As a compact, the first-generation Cutlass F-85 did not live up to sales expectations, and so the G2 version is larger, now an intermediate size with a more traditional body on frame construction incorporating rails for side impact protection. The resized F-85 put on only 300 pounds, but it now sports a 115-inch (2900 mm) wheelbase with a total length of 203 inches (5200 mm). The base power is the Oddfire 225-cubic-inch (3.7L) V6 or a new 330-cubic-inch (5.4L) V8 engine with a cast-iron small-block as the power option. The new two-speed Jetaway automatic transmission was available if you didn’t want the three-speed manual. The biggest change in the lineup in 1964 was the addition of a longer wheelbase station wagon, with a rear-facing third row seating.
In April ’64, the best news was the new Cutlass F-85 power option for a paltry $285.14 over base. The 4-4-2 power package took its roots from the BO-9 Police Apprehender Pursuit Option. This version of the 330 had a racier cam and delivering 310 hp (231 kW) at 5200 rpm with 355 lbs.-ft. (481 N·m) of torque-the same as the previous year but now peaks out at a higher 3600 rpm. The BO-9 option would normally have come with a four-barrel carburetor, but the 4-4-2 is slightly restrained, and a factory-equipped 330 engine came with a two-barrel. The 4-4-2, however, did get the Muncie four-speed, heavy-duty driveshaft, 3.36:1 rearend, heavy-duty wheels, and larger drum brakes. The suspension was a beefed-up police style under a more substantial frame with thicker coil springs all around, and the shock absorbers were built to control the ride.
The front roll bar is a thicker gauge steel than the basic, with the addition of another roll bar fixed to a fully boxed rear control arm. All the creature comforts load the Cutlass as you would expect in an uptown vehicle in ’64, but two packages were available; the first was two-speed wipers coupled with A/C at $430 and tilt steering plus the remote trunk release at $43. The Cutlass F-85 hit the mark in ‘64 with 167,002 units rolling off the assembly line without counting the Vista wagon.
Cosmetic changes in 1965 for the Cutlass included a new grille similar to the full-sized Olds lineup, and it was a little longer, at 204.3 inches (5190 mm). The 4-4-2 power option now had a 400-cubic-inch (6.6L) power plant that produced 345hp (257 kW) and 440 lbs.-ft. (597 N·m) of torque. The Oddfire 225 V6 and the Jetfire Rocket 330 V8 were still available, but now the base V8 delivered higher performance, with a four-barrel available for more power from the engine. This was the first year the Cutlass sported the Rocket emblem, and the model was a success with 20,000 more units sold than the year before.
The 1966 Cutlass has a body style similar to the full-sized line-up now, complete with a newly designed semi-fastback rear window. There was a new model that year, the Cutlass Supreme as the Sport, a pillared hard-top, or the Holiday, a four-door hard-top sedan. The old Oddfire is replaced with the “Action Line” 250 six sourced from Chevy Division, but the badge says it’s an Oldsmobile product. The other power options remained unchanged.
The news for 1967 was optional disc brakes, and there’s the three-speed Turbo-Hydramatic added as a choice above the basic two-speed Jetaway. Standard basic transmission is the three speed and optionally, the Muncie M-20 or the M-21 four speed if you want more but any transmission has a Hurst produced shift stick/linkage. The new for ’67 Turnpike model is a rare find today and appeared as a convertible or any coupe with the Cutlass Supreme package. This power option 4-4-2 is equipped with a heavy-duty, three-speed manual and was produced with highway cruising in mind. . The Turnpike was like the 4-4-2 with the upgraded suspension and the 400 engine, but the cam is milder, has a two-barrel carburetor and a low axle ratio; so equipped, the model delivered better gas mileage at consistent high speeds.