Vista Cruiser’s Cousin: 1969 Buick Sport Wagon

The Sport Wagon was Buick’s version of the Oldsmobile Vista Cruiser which featured a raised roof and skylights over the cargo and second seat area. It was produced over three generations between 1964-72, but the last two years had a traditional flat roof. Located in Albuquerque, New Mexico, this wagon is said to be a project but seems nicer than that. It’s available here on eBay for the Buy It Now price of $7,500 or you can make an offer. Thanks for the tip, Larry D!

For whatever reason, the Sport Wagon didn’t sell as well as the Vista Cruiser. Perhaps they weren’t marketed to the same extent. Both vehicles used extended-wheelbase versions of the Skylark and Cutlass wagons. While in production, the Sport Wagon was considered the luxury-version in the Buick stable. The 1968-69 Sport Wagon, like the other Skylarks, featured sweeping “S-shape” side sculpturing, while the wagon’s roof replaced the previously used split main skylight with a one-piece skylight over the second-row seat.

This ’69 Sport Wagon is one of 9,157 editions built with two seats while another 11,513 would have the triple-seat set-up. The seller describes this as a project vehicle, but his definition is broad compared to what we usually see here on Barn Finds as a project car. We’re told it had some earlier bodywork on at least one of the doors and the paint is chipped in several places. Also, the driver’s side rear door doesn’t seem to exactly line up.  The seller has been unable to get the tailgate top open and there is a small dent in the rear bumper. But it looks good enough overall not to be worried about the exterior appearance for any time soon.

We’re told the interior is original and that might be where the project part comes in. The seats don’t look like original 1969 Buick hardware and there are buckets upfront (no console: column-shifted automatic transmission). The cargo area may be where the most attention will be needed if you’re looking for something more show-worthy. The seller makes no mention of any leaks from the raised roof, but the surfaces around those pieces are not perfect.

The seller doesn’t mention what’s under the hood other than to say it’s “OEM.” More than likely there’s a 350 cubic-inch V8 there which may have as few as 57,000 miles. We’re told it “runs and drives” and just did a 60-mile trip with no issues. This looks like a fairly inexpensive vehicle for weekend car events, especially since station wagons are gaining more attention in collector circles. In good condition, Hagerty pegs one of these wagons at $9,000, so the seller hasn’t set a loftier goal in selling the car.

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Comments

  1. Steve Clinton

    I had a 1970 Vista Cruiser. It was a barge, but I loved it.

    Like 1
  2. Dean Wilson

    Looking for a reason why it did not sell as well as the Vista Cruiser? How about it being a sculpted metal disaster on wheels? By far and away the ugliest cars in the intermediate class in those years.

    Like 5
    • Chris In Australia

      They’re ‘different’ that’s certain. And I love the looks of my ’69 Skylark. Nothing like it on the road today.

      Like 2
  3. Ralph

    Looking at the driver’s side, the rear door and quarter panel looks to be holding about 20 lbs. of Bondo. This also has the wrong roof rack. Throw in the mess of the interior and it seems this is a Frankenstein car. Glad it is still around, but it looks pretty “abby normal” in current configuration. Olds did a much better appearing wagon for sure.YMMV.

    Like 3
  4. Steve Robin

    This is actually a three-seater. The third row is just not “up”, but it’s there

    Like 1
  5. GM nut

    I love those 1964 chevy hubcaps re-badged Buick

    Like 1

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