1969 Buick Riviera - SOLD
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  • Overview & History
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This handsome 1969 Buick Riviera shows just over 50,000 miles and presents in mostly original condition.

Buick’s redesigned 1963 Riviera probably would have been the car of the decade had it not been for a certain split-window coupe from across town. The problem is, how do you update an icon? The all-new 1966 Riv was longer, lower, and wider than its predecessor, taking on a sleek almost muscle car like look that contrasted with the crisply folded lines of the earlier car. There was more power on tap, more space inside, and it still offered hidden headlights, which had become something of a trademark. The fastback profile masks the car’s size, and for a full-sized cruiser, the Riv had the moves of something smaller and lighter. It wasn’t a sports car, of course, but if you enjoyed driving, the Riviera still knew how to deliver an A-ticket ride.

This handsome 1969 Buick Riviera shows just over 50,000 miles and presents in mostly original condition. Hailing from the west coast, rust has never been an issue and the glowing code 75 Burnished Brown paint appears to be about 70% original, with the driver’s door and quarter panel apparently repainted at some point in the distant past. The work was extremely well done and we can’t see the reason for the repaint—no rust, no dents, no bent substructures—and the age of the finish makes it blend in seamlessly with the factory finish. The top almost looks chopped, particularly with the black vinyl covering, which is also original and in excellent shape. Up front the 1969 Riviera got a new grille and it was the final year for hidden headlights, which drop down from above in one of the coolest moves of the era. The chrome on this car remains in very good condition, although the rear bumper has a ding that’s only noticeable from certain angles. Overall, it presents as a very well-preserved 52-year-old original car.

The black bucket seat interior is an excellent place for driving and like the exterior, it’s almost entirely original and untouched. Buckets and a console were optional even in the Riv, and by ordering it this way you get one of the coolest shifters ever invented. Buick started the faux wood paneling right about this time, so there’s plenty of it throughout to add a bit of warmth to the cockpit. Gauges are simple, with a square speedometer flanked by warning lights on the left and a fuel gauge on the right, and a clock on the far right—it almost wants to work. This Riv is equipped with options like cold factory A/C, tilt steering column, and the aforementioned bucket seats. There are no splits or tears, the headliner is completely intact and taut, and crisply rendered door panels. There’s a newer AM/FM stereo head unit in the dash doing a pretty good impression of the original Delco unit, and with a CD changer in the trunk it sounds far better. The original trunk coverings are in outstanding condition, with a full-sized spare underneath and a factory jack assembly tucked into the quarter panel.

Buick replaced the venerable Nailhead V8 in 1967, upgrading to a stout 430 cubic inch V8 with 360 horsepower and a towering 475 pounds of torque. Despite being a bigger car, it was now a faster car and with that much power on tap, performance is effortless at all speeds. Around town, the big Riv ignores its mass and doesn’t mind hustling, and it just whispers along at highway speeds. Buick engines wore Dante Red paint they way they did in 1941 and designers made sure everyone knew there was a bigger engine under the hood with plenty of ‘430’ decals. With only 50,000 miles on the clock, this one has never been opened, but there are a lot of new parts including a fresh alternator, new mater cylinder, and a completely rebuilt A/C system. It starts easily, idles beautifully, and has that massive wave of torque to push it around so it feels downright quick around town. The engine bay is quite clean and almost entirely original, so you know this car has not lived in a rust belt area.

Underneath there’s surface scale on the heavy metal parts, but exactly zero rot or critical rust that compromises the structure. The floors are completely solid, the rockers have no issues, and there’s a bunch new equipment here, too. The TH400 3-speed automatic transmission shifts beautifully and snaps down a gear if you give the throttle a prod and a newer dual exhaust system has an aggressive sound—this Riv isn’t a pushover. Buick’s giant aluminum drum brakes are more than adequate up front and there are newer shocks to keep that peerless Buick ride intact. 3.42 gears were standard equipment, so the Buick has good off-the-line punch without losing the kind of highway cruising that allows you to drive all day. Gorgeous Buick Road Wheels look awesome and carry recent 235/70/15 whitewall radials for the right 1969 look.

Documentation includes the original owner’s manual and factory shop manual. It also includes a set of standard steel wheels with original hubcaps and a few miscellaneous spare parts.

These cars represent the kind of cool luxury that epitomize the ‘60s—performance, style, and comfort. Combined with this car’s fantastic originality and wonderful road manners, it makes for a compelling package, especially at this price. Call today!

Harwood Motors always recommends and welcomes personal or professional inspections of any vehicle in our inventory prior to purchase.

Vehicle: 1969 Buick Riviera
Price: SOLD
Stock Number: 117080
Mileage: 50,172
VIN: 494879H923670
Engine: 430 cubic inch V8
Transmission: 3-speed automatic
Gear Ratio: 3.42
Wheelbase: 119 inches
Wheels: 15-inch Buick Road Wheels
Tires: 235/70/15 whitewall radials
Exterior Color: Burnished Brown
Interior Color: Black vinyl
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