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wildcat70

Question on 85 Olds Ciera Pace Car

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I ran across one of these cars. It is a white convertible with stripes etc but cannot find any information on these cars. I am wondering if they are rare and how can it be verified as real?

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I ran across one of these cars. It is a white convertible with stripes etc but cannot find any information on these cars. I am wondering if they are rare and how can it be verified as real?

Pretty rare, one-of-none.

The 1985 Indy Pace Car was the Olds Calais, not the larger Ciera, and the replicas were all burgundy with silver metallic leather upholstery. I used to own one. None of the replicas were convertibles. There were aftermarket convertible conversions of the Ciera, but it was not the Indy Pace Car. If you are talking about one of the custom PPG pace cars, I don't know if one was ever made on the Ciera platform or not.

The real 1985 Indy Pace Car was a roadster - there was no convertible top:

indy1985calais500.jpg

The replicas were all hardtops:

Calais_7_16_06_006.jpg

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You would think the replicas would have the same wheels.

They didn't have the same motor, either... ;)

That TBI Iron Duke 4 cyl was a real pavement ripper. :D

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Cool. That's one of the PPG-sponsored pace cars that I mentioned above. Used in the IndyCar series, but never at the Indianapolis 500. Keep in mind that "IndyCar" encompasses the year-long series that includes the Indy 500.

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Wildcat,

Forgive me for replying to this post from May, but I just joined this forum. The car you are decribing is a Princess Car mad for use during the Indy 500 festivities in 1985. Only a handful of these cars were made and they are very hard to find. I know someone who is selling one of these cars. They have all of the documentation showing the car is real and authentic. PM me if you are interested.

Thanks,

Indy Agent

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The one in the picture is close, but the wheels are not the same and the one I know of that is for sale is in much better condition. The one I've mentioned is for sale in Indianapolis, but it hasn't been listed anywhere yet. The person selling the car knows a lot about the car and has all of the documentation from various sources showing it's authenticity. In fact, they have talked to the Indianapolics Motor Speedway about the car and they were interested, but wanted the car to be donated and did not want to buy the car.

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I have an 85 Olds Ciera Princess Pace Car. I have owned it since ' 89. It has 89,000 actual miles on it and is in excellant condition. You are correct about the car pictured above from Connersville. It is very rough. Mine has always been parked in the garage. I have all the documentation including the Hess Eisenhart document and original sticker. I want to sell this car but have not advertised it as yet. I want to sell it to someone who will preserve it as I have. If anyone is seriously interested in buying my car, I can forward pictures. My email is tcassidy@indylink.com

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It's obvious the 'Princess Car' pictured in post #8 has uni-lug aftermarket wheels, added sometime later in it's life.

Sunshine333's Ciera appears to have OEM wire wheel covers with a special center cap. It's hard to tell from twenty feet away.

Sunshine, how about listing the car in the For Sale section with some better pictures.

Edited by Thomas Lord (see edit history)

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Cool. That's one of the PPG-sponsored pace cars that I mentioned above. Used in the IndyCar series, but never at the Indianapolis 500. Keep in mind that "IndyCar" encompasses the year-long series that includes the Indy 500.
And the official Indy 500 Pace car that year was a Buick Riviera.:cool:

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I have a photo of James Garner, Actor and Pace Car driver for that race, riding in one of these cars in the 500 Parade that year. I took the photo myself, not knowing I would own one of those cars very soon. I bought the car from the dealer. I have the original documentation from Hess Eisenhart. Hess Eisenhart is the company that took the 33 White cars and converted them into Convertibles for the Indianapolis Motor Speedway to use in the Parade and during the 500 Festival for the 33 Princesses. Oldsmobile did not manufacture a convertible that year. It still has Hess Eisenhart plate on the dash and the metal 500 wings on each front quarter panel.

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It's true. The one here in Connersville would need alot of work. It's kinda interesting to see how these cars were created for the same purpose, then to see the different paths they have been on afterwards.

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Guest BJM

I have seen a couple of mid 80's Buicks with the convertible conversion. One was for sale on the Buick Buy/Sell for quite awhile. It looks out of proportion with top up due to large convertible top coverage in the "C" pillar area and when down, at least on the Buick, there was no smooth storage of the top so it kind of stuck up.

He had a hard time selling it and dropped the price frequently. If you are happy owning this car (85 Olds version) great but I would say these are not wildly collectible to the general collecting crowd. Maybe I am wrong but the base body style was kind of pedestrian and it's basically an aftermarket convertible job with an Indy badge. Not a factory authorized and smoothly executed convertible.

I don't want to rain on anyone's car, my choices may not appeal to you and that's understandable, but in my opinion these are fringe cars to collect and probably won't garner premium prices if sold by the loyal long time owners.

I have one other question. Why would they call them "Princess" cars?

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None of the Ciera's have been able to bring in any large sums of cash at sale time. This does not however mean that they are worthless, especially considering the huge role they played in Olds sales during the 1980's and 90's. The convertibles are tricky because Olds/GM did not build them themselves.

Thank you Ervince 383 and Sunshine 333 for sharing the pictures of your cars, I have heard little about these special Cieras and really appreciate you providing pictures as a visual resource.

To answer and earlier question, those wire wheel center caps are the same as used on other fwd Olds during the early-mid 1980s (they switched hubcap designs after 1985).

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Hello...My wife and I own an 85 Olds Ciera Pace Car. We have a picture of the car at the race. When we purchased the vehicle the previous owner said that one of the previous owners had been James Garner. Any way to document that? Thanks for any further information!

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Hello...My wife and I own an 85 Olds Ciera Pace Car. We have a picture of the car at the race. When we purchased the vehicle the previous owner said that one of the previous owners had been James Garner. Any way to document that? Thanks for any further information!

You may be able to trace the previous registration from the DMV. I did that for a car I had by filling out a form from that state's DMV website and sending a check for the small fee ($20). They sent me a copy of the original title information.

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trying to find out how many of the Calais Pace car replica were produced....I have one with the rare 3.0 v6 and saw somewhere they only made 242 of them and mine is one of 111 with the v6 any help to verify info would be appreciated send email to drptop61@yahoo.com....also mine has only 20k on it....thxs Vinny

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