1956 Buick Super Sedan Barn Find

In 1956, Buick sold four models of automobiles: Series 40, 50, 60 and 70. The Series 60 was more commonly known as the Super, one step up from the Special, but below the Century and Roadmaster. It would use the Series 70 platform but with fewer amenities and creature comforts. This ’56 Super was purchased new by the seller’s grandfather but was parked in 1969. Even though it was kept indoors, more than 50 years of inactivity have taken their toll, so it will need a complete restoration. Located in Mt. Carmel, Pennsylvania, this Buick is available here on eBay where the no reserve bidding sits at $1,500. Thanks, Larry D, for uncovering this one for us.

The Buick Super was a full-sized automobile produced from 1940-58 excluding a four-year hiatus during World War II. The nameplate was replaced in 1959 by the Electra but was resurrected briefly in 2008 as a performance trim level on Buick’s LaCrosse and Lucerne sedans. Model years 1954-56 would be the car’s fifth generation, built on a new GM C-platform shared with the Roadmaster. Changes for the Super in 1956 would include adding the 2-speed Dynaflow automatic transmission as standard equipment along with some convenience doodads like foam seat cushions, a trunk light, electric clock, front and rear armrests, sliding sunshades, cigarette lighter, glove compartment light, map light, dual horns, and other things we would like take for granted today.

Overall Buick production slumped in 1956 as the auto industry in general was in a brief recession. The Series 50 Super 4-door sedan saw just under 15,000 copies built, including the seller’s car. Once this machine was parked 52 years ago, it has not moved since. There have been no attempts to start the car for fear of damaging the dormant motor. The seller believes the original 220 hp, 322 cubic inch Nailhead V8 is under the hood. Ironically, the reported mileage on the old Buick is 56,000.

The paint is likely original, and the seller believes no body work has ever been performed. The frame has some rust and things look crusty down below along with the rear quarters. The trunk floor is okay except for some rust in the well where the spare tire (which is missing) would reside. The blue paint has pretty much given up the ghost, the trim looks to be complete, and there is one cracked window on the driver’s side. The headlight chrome has been removed along with the wheel covers and are currently keeping the trunk lid company.

For loading the car on to a trailer, another set of tires will be needed as the ones on the car are cracked and flat from sitting. Despite the car falling into the long-lost category, the whereabouts of the title is not a mystery and the seller can send interested parties a photo of it if desired. Once restored, this car may be worth $20-30,000 going by Hagerty’s estimates.

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Comments

  1. Rex Kahrs Member

    Coincidental, not really ironic.

    Like 1
  2. flmikey

    If you take a close look at the underside of this car, only one thing comes to mind: parts car. Crusty is an understatement. Maybe if it was a 2 door, it might be worth the time and money, but the rarity of the parts begs for it to be disassembled.

    • TimS

      It’s worth the time and money if someone wants a 4-door. Not if someone’s only goal is profit.

      Like 8
  3. LarryS Member

    The Super was between the Century and Roadmaster. The 3 had the larger of the two engines offered in that year, the engine was smaller in the Special. The lineup was the Special and Century (122′ wheelbase) and Super and Roadmaster (127″ wheelbase) in ’56. The order (from least to most expensive) was the same from ’54-’58, with the Limited added at the top for ’58. There was no Century in ’53 and in ’59 Buick revamped their model names to LeSabre, Invicta and Electra. The Invicta was kind of the successor to the Century, with the bigger engine and the shorter wheelbase.

    Like 1
    • Rick

      In 1956 Buick offered just one V8 and that was the 322 CID, but there were differences in carburetion and horsepower ratings. The Special was equipped with a 2 barrel carburetor. The Century, Super and Roadmaster had a 4 barrel.

      Like 2
      • LarryS Member

        That’s correct – I was thinking of ’55, when the Special had a smaller engine. Thanks for the correction. I had a ’55 Century. Our neighbors had a ’56 Super.

      • Gary

        Wasn’t there a 364 cu in engine in the Century, Super, and Roadmaster models in 1956 with the Special getting the 322?

  4. Johnmloghry Johnmloghry Member

    I always liked the 56 models. The first car I bought with my money was a 55 Super. That was in 64, and I paid $275.00 for it with 38000 miles on the odometer. It was red and white. It ran so quiet you couldn’t hear it run in the garage where I had the oil changed. The heater was under the passenger front seat so it heated both front and rear areas equally. Starter button was under the gas pedal so it closed the choke and gave a shot of gas when you pressed the pedal to start the car. I hear a lot of negative things have been said about the transmission in these cars, but mine would spin the back tires on excelleration and gave a very smooth performance. I really liked that car unfortunately two drunks crossed the white line hitting me head on at 60 mph totaling both cars. No one was seriously injured.
    God bless America

    Like 7
  5. Eric Esterby

    The Super was the Series 50, not 60, as in the text. The Series 60 was the Century. This can be proven in the serial number, which on all Supers starts with “5”.

    Like 2
  6. Bunky

    Holy Highway Patrol Batman! Somebody call Broderick Crawford. 🚔

    Like 9
    • Bill Hall

      Ah yes I recall the show well. When I was MUCH YOUNGER it was on as a rerun in the sixties on Saturday PM. I used to sit in the basement watching and always noticing that Broderick Crawford always had BIG PLAIN BUICK. Don’t see anything like that now.

  7. James Petropulos

    I had a ’56 Buick Special Convertible while in the Army back in ’67. Black top over white body with black side panels below the chrome strip. Needless to say it was a fun car to drive. Got it up to 120 mph one night on the PA turnpike going back to camp…. I was stationed at a Nike site outside of Pgh. PA. a lot of memories in that ride.

    Like 9
    • Tad Imbrie

      Which Nike site was it? I grew up and still live near the one in Collier / S. Fayette Twp.

      Like 1
  8. Tinkertoy Member

    The Century was below the Super. Roadmaster and Super had four portholes Special and Century three if I recollect

    • LarryS Member

      Correct. I grew up in a Buick family.

  9. DavidL Member

    I may not be seeing this correctly but it looks as if the car is or at least has been sitting in water! (see photo of left rear quarter) Can’t be good.

  10. James Petropulos

    I was stationed at the Herminie, PA site near Irwin.
    Jim Petropulos

    Like 1

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