1953 Buick Skylark Convertible
Lot No. 4154
Auctioned on Saturday, May 10, 2014
Sold for $112,500
Inside, the interior has been finished in the correct red and white leather in the original patterns. The Roadmaster's seat was lowered in production so that it would not protrude above the body line, but it remains supportive and comfortable thanks to fresh foam underneath and supple red leather on top. The dash houses the original AM radio, with secondary switches clustered around the center-mounted speaker in a throwback to the previous decade. Beautifully restored gauges keep an eye on the engine's vital signs, while the contrasting steering wheel looks almost too delicate to manage a two-ton car. You'll also notice the sensor for the Autronic-Eye automatic headlamp dimming system mounted atop the dash, as well as the clock located on the passenger's side of the instrument panel. Of course, other items like the carpets and floor mats have been replaced during the restoration and remain in first-rate condition. Overhead, a black canvas top seals up tightly and provides contrast to the red paint, and folds effortlessly into the well behind the back seats, where it is covered by a body-color matching boot and at the back, is a Continental kit.
The Original 322 cubic inch "Nailhead" V-8 under the hood was a state-of-the-art powerplant in 1953, with a short stroke, overhead valves (Buick always used overhead valve engines), and a healthy 8.5:1 compression ratio, developing a relatively robust 188 horsepower. Called the Nailhead because of the vertical orientation of the valves, it was famous for its durability and torque production, allowing the Skylark to be one of the fastest cars on the road in 1953. Beautifully detailed, the engine in this Skylark has clearly seen its share of show duty. From the correct Buick Matador Red paint to the smaller details like the decals on the air cleaner, as well as correct hoses and clamps, it looks exactly how it might have a few days after the new owner took delivery in 1953. Power steering was a new innovation, and it was standard on the Skylarks along with just about every luxury convenience Buick could imagine.