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Oldsmobile

AMT 1/25 1969 Hurst Olds Kit First Look

By Phil Cooley, Front Range Auto Modelers (FRAM)

Date of Review November 2012 Manufacturer AMT/Round 2
Subject 1969 Hurst Olds Scale 1/25
Kit Number 0703 Primary Media Styrene
Pros Individually bagged trees, Tampo printed tires Cons Although the price is reasonable, I wish it came with the 1969 pricetag
Skill Level Basic MSRP (USD) $20.99

First Look

Oldsmobile
Oldsmobile
Oldsmobile
Oldsmobile
Oldsmobile
Oldsmobile
Oldsmobile
Oldsmobile

In 1966 and 1967 if you mentioned Oldsmobile and Hurst in the same sentence a few people thought of the Hurst Hairy Olds, a twin engined Oldsmobile match race car.  A year later that changed when Hurst and Olds teamed to build what some would argue was the first "gentleman's muscle car", the 1968 Hurst Olds.  The only GM intermediate with an engine larger than the 400 cu. in. limit GM imposed upon itself, it was, in effect, a real sleeper, a silver Cutlass with black accent stripes and trunk and a 390 hp 455 cu in V8, complete with under-bumper cold air induction and a Hurst Dual Gate shifter!  Only 515 were built,  but the legend had begun!

The Olds Cutlass was mildly updated for 1969 and the H/O (for Hurst/Olds) was too.  Changes included white paint with gold accents and hand applied black pinstripes (the signature H/O color scheme for years to come), a functional fiberglass hood scoop, English racing mirrors, a rear spoiler, and special Super Stock II wheels with Goodyear white letter Polyglas tires.  The engine remained the 455, but was slightly detuned (only 380 hp) for improved driveability.  A little over 900 of the street terrors were built, including two H/O convertibles that were built specifically for Hurst's use.

GM dumped their "no engines over 400 cu in" policy for 1970 and the H/O did not come back that year.  In fact, it was not brought back until 1972 when the Hurst engineered a special H/O to pace the Indianapolis 500.  After that, the H/O remained a staple of Oldsmobile performance through 1975, when it was the first production car (other than a Corvette) to have a removable T-top type roof installed (called the Hurst Hatch).  The H/O came back in 1979 and was the first H/O to be built entirely by Oldsmobile.  The last H/Os were 1983 and 1984 models.  (Data condensed from Wikipedia).

AMT/Round 2 is in a nostalgia craze right now and came up with a box that look like it's straight from 1969.  However, this Skill Level 2 kit, #703 is a re-release of the kit AMT tooled up in 1989.   As such, the model  appears to be pretty much a straight re-release, although the gold accented decals are closer to the shade of the full scale car's paint than the ones of a few years back. .

The engine is a 455 cu in V8, complete with extra molded in details, such as the valvetrain and cylinders and pistons.  The engine has around 25 parts including an optional set of valve covers and headers.  The transmission is a Turbo-Hydromatic 400.

The interior is a stock only, bucket type with a separate brake pedal, steering wheel, and dash.  Seats are GM's Strato-buckets and there is also a console and chrome gear shift.  Interestingly, if you examine the inside of the roof there are engraved shoulder belts and sunvisors.

The chassis and suspension was fairly detailed for its time.  Up front, it includes upper and lower A-arms, along with separate coil springs, spindles and a tie rod.  Although it isn't touted anywhere, the front wheels are steerable.  The suspension in the back is almost as detailed with a two-piece rear axle, coil springs, shocks, driveshaft and roll bar.  The chassis platform and frame are integrated, but thankfully, the dual exhaust is molded separately, which makes it a lot easier to detail paint.

The tires for this kit are newly tooled, extremely nice, Goodyear Polyglas GTs with tampo printed white letters.  They are so nice, I'd like to see AMT/Round 2 release them as a parts pack, like they have some of their other tires.  There are 2 sets of mag wheels in the kit, the factory correct Rallye wheels and a set of period-correct 5-spoke mag wheels.

 Under the hood there is a two-piece brake master cylinder, radiator with fan shroud, battery, firewall and cold air seal for the air cleaner.  The rest of the body includes a flat hood, the H/O hood scoop, the body itself, and a rear spoiler.  The front and rear bumpers are chromed and there are separate headlight and tail-lamp lenses.  There is only a minimal amount of flash to clean up and mold lines are almost non-existent. 

The instructions appear to be well laid out, though do not include the names of the parts, like a lot of the instructions of the original AMT annuals did.  It's not really a big deal, I only mention it because that is how I first learned the names of a lot of car parts.  And before I forget, decal placement appears to be well-depicted in the instructions.

There are a couple of nice to have extras included in this kit – a Hurst decal and a scaled down version of the box, which will make a nice display piece along with the model.

To sum it up, this is a nice kit that will build up well (I built one a few years ago when AMT was selling many of their kits prepainted).   Although it is not as detailed as many kits of today, it was well done in it's time and has held up well.  In fact, the chassis is one of the better depictions of a mid-late 60s GM intermediate chassis; I have seen many modelers swap it into other similar era GM musclecars.

My sincere thanks to Round2 Models for this review sample!

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