Not Easy Being Green: 1973 Oldsmobile Delta 88

Back when I was a kid in the early 70’s, we thought American sedans were land barges, and one would never ever want to own one.  With curb weights of around 4,000lbs and lengths of 19ft, they are almost petite compared to the Bro Trucks and Mommy ‘Burbans that clog the roads of today, and I find them strangely attractive.  Find this 1973 Oldsmobile Delta 88 for sale in Kirkland, WA for $5,500 via craigslist.

The Delta 88 in 1973 was in its seventh generation.  As part of the GM Empire, it was platform engineered with various B-body Cadillacs, Pontiacs, Buicks and Chevrolets.  The Delta 88 was available in 1973 with either the standard 350 Rocket V-8 or the optional 455 Rocket V-8.  This car has the 455, but the ad doesn’t mention if it has the single or dual exhaust.  Dual exhaust along with the 4 barrel carb, gets you 250hp from the 7.5 liter V-8.  I’m always amazed at how Detroit could get such meager output from large V-8’s. This car is said to be a 3 owner, 81K mile car.  I’m amazed at the level of surface rust on the air cleaner housing and brake master cylinder/booster.  It must have sat around in the back of gramps damp garage for quite a while.

The insides look presentable, with large bench seats that will keep you from thinking about an lateral G’s.  I really like these pillar-less sedans, that we will never see again, thanks to The Man.  I can’t help but think it probably smells of moth balls.

If I bought this car, the first thing I’d do would be to get out the hair dryer and peel the gangsta tint off the windows.  It just looks wrong on a grandpa car, especially one that sports a black vinyl roof, white walls and original hubcaps.

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Gianni is Daily Turismo’s Pacific Northwest correspondent.