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Pre-War Patina For Sale: 1941 Oldsmobile


Offered for sale here on craigslist in Wichita, Kansas is this 1941 Oldsmobile two door sedan. The asking price is $2100, which is too high for this particular model in this condition, but a solid body and great patina may offer some consolation. The seller has plenty of other vehicles for sale, so possibly he is willing to negotiate. The drive line is missing from this car, making it an obvious candidate for a later-model engine swap, but an original wouldn’t be impossible to locate if one were so inclined.


Before 1940, Oldsmobiles came in letter-series designated body styles, A-body and B-body, etc. In an attempt to differentiate between the various trim levels and optional engines, a number series was devised, for example a 60 series, which could be a 66 with a six cylinder engine, or a 68 series with a eight cylinder.


There was also a 70 series, an 80, and a 90 series, these spawning at least two models that were still in production decades later, the Eighty-Eight and the Ninety-Eight Oldsmobiles.


Some of the number-series designations were replaced with names, the Special, the Dynamic, and the Custom Cruiser. I believe this one is a 66 series, but I’m looking forward to our knowledgeable readers to educate the rest of us further on this.


Also noteworthy, is that some Oldsmobiles of near this vintage were fitted with the first mass-produced fully automatic transmissions, called the Hydramatic. The body on this one is said to be solid, but the lone interior shot confirms what we already know, that this is an outdoor-stored car in need of complete restoration both inside and out.


In the right hands, this could become a very tastefully done street rod. Although obviously possible, a fully correct restoration seems unlikely as the supply currently exceeds demand for many of these 1940s fat-fender rides. What do you think will become of this car and others like it in the future?


  1. Avatar photo DENIS

    I have a spare 455 Olds/400 turbo that would work nice but not at this price….

    Like 0
  2. Avatar photo Jason Houston

    In the right hands this could be an easy 100-point restoration, and I do not agree that two grand is ridiculous. This is exactly the type of car that is slipping away too fast at the hands of street rodders and needs to be preserved, not sacrificed to the street-rod-gods. C’mon… a two-door sedan? When was the last time you saw one? They weren’t even common when they were new.

    Like 1
  3. Avatar photo Gary I

    I see 1,500 to $2000 project cars talked bad about constantly on here. What do people think they should cost then? A car of a couple of tons is worth almost $400 in scrap. Shouldn’t the person who saved the car from being junked be able to make something for doing so? When scrap prices were high about 5 years ago you went from seeing yards full of potential projects to now look around, where did the projects go? Scrapped by Junkers and drug addicts looking for a quick buck. Those cars sat for years when scrap valued them at 50 to $100, but four times that was the lucky number a bang cars are gone now. The collector car market has to keep cars more valuable than scrap metal to keep those that hold onto the potential projects to do so, simple right? Once you invest more into a car putting in a new floor pan than you paid for the vehicle in the first place, the costs start to numb you a bit and you realize why solid cars cost as much as they do.

    Like 1
    • Avatar photo Ukracer

      I tend to agree. Today’s 1950 pick-up on eBay made over $4,750 and looks like it needs as much work but is a bargain? This looks like a great start and not far off a good price if the structure is sound underneath.

      Like 0
  4. Avatar photo Gearheadengineer

    A friend had one back in the ’80s. Same year and body style as this. Had the six plus hydramatic. He put a lot of work into the transmission to make it shift smooth, but couldn’t get it right. We heard from some folks that they were always that way, even when new.

    Interesting cars, unfortunately they just aren’t that popular. I think this will be a hard sell at that price.

    – John

    Like 0
  5. Avatar photo 64 bonneville

    body tub is very similar to a 48 Chevy 2 door sedan. Wonder if the Chevy sheet metal would fit, thus bringing down restoration costs?

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  6. Avatar photo Mark S

    After reading through the Camero cowling thread I would say that whoever buys this better not put any new sheet metal in it to repair rust holes or body damage. From what I’ve have heard that might be illegal or fraudulent. I say put it back in the field it came out of and we will admire it as it disintegrates. Then we can share pictures of it and reminis about what a great project it could have been.

    Like 0
  7. Avatar photo Jim

    It’s a fairly complete car, I love the dash layout. There are instrument companies that will refurbish the cluster and even make them electronic. Someone mentioned if the Chevrolet body panels will fit and I believe most of the body is the same. I’d leave the body stock rebuilt and painted however a modern drivetrain, suspension and brakes would make it a great car for road trips and long cruises.

    Like 0
  8. Avatar photo Mike

    I have an original 6 cyl engine and trans for this if anyone is interested.

    Like 2
    • Avatar photo Wayne

      I have a 1941 olds 66 2 door sedan ,in in va

      Like 0

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