1965 Oldsmobile Delta 88 Review from North America

1965 Oldsmobile Delta 88 Dynamic 88 425 cu. in.

Year of manufacture1965
First year of ownership1966
Most recent year of ownership2009
Engine and transmission 425 cu. in. Automatic
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 9 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 4 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.0 / 10
Distance when acquired15000 miles
Most recent distance169000 miles

Summary:

An absolute dream

Faults:

The car had its manifold replaced in the first year we had it.

It was pretty trouble free until something major snapped in the engine, in 1983 with 115,000 miles. I then had the engine overhauled.

There was a badly rusted spot, at that time, on the rear frame where it curves around the rear axle. I had it plated by a welder.

It then ran well for many more years, until its manifold again cracked and was again welded. But the lovely distinctive engine sound was lost.

The rear axle detached itself on one side in 2003, right where the rusty frame curved around it twenty years earlier.

General Comments:

The car was a wheel-spinner. It had terrific power, and for that reason was lousy in winter, especially with the cheap tires then. It sat out the winters, probably the reason for its long life.

But in good weather it was a complete delight to drive. I still have it, stored away until I can find a few thousand dollars to get it fixed up as an antique.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 2nd February, 2009

3rd Feb 2009, 22:29

Just a couple of additional points - our "Olds" would get 22 miles a gallon on the highway at 55 mph; that's imperial gallons, bigger than US gallons, before we went metric. Pretty impressive mileage for a big North American powerhouse.

It has a strange option: reverberation for the AM radio, effected by a switch under the dash, putting a strong echo in the radio. Mighty cool in the '60s.

My Dad loved to show off its power by stopping the car on a highway and then flooring it. The squeal of the 2 ply tires could almost be heard back in town.

14th Aug 2010, 04:56

Original poster here. I was forced to remove my Olds from storage, so I had the dusty hulk carried to a garage by DAA. To my delight, they got it running with no big problems. Then a welder fixed the broken frame for just $650, changed the oil, put in new battery, and presto! I am back driving it. Does it ever turn heads now!

It has a heavy sound, quite unoriginal, which I believe is not the muffler, but continuing problems with the exhaust manifold.

I just noticed today that the right front turn light comes on with the brake lights - some electrical bugs that need to be worked out. And it seriously needs a new back bumper and paint job, and the interior is worn. I will spend cautiously on it, year by year, as who knows how long the engine will last until it needs an overhaul again.

Average review marks: 8.0 / 10, based on 1 review