Used 1997 Oldsmobile Aurora Sedan

1997 Oldsmobile Aurora
List price range
1997 Oldsmobile Aurora


  • Full load of equipment, V-8 power, good looks, roomy rear seat


  • Nose-heavy handling, high cowl
Oldsmobile Aurora years

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Edmunds' Expert Review

vehicle overview

We really want to like the Aurora. On paper, it seems to have everything in place to whip the competition. Strong performance, a Northstar-derived V8 engine, standard antilock brakes and traction control, svelte sheetmetal, and prices that top out just over $40,000 fully loaded. Sounds tasty, doesn't it?

While slick overall, it looks like a 1995 Saturn SL that underwent minor reconstructive surgery. It weighs two tons. The wheels look like Aunt Polly's holiday condiment dishes. It barely avoids the dreaded gas-guzzler tax.

We can't argue that the Aurora hasn't proven to be an image-maker for Oldsmobile. We also can't argue that the Aurora hasn't been selling to expectations, despite continuous improvement with each model year. From a design and engineering standpoint, the Aurora is lighting the way toward a new kind of Oldsmobile. From a sales standpoint, it is becoming obvious that luxury car buyers do not look to Oldsmobile to meet their needs

For 1997, Aurora gains few changes. The right exterior mirror now dips down while reversing to help the driver see the curb or other obstructions to the rear of the car. The rearview mirror gains an integrated compass, while larger front brakes help bring the car to a stop more assuredly. A 3-channel garage door opener is added, and outside door handles have improved operation this year. Seatbelts feature end release buckles for easier detachment, and the Bose sound system gains an in-dash CD player. Newly optional is a 12-disc changer, but only if you avoid the Bose stereo.

So, what is the competition for the Aurora? The Buick Park Avenue Ultra and Pontiac Bonneville SSE are worthy alternatives, but aren't as coolly sophisticated. Acura's 3.2TL hovers around the Aurora price tag, as do the Infiniti J30 and Lexus ES300, but these Japanese near luxury sedans aren't nearly as stylish as the Aurora. Chrysler's LHS is nice, but lacking oomph under the hood. Lincoln's Continental offers a wonderful V8 powertrain, but dull styling and too many electronic gizmos. The Audi A6 could be worth consideration, but is severely underpowered. The Mercedes E320 and BMW 528i are substantially more expensive than the Aurora when comparably equipped, and lack V8 power.

Yes, it would seem that the Aurora blends the perfect mix of luxury and performance into a highly styled, competitively priced near-luxury sedan. We just can't shake the feeling that this good package could have been much better, particularly in comparison to the slightly more expensive and absolutely stellar BMW 528i.

1997 Highlights

Larger front brakes, an in-dash CD player for the Bose sound system, a tilt-down right-hand exterior mirror for backing assistance, an integrated rearview mirror compass and a three-channel garage door opener are added this year.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 1997 Oldsmobile Aurora.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

Love the Nana car
I bought my Aurora a year ago at an auction, I am only the second owner and it had 90,000 miles on it when I bought it. We were not in Modesto on preview day, so did not even know if it ran, but it was in such pristine condition and had such low mileage I took a chance. I paid $3000 for her, and she started right up and i have been in love ever since. This car looks as good as it did the day it left the showroom and while the in-town mileage is not very high, on the highway she gets between 27-34 mpg. My son the mechanic says with the low mileage I put on it and timely maintenance it should last me many years.
Great Car
A great car have had since new,20years and 132,000 miles, nice style, power, good ride. No major issues, except leaks oil, minor trim issues with rubber seal around trunk, mirror comes loose and costs ~$600 to change plugs/wires. Had A/c compressor changed 3 times ( no charge, life time warranty). Replace radiator this year , small pin hole leak in side tank! Real process but doeable if done in proper sequenxw, available on line! It is an antique now, use it occasionally during summer at Lake Almanor CA!
One of the best ever
Carl E Council,06/27/2008
I am getting 32.5 mpg. I started in a town. Call Hopkins SC a drove to South Bronx New York 77 north to 81 north to 33 east 80 west. Fill the car in SC $4.00 a gal $68.00 to fill up. At 65 mph with air conditioning, NC, VA, WV, MD, PA.645 miles on 15 gal of fuel. Left Pa going to Bronx for the day. Left and went to up state NY to a town call Becon for the day. Left and went to Paterson NJ.1000 mile later I have spend a total of $122.50.
Best Car I Ever Owned
I absolutely love this car. I was very disappointed when it was discontinued. When I look at its styling, it still outshines today's newer cars. Yes it is more expensive to maintain; but cheaper then buying a new car.
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Features & Specs

15 city / 24 hwy
Seats 0
4-speed automatic
250 hp @ 5600 rpm
See all Used 1997 Oldsmobile Aurora Sedan features & specs


NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver3 / 5
    Passenger3 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    DriverNot Rated
    PassengerNot Rated
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    RolloverNot Rated
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test

More about the 1997 Oldsmobile Aurora
Used 1997 Oldsmobile Aurora Sedan Overview

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Find a used Oldsmobile Aurora for sale - 11 great deals out of 23 listings starting at $20,514.

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Find a used certified pre-owned Oldsmobile for sale - 2 great deals out of 16 listings starting at $10,985.

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Should I lease or buy a 1997 Oldsmobile Aurora?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out Oldsmobile lease specials
Check out Oldsmobile Aurora lease specials