Curbside Outtake: 1991 Oldsmobile Cutlass Ciera – Don’t Call It A Comeback

The image of the speedometer and Cutlass badge were taken from Google.

This car has a secret, can you guess what it is? I’ll give you a hint. It’s got something to do with the speedometer…

This car is from Canada! I found this out while out walking one evening and passing by the owner who was raking up his yard. He owns both a base model 2005 Dodge Ram and this Cutlass. The truck is what sparked the discussion, as I told him you don’t see very many single cab work trucks like his anymore outside of the industry I work in. He explained he had purchased it from a rancher who had won it at a stock show and didn’t have a use for it. When the conversation came to his Cutlass, he explained that it used to belong to his mother in law and that it was a European market car, because the speedometer was in kilometers. He wasn’t sure how she had come about it, but when she passed away, it became his.

He said he had driven the car for two years with Canadian plates, while living in a small town in west Texas, and no one had ever given him any guff about it. Sadly, while making a long trip to Dallas late one night, he was pulled over for having a tail light out. When the officer tried to run his plate, to no surprise, the car wasn’t in the system. The owner had to sheepishly lie that he had just bought the car and was in the process of getting it legal.

He then explained the major pain in the neck it was to do so. Technically, it was a “foreign car” despite the VIN saying it was made in the US, and had to be treated like an import. He had to drive to a police station on a specific day and have the whole car checked over, and was handed a mountain of paperwork to fill out. After all that was done, he was the proud (legal) owner of a Canadian Oldsmobile that was finally back where it was made.

(Author’s note: This the first car of it’s type that I’ve ever come across, and am explaining it as the owner told it to me. I apologize for any inaccuracies, and would like to know more about American cars sold in other countries. I look forward to looking at the comments, thank you for reading!)