Nicest One Left? 1973 Buick Riviera

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When a seller describes his car as a stunning museum-quality piece and then follows this proclamation up by calling it probably the nicest example in the country, perhaps unfairly I often get skeptical, with my thoughts going into the I’ve-heard-that-one-before mindset.  Even suggesting that your auto could be the nicest one anywhere sets up stellar expectations, but after checking over this 1973 Buick Riviera, I’m not sure the seller isn’t on the right track here.  A big thank you goes out to Barn Finds reader numskal for sending us the great tip on this one!

The third-generation Riviera is a good example of a car that looks pretty cool after 50 years have gone by, but with the design change in 1971, sales fell to the lowest point since the model had been introduced.  Buyers weren’t all that enthralled with the enormous back window and rear end that looked about as much like a boat as a Buick.  The company even toned down the rear-end appearance a bit for 1973, but sales were stagnant, with just over 34,000 finding homes that year.

With the controversial styling and low production numbers, spotting one of these unusual cars on the road nowadays is a real treat, and I’m not sure I can remember the last time one of these cruised by in my neck of the woods.  The seller provides literally no history regarding this Riviera, so we’ll have to take a close look at the photos, and I’m certainly not spotting anything on the exterior to make me disagree with any of the owner’s claims regarding its condition.  There’s no word on whether or not this one’s been restored or if it’s always looked this sweet, but either way, the Buick appears quite beautiful outside.

Stepping inside, I’m not seeing much in here condition-wise that would keep this one out of a museum, plus finding the buckets and console takes this one up a notch in my book in the desirability department.  It’s loaded for the period as well, with power windows, cruise control, and a tilt column among the interior equipment that can be spotted.

A 454 cubic-inch V8 was the only size motor available for ’73, making 250 horsepower in standard form or 260 for those who opted for the Stage One package.  The mileage here is listed as 60,000, and everything appears to be in good order under the hood.  I’m not finding very much to not get excited about regarding this 1973 Buick Riviera, and if you’re already imagining yourself behind the wheel it can be found here on Craigslist.  From the looks of things, I’m guessing it’s ready to be driven from Coast Mesa, California where it’s currently residing to just about anywhere.  The seller has set his asking price at $32,500, which doesn’t sound all that unreasonable based on the condition.  What are your thoughts on this one?

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  1. Big_FunMember

    Yes…that Buick *455-4bbl* is a torque monster. Needed that for that big front bumper.
    That aftermarket cruise resembles what MOPAR used over at the Pentastar.

    Like 7
  2. 370zpp 370zppMember


    Like 8
  3. Joseph F Monahan

    Worth every dollar owner is asking. Classic example of Detroit Motorized Art work. If I had the money and proper storage, I pay his asking price.

    Like 11
  4. Joe

    ugly new
    ugly now

    Like 2
  5. PaulG

    Nice, but we just saw this on 6/24…

    Like 5
  6. Fox owner

    Deleted by author. Scam maybe?

    Like 0
    • PRA4SNW PRA4SNWMember

      Either that, or someone REALLY wanted it.

      Like 3
  7. JoeNYWF64

    Would the driver even notice the mere 10 hp increase of the Stage One motor?

    Like 2
    • Poppy

      Not if he has to rev it to 4500+ rpm to achieve those extra ponies.

      Like 1
  8. ClassicP

    Nice to see that the car was cleaned and the tires are dressed too. 454 was Chevy Buick 455’

    Like 3
  9. Steve

    Rediculous asking price ! Only a fool would pay that. Nice ride at a reasonable price.

    Like 1
  10. JoeNYWF64

    Can a ’71 front bumper be made to fit a ’73?
    Tho the front would probably rise up 2 or 3 inches!

    Like 0
  11. HCMember

    I love the 71-73 Boat tail Rivieras, and this 73 is really clean. Danny from Kounts Customs bought a 73 like this for $10k on his show, but it took alot more to finish it. Although price is full blown retail, it would probably take $30k to to turn a beater into a car like this.

    Like 3
  12. UDT FROG

    I would love to be STEVE’s FOOL, if I had not only recently bought my ’54’ with all the same goodies( restomod) and my recent addition of the Holley EFI 2 fuel injection MAN O MAN what a huge improvement, in performnace and huge gas mileage So you see STEVE my being a 43 year UDT FROG I’m already a aool.

    Like 3
  13. chrlsful

    what a great car in 1st gen. 2nd – down hill a bit, sorry to see the continued slide. Y did they do that (Toronado and many others of the time, same)? Meanwhile europeans got better w/each generation(al face lift).
    Many the mechanicals improve (thinkin final yr fiero right now, but plenty others).

    Like 0
  14. scottymac

    My oh my! Maybe the seller justifies the asking price because of the gold plated emblems?

    Like 0
  15. Elliot Rolon

    Excellent condition love your car”

    Like 0
  16. JoeNYWF64

    If Buick made one today, there would be no room/overhang in back to fit a boattail, & it would be only 4 door & only grey inside, & there would be some sort of angry ugly face on the front & possibly the back, & cheap looking plastic trim galore on the outside(espec around the side windows- like on today’s pony cars, under the wipers – forget hidden ones – & more plastic on the front edge of the doors to mount today’s cheap lookin ugly mirrors).

    Like 0

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