Curiousity got the best of me, this is the Cutlass....the 2+2 must of sold at this auction originally too now that I think about it, or around this time. This Cutlass looks fairly nice for a testing vehicle: https://www.barrett-jackson.com/Events/Event/Details/1985-OLDSMOBILE-CUTLASS-COUPE-71576
I'm impressed by that car not being beat to hell like most of them would be. I'd definitely drive that around. Note it's a "Supreme" so no reclining AR9 buckets like Salon/442. Came with the A51 non-recliners. That was the ONLY difference of those seats. I'm gathering that car was a production car they just built and then took it apart and played with it, as the VIN doesn't show it any different than any other 307 Y engine Supreme. The car sorely needed a 3.23. Makes sense. The non-442 307s came with 3 speed autos only in 85 Cutlass, so I'm sure they wanted to experiment with 4-speed and 3.23s in a Cutlass.
Interestingly, the 307 Y/200-4R (code OJ) with the GU5 (3.23) was already certified for Custom Cruisers and 88s, so why couldn't they just use that setup? Same engine. All Custom Cruisers, Diesels, and 442 came with 200-4R. Some Delta 88s came with 200C or 200-4R depending on rear gear choice.
I got to see a couple of test mule 1990 Corvette ZR-1s in early 1987. There's a skunkwerks in the middle of the Corvette plant in Bowling Green, KY where they build Corvettes. Or there was in the late 80s. Nothing but tall plywood walls around it at the time with no roof. My dad snuck me in to see it. Inside were 2 ZR-1s, both on lifts, buch of tools, equipment and 3 mad scientists at work. They were trying to test fit the cat converters in one of them. They both looked like clown cars because every panel was painted a different color. There was no engine in the car they had on the other lift, but the "engine" was sitting on the stand, half torn down. There was also a complete LT5 engine, heads, and transmission assemblies in balsa wood sitting nearby. Must've weighed 2 lbs total if not an ounce. That was their "clearance mule" parts that they could jam in there, and take it out or move it around as needed. Now, at the time, 1987 Corvettes weren't all that and a bag of chips performance-wise, so a 16 injectored, 4 cam, 32 valve, 375 HP Mercury-Marine built V8 engine was something to behold in that era. Starter was under the intake manifold. Yikes. They swarmed on me and wanted to tell me everything they could about the car and its capabilities. Lots of show and tell and I was blown away by all the cool sh*t that was coming down the pike for Corvettes. Kid in a candy store.
Honest to God, that place looked more like a typical backyard car shop than a laboratory where history was coming to life. Cool toys inside, though.