1940 Buick
Limited Phaeton

Location: WI
VIN #:13694572
Engine:Straight 8
Transmission:3 Speed Manual

Buick is currently the oldest still-active American automotive make, and among the oldest automobile brands in the world. It originated as the Buick Auto-Vim and Power Company in 1899, an independent internal combustion engine and motor-car manufacturer, and was later incorporated as the Buick Motor Company on May 19, 1903, by Scottish born David Dunbar Buick in Detroit, Michigan. Later that year, the struggling company was taken over by James H. Whiting who moved it to his hometown of Flint, Michigan, and brought in William C. Durant in 1904 to manage his new acquisition. Buick sold his stock for a small sum upon departure, and died in modest circumstances 25 years later. Durant was a natural promoter, and Buick soon became the largest car maker in America. Using the profits from this, Durant embarked on a series of corporate acquisitions, calling the new megacorporation General Motors. At first, the manufacturers comprising General Motors competed against each other, but Durant ended that. He wanted each General Motors division to target one class of buyer, and in his new scheme, Buick was near the top — only the Cadillac brand had more prestige. Buick occupies this position to this day in the General Motors lineup. The ideal Buick customer is comfortably well off, possibly not quite rich enough to afford a Cadillac, nor desiring the ostentation of one, but definitely in the market for a car above the norm.

The Buick Limited was a continuance of Buick's long wheelbase premium Series 90 automobile. In 1936, Buick released a new line of cars that were technically superior to their predecessors by offering such features as all-steel passenger compartment tops (GM's Turret Top design), improved front suspension, improved hydraulic safety-breaking system, alloy engine pistons and an improved engine cooling system. To celebrate the changes in its models, Buick renamed its vehicles by discarding the "Series" format of model names (adopted in 1929) and renamed its "Series 40" the Special, "Series 60" the Century, "Series 80" the Roadmaster and its premier model range, the Series 90 the Buick Limited.

Limiteds were the most expensive Buicks in production, riding on the company's longest wheelbase of 138 in and the best appointed cars that Buick built. The name Limited was truly appropriate to the cars themselves which were limited to touring sedans and limousines; its sales too were the smallest of Buick's entire model range: 1936-4,086; 1937- 3,697; 1938-1,491; 1939-1,451; 1940-1,739; 1941-3,006 1942, 636 (abbreviated model year September 1941 to January 1942).

In 1938, the wheel base was stretched to 140", and the Limited, along with Roadmaster, lost its wooden structural members for steel, making them the last Buick passenger cars to rely upon a wood components. In 1939 Buick products underwent a substantial redesign; however, the Limited's "limited" production merited it to continue using its 1938 body. Behind the scenes, Cadillac executives lobbied to get the Limited out of production because it infringed on their market. While it was priced in the lower end of its Fleetwood series price point, the Limited almost equaled Cadillac's factory built Imperial Sedan (Limousine), which cost almost four times as much as the Buick, in its appointments. Buick executives fired back that Limited production averaged only 1,561 vehicles per year for model years 1938 through 1940, a drop in the bucket compared to Cadillac's production of its senior cars. Production of the Limited continued until the eve of World War II. Following World War II, Buick dropped its extended wheelbase models, and dropped the Limited nameplate.

This beautiful freshly restored example is identical to the car used in the parting scene of Casa Blanca, as you Classic Film enthusiasts probably already know. Finished in Black over Maroon Leather with a Tan Top, the car has a striking presence that few cars can emulate. Restored to top show standards by a highly respected shop, and with hard to find correct parts supplied by the leading 38-41 Buick Specialist in the Country, this car stands alone. Everything is as new on this car- The Paint and Chrome are spectacular, the leather is perfect, the top is without fault, and the engien bay and undercarriage are as clean and perfect as the top of the car. Everything was rebuilt- this was a ground up restoration.

Equipment includes, dual side-mounted spare tires, a Sonomatic AM radio, Heater, a column-mounted gear selector, an analog clock set into the locking glovebox door, armrest-mounted ashtrays for both rear-seat passengers, and a flip-down rear footrest.

This a very rare car, only 240 were produced with integrated trunk and an additional 7 without.Thsi is a model we feel is way underpriced in the marketplace, and represents a great opportunity to obtain one of GM's Best cars from the Era. A CCCA Approved Full Classic, this is the perfect car for CARavanning, and is eligible for a wide variety of Events.

This car has never been shown so represents a rare opportunity to go collect a lot of trophies.

Click on any image to enlarge it.