Weirdest optioned g-body cutlass

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oldson

oldson

Not-quite-so-new-guy
Feb 6, 2012
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What information are you looking for?
 
ssn696

ssn696

Older Than My 1980 Malibus
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Jul 19, 2009
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Pictures, who made them, specs, how many. I didn't believe that there was a five-speed that early, but over the years I have heard about three of these, but always in past cars, so no one could tell me anything about them.
 
oldson

oldson

Not-quite-so-new-guy
Feb 6, 2012
48
8
Pictures, who made them, specs, how many. I didn't believe that there was a five-speed that early, but over the years I have heard about three of these, but always in past cars, so no one could tell me anything about them.
This is what I found in my chiltons:

Warner T-50 5 speed
Applications:
Astre, 1976-77
Cosworth Vega, 1976
Cutlass, 1976,78-79
LeMans (260), 1976
Monza, 1976-79
Omega, 1976,78-79
Skyhawk, 1976-79
Starfire, 1976-79
Sunbird, 1976-79
Vega, 1976-77
Ventura, 1976-77

Sorry, no specs but, do have a cut away pic if your interested. From what I remember, it was not a stout trans by any stretch of the imagination which kinda go along with what they were used in.
 
ssn696

ssn696

Older Than My 1980 Malibus
Supporting Member
Jul 19, 2009
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New Mexico
Wow. I wonder how many made it into a 1976 LeMans or Cutlass - wasn't that a 4000lb A-body? Probably why it was for that year only.
 
87BlazeLS

87BlazeLS

Master Mechanic
Sep 5, 2012
402
18
Apopka Florida
The 5.7 diesel was used in Chevy, Pontiac, Olds, Cadillac, Buick, GMC. Basically it was a 350 cu in gas block
converted to run diesel heads. The section where the gas distributor would be was a gear driven injection pump.
Compression was like 30 to 1. These motors were way weaker then the 6.2 litre diesels that came out a year or 2
later. The way the motors were modified led to their short lived survival. By 1984 most were done in.
People ran from these like the plague. And 350 diesel vehicles could be had for penny's on the dollar during the late 80's.
Good cars and trucks just waiting for a gas motor swap for cheap were easy pickin's. Pre LS days...
 
C

clean8485

Royal Smart Person
Dec 18, 2005
2,469
113
Ontario, Canada
In October of 2015, I went to look at a 1977 Olds Cutlass Salon 2 door, that is a factory Olds 260 V8/5 speed car that was for sale . I was aware that GM did build these cars with the 260/5 speed powertrain package, but I had never actually seen one like this for myself. Its an interesting car, but definitely not a performance car. As mentioned by someone else, the 260 Olds V8 was rated at 105-110HP, and the BW T50 5 speed did not have a high torque capacity. Most of these 5 speeds were installed in Vegas and Monzas, with either 4 cylinder or V6 engines.
I checked earlier today, and the '77 Cutlass is still for sale. The car is located about a 2 hour drive east of Toronto Ontario. If anyone is interested, you can PM me, and I'll pass along more info.
 
ssn696

ssn696

Older Than My 1980 Malibus
Supporting Member
Jul 19, 2009
4,099
113
New Mexico
https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Borg-Warner_T-50_transmission
I couldn't find any gear ratios but it came behind the 260 v8. I'm sure it wasn't performance oriented.
Thanks! The H-body blog had a photo of the transmission. The T50 is really compact. I suspect the T5 grew out of the T50 design, and it has a lot more and thicker stiffening ribs on the case. I have read that the center-to-center distance between the main shaft and counter shaft was very short to fit the transmission between the driver and the ground in the compact cars where it was used - and this later was the constraint that made these a risk behind V8s. The 'World Class' ones optimized the deisign with the improved synchros and input/mainshaft needle bearings. There is a place in Pennsylvania called GForce that made stronger cases and specially-hardened and liquid-nitrogen-conditioned gears to be as strong as a Tremec. I paid less and hacked up my tunnel to fit the cheaper Tremec...well, cheaper 10 years ago...
 
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oldsmobile joe

Royal Smart Person
Nov 12, 2015
1,255
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mpls
Wow. I wonder how many made it into a 1976 LeMans or Cutlass - wasn't that a 4000lb A-body? Probably why it was for that year only.
i can't answer all your questions but i remember reading a cr ad this past summer for a 76 or 77 cutlass supreme with a 260 and t50 five speed for sale in milwaukee wi. area.

i also own a 78 salon equipped with a 260 and t50 five speed. see attached pics of 78 service manual for details. mine is equipped with the 2.56:1 rear gears. i've only owned it for a short time and is now in storage for the winter. but i did drive it once on a long trip and averaged 23mpg at 70mph. not earth shattering but still when you consider this car was designed for the 55mph speed limits of the day, still remarkable. thats good enough to travel from albuquerque to flag staff or armarillo on one tank.

one down fall of the t50 is the shifter is very notch, making it slow to shift. the shift pattern is odd also. reverse is in the upper left, with first in the lower left. think of standard three speed H pattern with two additional gears added on to the right side.

another oddity of the manual trans 260 engine is the bell housing will fit buick, olds and pontiac motors and has two trans mount patterns. one for the gm trans pattern and the other for a ford trans pattern. from what i have read from old timers and read, pontiac used a ford three speed trans in the sixties as a the base transmission due to it being stronger than the gm three speed. if the trans ever need to be replaced, i'm hoping to replace it with a mid 90's camaro t5 due to that trans having a ford mounting pattern and similar gearing. IMG_0205.JPG IMG_0209.JPG IMG_0206.JPG
 
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