Posts from ‘Buick’
I don’t know when it was that stand-up comics began telling clown jokes. I want to say I was fully an adult before it was brought to my attention—by those stand-up comics—that the whole clown thing is pretty weird. I recall a local shock jock dedicating considerable attention to the whole clown-as-a-career thing.
Say the word “hardtop” and any vintage-auto enthusiast knows what you’re referring to: a closed-roof car with a pillarless roofline (i.e., no door posts to break up the flow of the styling). Though there were earlier examples of the basic concept, General Motors kicked off the hardtop as we know it by introducing a pillarless-coupe body style in its Buick, Cadillac, and Oldsmobile product lines midway through the 1949 model year.
Question: What would large-coupe drivers of the Seventies and Eighties drive today? Answer: Not large coupes, because there aren’t any. I suppose there’s still the Bentley Continental and the BMW 8-Series, but that’s not really what we’re talking about here.
By Jim Flammang
Not many automobile engines warrant a biography. Ford’s Model T four-cylinder is one of them. So is Volkswagen’s air-cooled rear engine, which powered what once seemed like zillions of original Beetles.
Note: The following story was excerpted from the December 2020 issue of Collectible Automobile magazine.
Some of the hottest cars out of Detroit in 1987 were Buick Regals. The Grand National and limited-production GNX were seriously fast and commanded respect on the street and at the strip. It was also the end of an era, because a new front-wheel-drive Regal was being readied for 1988 and turbocharged muscle was not part of its equation. The sportiest new Regal was the Gran Sport coupe, and its 1992-96 iteration can make for some fun cheap wheels.
Just as consumers are now beginning to grapple with the notion of owning an electric vehicle, car buyers once debated whether or not go with front-wheel drive. Really. Front-drive cars were still a fairly new, unfamiliar idea to the average American car shopper in 1983, though the pioneering front-drive Volkswagen Rabbit had been selling in volume on our shores since 1975.
Fun fact: Most car dealers pay a small amount into a regional advertising fund for each vehicle they sell. That money is spent on ads and promotions tailored to reach would-be car shoppers in a given area. In many cases, manufacturers contribute additional cash to the fund. And, depending on the franchise, some of that money may be spent by the dealer on store-specific ads.
If you trust Wikipedia, the Cord 810 was among the first automobiles to sport hidden headlamps. As far as design trends go, that’s a pretty auspicious starting point. For the purposes of this gallery, we are making a clear distinction between hidden headlamps—those found in or near a traditional grille–and pop-up headlamps along the lines of those found on the early-generation Mazda Miata or RX-7.