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The 1964 Oldsmobile Jetstar 88 Had a Short Shelf Life

1964 Oldsmobile Jetstar 88In 1964, Oldsmobile introduced its low-priced Jetstar 88 series. Based on the Olds 88 B-body, it was designed to compete with the popular Pontiac Grand Prix.

Although the exterior styling and performance were considered good, the car failed to bring success to the brand.

 

Standard Equipment on the 1964 Oldsmobile Jetstar 88

The 1964 Oldsmobile Jetstar 88 was a low-end companion to the luxurious Starfire. It contained features like bench seats, wheel covers, and a padded instrument panel. The three-speed manual transmission was accompanied by a 260-horsepower V8 engine. Its vinyl interior and lack of trim helped keep the price level low.

 

Driving Impression

While on the road, the 1964 Jetstar provided a soft ride. Although it weighed over 4,000 pounds, its handling was nimble, especially around turns. The power steering allowed a driver to negotiate well through winding roads. Staying true to Oldsmobile’s heritage, the engine remained whisper quiet at low speeds and while sailing the highway.

 

Jetstar 88 Performance

The Jetstar 88 performed well. There was little loss of rpm between shifting, and the car had nice pulling power over 70 mph. One complaint from many drivers was the inadequate braking power. The Jetstar was a large and heavy car, so it needed more than 9.5-inch cast-iron drums. Braking distance was 210 feet from 60 mph. With continued abuse, the shoes would disintegrate, and the linings would become glazed.

For a driver looking for better options, it was possible to tailor the Jetstar 88 with different equipment. It could be ordered with power accessories and performance upgrades. For instance, a buyer could choose a four-speed gearbox with a shift lever mounted on the floor. Towing options were available as well.

During the 1960s, Oldsmobile made an honest attempt to please its customers. Since the market was turning to lighter cars with large engines, the Jetstar series only lasted two years. However, in the future, the low number of cars produced may contribute to a potentially high collectible value.

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