45k Mile Survivor: 1973 Buick Centurion

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The Centurion replaced the Wildcat in the full-size Buick line-up in 1971 and would have a short tenure at just three model years. Sandwiched between the LeSabre and Electra, the Centurion was the sporty big Buick. This 1973 example may be a low-mile survivor that wants for a new paint job and perhaps little else. Located in Kokomo, Indiana, this 50-year-old family car is available here on craigslist for $8,000, and is brought to us as a tip by Rocco B.!

Buick had an interesting practice for naming some of its automobiles. The Centurion was coined after that of an officer in the Roman Army, inspired by an earlier Buick concept car. The car’s emblem was not the traditional Buick tri-shield, but a side profile of a centurion instead. Trim-wise, the vehicle was on a corporate level with the Chevy Caprice, Pontiac Grand Ville, and the Olds Delta 88 Royale. Changes were few in 1972 but the machines gained those infamous 5-mph front bumpers that the Feds had begun to mandate. In 1973, the Centurion had the distinction of being the only Buick sold as a convertible.

The seller’s car is one of 22,354 Centurions built during 1973 (it was the more popular choice over the 2-door hardtop and the drop-top). A 350 cubic inch V8 with a 4-barrel carburetor was standard in the Centurion, with a 455 4-barrel being optional. There is a 50 hp spread in how these two motors were rated in terms of output. We don’t which of these engines is in the seller’s car, but we’re told it’s just had a tune-up. But the carburetor needs some degree of adjustment before the Buick will run exactly as it should.

This cruiser may have been seldom used given that the odometer reads below 45,000 miles. That could be accurate as the original interior looks like that of an automobile that was driven sparingly over the past five decades. The blue paint appears to be starting to crack, at least according to the photo of the hood, while the contrasting white vinyl top looks to have no apparent issues. The seller would prefer cash, but he/she would also consider a trade for a dependable vehicle and some spare coin. As the lingo goes, “wouldn’t you really rather have a Buick?”

Auctions Ending Soon


  1. Rw

    Oh yeah did many right rear burn outs in these working in garage as a teenager late 70s early 80s, after taking the little old lady home who wanted her Prestone changed.

    Like 1
  2. Doone

    Did the Wildcat replace the Invicta?

    Like 1
    • Erik

      Doone, the Wildcat was a (more expensive 2-drs coupe) sub-series of the Invicta for model year 1962. The next year, there was only 1 Invicta model available next to 3 Wildcat models. 1963 was also the last year for the Invicta name.

      Like 0
    • Chuck Dickinson

      Basically, yes. In 62, the first WC appeared as a ‘special’ Invicta 2 dr ht. In 63, WC replaced the Invicta lines EXCEPT for the wagon which continued as an Invicta for that one year only. In 64, the wagon was part of the LeSabre line, and the Invicta name was gone. In 71, Centurion replaced Wildcat, and in 74, the Centurion became the LeSabre Luxus (stupid name IMHO)!

      Like 0
  3. George Mattar

    73 is the best looking year. I would give him $5,000 for it.

    Like 1
    • Michael Berkemeier

      The ’71 looked worlds better.

      Like 0
  4. Troy

    Nice big boat of a car

    Like 5
  5. angliagt angliagtMember

    I had a ’72 LeSabre 4 door,in that Light Blue color.
    Added a set of the factory Buick chrome wheels.It had a
    455 in it.It really had lots of power,& handled really well
    for a big car,& got decent mileage,but seemed to run for-
    It doesn’t say what engine’s in it.There should be
    emblems on the front fenders showing that.When I put mine
    up for sale,I put “FOR SALE” signs in the windows,& when
    some people would walk up to see it,they’d instantly turn
    around & walk away,figuring the mileage was dismal.
    I once drove up to Great Falls,Montana in it,& towed
    a big Uhaul trailer back.Barely put any strain on that Buick.
    I had to check to see if it was behind me.
    When I sold it,a couple bought it for their daughter who
    was going to school in Las Vegas.I wouldn’t think a teenage
    girl would want a big car like that.
    A few months later,I got a letter from the Las Vegas Police-
    Department saying that my car was towed & impounded.Turned
    out that the girl’s boyfriend was driving it,& got into an accident.I
    was half-tempted to go & get it back,but it was too far away.

    Like 5
  6. Grog

    Looks like you could have a picnic on the front bumper

    Like 1
  7. Cory Finafrock

    I would love to get that car I can’t afford it. It was my first car in high school. It was a great car. I miss it

    Like 1
  8. jrhmobile

    When I was in college in the late ’70s, a buddy had a triple-black ’73 Centurion coupe with a 455.

    We’d go barreling down the rural roads of Missouri, wasting 55 cents a gallon premium gas and powersliding on the two-lane blacktops. It took a little bit to build up speed from a full stop, but once we were rolling that big black Buford was a badass ride.

    Like 1
  9. Erik

    There is no 455 badge under the Centurion script on the front wing, so it looks like this is a 350 car. Photo: https://i.ibb.co/H7t9kxV/455-Centurion.jpg

    Like 0
    • Vaughn Edward Ebbighausen

      A standard feature on the Centurion was the 455.

      Like 1
      • Erik

        Vaughn Edward Ebbighausen:

        This is your second post saying that the 455 was the base engine for the Centurion. Well, it’s not! Get your facts right before you claim stuff like that

        Here’s a photo from the 1973 Buick brochure, and if you want I can also post shots from the 1971 and 1972 Buick brochures: https://i.ibb.co/Dtjz38Z/1973-Centurion.jpg

        Like 0
  10. Jeff

    It looks more like 34,057 miles.

    Like 1
    • Erik

      It’s a mess: the photo says 34057, in the text on Craigslist the seller says “Low mileage (od says a bit over 40k)” and next to the text is says “odometer 45000”.

      Like 0
      • Steve

        Multiple choice?

        Like 0
  11. Steve

    When the gas crisis hit, you couldn’t GIVE these barges away!

    Like 0
  12. Emel

    I think you were also offered a Roman Centurion grade & helmet, way back then.

    Hail Caesar !

    Like 1
  13. Michael Berkemeier

    Nice stupid finger over the license plate, lol…wonder how he covers it up when he’s driving it so that millions of people can’t see it? I would never even contemplate buying any car from anyone stupid enough to think that you have to put a finger in front of your license plate.

    Like 2
    • angliagt angliagtMember

      I keep asking why people do that,but never seem to
      get an answer to that question.
      I’ve noticed that scammers seem to use pictures of
      vehicles without any plates on them,or at angles that don’t
      show them.

      Like 0
  14. DON

    Seeing all these full size cars brings me back to the late 70s /early 80s we you could pick these up for $50 or less. I bought so many land yachts , but sadly, all but one ended up with a number on the doors and getting derbied . Of course they were no where near a clean as this one is and would have been junked soon anyway

    Like 0
  15. Vaughn Edward Ebbighausen

    A Centurian came standard with the 455, while it was “optional” on the LeSaber.

    Like 0
    • Erik

      No, the 350 was the base engine for the Centurion. 455 was optional

      Like 0

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