M2 Oldsmobile 88 Police Patrol car

By Maz Woolley

All text and photographs by, and copyright of, the Author.

Models from Castline’s M2 1:64 scale Auto-thentics range have appeared in MAR Online from time to time. Here we look at their 1950 Oldsmobile 88 in Police livery from Release 45.  I have been unable to find any evidence that any US Police Force ran Oldsmobile 88s though it is possible that they used a base 88 as that was quite a light body, but reasonably roomy, and was fitted with a V8 that could be supplied in higher police special levels of tune to give it a fleet turn of speed. Maybe a reader can confirm whether they were used or not.

The model has a generic Police Patrol crest as well as white door panels, a red light on the roof and a large siren on the wing. The wheels have been toned right down with a small silver hubcap on black wheels with plain black tires which was the sort of finish used by Police Departments. The black 88 body appeared previously in release 23 and it had full size wheel embellishers and white sidewalls.

Like most M2 Auto-thentics the car has opening bonnet and doors with the usual wildly overscale hinges which are probably retained due to safety testing requirements. In the early days these often spoilt the models with huge panel gaps but on this car they are fine and as the doors are full framed they look good open or closed. Though the lower door is white in and out and I am not sure how realistic white door cards are.

Under the bonnet we find a simple replica of a V8 engine. The interior is neatly moulded but has no printed detail. One curiosity is that there are no rear side windows fitted which I would expect to be there and firmly closed in a police car even if the front windows were left open. Underneath the base plate has the vestigial chassis details and exhausts, sump and axle all moulded in.

Bumpers, grilles and lights are all well modelled in a way that suits the heavy chrome work of the original vehicle.

To the rear the painted rear lights are  a good feature as is the printed Oldsmobile name and insignia and the other badging. I only noticed the black “88” printed on the strip leading from the rear lights over the wing when looking at the photograph of the car very much enlarged.

Good to have a Police Car to show alongside all the other M2 models of the early 1950s. It would be good if M2 look at some more of their castings with an eye on creating some more public service vehicles.

With M2, AutoWorld, and Greenlight all releasing excellent 1:64 scale models collectors of US cars and vans are well-served.

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