Oldsmobile’s Cutlass was the most popular new car during the 1970s, but unless you live in the Tulsa area, we’ll bet you’ve never seen a Cutlass S like Charlie Cress’ 1977 model.
What caught Cress’ eye about this coupe was it’s 1955-’56 Ford Crown Victoria-like roof band, which appears to be made of stainless, with the name “Crown Cutlass” at the base of the band. The name appears on both sides of the car, between the door window and the rear quarter window. The car also features chrome-plated side view mirrors and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. According to Cress, these are the only differences he sees between his car and standard 1977 Cutlass S.
Growing up in Minnesota and now living in Wisconsin, I have never seen a Olds Crown Cutlass, but I do recall seeing a black 1976 or 1977 Cutlass S with a similar roof band. Rather than wear the “Crown Olds” emblem, the car was fitted with SX emblems (if I recall correctly) on the front fenders and on the rear deck. When I first saw this black car with a white half-vinyl roof, it was still a nice driver given its age and the manner in which these cars succumbed to rust. The last time I saw this car, it was in a local salvage yard with rust having taken several bites of the rear quarter panels.
We know that Oldsmobile built 70,155 Cutlass S Colonade coupe models in 1977, but how many were Crown Cutlass editions? How many were SX models? Were other regional Cutlass S models built for other parts of the country? Perhaps we’ll never know.