One 100 Year Old Owner: 1989 Oldsmobile Delta 88 Royale

This 1989 Oldsmobile Delta 88 is in fantastic shape, even at a fairly average 123,467 miles. It has been owned and cared for by an elderly female owner since new, who is now 100 years old. While it’s true she wasn’t 100 when she bought the car, she was 70! The owner was born in 1918, and has not had kids or pets (at least during the time that she has had this car!). Find it here on craigslist in Connecticut for a reasonable $1,999. Thanks to Pat L. for sending this one in! 

The seat pattern, color, and material is very characteristic of late 1980s American cars. The smaller GM cars such as the W-body, or the H-body like this Oldsmobile are known to keep on chugging when maintained properly. They’re even known to keep on chugging when they aren’t! Unfortunately, many of the interior materials have not stood the test of time nor the test of abuse once they reach “beater” status as so many have. The cloth, carpet, and plastics in this Oldsmobile look nearly new! I certainly wouldn’t have any issue driving this car daily.

If you were impressed with the front seat and driver’s area, as I was, then look at the rear! It looks like this car rarely carried passengers, and when there were passengers they certainly weren’t rowdy. Furthermore, this car has many power and luxury features, including power windows as show in the lower right corner of this picture. This is also a non-smoker vehicle.

Equipped with the venerable 3.8 liter GM V6, this Oldsmobile likely has at least another 100,000 miles in her, if not 200,000 more. That may sound crazy, but when properly maintained and serviced, the 3.8s keep on doing their thing! Being located in the northern United States, hopefully this car isn’t suffering from any hidden or structural rust. The exterior metal isn’t showing any, so that makes me hopeful, but diligence is necessary. For $2,000, this seems like a good deal at a fair price for someone looking for reliable, older transportation. Believe it or not, there is a whole automotive subculture that loves cars like this!

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Comments

  1. Coventrycat

    If you’re looking not to be seen, this is the car to have. Great shape but a big yawn, even for cheap daily transportation. Think I’d rather ride my bicycle.

    • Scott

      You can ride your bike all you want, I’d drive this car, with pride, anywhere!

      1
    • Jerry Brentnell

      here sits the car that killed oldsmobile and should have killed buick too! ugly is calling these things what they are! aston olds must have be rolling over in his grave when general mistake come up with these poor excuses for a car!

      • DweezilAZ

        Ransom E Olds, not Aston

        1
  2. Luke Fitzgerald

    Gold – means she was 70 when she laid down the hard cash

  3. jw454

    This is a very good deal. If you were close by and needed a good A to B car, this would be a good choice. Very clean and seems to have been taken care of. As for the miles on it, that’s only a little over 4k per year. Not bad at all. When you look at other cars at this price level they’re mostly abused, rattling, rust buckets.

  4. Fred w.

    As boring as these are, they have to be good cars or you wouldn’t see thousands of them still on the road. I’ll bet I could drive around my small town and see ten of them in no time. If you need a car for your teenager , this is the one.

  5. BRAKTRCR

    We bought one of these 10 years ago for my Father in law, confident he would be thrilled. It only had 27k miles, it was spotless, and the price was right. Well, at 80 years old, he didn’t like it, and politely said it was “too fancy”. So my wife gave him her Nissan, and she drove it a couple years. It did good on gas had plenty of power, and nice features, bit it was boring. Her sister needed to borrow a car for a couple months. When we got it back…. well, that’s family for ya. I’m too nice

  6. DB

    I would have no problem driving this as a daily. It’s priced low enough that even if someone got at least 6 months out of it, it would still be a good deal. I have my muscle and sports cars to drive and this one would continue to help me afford all of them.

  7. sunbeamdon

    If we describe this as a “Classy Chassis” are we talking about the car or its owner(?)

    WOW – I’m impressed – 100 and still ticking!

  8. RoKo

    I hated these FWD downsized versions when they first appeared, but have come to appreciate them. I’d still rather have the previous generation Delta 88, but these are nice too.

  9. Martin Sparkes

    Not to nitpick but ….well ok I’m nitpicking. 1989 plus 30 doesn’t add up.

    We have a family friend who is 103 and still drives the Cavalier she bought new. I think it is a 1983 or so. She doesn’t drive at night anymore and doesn’t like the highway but she will if she has to, and she keeps up with traffic no problem.

  10. Jason

    This is just one example of why this “barn finds” will FAIL if they continue to post garbage like THIS!!

    • Andre

      You should totally ask for a refund. Or better yet, go elsewhere.

      1
    • Mountainwoodie

      Relax dude………yes it’s not worthy in many ways and I HATE velour AND my Dads last car was the Buick version….still a little internet politeness goes a long way. The BF guys do all the work…. We just comment and carp…. Less carping would be good

      1
    • Dave

      Speak for yourself. Your opinion doesn’t represent the majority.

      1
    • Andrew Tanner Andrew Tanner Member

      To quote myself, “Believe it or not, there is a whole automotive subculture that loves cars like this!”

    • carsofchaos

      Right! We need to see Corvette, Corvette, Mustang, Mustang, Camaro, Camaro, Chevelle, Chevelle, Tri-5, Tri-5 over and over and over ad nausium (ala the borefest that Barrett-Jackson has become), cos…you know…that never gets old. Some people out there in the car world like to see different stuff.

  11. Chris Londish

    A clear title and good price to l’d have been there yesterday with the readies in my hot little hand

  12. Martin Sparkes

    I personally come here for the stories as much as the cars. They find interesting cars and post them. What are you looking for exactly? Go to BAT. All the overpriced collectors items are over there now.

    • Andrew Tanner Andrew Tanner Member

      We appreciate your support!

  13. Joe P

    Great car in great shape! Someone will scoff it up.

  14. Comet

    My father bought one of these with 90K on the clock and followed a regimen of 3K oil and filter changes. A local “mechanic” told him the engine wasn’t long for this world due to an “upper knock” that apparently only he could hear. I purchased it from him at 120K and put an additional 250K on the odometer. The car finally rusted to the point of no longer being safe and got hauled off to the junk yard. That engine (or trans) was never opened up and I’d bet it had another 100K left in it. It NEVER used a drop of oil between changes. What a car.

    • Andrew Tanner Andrew Tanner Member

      Sounds like you had a really good one!

  15. Frank

    Really nice find…will run forever. I liked the Buick Park Avenues better in 1989, but both are mechanically the same.

  16. David Miraglia

    Damn good deal and in great shape. The only problem is trying to find parking here in Brooklyn.

  17. DanH

    An ’89 Olds Delta 88? Really guys?

  18. Bill T

    I will never completely understand why sellers like this won’t pop the hood and take a photo of the engine…

  19. C.Jay

    A year and half ago my wife and I flew to FL and drove this 1989 LeSabre Coupe (basically the same as the Olds) back to Ft Knox it had 49K on it. It was the replacement for her other 89 LeSabre Coupe we had bought in 2000 with 70K on it $2700 (now 194k) Her current winter driver a $1100 plain gray1996 Cutlass Ciera. We call it Aunt Mable. A lady in my wife’s office said “Your Aunt Mabel called she’s looking for her car.” These cars run a long time with just regular servicing. Guys if you can get your wife to like a car for 17 years, DON”T SCREW UP THE SYSTEM!!

    • Todd Zuercher

      Nice car and I like the Bronco II in the background too!

  20. Maestro1

    It’s a great buy, someone should do it. And, Barn Finds isn’t going anywhere (i hope) so let’s have some politeness.

    1
  21. Ken Carney

    Guess they didn’t change chassis layout much since it came out in the late
    ’80’s. Mom’s got an ’01 Buick LeSabre Custom 4-door with close to 200K
    miles on it. These cars might be boring to many, but they last forever! Used
    to joke around with that this would be the last new car (to her) that she would ever buy when she bought it in ’07. Despite some maintainance and
    interior issues, it still runs and drives great–so much so in fact that she
    seldom drived the ’15 Santa Fe we bought her in ’16. I’d do it if I had the cash to do so. As for the featured car, very nice indeed!

    1
    • Bob Jones

      Yeah pretty much from ’86 until the early 2000’s there weren’t huge changes in this GM chassis style which included the LeSabre/Park Avenue/Regal/Century, the 88/98/Cutlass Ciera, and the Bonneville. My dad had an ’86 Olds 88, and my grandfather had an ’87 Olds 98, as well as a ’91 Buick Park Avenue. Grandpa’s final car was a gold 2000 Regal. I ended up with that bad boy eventually. I actually really liked it. It had leather, sport suspension, mag wheels, and the old trusty GM 3.8 litre V6. Couldn’t pass it up though when my uncle traded me his ’01 Toyota Tacoma 4×4 for it…and I ended up making money on the deal in the end.

  22. Rock On Member

    Great find. It’s cars and stories like this that keep me coming back 3-4 times a day.

  23. Bill T

    I reached out to the seller, seems like a very nice honest guy. I asked about rust, as to be expected behind the right rear wheel has cancer, I know how it goes with rust. It’s not what you can see… it’s what you can’t.

  24. DweezilAZ

    Love it. And nice to see a front passenger compartment not eaten alive with a space robbing super size console.

  25. Yoopermike

    I owned one of these cars back in 1997. Was super in the snow. I lived in the UP of Michigan at the time. Great car, NO problems. Wish I had it now. Would make a great travel car for someone.

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