I am making my first foray into the “classic” car market and am looking at a 1967 Oldsmobile Cutlass Convertible. I learned that the car doesn’t have seatbelts (which apparently became mandatory in 1968). Is there some way to retrofit the car with seat belts? Are there any particular online resources for these types of things?
Yes you can retrofit seatbelts and there are plenty of aftermarket seatbelt suppliers who can supply you with everything you need.
Just Google “aftermarket seatbelts” - classic cars and google are good friends…
Places like J.C. Whitney sell an assortment of aftermarket seatbelts.
On an old convertible, you might be able to install aftermarket lap-belts, but I’m not aware of any aftermarket shoulder belt that will work-- there’s no place to mount them! Mandatory shoulder belts was a factor in the death of the great American convertible due to the difficulty of styling around the mount.
Since they definitely were an option, you might be able to grab a set of OE lapbelts at a junkyard, which for me would be the preferred method.
If you really plan to buy a classic, you will want to use factory parts or faithful replicas. See if there are unused bolts on the floor for the lap belts. Be careful to install them exactly as they would have been at the factory. Otherwise, it will reduce the value of the car.
Since your post has been answered, I thought you may enjoy this site with your classic.
Maybe some of this would work.
Nice car, seat belts or not. One doesn’t see too many 67 Cutlasses running around, and especially a convertible.
I had seat belts on a 65 Fairlane and you might find them on the Cutlass. You might find the mounting points though.
As others have said, if you want seat belts for some reason shop around to find the correct lap belts for that car or find someone who sells reproductions.
I know there are many purists out there…but I think you can keep a nice car like this WIHOUT keeping it pure. I’ve seen many cars from this era with MAJOR upgrades to modernize the vehicle…from upgraded suspension systems to fuel injection and electronic ignition. Some people don’t like that…I’m NOT one of them. It’s a GREAT way to keep the car alive.
Upgrades? If you’re going to do that, you might as well just buy a new POS.
That’s ONE opinion…To each their own.
I just don’t understand the point of hacking up an old car, it will either cost the next owner a fortune to make it correct again or it will be junk. If you want something that looks like an old car (but isn’t), why not just buy one of those silly retro cars like a new mustang/new t-bird/new charger/etc.? Leave the old cars to the folks who are willing to preserve them correctly.
I’d say as long as it’s a bolt on situation, it’s no big deal getting the “correct” belts. In fact, the correct belts are no belts for this car if that’s what the factory installed. Any bolt-on would be easily removed and restore the car to “correct.” Of course, if the OP wants it to be the factory type he should try to find them in Hemmings or similar place. My point is as long as the belts don’t require drilling new holes or anything, then they aren’t hurting the value or destroying the integrity of the car.
I agree, it’s OK as long as it can be reversed without damage. Personally, I would leave it as-is, without the belts.
Craig, I knew you were opposed to airbags, ABS, and other modern safety equipment, but seatbelts??
I always use the original seatbelts that are correct for my daily driver. If I bought a collector car that did not originally have seatbelts, I would keep it correct. I would not use a '67 cutlass as a daily driver either.
One thing is you it’s very very difficult to find Stock parts for these cars anymore. Second…let’s face it…handling and safety were are far less then they are now. I love seeing a nice completely restored old car to it’s origional state. I also love seeing a nice older car that’s restored to new condition with upgraded/updated features. It’s ones personal taste. I’m NOT saying you’re wrong in wanting these cars stay stock. I’m just saying it’s NOT wrong in updating these cars.
I don’t know if its “wrong” (whatever that means), but if the car survives your ownership, it will just be that much more difficult for the next owner to undo all these “upgrades.” Unless the car is particularly valuable/rare you are probably just dooming it to the crusher.
I would’t buy a car like this to SIT in a garage. I’d want to drive it. I sure wouldn’t want to drive one without seatbelts.