Old Lady Owned: 1962 Oldsmobile F85

1962 Oldsmobile F85

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Look at the interesting styling on this 1962 Oldsmobile F85. This car was owned by an old lady who eventually decided to parts ways with her car that she bought brand new. The seller mentions this F85 has some issues, but that it is a great driver. With appealing looks and great drivability this F85 is a worthwhile driver with bidding up to $4,000. Find it here on eBay out of Colombia, Missouri.

62 olds f85 3

Here is a familiar sight, the Buick aluminum 215 v8. The 215 was an excellent choice for this compact Oldsmobile. It looks clean despite it’s age. The seller assumes the mileage on this F85 is 115,000 miles. The engine bay looks reasonable for the age of the car, with no major eye sores apparent. Operation of this 215 is noted as running very well and that the transmission shifts smoothly as well.

62 olds f85 2

The Proportions and styling of the F85 are pleasing to the eye. The interesting front grill and taillight treatment really make the looks of this car. The scooped out cavity that runs down the side of the car is cool, forming a crisp line along the upper edge of the body work leading into a faint tail fin. By 1962, America’s love affair with the tail fin had passed. The exterior of this F85 looks quite pleasant from the photos, but the seller mentions the car likely has an “Earl Shibe” paint job which is not all that inspiring. There is also mention of a rust repair in the floor board utilizing rivets. Not our favorite method, but this issue could easily be resolved in a more proper way. The rest of the car is listed as being in solid shape with no other major issues.

62 olds f85 4

The interior looks welcoming, and is claimed to be original. There are a few small issues, the wrapped steering wheel leads us to believe the it may be cracked, and the discoloration on the passenger side door and panel are concerning. Aside from that the interior looks clean and correct with little to no sun damage or fading. One detail we really like is the “Fisher Body Works” emblem on the door sill kick plate.

1962 Oldsmobile

This F85 is an interesting car that isn’t all that common to see on the road or at car events. It would certainly stand out at any of the above. There are some issues with this Olds, but we don’t think they are serious enough to pass on this opportunity. Would you buy this Oldsmobile F85? If you did, what would you do with it?

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  1. Mark

    It’s a cute competitor to the Falcon. I would want a professional assessment before purchasing it. It’s not worth a great deal so the budget to repair the known defects would be tight. Any “surprises” could be costly to the bottom line. It’s a gamble to be sure. This unique find should be saved.

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    • mopar man

      Isn’t the tranny in the rear, engine up front and a long tunnel kind of holding the two together?

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      • BOP_GUY GregMember

        That was the Pontiac Tempest and Lemans 61-63 with the tranny in the rear. I have a 62 Pontiac Lemans. Really cool setup, way ahead of its time. Even 50/50 weight distribution. Engine up front, 2 speed Powerglide automatic in the rear (although 3&4 speed manuals were available too), and a steel rod in a tunnel connecting the two, making for a flat floor.

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  2. Milt

    Considering the fuzzy dice hanging from the rear view mirror “Old Lady” might be ok, assuming she was on the way to the drag strip. Otherwise, the term “elderly lady” might be a bit classier.

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  3. jeff6599

    First ditch the Dice so no one will suspect that an immature person has anything to do with this car and cause hidden damage. Next, take it for a drive to thoroughly warm it up and check for overheating even if you must use a Ryobi heat laser gun to do it. Those aluminum Buick and Oldsmobile 215 blocks used to cause aluminum oxide to go into solution with the coolant and settle to the bottom of the water jackets and it is not an easy job to clean out. If it overheats, I’d avoid it. At 100k miles and it’s age, it is likely in there. Otherwise they are enjoyable cars, Sheetmetal, glass and mechanicals are readily available and they’re reliable. I have a nice 41k mile coupe and love it.

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    • Roger

      The one I had blew a spark plug in the middle of South Carolina. Got a helicoil put in in a tiny little garage. The guy said he had fixed these before, it worked.
      I also had a alum block in a 78 cutlass s think it was a 260ci. Had a head gasket go bad due to corrosion (electrolysis). Both good economical cars.

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  4. Joe Howell

    Exactly like my my brother’s first car, about 6-8 years old then. Nice little car but had some trouble with the slushbox and a timing chain/gear issue I fixed for him but can’t remember what :(

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  5. Larry Brantingham

    Technically, it’s an Olds 215 V8. Although they were very similar, Oldsmobile used different heads with slightly larger valves and a six bolt per cylinder pattern (18 bolts per head) where Buick used only five. This might have been because Olds planned to build a turbocharged version, the Jetfire. The Olds version was the basis for the Repco engine Brabham used to win the ’66 Formula 1 Constructor’s championship.

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    • Nick Maher

      This engine being based on British/American Rover V8 /Buick 215 block[4] is a common misconception, as the Rover/Buick V8, although quite similar in appearance and size, had 5 cylinder-head-studs per cylinder (14 studs per head with 6 shared studs in-between-cylinders) configuration that cannot accommodate the 6 stud (18 studs per head with 6 shared studs in-between-cylinders) Repco RB620 heads. The difference in block design originated in Oldsmobile’s intention to produce the higher power, turbo-charged Jetfire version. GM’s later use of parts diagrams drawn for Oldsmobile in Buick parts catalog showing a 6 stud cylinder block further fueled the confusion.

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  6. Tony S

    Whoa! I just noticed how similar the tail lights are in shape to a ’58 Pontiac’s…

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  7. HoA Howard AMember

    1st of all, it’s Earl Scheib, and they were the butt of all bad paint jobs. I delivered paint to an Earl Scheib facility in Milwaukee years ago, and yes, the $29.95 paint job was pretty basic, but like anything, you get what you pay for, and I saw some really nice paint jobs come out of there ( not for $29.95 though) As far as the car itself, nice car, but I agree with Jeff. That motor was troublesome. My brother had a wagon just like this, in pretty nice shape. He stopped driving it when it needed brakes and it sat in his barn for years. Not too long ago, he began trying to sell it, and nobody wanted it. I thought for sure for the wagon part. He ended up selling it to a gentleman from down south, that wanted it strictly for the motor, I’m sure he junked the rest. That motor, btw, found it’s way into British sports cars as the Rover V-8. Nice little car here, whether or not you believe the “little old lady” part.

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  8. pat k

    that engine, possibly slightly changed was used by BLC in the MGB V8.
    nice looking car. always like the styling of the smaller GM cars of the early 60’s F85, Skylark, Tempest…..

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  9. Blueprint

    That was my very first plastic model kit as a child! Same 2-door sedan and V8 combo too!

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    • HoA Howard AMember

      They want $109 bucks for the kit!!!! What did we pay, $1.99?

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      • angliagt


        A lot of the old ORIGINAL kits are going for good money.
        I’ve got a closet full of unbuilt ’60’s & ’70 kits that I’ll sale – for the
        crazy prices,otherwise,I’ll just hang onto them.

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  10. Brian Joseph

    My neighbor bought the cutlass version of the same f85 at Barrett Jackson this yr. He got a bad case of Auction Fever. Paid well over 20k for it,and it needs work. A mint one books at 11k..these cars are nice alternatives to fords and chevies, but pay accordingly

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  11. BOP_GUY GregMember

    I have the 62 Pontiac version, the Tempest Lemans, and mine’s a convertible. Those v8 engines did have a reputation for overheating. Mine has the funky Pontiac-only 3.2 liter 195cid slant 4 cylinder. With the high compression head and 4 barrel carb, mine puts out almost as much horsepower as the 215 v8. But really fun little cars that should be saved. Would be interesting to drive an Olds F85 with a Jetfire engine!

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    • RichS

      Way cool! My father-in-law has a 63 that he’s has since the early 70s, It need a ton of love but that slant 4 motor blows peoples minds when the hood goes up.

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  12. BackYardDJYoursOrMine

    Somehow the bench front doesn’t work with this car.
    Should be buckets.

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  13. angliagt

    Look Ma – no seat belts!

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  14. Lary

    I’ve spotted a ’62 Buick is it a Skylar?. Going to try to pick it up on the cheap. Needs lots of work. Almost identical to the F 85. There is just something about these models that I like.?.?

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    • BOP_GUY GregMember

      GM came out with the B-O-P Y-body 61-63. I have the Pontiac Lemans, but I think the Buick Special/Skylark is the best looking out of the three! Light weight quick little cars, and pretty rare these days. The Buick 215 v8 was different from the Olds 215 v8 (Buick’s was some 40 pounds lighter), and since Land Rover bought the rights to build the engine for the next two+ decades, parts are plentiful. OPGI has tons of resto parts too (no, I don’t work for them). Great cars! I’d say go for it!

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  15. ccrvtt

    My first car was a 1962 Cutlass convertible, white top with burgundy exterior and a dark red interior, bucket seats and a console with automatic floor shift. It had 90 coats of Classic Car Wax and you could eat off the floors. Skinny little 6.50×13 tires and a truly gorgeous 4-barrel carburetor. Allegedly there were 185 horses in there somewhere. I grew up near Lansing, home of Oldsmobile, so I can guarantee you that the Cutlass was far superior to the Tempest and at least as good, if not better than, the Skylark. Lansing had a better labor market than Flint or Pontiac, too. I guarantee it.
    I would seriously consider giving up the ‘Vette for another one of these… Nah. Those aluminum engines all suffered from blow-by at about 40,000 miles. A whole lot of progress has been made in metallurgy in the last 50 years.
    I loved that car but like an old girlfriend you can’t really go back.

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