Monday, July 28, 2014

Show Car Sunday/Monday returns with something Special (if by special you mean cheap)

There's this little park and residential area way out amidst the miasma of industry along the Greenpoint waterfront that I somehow never noticed until recently. On my first ride past the park I saw this little emerald:
This is a 1969 Buick Special Deluxe in what I believe to be Verdoro Green. The wheel covers are an abomination, otherwise this is a great looking ride.
The lines on the '69 Buicks were great across the board, with every model besides the Riviera having a downward-swooping crease from the top of the headlights to the rear wheel. On the 2-doors such as this the line is replicated in the flow of the rear side window and the rear edge of the roof. Nice job Buick!
At the end of the 1960s (arguably the decade that produced the most perfectly square cars until the '80s came along) the automakers were playing around with different angles. An odd choice is shown here, where the center of the trunk bows inward towards the middle of the car. It certainly keeps it dynamic, and makes the cycloptic reverse one of the hardest to ignore in the business.
The taillights are very subtle under their mighty chrome brow. Buick taillights from the '60s are some of my favorites of all time. They're always wider than they ought to be! In fact, the full-size Electra and Le Sabre had a full-width taillight bar with no break for a license plate.
Special DELUXE means that this is the cheapest Buick you could get. The body is the same one as the more-upscale Skylark and the top of the heap muscle car Gran Sport. If you went cheap though the base engine would be a 225 V6, with a 300 V8 available as an option. The Skylark could be had with a 400 V8, a higher-horsepower version of which would be in the GS.
That chrome trim going over the rear side window and crossing the car under the back glass tells us that this once had a vinyl top. What usually happens is water gets underneath and rust bubbles start to appear under the top. This one probably got removed for a repaint and a replacement was deemed unnecessary. It is a fine color though.
Those three chrome rectangles on the front fender are a stylized version of the classic Buick portholes. The uppermost luxury Buick from '69 had four of them.
When this body style debuted a year previous to this it was polarizing. While it did sell in high numbers that swooping line on the side put many customers off. I think it's aged very well myself in an upscale Nova kind of way. Regardless it looks like the Greenest Buick in Greenpoint is getting plenty of love so I'm sure it will be rolling along for years to come.

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