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I am considering buying a 1962 Oldsmobile F-85 Cutlass, and was wondering about the availability of parts as I am thinking of using it as a daily driver... As painful as this may sound to some of you, I kind of cringe at the thought as well; I need a more reliable vehicle and this one is in my price range and only needs a little interior work, beyond that the car is very good condition and still runs.
Which engine does this F85 have? The 215 V-8 was aluminum, and I think could be a bit troublesome. There were three versions, IIRC a 2-bbl, 4-bbl, and turbo model, rated at 155, 185, and 215 hp, respectively. The turbo was troublesome.
There was also a 198 CID V-6 engine around that timeframe, which I think had an iron block. However, it might have been limited to the Buick Special.
These engines went on to become the Buick smallblock V-8 and V-6, and in V-6 form, lasted up through 2008, when the few remaining applications were replaced with Chevy 3.5/3.9 units. I don't know how many parts would interchange over the years, but engine parts might not be too hard to come by.
In 155 hp form, which is probably what most of them were, don't expect it to be very fast. 0-60 in around 14 seconds, probably, when it was new and in top shape. Adequate enough for most needs, but if you need to do a fast merge onto a highway, it might be a bit hair-raising. I think they used a 2-speed automatic, but not sure which one. I don't think it was a Chevy Powerglide, but could be wrong on that.
You should be able to find all maintenance-type parts, but rare trim pieces might be tough, as well as odd mechanical bits like gauges and radios---you may have to scour for those. By all means join and Olds club you can find that has members with similar cars to yours. You might also consider conversion to a dual master cylinder, radial tires and electronic ignition.
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