The 442 was launched in 1964; the figures signified a four-barrel carburetor, four-speed gearbox, and dual exhausts. It was a stand-alone model from 1968 to 1972. As the 1970 model year unfolded, it would have been impossible to predict that in a few short years, Oldsmobile would be the nation's number three automobile producer. But this marked the year that a key to that success was introduced.
The Cutlass Supreme Holiday Coupe was introduced this year. There had been a Cutlass Supreme Hardtop prior to 1970, but it was a higher trim level of a regular Cutlass model. The new Supreme was given a more formal roofline (similar to the Monte Carlo and Grand Prix), but was based on the regular 112-inch mid-size wheelbase giving it a sportier flair. This change, coupled with the restyling received by the entire Cutlass line, produced a very appealing car at an affordable price. This new image for the Cutlass Supreme would eventually lead to the entire Cutlass line becoming the best selling car line in America.
Another key to success was the performance image that the Cutlass had gained through the sixties, and which was highlighted by the Cutlass 4-4-2 being selected to pace the 1970 Indianapolis 500 race this year. This would be the first of four times during the seventies that Oldsmobiles (three of them Cutlasses) would do the honors at Indy, a testament to the popularity of Oldsmobile and the Cutlass in this period.
Changes to the remainder of the Oldsmobile line were limited to trim and detail changes. The exception was the Toronadom which was given an all-new front end treatment. The leading edge of the front fenders held vertically mounted "bumpers" and rub strips. These flanked a loopstyle bumper which housed the headlights and egg-crate grille. It was a rather unusual look for what had once been such a cleanly styled car. Fortunately, it was only one more year before a totally new Toronado would appear. There were no model changes of note, but 1970 would be the final year for the luxurious Ninety-Eight convertible.