1950 Oldsmobile 88


Owned by Cliff Crawford.

The 1950 Oldsmobile 88 was a full-size car sold by the Oldsmobile division of General Motors, which is heralded by car lovers as the precursor to the muscle car, due to its combination of a relatively small body and large, powerful engine.

The 1950 Oldsmobile saw the introduction of the revolutionary tail fin which was consequently adopted by several car makers of the time. While viewing the US air force’s F-58 “lightning” fighter planes in 1944, G.M’s legendary chief stylist, Harley Earl struck upon the idea of tail fins in automobiles .This set the GM artists to work designing the tail fins of all sorts to be adapted for use on automobiles.

Oldsmobile entered the 1950s following a divisional image campaign centered on its “Rocket” engines, and its cars’ appearances followed suit in their themes. The classic design was coupled with several innovative features such as:

A wide, “open maw” grille, suggestive of jet propulsion

Introduction of a ringed-globe emblem to attract universal appeal

A powerhouse V8 Engine , of 5 L capacity, and 303.7 CU IN displacement

The 4977 cc engine served up an astounding 135 Bhp of raw power – compliments of a two-barrel side-draft Rochester carburetor drawing air through a silencer and an oil bath deluxe air cleaner.

The Whirl away hydraulic transmission providing excellent power transfer.

Coil springs at each corner of the car cushion the ride, as the 7.60×15-inch tires support the 119.5-inch wheelbase.

The 1950 Oldsmobile 88 enjoyed a great success, inspiring a popular 1950s slogan, “Make a Date with a Rocket 88”, and also a song, “Rocket 88”, often considered the first rock and roll record.

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