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In the Weeds: 1956 Buick Century Wagon


When I first clicked on this listing, the seller had posted it with an opening bid of $200 and no reserve. That has now changed, with the listing for a 1956 Buick Century Estate wagon here on eBay commanding an opening bid of $2,500 with a reserve. Frankly, it makes sense given the rarity of this wagon, even if it just wasting away in the weeds…


For a vehicle that clearly looks like it has been sitting for quite some time, I’m surprised by the level of preservation inside the cabin. Just over 8,000 Century Estate wagons were produced and while not hugely valuable, it’s tough to find a good one. This example, depending on how significant the rust is, could be worth bringing back to life provided it hasn’t been left to the elements for so many years that it’s too rotten to restore.


The 322 cui Nailhead V8 is still present, but no word on whether it’s numbers matching. This powertrain was no slouch, delivering 220 b.h.p. and 319 lb-ft of torque. While not clean, the engine bay appears complete, giving bidders some hope it’s the original unit and all the rare or NLA bits are still present.


This photo reminds me of an old Chevy Nomad near my house growing up (long gone now) that was completely engulfed by small trees and brush. You could always see it, but the car’s location on private property made it tough to inspect. It’s amazing to think that someone just had this car sitting around despite the potential payday that awaited them. What do you think it will end up selling for?


  1. Avatar photo Ken

    Looks like a Special with three portholes.

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    • Avatar photo John Deebank

      It says Century on back door.

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  2. Avatar photo randy

    That’s about 5 years of growth on this CARnivorous plant species.

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  3. Avatar photo Stang1968

    Listing is scant on details. Just says it’s 100% restorable. I suppose with a bottomless check book anything is restorable.
    It’s pretty far gone but not impossible- would be a true labor of love.

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  4. Avatar photo Duffy

    Some body put the wrong numbers in this gentleman’s head. I could see saying $1500.00 if it ran and drove. This is not a vehicle you are going to get into and drive around the block.Your looking at $40,000 to $50,000 Just to get it presentable. Check out the price just to rechrome the bumpers, interior is $6500.00 unless you want to sit on an egg crate. Should have left it at $200,00 and let the people bid on it.Way over board on the price.

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    • Avatar photo randy

      You never know these “daze”. It’s better to try than to have “sellers remorse” later and lose sleep. Don’t ask me how I know. ;>)

      The wagon is surely not doing him any good, he’ll eventually take market value for it.

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  5. Avatar photo L.M.K.

    An undercarriage & lower beltline inspection is mandatory. The rest of it looks fairly promising . The original $200. with no reserve made better sense. I like the car but not the current price.

    I wonder if the keys have been hanging in the ignition since it was last driven ?

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    • Avatar photo Howard A Member

      Hi L.M.K., “ran when parked”,,,,see the keys are still in there. :)

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    • Avatar photo kenzo

      He just parked it there this morning and is coming back to remove the keys as soon as he finishing writing the listing. haa haa haa

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  6. Avatar photo Barry Solar

    I think it is a Special, not a Century, because a Century had four portholes

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  7. Avatar photo Howard A Member

    I agree with Duffy. With the cost of restoration bits today, you almost have to start with something decent. I suppose if there is some sentimental attachment to a car like this, it will go, otherwise, I just don’t see it happening. Shame, as this, at one time, was one nice family car.

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  8. Avatar photo Bob

    This a Special not a Century.

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  9. Avatar photo Jason Houston

    He must have been tipped off $200 was too cheap when he received a ton of “Wooja do a Buy-It-Nows?” from the local bottom-feeders.

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  10. Avatar photo cory

    Didn’t they make a 2 door wagon as well? Sad when tire kickers with no money get ahold of someone and tell them their junk is priceless. More than likely the seller will let it rot into the ground because someone told him not to take less than 40k for it.

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  11. Avatar photo Jerry

    Not a Century. Probably a Special. It has 3 portholes, Century has 4.

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  12. Avatar photo hhaleblian

    Pigs get fat, hogs get slaughtered, fat hogs end up playing with themselves. Case in point.

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  13. Avatar photo OhU8one2

    Just another seller who think’s because it’s old,it must be worth a lot of money………Ummm wrong Sir. You should have left it up to the buyer’s to say what the market will pay. You shouldn’t be rewarded with money for doing nothing. Neglect ought to cost you. And I think it will. Happy Motoring!

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  14. Avatar photo RoughDiamond

    Comes with a squirrel pelt laying in the front seat too.

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  15. Avatar photo kenzo

    If I had the pockets that were deep enough, this would be my final project……

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  16. Avatar photo Woodie Man

    I know I know.people can do whatever they want with their own cars………..but stupid is just stupid. Leaving this car to rot and then trying to sell it as more than a rotted hulk is well……….stupid,

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    • Avatar photo Howard A Member

      Hi Woodie Man, look on the bright side, I don’t think it’s going to sink any farther in the dirt.

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  17. Avatar photo Jasper

    I’ve passed by this thing for years, even considered stopping to find out what the deal was with it. The scalper didn’t even bother to load it on a trailer and take it to their own place.

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  18. Avatar photo Doc

    OK so what is with the electrical outlet in front of the drivers side radiator?
    Some sort of winter keep your engine warn set up? I have seen this but it has been 40 years.

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