The Oldsmobile Rocket 88 was produced from 1949 till 1999, it’s widely credited with launching Oldsmobile out of it’s staid reputation in the 1940s into a new, NASCAR dominating behemoth and the 88 is often pointed to as the pre-cursor to the muscle cars that began appearing in the 1960s.

The combination of a light-weight body and a powerful V8 gave the Rocket 88 a significant advantage on the racetrack and led to the Oldsmobile winning the majority of NASCAR races in 1949, 1950 and 1951.

The surviving Rocket 88s fetch a pretty penny at auction nowadays and the rocket shaped badges on the cars have a community of collectors spanning the globe.

Click either image for the high-resolution version.

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Ben Branch has had his work featured on CNN, Popular Mechanics, the official Smithsonian Magazine, Road & Track Magazine, the official Pinterest blog, the official eBay Motors blog, BuzzFeed, and many more.

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