Complete Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight lineup, specs, economy, dimensions

1992 Oldsmobile Eighty-eight - Technical Specs, Fuel economy, Dimensions1991 - 1999 Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight SedanEighty-eight3 Trims 172 to 243 Hp

The Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight is a full-size car manufactured and marketed by Oldsmobile, a division car manufacturer of General Motors, from 1949 to 1999. Oldsmobile changed the name of this model from 88 to Eighty-Eight and sold it in 1989. When it was new in 1949, Oldsmobile's Eighty-Eight series was top-of-the-line in the image, thanks to its lightweight, small dimension, and refined high-compression V8 engine. It was one of the top-performing cars at the time.

History of Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight

Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight First-Generation (1949 - 1953)

In 1949, Oldsmobile adopted the 88 badge. It was named to complement the 76 and 98 models already on the market, and it replaced the straight-8-powered 78 in the model roster. Oldsmobile built the new automobile on the same innovative Futuramic B-body platform as the straight-6-powered 76, but with a more powerful Rocket V8 engine. It was a predecessor to the muscle vehicle because of its mix of a compact, light body, and a massive, powerful engine. On the NASCAR (National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing) circuits, the Rocket 88 transformed Oldsmobile from a dull, conservative automobile to a performer, which became the one to surpass. The low-slung, strong Hudson Hornet soon overtook it, but it was the first true "King of NASCAR." It won six of the 9 NASCAR late-model division events in 1949, ten of the 19 in 1950, and twenty of the 41 in 1952. As a result, public sales surged. There was a pent-up desire for new automobiles in the rapidly developing post-World War II industry. The 88 attracted many ex-military people who were young and had handled solid military weapons.

Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight Second-Generation (1954 - 1956)

Oldsmobile completely restyled the 88 models with lower but longer body shells and wrap-around windshields and windows. They also increased the wheelbase to 122 inches (3,099 mm). After only a year as DeLuxe 88s, base models returned to just being named 88s, and the Super 88 was again the top class—under the larger 98. Oldsmobile enlarged the ROcket V8 from 303 to 324 cubic inches powered by a two-barrel, 170 hp (130 kW) engine, and the Super 88s had a 185 hp (138 kW) engine with a four-barrel carburetor.

Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight Third-Generation (1957 - 1958)

The primary 88 was given the nameplate Golden Rocket 88 for 1957 only, after Oldsmobile's 1956 Motorama two-passenger display vehicle. The only markings on the car were a "88" beneath each taillight. GM celebrated its 50th year of operation in 1958 by introducing Anniversary models for each of its brands: Pontiac, Buick, Cadillac, Oldsmobile, and Chevrolet.

The top models of each brand's 1958 lineup all bore the same design features:

  • Cadillac Eldorado Seville
  • Buick Roadmaster Riviera
  • Oldsmobile Holiday 88
  • Pontiac Bonneville Catalina
  • Chevrolet Bel-Air Impala

Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight Fourth-Generation (1959 - 1960)

There were major changes made to all of General Motors' standard-sized vehicles in 1959 with the introduction of the new B-body for Oldsmobiles, which had a lower, longer, and broader body. The 88's design was based on the 98's top-of-the-line Oldsmobile. Oldsmobiles had more moderate "oval" fins and significantly less chrome than the '58 model for a much smoother aesthetic than many 1959 model vehicles. A one-inch increase in the wheelbases of the 88 models resulted (3,124 mm).

Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight Fifth-Generation (1961 - 1964)

The 1961 full-sized Oldsmobiles, accompanied by the innovative compact F-85, had an all-new chassis and body with a "Guard Beam" structure and all-coil suspension eliminating the earlier leaf springs. The 1958 recession reflected the repercussions of the 1961 Oldsmobile body style. While wheelbases stayed unchanged from 1960, the company lowered the total length and width marginally—a trend seen across all GM's brands. On the Dynamic 88, the Skyrocket engine was an optional addition. As a replacement, a new three-speed "Roto" Hydra-Matic gearbox was offered as an option to the preceding four-speed gearbox.

Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight Sixth-Generation (1965 - 1970)

When Oldsmobile first used the Delta nameplate in 1965, the Dynamic 88 Delta was the most premium version of the B-body Dynamic 88, succeeding the Super 88. Oldsmobile started producing the Dynamic 88 Delta line as a subseries some few weeks after the beginning of the model year, and it was renamed the Delta 88 shortly after that. The Jetstar 88, the volume-selling Dynamic 88, the fast Jet I, and the fast and luxury Starfire were full-sized Oldsmobile models with a 123-inch (3,124 mm) wheelbase. There was more name-dropping among the models. Oldsmobile discontinued the Jetstar 88 and the Dynamic 88 model lines in favor of the Delmont 88 in 1967. The Delmont, arguably best known as the automobile Ted Kennedy was driving at Chappaquiddick in 1969, was equipped with the 330 V8 as standard, the 425 V8 as an extra in 1967, and the updated "Rocket 455" variant of the same engine in 1968.

Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight Seventh-Generation (1971 - 1976)

Restyled and expanded for 1971, but with the same 124-inch (3,150-mm) wheelbase. A staggering 226.9-inch (5,763 mm) was its longest length in 1974. Four-door Town Sedan, Holiday hardtops (two or four doors), and a convertible were all options. The 1970s lineup of Delta 88 vehicles includes standard and custom variants and a convertible model that had previously been offered on base Delta 88 cars. Fuselage style was identical to that of Chrysler Corporation's 1969 models for all types, while revised rooflines featured greenhouses that were more squared off for Town sedans and much more curved for Holiday sedans and coupes, the latter of which returned to a semi-fastback shape.

Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight Eighth-Generation (1977 - 1985)

It was a significant change in size and weight for the Delta 88s and other GM B-body vehicles of the '70s, with different changes in dimensions:

  • Wheelbase measured 116 in (2,900 mm) like the  four-door 1973–77 A-body Cutlass Sedan
  • Curb weight of 3,500 and 3,600 lbs (1,600 and 1,600 kg) depending on the model

In reality, Oldsmobile enhanced the headroom and back seat legroom, despite less shoulder space. The two-door coupe and the four-door Town Sedan were the only body styles available for the base Delta 88 and Royale vehicles. The Delta 88's B-body, instead of the Ninety-Eight's C-body, Eight's provided the basis for the 1977-1979 Custom Cruiser, which used coil spring suspension instead of the multi-leaf spring and had a two-way tailgate on vehicles from 1971 to 1976. A fuel economy meter was an optional feature.

Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight Ninth-Generation (1986 - 1991)

On January 1, 1986, the Delta 88's wheelbase was reduced to 110.8 inches (2,814 mm), making it smaller than the previous year's B platform (2,814 mm). Headlights were redesigned in 1987 to include ordinary and high-beam lighting in one unit. Several NASCAR teams built race cars from 1986 Delta 88 sheet metal and raced them in the 86-88 season, but Terry Labonte earned only one victory.

Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight Tenth-Generation (1992 - 1999)

In 1992, Oldsmobile redesigned the Eighty-Eight model, following the revision of the Niney Eight the previous year. This generation was Oldsmobile's final Eighty-Eight or 88 models, the performance LSS and Regency versions before Oldsmobile discontinued the model in 1999 and replaced it with the Aurora in 2001.


Oldsmobile manufactured and sold the last generation of Eighty-Eight in 1999 with an MSRP of $23,555 ($40,113 in 2022) for the Base trim, $25,105 ($42,753 in 2022) for the LS trim, and $27,350 ($46,576 in 2022) for the 50th Anniversary Edition trim. Oldsmobile sold the 1950 Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight for the first generation with an MSRP of $1,920 ($22,603 in 2022).


Interior features for the Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight include adjustable front headrests, 6-way power driver seat controls, bench rear seats, cloth seat trim, carpet floor trim, and simulated wood dashboard insert. Oldsmobile also included dual auxiliary visors, day-night rearview mirror, faded dome light, front &rear reading lights, double door bins, carpeted cargo floor trim, manual front air conditioning, and an AM/FM stereo engine. More standard features include a CD player, a 6-speaker sound system, a radio theft deterrent, a power-retractable antenna, cruise control, power flap, hatch, trunk, fuel flap release, and analog instrument panel with tachometer, engine temp gauge, and trip odometer. For safety features, Oldsmobile added 4-wheel anti-lock brakes (ABS), daytime running lights, center high mounted stop light, front impact airbags for the driver and passengers, an immobilizer, and a panic alarm. The exterior features are body-colored bumpers with chrome insert, bodyside insert, and grille moldings. Available color options include gold metallic, midnight blue metallic, evergreen metallic, champagne metallic, arctic white, burgundy metallic, black onyx, and crimson metallic.


The Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight Base 4dr Sedan engine delivers 205 hp (153 kW) at 5,200 rpm and 230 lb-ft (312 Nm) at 4,000 rpm of torque. The Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight accelerates from 0 to 60 mph (97 kph) in 8.8 seconds with a top speed of 136 mph (219 kph) and a curb weight of 3,466 lbs (1,572 kg). Oldsmobile offered the last-generation Eighty-Eight in three different trims: Base, LS, and 50th Anniversary Edition. The company sold the model as a front-wheel-drive (FWD) model with a 4-speed automatic gearbox powered by a 3.8L V6 engine.

Release Date

This first American high-compression V8 engine-powered Oldsmobile immediately rose to the top of sales charts when Oldsmobile first released it in 1949. The company discontinued the model's production in 1999 to give way for the Aurora model in 2001.