whoops. But hey, it’s not intentional. I just keep seeing vintage land yachts out and about, and have to immediately write it up. It’s an incurable issue with me. I love pretty much all classic and vintage cars, but it seems I always gravitate back to Broughamville. Caprice Classics, Fleetwood Talismans, Bonneville Broughams, 98 Regencys. I can’t help it, man!

1976 Impala Landau

So now that that’s out of the way, here’s another one. A 1976 Chevrolet Impala Landau coupe, espied by yours truly on one of the FB groups I’m on, Finding Future Classic Cars. A rare birdie. In 1976, Landau was king. And Chevrolet offered both Caprice Classic and Impala Landau trim packages, consisting of the aforementioned Landau vinyl roof in elk-grain vinyl, color-keyed wheel discs, sport mirrors and custom pinstriping.

1976 Caprice Landau, formerly owned by Jason Bagge.

Of the two full-size B-Body Landaus, the Caprice Classic was the clear sales winner, with 21,926 of the $5,284 coupes sold.

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1976 Cadillac Fleetwood Talisman: The Broughamiest Brougham That Ever Broughamed

Ever had a post you meant to write up, and it keeps getting displaced by other subjects? Happens to me all the time. There was one in particular I wrote for the old site, where I really, truly meant to write it up the very same weekend that I photographed it. But then other car shows intervened, more and more photos were taken, and further bright, shiny rolling stock distracted your author. That car finally was written up, approximately a year and a half later. But, it DID get written! And so shall today’s subject, perhaps the Broughamiest Brougham that ever Broughamed. The 1974-76 Cadillac Fleetwood Talisman. Today’s subject is a ’76 in Georgian Silver with matching top and Light Antique Blue velour interior. Maximum Cadillac. Maximum Brougham. Maximum Awesome!

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1976 Chrysler Cordoba: The Small Chrysler!

The Chrysler Cordoba, introduced in Autumn 1974 as a 1975 model, was probably the most famous Chrysler of the ’70s.
Its advertising campaign was not only a stroke of genius as the Muscle era gave way to Broughamville, it was highly memorable. Seemingly overnight, Chryslers went from a big-car only company to cranking out personal luxury coupes at a rapid clip!

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1976 Chevrolet Vega Cosworth: Smokey And The Vega

Vega is a four letter word. Literally and figuratively, of course. Why, you’d think only Chevrolet made subcompacts with questionable fit and finish in the 1970s. Um, Datsun B210 Honey Bees, anyone? Rapid-rusting ’74 Corollas? Pardon me while I roll my eyes. OK, where was I? Yes, well, today I’m not going to add more to the blogging cannon fodder directed at the Chevrolet Vega. No, today, I’m here to talk about the good parts, the fun parts. And no Vega was more fun or more interesting than the Cosworth.

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1976 Continental Mark IV Desert Sand Luxury Group

1976 was, in my opinion, Peak Brougham. It was the last year for the truly large premium sedans, the Cadillac Fleetwood, De Ville, Oldsmobile Ninety-Eight and Buick Electra. Over at Chrysler you had Royal Monacos, Gran Furys, New Yorker Broughams and even the wood-paneled Town & Country station wagon. And over at Ford, there were myriad examples of big luxury cars to fill your requirements: LTD, Marquis, Country Squire, Colony Park, and Continental sedans and coupes. At at the very top, the finest, the Continental Mark IV.

Mark IV

1972 Mark IV owned by fellow LCOC member Humberto Garcia.

1976 was the final year for the Mark IV, which first appeared in Autumn 1971 as a ’72 model. My grandfather ordered one in triple dark green, to replace his triple dark green 1969 Mark III.

Mark IV

In my opinion, the 1972 was the prettiest with its small, integrated front and rear bumpers. In 1973, the Mark IV, along with most other Detroit rolling stock, got the new 5-mph front bumpers due to new federal regulations. In 1974, a larger rear bumper was added to match the front.

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