Motor City

25 July 2015

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Lot 160

1958 Buick Special Convertible

  • Chassis no. 4E6002362
  • Body no. G 163

Sold for $57,750

250 bhp, 364 cu. in. OHV V-8 engine with a single two-barrel carburetor, two-speed Dynaflow automatic transmission, coil-spring front suspension, live rear axle with semi-elliptical leaf-spring suspension, and four-wheel power-assisted drum brakes. Wheelbase: 122 in.

  • Still titled in the name of its original owner
  • A longtime North Carolina car; only a cosmetic restoration since new
  • Numerous options and accessories
  • An ideal summer cruiser

The Arthur Kudner Agency handled Buick’s advertising, and they came up with some attention-grabbing names for the latest styling developments. The 1958 design was “The Air-Borne B-58 Buick” (a tip of the cap to America’s frontline nuclear bomber), and from its Fashion-Aire Dynastar Grille, Vista Vision quad headlamps, and Gunsight front-fender ornaments to its reverse-canted, heavily chrome-laden fins, the new Buick practically shouted, “Look at me!”

It was a noteworthy year for Buick on many fronts. It was the first year for the aforementioned quad headlamps, the last for the storied Dynaflow transmission (after four million built), and the first and last for what Buick called “Air Poise” suspension at all four corners. It was also the first year since 1948 that Buicks were built without their trademark “ventiports” on the front fenders, and a 1958 model was the one-millionth Buick equipped with power brakes. Power-boosted or not, finned aluminum front brake drums gave Buick the best stopping power of any American car, and even the Special’s 240-horsepower motor made it very competitive against anything in its class.

Our Special Convertible was originally sold new to James Grant Sharpe, of Alamance, North Carolina. It was eventually brought to California, where a dealer purchased it and kept it until its acquisition by the present owner. He was pleased to find that the car was completely rust-free, making for an easy basis for a cosmetic restoration in the original color scheme of Carlsbad Black with Red leather interior; paint and chrome were redone throughout, while the interior is partially original. The engine was rebuilt several years ago, and the owner happily notes that it still runs well.

Equipment includes the optional Dynaflow automatic transmission; power steering, brakes, and top; a modern refit radio; and all-new wire wheels shod in radial tires. Finding the original spare in the trunk, the owner remounted the original tire on a fifth new wire wheel so that it remains original yet also matches the other wheels.

Most special of all, the Buick is still titled in the name of its original owner and is accompanied by some of its original paperwork from over the years. It is a wonderful opportunity to acquire a classic American convertible from the days when Buick was the chrome king!

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

David Swig

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Jake Auerbach

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more