If you ever look at the history of RVs, you will find a lot of creativity in the design and features used over the years. The word unique is the best word to use for the 1988 Cadillac Starstreak.
When it comes to looking for a rare RV for sale. The best place to start will be the classified ads. Not just Craigslist but all classified options. You can find some on the different RV discussion forum websites and that may be your best location to find this unique model of RV.
To learn more about this RV and where to find one for sale, just continue to read our article. It explores the topic so you have the best information possible to help your search. But in looking at a picture of this RV, the question is, do you really want help finding one?
This is where a picture is worth 1000 words. To be honest, it is hard to think that we could describe this unique RV in 10,000 words let alone 1000. As you look at the images, you may understand what we mean by that statement:
As you see the picture, the biggest question to answer is ‘where does one start to describe this 2-of-a-kind motorhome? Yes, only 2 were built and they were built by one man and not an RV company.
Starting at the beginning is probably the best place in this instance. It all started in the 1980s and not the 1880s, when one man, Lt-Col. Paul Jones decided that on retirement from the Air Force, he wanted to travel the country with his wife.
He looked around at the many RVs being made at that time and found them insufficient. So, he decided to build his own. As you look at the design concept in the image above, you can guess easily, where his design concept came from.
That is right, aeronautical engineering along with his many engineering degrees. His concept for an ideal RV was that it should be small enough to fit in a regular garage yet be full of amenities or features that would make life on the road comfortable.
He set about doing just that. Everyone understands why he made the first one, but so far, there is no explanation available as to why he built a second one. But he did. Both are in top condition but you won’t see them on the road today.
The Lt. Col. Had a specific concept in mind when he set out looking for the perfect RV to tour the country. He put that concept to reality by using different parts for the chassis and trim.
The chassis came from the old Oldsmobile Toronado and the trim came from a Cadillac. That combination helped provide this unique look. However, he designed and made most of the panels by hand using an aluminum frame and anodized aluminum for the panels.
That construction decision saved on paint. Then he went with polystyrene foam for insulation and bulletproof glass to create scratch-proof windows. The engine reached 350 HP at 4400 RPM combined with a 4-speed transmission.
The wheel base only reached 112.3 inches and the dry weight came to 5800 pounds. That was for Start Streak 1. Start Streak 2 was built with a 1976 Cadillac Eldorado and a 1976 Oldsmobile Toronado engine.
Its total length was 270 inches and weighed only 5400 pounds. The nice thing about the first Star Streak is that it was driven over 100,000 miles and lasted for a very long time when it was in use.
Plus, the LT. Col did not cut any corners in his construction so it was a very durable, reliable RV that served its purpose well. They still exist and we will tell you where later near the end of the article.
Since there were two of these RVs made, we will tell you a bit about both in this section. Lt. Col. Paul Jones knew what he wanted in an RV he was going to own and drive.
The cabin for both resembled an airplane cockpit. That is understandable given the engineer in the design stage. Here is what he put in the first model which was the one he and his wife shared during their travels:
- gas and electric heating
- air conditioning
- built-in vacuum cleaner
- hot and cold running water
- large kitchen with dual sinks, fridge & cooker
- a lounge area with a television and a skylight, the lounge turned into a bed
- antennas for both the TV and radio for nightly entertainment
- a small bathroom that turned into a shower
- storage for a barbecue grill, 2 bikes, and folding chairs
The second Start Streak was built pretty much in the same design with the same features. Here are a couple of images showing the interior of the second Start Streak RV:
The second photo is the most common one we have come across during our research. As you can see, the upper cabinet storage space was minimal.
We are sorry to say that these two RVs have no value whatsoever. There is just no way anyone could put a figure on what these two RVs are worth. At best, they have the most value being what they are at the current time.
This is a common problem when you come across nicely made RVs that were produced in low numbers like this. There are no standards from which to draw any financial value from them.
Since these two models do not go on the road anymore, that is another factor that is eliminated to establish any value for them. Plus, there is nothing on the road now or then that looks like them to help establish some value boundaries.
These RVs are 2 of one kind and there is nothing to compare them with. Any labor and construction cost value would have been removed once the RV hit 100,000 miles of actual driving.
In the next section, you will see where they are at currently and that is the best value for these two RVs. They won’t be used outside again as they are a unique piece of RV history
You won’t find one for sale. This seems to be a prototype RV design that never made it past the prototype stage. Only 2 were built and as you can see from the photos, two is more than enough.
According to one reviewer, this RV model was a real head-turner. And while we mentioned that the classified ads were the best place to look for a rare RV for sale, those won‘t help you in this case.
The reason they won’t help you is not that there were only 2 made but that the pair are housed n different museums. The original one is the California Automobile Museum in Sacramento.
The second one is housed at the Motorhome Recreational Vehicle and Motor Home (RV/MH) Hall of Fame Museum in Elkhart, Indiana. That is the story of this unique RV model.
For other rare RVs that are not quite as ‘head turning’, the classified ads, the New and Used RV lots, or the auction houses for RVs are the places to find unique and rare RV designs.
Or check with family members to see if there are any eccentric members of your family that happen to have those rare and oddly designed RVs sitting in a barn or a shed.
As you can see we focused on the original model. That is because the original was built in 1971. It is also the model that gets the most press. The second model was almost an exact copy with any differences very minute and hard to see.
The original had a 455 c.i. Oldsmobile Front-wheel Drive Toronado platform and used Cadillac hub caps. One thing that can be said about this motorhome is that the rear had lots of windows.
It looks to be very bright inside expanding the space without really expanding it. The windows made the interior a lot easier to live in.
The Star Streaks 1 & 2 are not the only uniquely designed RVs in RV history. They just happen to have a design that will turn heads as they drove down the highway.
It was an individual’s concept RV because he did not like what was on the market at the time. Given the year it was built, that is an understandable conclusion.
Not everyone has the education or skill to design their own RV but if you do, try to make the design a little more eye appealing.