Classic Car Overview
The Oldsmobile 88 has always been a trendsetter. Of course, the OHV Rocket V8 engine was just the beginning, but it launched a performance revolution that were still enjoying today. Even by the mid-50s, Oldsmobile was delivering big performance with a healthy dose of luxury to match, creating a unique niche in the GM hierarchy. If you wanted a car that could run with the big Pontiacs, yet offered the luxury of a Buick or Cadillac, the 88 was the smart choice. This 1956 Oldsmobile Super 88 sedan is an extremely tidy old car that has been freshened as needed but never fully disassembled for restoration. As a result, it feels solid and robust going down the road, but it has a high-quality look thanks to a recent paint job. Finished in subtle Alcan White over Cirrus Blue, this was unquestionably a solid, rust-free car all its life and the two-tone combination makes it look dramatic from any angle. The doors open and close effortlessly, the trunk fits well, and the massive hood snaps closed with only light pressure. The finish is modern, but it does not have the bright, almost sterile shine of modern finishes, and the Alcan White in particular has a warm glow that looks entirely appropriate. Things like the bumpers and grille are in good condition and all the stainless has been shined up to look highly detailed against the bright paintwork. Be sure to note the bullet-shaped taillights, the globe emblems on the nose and tail, and the awesome wrap-around glass fore and aft. This cars quality is especially apparent inside, where it has been reupholstered using modern cloth in the original patterns, which is a nice combination. Fresh carpets, comfortable fabrics, and door panels that only show a bit of age make it a wonderful place to be, although the passenger-side door panel has a missing fastener. All the gauges are fully functional except the gas gauge, which seems like a bit of a pessimist, and the dazzling instrument panel looks awesome in its space-age glory. The steering wheel is showing its age and thats one place you could really add value to this car. AM was the only way radios came in 1956, so that might be another worthy upgrade in a car that youre going to want to drive as often as possible. The highly original trunk carries a full-sized spare tire and what appear to be the factor mats. Oldsmobiles famous Rocket V8 lives under the hood, ready to drive and enjoy immediately. Thanks to a big horsepower injection in 1956, it makes 240 horsepower from its 324 cubic inches, it is a spirited performer on the road thanks to a broad torque curve and a quick-shifting Hydra-Matic automatic transmission. It starts easily thanks to a 12-volt electrical system, and idles with a healthy rumble from the exhaust. That actually looks like the same Cirrus Blue paint on the block, which isnt correct, but its clean enough to be easy to live with, and it appears to be entirely stock, so maintenance will be easy. Underneath, the chassis is highly original and shows no critical signs that it has spent time in winter weather, but, as youd expect, the Hydra-Matic is a little moist, which is typical. L78-15 wide whitewall tires are the right choice for a car thats going to be driven, and theyve been mounted on the original wheels with factory chrome wheel covers. If youve been watching auctions lately, you know that the shoebox Chevys have cooled off while their big brothers at Oldsmobile and Buick have heated up. This is an appealing car that you can improve as you enjoy driving it, and chances are slim that youll see another one anywhere but the Oldsmobile national meet. Call today!