1963 Oldsmobile F85 JetFire
1963 Oldsmobile F85 JetFire
The 1962 Oldsmobile Jetfire, announced in April of that year, was one of the world's first two turbocharged production cars, the other being Chevrolet's 1962 Corvair Monza Spyder. Each of these General Motors models, which debuted more than a decade before the BMW 2002 Turbo and Porsche 911 Turbo, met very different fates. The Jetfire's troublesome turbo setup caused much grief for owners, and Oldsmobile canceled the model after 1963.
A rare bird due to the troublesome turbocharger setup and a lack of dealer instructions on how to have a repair technician fix it, this car met an early exit being produced for a mere 1 year. A low production number of 9,167 were produced and today there might be only about 150 left with potential for restoration and even fewer running great like our example here in the hallowed halls of Classic Auto Mall.
Straight steel all bathed in Brilliant Red Metallic paint which is the deep end of the pool paint covers this classic. An oversized trim spear runs from bow to stern and widens just a bit as it reaches the tail. Here small fins grow up from the rear quarters, where on the rear of the car shiny bezels frame a square taillight and small rectangular back up light. Rocker trim thins out and then surrounds the wheel wells in front and back. Chrome for the bumpers is all excellent as is the front grille which for this year has flattened out just a bit and sports the O L D S M O B I L E badge in the center which is flanked by dual headlights on either side. A clean white vinyl covered hardtop is a nice contrast to the metallic red and shiny trimmings surrounding all the glass. 14-inch mag wheels are wrapped with 195/75-R15's on all 4 corners.
The jet age is in full swing, the race to the moon has begun in earnest, and the styling of this car reflects that. Even the name Jetfire inspires speed and thrust. Near perfect faux leather pattern maroon vinyl is interplaying with chrome trimming wrapping around various panels. A rocket in a sunburst badge is top and center on the doors, and maroon carpeting covers the lowers. Inside nice wide maroon vinyl low back buckets show near perfectly with their tuck and roll inserts and smooth bolsters and wide chromed edging. A rear bench is in back in the same pattern and also looking unused. Molded plastic in maroon is on the sides of a center console which begins just in front of the buckets. Here a chromed shift lever resides along with the turbo power meter which goes from gas saving green to ass kicking red depending on your mood. This sits on a ribbed aluminum plate on top of the molded maroon. In front of the original steering wheel is a symmetrical dash with a double pointed Olds badged spear, and more maroon for the dash top and metal painted dash front. A few brushed aluminum panels are also here housing the pulls and knobs. Just below in a black panel is a trio of aftermarket gauges to show more vital signs of the mill upfront. Maroon carpeting is very clean, covers the floors and a vented white headliner is above showing nice and tight.
Under the hood is an engine aficionado's dreamland where the Olds designers have taken a 3.5 liter 215ci aluminum V8, and added on a Garret AiResearch turbocharger and a special Rochester 1-barrel side draft carburetor, creating the Jetfire mystique. A 3-speed Hydramatic automatic transmission is on the back, and the rear axle is 3.36 gear ratio.
Clean and pristine with an ample application of rustproofing texture coating is seen throughout. Independent coil spring suspension and a 4 link with coil springs provides the ride, and drum braking brings you back to earth safely. Also, a Flowmaster exhaust is snaking its way rearward from the booster up front.
3, 2…1 Liftoff and we were off to the test track. All was performing just nicely with snappy acceleration and good solid handling. All seemed to be working although the wipers were not on this day, and for the panic stop the car pulls hard to the left.
This is a rarely seen and most examples have been converted to a 4-barrel non turbo setup, but this one survives just like it came from the factory. All surfaces have been attended to, and we have a great example, also be it short lived, of the Olds venture into the muscle car era in 1963. Ready for stage 2!
M-Lansing, MI Assy Plant
27413-Sequential Unit Number
Classic Auto Mall is a 336,000-square foot classic and special interest automobile showroom, featuring over 600 vehicles for sale with showroom space for up to 1,000 vehicles. Also, a 400 vehicle barn find collection is on display.
This vehicle is located in our showroom in Morgantown, Pennsylvania, conveniently located just 1-hour west of Philadelphia on the I-76 Pennsylvania Turnpike. The website is www.classicautomall.com and our phone number is (888) 227-0914. Please contact us anytime for more information or to come see the vehicle in person.
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