Open Roof Roadmaster: 1948 Buick

Buick Roadmaster’s are cool cars that pop up from time to time, but when was the last time you saw a solid Convertible? Certainly more desirable with its convertible roof, this not so common find is very solid, looking like the perfect start for a restoration. Currently bid up to $8,200 the reserve has not yet been met. Check out this beauty here on ebay out of Ottertail, Minnesota.

With little rust to be seen in the vacant bay, little body work would be needed to spruce up this engine bay for restoration. The factory 3 speed manual transmission is still in place after all this time of sitting in dry storage for several years.

The massive 320 cubic inch boat anchor of an engine is with the car, as well as some other engine accessories. The engine was possibly “rebuilt” at some stage in its life, but for now it resembles more of a boat anchor than anything else. Although we shouldn’t judge a book by its cover right? Hopefully the engine is original to the car, and is rebuildable.

Although partially disassembled with seats that are mouse food, the interior views of this Roadmaster give some hints as to how solid this car is. The floors are excellent, as is the dash and steering wheel. The convertible top upholstery is long gone, although there are some parts that are still in place including the original rear window, making it easier to get a new top made and have the window. The top frame is shown in the up and down position, but there are no close up shots of the top frame or bows to indicate its condition.

The exterior tells a story that just about anyone can get on board with. There is no visible rot in this Buick, and surface rust is confined to only a few small areas. There is a fair amount of what appears to be original paint, but the hood has obviously been replaced. The only real down fall to the body is that the driver door has a dent and a puncture in the sheet metal. The door could be worked out, or a replacement could possibly be dug up? Many of us have seen miraculous stories of people restoring cars that are so darn rough that little of the original car has survived. This Buick is an awesome starting point for a restoration, and boy would I love to drive such a stylish convertible as this Roadmaster. Would you take the plunge to restore this solid beauty?


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  1. Peter R. Member

    “K-Mart sucks… “

  2. Fred W.

    Reminds me of this one from “Rain Man”…although by this point they had eliminated the cool fenderline


    i have known the seller for a long time and bought a few cars from him . very honest and good guy.

    • Brian Birkner Staff

      Interesting. This Roadmaster is a phenomenal starter for a restoration, but it makes we wonder what other jewels your friend may have tucked away!?

      • Scott

        The seller has been been on eBay for many years and I’ve watched him sell tons of cars

  4. Vince H

    These had good engines far from a boat anchor.

    • Brian Birkner Staff

      I agree that the engines are more than suitable.

      I meant that this engines appearance was rusty, appearing as if it had been used as a boat anchor.

      But again, we can’t really judge the condition of this engine based on its appearance. Sorry for the confusion.

  5. Rex Kahrs Member

    Yeah, I noticed that fender-line…it reminded me of the ’68 Skylark.

    On another Buick Roadmaster note…During his college years in the early 1950s, my father sold Fuller Brush door-to-door, and also had contracts with the large state university he attended.
    To his friends he was known as the “Fuller Brush Man”. Sales were brisk, and he saved his money until one day in 1953, he walked into a Buick dealership in Columbus and plunked down about $3500 for a brand new Roadmaster. Not bad for a guy 25 years old.

  6. Van

    I like it. I’d say restomod. Add fuel injection to the original engine. 4L60 Trans, air bags, disc brakes (not huge brakes) power everything, red leather power bench seat. Black or navy paint, hidden audio and A/C. Add a mild evening and friends to go to dinner.

    Like 1
  7. Steve

    To the best of my knowledge, all Roadmasters had auto transmissions.

    • Steve

      Sorry, I stand corrected. Dynaflow option from 1942.
      Dynaflow was the only transmission available from 1949 on.

  8. Hoodude

    Does anybody watch the Aussie series A Place To Call Home?..running now on our PBS.. the main male character George Blythe drives a vert Roady but it may be a ’50 or ’’s black over red..and stunning. Cheers RE

  9. S. Brodie

    I bought two cars from Dave D. at Ottertail Minessota. I drove the 300C half way accross the continent from there to Princeton BC. and trailered the 300C convert all of the way home. It was one of the high points in my life and Dave is an honest good guy! Still have the Parade green 300C but doubled my money and sold the convert to a gentleman in Sweden.

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