They All Float Down Here

This is the Buick Riviera version 3.  Maybe I should call it Stage 3, because it’s like a cancer. It followed the familiar path of Thunderbird and Cougar.  Start with a sporty/GT car of various levels of effort.  Get slinkier, but also larger. Coalesce with other models (if you didn’t start as a knockoff to begin with).  Then give up any pretense of sporty, in favor of “luxury.” Have a renaissance, then veer off on increasingly inexplicable courses with no real connection to the original concept, then die quietly, as the accountants piss on you and what could have been if you stayed true.

Buick Riviera
Continue reading “They All Float Down Here”

Personal Luxury and High Performance

regal t-type
Buick Regal Limited T-Type
Step 1 – Make up a performance-sounding badge

Both in one car! Or Neither!

In the late 1980s, your firends at Buick were desperate for an identity that resonated.  Buick was for 60 year olds, but those people die off. They wanted a younger crowd, buyers with sophistication, whose appetite for performance could be sated with a turbo and some stinking badges.  Enter the T-Type…
What is a T-Type?  Well let’s just see:

Buick Regal Limited T-Type
2 – Deselect the vinyl roof.  Wheels are nice too
Buick Regal Limited T-Type
3 – Add the corporate turbo 3.8L and some “aero” skirting.
Buick Regal Limited T-Type
4 – High Performance requires a digital speedometer and an engine badge so you know what you’re driving
Buick Regal Limited T-Type
5 – and a console, to make your loose pillow leather bench seat into high performance “bucket” seats.

Mission accomplished. You’ve turned Dave’s dad’s middle management company car into a thinking man’s 320i. Nice work, Buick. I’ll take two.

You can’t hide

Buick Electra 225

your lying eyes J.C. Whitney fog lights

1972 Buick ElectraYes, swapping out the high beans for worthless yellow bulbs really was a thing for while. But so was Shaun Cassidy, bell bottoms and “CHiPs.”