Today’s featured car is a 1958 Buick Special Convertible from the last year of manufacture of the second generation Specials which dated back to 1949.
The grill looks vaguely similar to the keyboard of my G4 Power Book Steve Jobs however would have been all of three when these cars were new. Polishing the 165 1/2 inch chrome squares is an act of extreme endurance and dedication.
Looking closely at the Special and it’s apparent acres of chrome detailing, with no less than three bombsight bonnet / hood ornaments it is hard to believe that the Special was in fact Buick’s base model.
First seen on 1946 Buicks, the Bombsight ornaments were a huge hit in post war America.
The sweepspear chrome body moulding was first seen, as an option, on the 1949 Buick Riviera and like the Bombsight it soon became a trade mark Buick item.
Sitting on a 122 inch wheel base and with a 208 inch long body the Special is 5 inches shorter than the contemporary Buick Supers and Roadmasters.
The interior is a upholstery is a combination of cloth cloth and vinyl with a nylon rug, the 2 speed Dynaflow is operated by the chromed column shifter on the right of the steering wheel.
Scalloped rear wings / fenders were all the rage in 1958 …
but they were not a guarantee for success as demonstrated by marketing disaster known as the Edsel.
With a top of the range 250 hp 6 litre / 365 cui nailhead V8 a model like this could reach 60 mph in under 11 seconds,
which would substantially reduce the average 8.6 miles to the US gallon fuel consumption.
5,502 of these 109 mph Buick Special Convertibles which weigh 4,165 lbs were built in for the 1958 model year, they retailed at US$ 3,041 and today can be worth in the region of US$ 70 – 80,000 at auction dependent on condition.
Wishing all GALPOT readers a Red Hot Valentines day.
Thanks for joining me on this “Red Hot Convertible” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again for Ferrari Friday tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !