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OLDSMOBILE TORONADO

Americans love a large car with a huge engine; they always have, and who can blame them? The thing is, when you’ve got a big engine with lots of power and torque, there’s only one end of the car to which they should be directed – and that’s the back.

So when Oldsmobile decided in 1965 to launch a new muscle car with a 385bhp 7-litre V8, with the power sent to the front wheels, the world assumed it had gone mad.

Which it appeared to have done.

Despite being pretty terrible to drive, the Toronado sold well thanks to its generous proportions and tempting price tag. Besides, it was OK on the straights…

The Toronado was the first American car to be built with front-wheel drive since the Cord 810 and 812 of the 1930s. And Cord went bust…