I went through the same thing with a 1978 Oldsmobile Cutlass Salon with the 4-4-2 package three years ago. I bought the car new in 1978. However, through the years, it lost its status as a road car. The worst thing was that it was rusting out underneath. We really didn’t have room for the car, so I sold it to my neighbor whose son needed transportation. He got a year’s use out of the car. However, during that year, the back bumper fell off because of rust. The car ran, and was driven up and hooked to a wrecker and finally towed away from my neighbor’s house. I don’t know where it went from there.
Had it been a 4-4-2 with the big engine, dual exhausts, 4 barrel carburetor and 4 speed manual transmission, it might have been worth restoring. However, it was a 260 cubic inch V-8, single exhaust, 2 barrel carburetor and automatic transmission. It didn’t attract any attention from the muscle car crowd. The engine ran well at 240,000 miles–never had the head or pan off the engine and it used no oil. The 4-4-2 package did give it a faster steering ratio and firmer suspension. However, it wasn’t a fast car at all. The rear axle ratio was 2.41 to 1, so it was no dragster. It did get reasonably good mileage. However, today’s cars get much better mileage and are faster as well. I like old cars as long as someone else owns them. Restoring that Oldsmobile would have cost about $12,000 for a car that would be worth, at most, $10,000.
I have a friend that bought a museum quality 1948 Frazer and only paid $10,000 for the car.