Big Block Beauty: 1970 Buick Wildcat 4-Door Hardtop

I guess that if a manufacturer makes the decision to end production of a car with a truly great model name, then they might as well go out in style. That is precisely the decision that Buick made when it ended production of the evocatively named Wildcat in 1970. For a large and heavy car, the 1970 Wildcat offered a winning combination of comfort and horsepower. If that sounds like a great mix to you, then you will find this Wildcat located in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and listed for sale here on eBay. The owner has set the listing to open at $2,500, but so far there have been no bids on this classic.

From a reasonable distance, the Wildcat looks really nice. Even up close, it does appear to be a solid car. While the Burnished Saddle paint looks nice and consistent, it is also showing consistent fading across the entire car. It isn’t horrendous, but the paint has lost its edge a bit. There are a few marks and dings on the car, but none of these are particularly bad. If the photos and listing description are both accurate, then some surface corrosion on the trunk is the full extent of the Wildcat’s rust issues. The gold vinyl top appears to be in good condition, and I can’t spot any bubbling that could indicate that there are some nasty surprises hiding beneath. With the external trim, chrome, and the factory tinted glass all appearing to be in good condition, things look really promising with this very attractive car.

While the interior photos tend to be a little limiting when it comes to gaining an overview of the Wildcat, they do indicate that being seated inside the car would be a fairly pleasant experience. There is some wear on the driver’s seat, a couple of small holes in the headliner, a crack in the steering wheel, and a loose trim on the back of the passenger seat, but these are all very minor issues. The headliner should be able to be blind-patched, and the seat trim looks like it could be re-attached. So, a new cover on the driver’s seat and some minor work on the wheel, and the interior would look pretty good. One thing that the Wildcat isn’t, is loaded down with luxury options. What you get is a working AM radio and a power front seat. Still, it really doesn’t look like you would feel neglected, because the seats look comfortable, and there’s plenty of head and leg-room for even the tallest person.

When I mentioned the fact that the Wildcat name was retired with style, a lot of what I was referring to was about what was available under the hood for potential buyers. The original owner of this car knew what they wanted, so they opted to put down their money for the biggest and most powerful engine ever offered in a Wildcat. The 455ci V8 engine was only offered in the Wildcat during that final year of production, but it was quite an engine. While 370hp was a healthy power figure for a family car, engine torque figures were even more impressive. That 455 could produce 510ft/lb of torque, which appeared relatively high-up in the engines rev range. What that meant was that the Wildcat was a sedate vehicle to use around town and in heavy traffic, but if you needed rapid acceleration once on the move, or you just felt like giving the car a bit of a poke with a stick, it could really get up and go. Not only do you get that impressive 455 with this car, but you also get a 3-speed Hydramatic transmission, power steering, and power brakes. It appears that the Wildcat is in extremely good health, and the owner states that not only does it drive as it did in 1970, but that he would have no hesitation in driving the car right across the country.

This 1970 Buick Wildcat 4-Door Hardtop just looks like it’s a great car. Sure, it’s big and heavy, but it’s also comfortable and features a great engine under the hood. Getting the car to the point where it would present really nicely would take very little effort or expense, and I think that the next owner is going to truly enjoy this classic.


  1. Chebby Staff

    Very nice car, bet it hauls. ’70 was THE year for horsepower. Too bad it’s triple old-man colors: tan, gold and beige. Some Buick rally wheels would wake it up.

    Like 22
  2. art

    Always liked the lines of the 1970. Too bad the pictures are poor quality and too few in number. Trunk condition? Underside condition?
    Tires/brakes/battery/exhaust/suspension/A/C condition? Repairs? Maintenance? Any items replaced? Fluids replaced? Leaks? One owner? Six owners? Refugee from a freeway pile up? What works? What doesn’t work?

    Always amazed that sellers expect buyers to have access to a crystal ball.
    If I’m gambling, $2000, no more. lol

    Like 4
  3. Troy s

    She’s real plain, that Jane, but after hours she can get kinda…exciting. These are cars all that big torque was really meant for…that’s a lot of car for a pukey 350 to haul around. I don’t think anyone bought these to race around in, luxury, comfort, and leg room plus the prestige of owning and being seen in a higher end full sized car was status amongst the grown ups.

    Like 2
    • Dave Coakley

      Troy S- This Wildcat has the optional 455 with 370 HP and 510 torque.

      • Troy s

        Dave,. Yep, it sure does have the top engine. I was comparing this to lesser powered versions, if the smaller 350 was actually available in the Wildcat I really don’t know..

      • Pete Phillips

        The 455 with 370 hp was not optional. It was the standard engine in the 1970 Wildcats, and the only year for the high-compression 455. This particular car appears to have the following options: power brakes, factory A/C, radio, cruise control, and TH-400 transmission. I have a 1970 Wildcat with manual brakes and manual (3-speed) transmission on the column, so I know what the options are.

        Like 8
    • Chebby Staff

      This car with a 350 was the LeSabre.

  4. Rex Kahrs Rex Kahrs Member

    So help me out guys…how does an engine develop more torque? I hear numbers thrown about regarding horsepower and torque, but how (specifically) would GM or any engine manufacturer design any engine to have more torque?

    • Chunk

      First and foremost, more displacement, preferably by increasing the crankshaft’s stroke and, if there’s a displacement limit, a smaller bore.

      Second, longer and/or smaller-diameter intake runners.

      Third, a bit more back-pressure, probably with shorty headers, and an ‘H-style’ crossover pipe if you have dual exhaust.

      Fourth, less lift, duration, and lobe-separation angle in the camshaft.

      Fifth, forced induction.

      Like 15
      • Fred W

        Bottom line is she can pull a 40 foot Airstream through the Smokey mountains without even breathing hard!

        Like 10
  5. Fahrvergnugen Farhvergnugen Member

    I was lucky to briefly inherit my grandfathers near body double of this, a ’70 Lesabre HT sedan, and took it to college in ’76 after his passing. Even with the “pukey” 350, in burnished saddle with a black top, it was a fine car, and readily hauled around the crew in comfort. The car was sold a little while later during a fuel shortage and a need for something more economical.

    This one looks great, but closer to gold than brown. Still, nice memories.

    Like 4
  6. local_sheriff

    I’m sometimes really amazed with (car)people, ‘cuz nowadays I constantly hear so many of them moaning ‘ I’d drive this or I’d have that vintage car, if it wasn’t for the premium prize of buying one’.

    When cars like this BB Wildcat (at 2,5 grand!) pops up I’m tempted to scream out STOP SOBBING! Most cars we’re craving for were manufactured 50+ years ago, and one thing we can be sure of is that there will never be MORE of them! It’s really a time for adjusting our expectations; if one is sitting on the fence waiting for the one owner survivor GT, Hemi or whatever limited designation 2dht or ‘vert occasionally driven to church advertized for a song, one may never get into the hobby. Reality check: THOSE DAYS ARE GONE!

    A 70 Wildcat may not be the fanciest car made but it’s a reflection of what people drove then. And this seems to be in shockingly nice condition for a 50 year BB survivor in that $ range, and proves cool cars are still out there. With some tweaks in the suspension/wheels department it’d be a cruiser I’d never be embarrassed to be seen in

    Like 26
    • TimS Member

      Barn Finds Staff-

      Please automatically post this comment on any vehicle of this type, general condition and options between 1958 and say, 1978. People miss a lot of fun miles and good times by refusing to even consider examples like this.

      Like 9
    • Ralph

      This car will give you plenty of smiles per mile for that price.

      Like 4
    • Frank Y Member

      Local Sheriff I couldn’t agree more. Well said !

      Like 3
  7. Robert May

    When I see a fairly well kept mostly original car like this I think about how cool it would be to take about $5k, fly wherever it is, but it, drive it home to AL! Even if you paid full price, there’s plenty of gas money. This car would be an awesome interstate traveler. Of course, I would have to have some tool’s, engine belts, and fuses with me. Ahhh, but for the $5k I need to instigate the trip……….

    Like 8
    • Bob_in_TN Bob_in_TN Member

      ….. and if I were to make this trip, I’d mix the Interstate driving with a heavy dose of the old US highways, even local two-lanes. Visit local diners and less-well-known tourist attractions and state parks. Kind of like when this car was new, and the Interstate highway system was still under construction.

      Like 5
  8. Car Nut Tacoma

    Beautiful looking 1970 Buick Wildcat. I regret that I’ve never seen one in person. It has the patina of a daily driver that’s still being driven today. Assuming it’s been carefully maintained, hopefully whoever drives the car next should enjoy the car for years to come. I’m not an expert on assessing how much such a car is worth, but given its condition, I’d be willing to pay $2500 to buy the car. :)

    Like 2
  9. GeorgeL

    My dad had a 1969 LeSabre in nearly identical colors to this Wildcat. I always wished he had gotten the Wildcat instead of the LeSabre, because I preferred the subtle differences to the grill and taillights. I also thought the name “Wildcat” was just so much cooler!

    This one brings back memories for me, but I prefer the ’69 over the ’70.

    Like 2
  10. Del

    That engine alone is worth 3 grand

    Like 3
  11. Jann Halstead

    My Driver’s Ed car was a white/blue ’70 Lesabre 400 sedan, with the 4bbl 350. It was plenty quick, as the DE teach found to his consternation; large sign on top was flapping noisily at 70. This is a great Wildcat, but the lack of options leaves me out. Needs good home!

    Like 1
  12. Andrew Franks

    Everybody read the local sheriff’s post. The car is a great cruiser/driver and if you are concerned about the price then you are too late to purchase the car.

    Like 4
  13. bigdoc

    Beautiful car and with that 455 Wow.

    Like 3
  14. Frank Y Member

    4 days left $2700 6 bids and reserve not met. As of 5:30 today.

    • Dave Mazz

      Now, Current bid: US $3,005.00 Reserve not met At 4:42 PM,
      I wonder what the reserve is? At around this price it seems like a great buy!

      Like 1
      • Seed Planter

        Had reserve at $4500. Final bid (guy didnt follow thru no sale) was $5300. Not factory tint just reusable walmart stuff.(rear glass tint not to shabby looking) I traded my 94 Roadmaster wagon from a kid from Longmont so dont know the history but obviously grage kept. I love driving this in the snow..passing 4x4s up hills in the snow….priceless. Putting it for sale on Clist i consider trades (would like a k5) Picking up my future ex wife in Aspen today from Colo Spgs and looking forward to the drive on Independence Pass. Love this car and the look on someone face whos driving a 4×4 up a hill in heavy snow while i pass them….? …Priceless..

  15. John Oliveri

    That beautiful motor alone is worth 3000.00 let alone a great cruiser, throw some Buick road wheels and Vogues on it, rub it out, you got a 4 door Riviera

    Like 3
  16. stillrunners stillrunners Member

    Back when your mom accidently smoked them leaving the traffic light….cool time that was…..

    Like 3
  17. nlpnt

    Came up on this late while looking for reference pics to build the AMT model kit, it convinced me to build it out-of-box as a coupe rather than converting to a sedan, because of all the minor/major differences and work involved in the conversion, *not* the looks. I’d happily take the Four-Door Discount on the real thing.

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