Custom Classics - Customizing & Restorations

1963 Oldsmobile Holiday Super 88




Sorry, this vehicle has been SOLD. If you were interested in this car and would like us to help find or build you a similar one, please contact us at 847-487-2272.

If you think a fuel injected Chevy Bel-Air was the top of the General Motors luxury/performance food chain, allow me to introduce you to this 1963 Oldsmobile Holiday Super 88 with the SkyRocket 394 cubic inch engine! For 1963, the Olds Holiday 88 was officially named Super 88. The 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. Starting with the trunk-lid emblem of the 1950 model, Oldsmobile would adopt the rocket as its logo, and the 88 name would remain in the Olds lineup until the late 1990s. The 4-barrel carburetor atop the 394 cubic inch 440 lb.-ft of torque V8; made this a true luxury performance car before we even knew such a thing existed.

The Oldsmobile 88 (a.k.a. Eighty-Eight) was a full-size car sold by the Oldsmobile division of General Motors and produced from 1949 until 1999. From 1950 to 1974 the 88 was the division's top-selling line, particularly the entry-level models such as the 88 and Dynamic 88. The 88 series was also an image leader for Oldsmobile, particularly in the early years when it was one of the best performing automobiles thanks to its relatively in size, light weight and advanced overhead-valve high-compression V8 engine originally designed for the larger models.

The market hasn’t caught on yet, however, that these are faster and more luxurious than their Chevy cousins, and arguably just as attractive, making this car a tremendous bargain. Style, performance and luxury, this super 88 represents first-class in 60s cruising today at a price that probably doesn’t even cover the paint and chrome. The Superb performance and dashing beauty go hand in hand in Oldsmobile’s stylish super 88 model.

The bodywork on this car was done several years ago and still looks striking in the green metallic color of its day with the chrome trim that separates the two halves. And to answer your first question, yes, that’s the original color of this car. Bodywork is beautiful, with pretty straight panels and excellent fit throughout. Overall, the design is clean, uncluttered and streamlined, and in my opinion, one of the most successful body shapes to come out of the early 1960s.
As with any 60s car, There is a lot of chrome and stainless trim on this beauty, from the bumpers to the grille, to the unique Super 88 emblem. You’ll also note all the stainless has been buffed and polished, including the trim around the rear window and still looks pretty good today. Speaking of windows, all the glass is in excellent condition with only a few blemishes to be found. The front bumper shows some wear in the finish, and the left front fender molding has a few dings in it. The lenses and other details are beautiful, and I’m guessing that reproduction parts for a car like this are few and far between, so most of the items are either original or NOS replacements.

The story on this Olds is the Skyrocket engine under the hood. In 1963 the Olds 394 was rated at an even 330 horsepower and 440 pounds of torque. 10:25–to–1 compression ratio, with a 4 barrel carb. The engine was fully rebuilt and has apx 200 miles on it since rebuilt. It runs like new and the passing of years has proven that these 394’s are some extremely durable engines. Detailing is first-rate too, from the Oldsmobile red color block to the silver on the valve covers, to the correct 4-barrel carburetor, to the original power steering system and Air-conditioning system that’s fully functional. You’ll note that this engine sports a silver factory air cleaner with the red SkyRocket decals on it. On the firewall, you’ll see original wiper motor and correct vacuum diaphragms. The original style radiator has been recolored and reinstalled. Clamps, hoses, wires, and other details are correct, and someone obviously spent a lot of money making this Olds look and run right at one point. The engine bay area isn’t perfect and shows some signs of age, but overall is still in pretty decent shape.
The Hydro-Matic Drive automatic transmission shifts nice and smooth as it was designed to do. The shift indicator often makes people mistake it for a 3-speed automatic, as it indicates P N D-S (for Super, not second), and L, but the L position gives both 1st and 2nd gears, depending on road speed, then R last for Reverse.

The Green theme continues inside, and looking at the interior in this Olds only reminds me that General Motors was at the very top of their game in the 60’s. From the seats with patented GM comfort weave cushions, to the positively breathtaking instrument cluster, this interior is so artfully designed that you’ll find yourself sitting behind the wheel just admiring it as I did. Everything you can see or touch is in great shape or restored, and is brilliantly done in every way. The carpets compliment the headliner overhead, and the door panels are simply spectacular. The steering wheel is in decent shape, with the normal cracking in the clear center section. All the chrome on the dash is in amazing condition. It is as GM intended to be when it left the factory. The original radio has been upgraded to include a digital tuner, but looks nice in this stock like setting. The trunk is currently sporting an upgraded black carpet that shows off the large capacity of this massive trunk area.
Back in the day, this car carried a fairly stiff bottom line of $3,578.00 after being loaded with air and options. Today you can find these cars ranging in price from mid nines to the mid twenties all depending on condition, etc. This car is consigned to us, and I feel the owner has real put real fair and attractive price on it, which always makes our job easier. The current owner did spent over $9,000 here at Custom Classics to make sure the A/C system worked and to bring a few other things up to his standards before he would sell it. (Don’t you wish everyone would care like that before they sold their car?)
This car also includes an original new car brochure that is in great condition and the artwork inside is very nostalgic and a pleasure to flip through.

If you sense that we love this car, you’re exactly right. I love the look, the colors, the body style, and especially that SkyRocket 394 engine under the hood. I love that its relative rarity makes it an orphan at many car shows. It’s fast, comfortable, luxurious, and at this price, about 2/3 the cost of a comparable Chevy. There are no irreversible modifications, and this car could be put back to 100% stock condition in an afternoon. Whoever restored this car and spent the money on it, did a great job, and is so far upside-down on this car that he wouldn’t ever be able to recover all of the initial investment. This is one very special car, and I think once you take a good look at it, you’ll fall in love too. But you’re surely not alone, so act quickly and don't let other admiring eyes pry this away from you!
 
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