Automotive Mileposts  

1969 Oldsmobile Toronado
Production Numbers/Specifications

PRODUCTION NUMBERS
INTRODUCTION DATE:
September 12, 1968
TOTAL PRODUCTION:
28,494
TOP LINE: BODY CODE/MODEL NAME/BASE PRICE
BOTTOM LINE: WEIGHT/PRODUCTION
9487 Toronado (Base model) $4,836
Weight: 4,478 Built: 3,421
9687 Toronado Custom $5,009.78
Weight: 4,505 Built: 25,073
SPECIFICATIONS
ENGINE CODE
ENGINE DETAILS
US
UT

Optional:
UV
UW
455 CID Rocket V-8
Horsepower: 375
Torque: 510 lb.-ft.
Compression ratio: 10.25:1
Bore and Stroke: 4.125 x 4.250

Optional:
455 CID Rocket V-8
Horsepower: 400 @ 4800 rpm
Torque: 500 @ 3200 rpm
Compression ratio: 10.25:1
Bore and Stroke: 4.125 x 4.250
TRANSMISSION CODE
TRANSMISSION DESCRIPTION
OJ
OM (W34 option only)
Turbo Hydra-Matic 425
Special Turbo Hydra-Matic 425
REAR AXLE CODE
FINAL DRIVE RATIO
N/A (Front wheel drive) 3.08:1
TIRE SIZE
BRAKES
8.85 x 15" 2-Ply Blackwall

Optional:
J78 x 15" Fiberglass-Belted Dual-White Stripe

Wheels: 15" steel safety
Power-assisted drum, front and rear
Diameter: 11 inches
Lining area: 212.0 sq. in.

Optional:
Power-assisted front discs, rear drum
WHEELBASE
DIMENSIONS
119 inches
Front Tread: 63.5"
Rear Tread: 63"
Turning diameter: 42.9"
Length: 214.8 inches
Width: 78.8 inches
Height: 52.8 inches
Headroom - front: 37.7"; rear: 36.9"
Legroom - front: 41.3"; rear: 35.3"
Shoulderroom - front: 58.8"; rear: 57.8"
Hiproom - front: 62.2"; rear: 55.6"
CAPACITIES
Fuel Tank: 24 gallons
Cooling System: 18 quarts
Trunk: 14.6 cu. ft.
Oil: 5 quarts (6 with filter change)
SPECIAL NOTES
No special notes 1969 first year for:
- Anti-theft ignition/steering wheel/transmission lock
- Rear quarter panel "fins"
- Color-keyed steering wheels and columns
Image: 1969 Oldsmobile Toronado prototype

Above: This image is of a styling prototype for the 1969 Toronado which features styling proposals that didn't make it into production. A close inspection reveals the rectangular rear side marker lights on the rear quarter panel, just in front of the bumper. The production version utilized the same illuminated Rocket emblem used in 1968, placed just above and in front of the rear bumper. (Click image to view a larger version in a new window.)

If You Liked Last Year's Model...

Image: 1969 Oldsmobile Toronado

The Toronado received its first substantial restyle in 1968, so the changes between 1968 and 1969 were few. Some may not be certain which year they're looking at, but the few changes that were made are easy to spot if you know what to look for. Parked side by side, the 1969 Toronado is 3½" longer than before, with virtually all of the new length at the rear of the car.

Image: Rear view of 1969 Oldsmobile ToronadoPerhaps the easiest thing to check is the shape of the rear quarter panels (see image at left). On the '68 models, they were rounded and matched the contour of the deck lid, which gave the car a fastback appearance. For 1969, the rear quarter panels were squared off and given small fins, a small change, but one that gave the car an entirely new appearance when viewed in profile or from behind. Note the image included in this paragraph is of a styling prototype, and the Oldsmobile Rocket emblem on the gas filler door didn't make it to production.

While outside the car, inspect the front grille. The '68s had a honeycomb pattern, and the '69s have a cross hatch pattern. If the car has the optional factory installed vinyl roof, the '68 will have a halo effect with a body-colored break around the edge of the vinyl top. For '69, the roof material was tucked under the polished stainless steel roof rail moldings, eliminating the halo effect.

From inside the car, you have a couple of very clear indicators as to what year the car is. The ignition was relocated from the instrument panel to the steering column for 1969, part of GM's new anti-theft program. With the transmission selector in park, turning off the ignition and removing the key locks the ignition, steering wheel, and transmission lever. All at the same time. And to make sure you remember to take your key with you, a standard ignition key warning buzzer reminds you to do so.

The upholstery patterns were different between the two years as well. While there were similarities between the standard interiors, the Custom interior option for 1969 featured an Excella Pattern embroidery on the upper seat backs. This design was reminiscent of some Aztec works, and was very distinctive. It was used only on the 1969 Toronado.

Oldsmobile's advertising theme for 1969 was recreating scenes from classic movies. A large black and white poster appeared in the background, with the characters and props from that scene posed around new Oldsmobiles in the foreground. This and the changes made for 1969 apparently worked, as sales improved slightly for the year, which was unusual for a car in its 4th year of a styling cycle. Sales were still less than expected, and Oldsmobile stylists had been ordered to make even more substantial changes for 1970. Real relief would not come along until 1971, however, when Oldsmobile would take advantage of the new Cadillac Fleetwood Eldorado [link opens in new window] styling cycle, in which it would abandon its sleek 1967-1970 styling for something a bit more sculpted. Olds felt like that might be a mistake on Cadillac's part, and decided to use the crisp Eldorado styling introduced for 1967 as its inspiration for the next major Toronado restyle. After all, the Eldo design was one of Bill Mitchell's finest, and to this day is still one of the most respected and admired of all of General Motors' designs.

For 1969, Toronado would remain the personal luxury car with that great Toronado look, impressively refined to become the longest, sportiest, most luxurious Toronado to date.