New Car Review

1995 OLDSMOBILE AURORA SEDAN

by: BILL RUSS

The brand new 1995 Aurora is the first product of the new Oldsmobile organization. In less than two years the country's oldest active car company has undertaken some dramatic changes with a new general manager, a new product and a new philosophy. Under the dynamic leadership of John Rock, and in anticipation of its 100th anniversary in 1997, Oldsmobile has developed a comprehensive Centennial Plan. This plan includes both product and non-product areas and covers every aspect of automotive planning, manufacture, training and sales. The goal is to develop new models that are international in focus, distinctive from other GM divisions, incorporate the latest technology and, most importantly, appeal to people who now buy medium and high-line import cars.

These goals especially apply to its kickoff model, the Aurora - an all-new large-size luxury four-door sedan. Included in this plan are its core vehicles that, besides the Aurora include the Cutlass Supreme, an Achieva replacement and a new entry-luxury model. Olds also has plans for its lifestyle models which consist of the Bravada, the Silhouette, the Achieva sport coupe and the Cutlass convertible. All models will contain the best in clean, functional design and enginnering features.

John Rock's statement, "This is not a short-term thing," succinctly declares that the Centennial Program will continue as a prime mover of new Oldsmobile products and organization.

APPEARANCE: The Aurora has the look of a luxury car of the nineties. It is dramatically rounded with a low nose and a relatively low rear deck lid. Oval is in style in the headlights and the broad rear lighting design. A bright Aurora logo decorates the hood, and the in-the-bumper air-intake is flanked by driving lights. Subtle fender flares and a mild coke-bottle treatment highlight each side. Large wheel wells display its six-spoke alloy wheels and optional Michelin all-season speed-rated tires. The large four-door cabin is outlined by bright side window trim and distinctive side mirrors.

COMFORT: Oldsmobile made sure that the Aurora was outfitted like the luxury car it is. For starters there's leather upholstery, memory adjustable heated front seats, a new excellent-sounding Bose Acoustimass sound system with AM/FM/cassette and a trunk-mounted 12-CD cartridge changer, plus a dual-temperature climate control unit with rear seat ducting, and a glass sunroof. Other amenities include steering wheel-mounted remote controls for sound and temperature, a multi- function message center and trip computer, power windows, side mirrors and locks, front and rear cup holders, a rear seat armrest pass-through to the large low-liftover trunk. The driver is surrounded in a cockpit-like atmosphere with a full analog instrument panel and at-hand controls for all functions.

SAFETY: Aurora's inherent built-in safety starts with its structurally sound design. Special computer modeling assures rigidity and strength for all components. When finally assembled the completed Aurora provides a stable rigid platform for its safety, suspension and comfort equipment. Its safety equipment includes dual front air bags, three-point seat belts, side impact protection, and four-wheel disc brakes managed by a quick-acting computerized anti-lock system.

ROADABILITY: Another of the attributes of the Aurora is its very smooth quiet cruising ride on the highway coupled with its ability to take sharp turns in a relatively flat plane. A new magnetic speed- sensitive power steering system plus electronic traction control provides correct feedback and excellent control of the car in most driving situations. Well-designed weatherstripping and state-of-the-art insulation result in a very quiet ride. The specially tuned exhaust system projects a powerful V8 throb.

PERFORMANCE: The powertrain of the Aurora is centered around a brand new V8 motor that is a scaled-down version of the Cadillac Northstar model. It is a highly sophisticated 4.0 liter engine with dual overhead cams, four-valves per cylinder, direct ignition and port fuel injection. It develops a robust 250 horsepower. Power is directed to the front wheels via the newest Hydra-matic 4T80-E transaxle. This dual-mode automatic transmission and the V8 engine are managed by a computerized control module and assisted by traction control. This combination assures efficient and effective power application and smooth shifting at all speeds and driving conditions.

CONCLUSIONS: The Aurora is Oldsmobile's challenge to the luxury car market that is currently dominated by Asian and European manufacturers. Its mission is to demonstrate that American industry can build high quality, high performance motor cars at very competitive prices.

SPECIFICATIONS:
1995 OLDSMOBILE AURORA SEDAN

	   
	   Base Price              $  31,995
	   Price As Tested         $  34,341
	   Engine Type             V-8, dohc-32v, smpfi
	   Engine Size             4.0 liter/244 cid   
	   Horsepower              250 @ 5600
	   Torque (ft/lbs)         260 @ 4400
	   Wheelbase/Length        114"/205"
	   Transmission            four speed auto w/od
	   Curb Weight             4000
	   Pounds per Horsepower   16
	   Fuel Capacity           20
	   Fuel Requirement        Unleaded premium (91 oct)
	   Tire                    Goodyear Eagle GA 235/60VR16 M+S   
	   Brake                   anti-lock standard     disc/disc
	   Drive Train             front engine/front drive
	   
	   
			 PERFORMANCE    
	   
	   EPA Economy - miles per gallon,        
	     city/highway/observed      16/25/18.7
	   0 to 60 mph                  8.2 sec           
	   1/4 mi (E.T.)                16.3 sec  
	   Coefficient of drag (cd)     .32 

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