For 1937, Oldsmobile styling changes had an overall height reduction of 3-inches and a new 'Automatic Safety Transmission' as an $80 option for 8-cylinder models only. This was the first Oldsmobile that had a shift mechanism located on the steering column rather than on the floor. It was a semi-automatic with offered a safety feature that allowed the driver to keep both hands on the steering wheel more often.
With the 4-speed AST, Oldsmobile claimed a 15-percent better gas mileage. Hydra-Matic Drive, the first fully automatic transmission, would be in Oldsmobile models by 1940.