1970 Buick GS with 455 V8

The Buick GS (Gran Sport) started life in 1965, originally as a trim level on an existing model. Produced from 1965-1975, it eventually became a high-performance model in its own right, until the muscle car industry as a whole began to decline. This 1970 GS was made right in the middle of the run, and while it hasn’t necessary been “restored,” it has had plenty of things replaced, repaired and upgraded – it should need very little from the next owner. It’s up for sale here on eBay in Cape Coral, Florida. Bidding is at $18,100 with 24 hours remaining, and the reserve has not yet been met.

The quick success of the 1964 Pontiac GTO encouraged Buick to make their own muscle car. For 1965 Buick shoved a 401 cubic inch engine into the Skylark and called it the Skylark Gran Sport. They called the engine the Wildcat 455 due to its torque rating, and all Skylark Gran Sports, regardless of body style, received beefier frames and suspension. Over 16,000 GS-optioned Skylarks were sold in 1965, which told Buick there was definitely a market for it.

By 1970 GS had undergone many changes mechanically and cosmetically, and was now a model in its own right. Perhaps the biggest feature was that the 455 nomenclature no longer referred to the torque rating but the engine size – a massive 455 cubic inch V8 with 350 hp and 510 lb-ft of torque! A Stage 1 package was even offered that many testers believed bumped the hp over 400, although Buick claimed it was only 360hp. Either way, this was a mean machine. This particular Buick has a rebuilt 455 installed, and a rebuilt TH350 automatic transmission. It also has some upgraded ignition components. While it has about 84,000 miles on the odometer, the drivetrain is basically new, and will be a blast to drive.

The exterior of this car is really the only area that needs work. The two main spots are below the rear window, and the driver front fender. But, the rest of the car appears to be in very good condition. The paint looks shiny, the trim is bright and undamaged (although the piece in front of the passenger door is missing), and the wheels look fantastic. However, vinyl tops have the tendency to hide rust underneath, so potential buyers should be careful about that.

The interior is almost all new or repaired, including the door panels, the carpet, and the upholstery. In fact, the seller says the original bench seat was replaced by the buckets and console you see here, which is a welcome upgrade for many people. Even the tuck-and-roll style headliner appears to be perfect. I like the green paint color combo with the black interior. It’s not a color combo I’ve seen on a GS before, but it almost turns this into a bit of a subtle muscle car, compared to say the more common colors of red or yellow. A lot of work has been done to this car and very little is left, so the next owner should be able to enjoy it right away.

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Comments

  1. Daniel

    So this is a GS 350 with a 455 added. That’s a bit of a game changer for this if looking at it from an investment standpoint. Looks to be a cool driver if it was put together right in the updates.

    Like 3
  2. Don Page Jr.

    I’d pass on this one. Paint and interior doesn’t look that great. A GS with the 455 would have had a 400 trans. Too many things wrong with it for the price.

    Like 15
  3. Camaro Joe

    It’s not a bad car, and the price is OK right now. With the rust that’s visible plus the very likely possibility of rust hiding in the top and window channels, I wouldn’t go much higher. If it sat outside in Florida for any length of time I can guarantee that those will be a problem.

    Also, the TH 350 transmission will live behind a 455 for a while as long as you don’t beat on it. If the motor is anywhere near what it’s supposed to be, the TH350 won’t live very long. There’s a reason Buick put a TH 400 behind the 455.

    Like 21
  4. Troy s

    More than just a few upgraded ignition components on the 455, cam, pistons, intake, exhaust, there’s a list. Bidding has reached 20k, for a fun time driver not an original GS455 in any way. I like the car especially with the added bucket seats, but I wonder how the Florida residents take to seeing this California Special roaming the streets,
    curious about the 350 trans behind this torque monster.

    Like 1
    • Don Eladio

      Well, since the last “California Special” was in 1969…they’d probably laugh.

      Like 2
      • Troy s

        Yes, yes they probably would laugh…hopefully and not take offense to the blatant California emblems. Things are kinda crazy right now to say the least.

  5. Don Eladio

    This car could have been decent. The “California Special” Emblems (which are COMPLETELY incorrect) are absolutely atrocious, and the placement looks like Ray Charles installed them. Who, in their right mind, puts these emblems on any car? First of all, there was a California GS, not a “California Special” (that was a MUSTANG). The last year for the California GS was 1969.

    This car is a botched up mess.

    Like 5
    • Moparman Member

      Came here to say pretty much the same!

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