In the days before muscle cars, Oldsmobiles were some of the
hottest cars on the road. This 1955 Olds 98 Starfire convertible
was not only a fantastic performer in 1955, but it also combined
luxury and muscle in a way that still resonates today. A true
gentleman's express, it's a bright reminder of how horsepower and
style have no fear of time.
Restored quite a while ago, this is one of those cars that has been lovingly cared for, and given the look and performance of a mid-50s Olds, it's really not a surprise. Perhaps because of its awesome road manners, it's not perfect; however, it is well-sorted and ready to rumble at a moment's notice, and it has that great look that comes straight from the best designers in the world during the 1950s. We're not saying it's worn, because it's quite the opposite, in fact. It looks fresh, especially with the fantastic coral and cream color scheme, which is this car's original combination. As the top of the line, the Starfire was beautifully dressed in dramatic lines and the two-tone paint accents the stainless side trim, all of which remains in fantastic shape. Other great details include the rocket-like hood ornament, the globe emblem on the hood and trunk, and the jet-exhaust-looking taillight assemblies that definitely reinforce the "Rocket" part of Rocket 88.
The spacious two-tone interior offers room for six and a variety of patterns and materials that give it a highly stylized look. Of course, interior designers had to keep up with the body guys, so flashy two-tone door panels work with the sleek dual cockpit dashboard to create a unique driving environment, and they seem to echo the shape of the exterior trim. The slender steering wheel features another globe emblem in its center, and the symmetry of the instrument panel makes it look like the gauges and passenger trim pieces could be easily swapped for right-hand drive versions (which is true). There's plenty of hush mat under the carpets to keep it cool and quiet inside, a nice upgrade performed when the interior was replaced a few years ago. The gauges all show crisp markings and bright faces, and this car carries ultra-rare factory A/C, which was almost completely unheard-of in a convertible. The original AM radio is still in the dash, the windows are power-actuated, as is the seat, and the bright white convertible top looks almost new. The big trunk is beautifully finished with correct materials, side cards, and a full-sized spare and jack assembly.
Oldsmobile's 324 cubic inch V8 wore a 4-barrel carburetor in the Starfire, making it one of the hottest cars on the road. Today 202 horsepower may not be a lot, but remember that the original small block Chevy was only making 150, so the Olds was simply dazzling on the road. The engine was rebuilt some years ago, but thanks to Oldsmobile's legendary metallurgy, it runs superbly and pulls the flashy hardtop around with a great V8 rumble from the Flowmaster exhaust system. A 4-speed HydraMatic automatic transmission has characteristic firm shifts that feel great, almost like it's got a shift kit. Power steering is also part of the package, making this car very easy to drive, and the undercarriage is nicely preserved, with correct finishes on the components and plenty of evidence of recent service work. The original wheels and hubcaps are framed by a set of flashy whitewall bias-ply tires that fit and look right.
High-fashion fun, this Olds represents performance in the days when it was built into every car Oldsmobile built, with a little luxury on the side. When everyone else is driving their Shoebox Chevys, you'll stand out in this spectacular Starfire convertible. Call today!