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Elkes “Onized” Pontiac Sales and Service Tampa Florida

Recently Elke’s Pontiac used car sales lot was covered here with photos taken in 1953. Today, we take a look at Elkes Pontiac Sales and “Elkes Onized Certified Services” building two years later in 1955, located on Florida Avenue.

About a week ago Bob Deriso’s United Motors Service Repair Garage was featured in photos taken circa 1951, and at that time Elke’s new car sales and service was across Harrison Street from Deriso’s. At some point between the early-1950s and the 1955 Pontiac model year run Elke’s moved to Florida Street and the building featured today.

The lead image and an enlargeable view of it below show the service department and tire shop which also sold Texaco gasoline at a partially covered fuel pump island out in front of the building. The picture at the bottom of the post contains a view of the new car salesroom on the left and the service department on the right. Note the billboard featuring a two-door hardtop and the 180 h.p. Strato-Streak V-8 engine.

Share with us what you find of interest in the enlargeable photographs below by Robinson and French courtesy of the University of South Florida at Tampa.

21 responses to “Elkes “Onized” Pontiac Sales and Service Tampa Florida

  1. I always thought it was interesting to see new-car dealerships with gas stations attached. Maybe they needed the gas station services to offset slow new car sales? Not sure. Here in Omaha we never had the duos that I’m aware of, as most dealers back then were downtown, where real estate is tight.

  2. At the far left is an “antique” car likely kept for promotional purposes. Looks like a 1937 Pontiac which would be 18 years old at the time. Today an 18-year old (2000 model) car wouldn’t be noticed. Cars are lasting a lot longer than they used to.

  3. When I was just out of high school I ran a gas station attached to a new Chevrolet dealership in our small town. I also serviced the new Chevrolet cars with service contracts on our grease rack. This rather nice job ended when I locked a car on the grease rack overnight when the shop foreman told me to service it after hours.

  4. Just beyond the fuel pumps, in all three pictures, is “Elkes Onized” sedan-delivery, most likely a PONTIAC of the early 1950s vintage.

  5. What is the post that points to Florida right at the corner?
    From what I have seen and read it looks like it is a Lincoln Highway sign post, but I don’t think any of them pointed towards Florida.

  6. I’m trying to place where that is on Florida Ave. but cant.
    I do know that Florida Ave has always been synonymous with anything to do with cars,particularly used car lots.
    Wrecking companies,body shops,repair shops,etc.The area is on the gentrification list.
    There was a nutty old car hoarder for years near Floribraska ave.
    If you walked from downtown up to Hillsborough ave, junkyard dogs would come crashing against chain link fences
    trying to get you as you walked past on the sidewalk,block after block for about 3 miles.Some called it”The Gauntlet”
    That was in late 70s

  7. Just looked at6 a ’55 Pontiac brochure to see if dual exhausts were standard, could not tell, but what i did find was:

    “Entirely new reverse-flow, gusher valve cooling …” !!

    Now I’m an ASE Certified Master tech and I never heard of a “gusher valve”! What the heck is that?

  8. The ’55 “Strato Streak”was Pontiac’s 1st V8… unlike Chevy , it never offered a 6 cylinder car again… moving w/ the times the little spot illustration that showed a tiny Pontiac “whooshing” around the planet earth at the equator with the “tag”… “Built to Last 100,000 Miles” was gone forever. .. “planned obselesence” was the word. 2 years later they had a “fuel injected Bonneville convertible, by the end of the fifties they had a “Wide Track” , a couple of years later they had a GTO. They were off to the races. Dual exhausts…”Sleeper”, not! No longer were they exclusive to the then “fast and furious ” crowd. Early in the ’50s, Cadillac introduced them, by ’54 Chrysler had ’em, ’55… Lincoln came on board. 1956, practically everybody… they were truly “Those Fabulous Fifties”.

    • Does it maybe mean “oneized”, in the sense that you see 2 brands, ie: Texaco and Pontiac… I don’t remember a connection between GM and the oil industry except the obvious as shown here. Today, you see separate brand operations. One corporate entity having Japanese, Korean German, American, and Italian brands… each having multi-million different operations covering acres and acres and more…At that time, there was a somewhat widely circulated feeling/saying “Ah… GM, well so goes the Nation!” Today you see world commerce here, not national… I could go on, but enough.

  9. The 1955 Pontiacs were beautiful cars except for the grill area. It looked like the designers ran out of ideas at that point.
    1955 was the year that I began to notice cars in a big way. It was mostly due to the new Chevrolet introduction. No other make was that exciting in 1955.

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