Whim and desire leads to 1961 Oldsmobile

Farm Forum

Over the years Mike Fogerty has owned some Ford products, as well as a few vehicles from General Motors. However, deep down he admits to being a Mopar man. So how does a man who really favors cars built under the Chrysler star end up driving a 1961 Oldsmobile Dynamic 88 convertible? The answer is “desire.”

In order to stay abreast of used-car values, Fogerty often peruses the classified ads in the local newspaper. It was September 2002 while looking through the classified pages that he came across an ad that caught his attention.

The ad was offering a desirable Olds convertible. Fogerty noticed that the telephone exchange number in the ad placed the car in his neighborhood. On a whim Fogerty called the number and learned that the car was, indeed, located nearby, practically a neighbor. He went to see the car, liked what he saw and bought it. At that time the convertible had been driven 150,130 miles.

Along with the Oldsmobile itself came a myriad of spare parts, including an extra V-8 engine and a windshield. Fogerty learned from the woman who sold him the car that her father bought the Dynamic 88 new in Minnesota. It had a base price of $3,284. Records indicate that it was one of only 9,049 such models manufactured that model year.

A few years later the owner sent his daughter off to college in the 4,068-pound Oldsmobile that later was involved in a rear end collision. That damage was repaired and repainted in the original white color.

Oldsmobile sales literature for 1961 boasted that the 17-foot, 8-inch-long Dynamic 88 convertible was “Styled for today… and tomorrow.”

Fogerty reports that whenever he is settled onto the bench seat behind the two-spoke deep-dish steering wheel he has a clear view of the three oval instrument pods, the generator and oil pressure on the left and the fuel level on the right. A clock is in the middle pod.

The automatic transmission gear pattern is from the left: Park — Neutral — Drive — Super — Low — Reverse. Steering and braking chores are power assisted. The 8.00×14-inch tires support the convertible on a 123-inch wheelbase, enabling the Oldsmobile to be turned around within a 43-foot circle. Fogerty likes the desirable wing-vent windows that direct air flow wherever it is, or is not, wanted.

Beneath the expansive engine hood is the 394-cubic-inch V-8 engine that develops 250 horsepower. Fuel is fed to the engine via a two-barrel carburetor. The engine compartment is somewhat illuminated by a small bulb.

There isn’t much cushion provided by the padded dashboard that stretches under the tinted windshield on the 77.2-inch-wide convertible. In the dashboard is the AM radio equipped with a second speaker mounted in the upper part of the rear seat.

The convertible top is white as is the boot. On the inside of the rear most top bow of the top is a dome light — a nice, yet unusual feature on any convertible. With the top in the raised position the convertible stands a hair over 55 inches high.

A total of 154,200 miles have how been counted on the odometer which prompts Fogerty, a Mopar devotee, to exclaim, “It’s a pretty good road car.”

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