1981 Buick

Riviera $11,500



1981 Buick Riviera

The Buick Riviera is a personal luxury car produced by Buick from 1963 to 1999. GM's first entry into that prestige niche, the Riviera was highly praised by automotive journalists upon its high-profile debut. While early models stayed close to the original form, eight subsequent generations varied substantially over the Riviera's thirty-year lifespan. In all, 1,127,261 were produced. The name Riviera, Latin for coastline, was chosen to evoke the allure and affluence of the French Riviera. It first entered the Buick line in 1949, as the designation for the new two-door pillarless hardtop, described in advertising as "stunningly smart".

For consignment, a very nice, mostly original, low mileage, well-kept and pampered Riviera with a mere 70,650 original miles. A 1981 ad has a huge laundry list of available options for the Riviera with "Kitchen Sink Not Available". By the sheer ways to outfit your new 1981 Riviera it's almost as if the designers and ad men knew they were pitching a future collectible, and with its looks and styling, how can it miss? Read on for more excitement.

Bathed in its factory paint and in the color of Silver Fawn, we can see some aging areas on the straight steel panels. The car is from 1981, but has low mileage, and this car presents as such. One can pretty much guarantee this car was garage kept as both the front and rear filler panels are present and accounted for. A Light Sandstone landau style vinyl top is seen above the rear passenger compartment on the exterior. The chrome bumpers both front and rear present well with only minor dulling and oxidation. The brite work is clean and shows a very slight dimpling beginning. A few scratches are noted throughout but can only be seen upon close inspection and we see a notable dent at the rear of the driver's front fender. Nice chromed wire wheels are spotted on all 4 corners along with nearly new thin whitewall radials.

Luxurious Saddle leather buckets, (only in the sense there are two seats and they are separate), and spacious rear bench are seen with the opening of one of the massive doors, which is also covered in a mix of saddle vinyl and carpeting. Burl feathered veneer accents abound in the seats, door panels and cover the dash. All straight and square and rectangle design right out of the 1981 design playbook, the dash is very clean and unmarred. A small center console glove box is flanked by the front buckets and is Saddle vinyl and plastic. Conveniences such as climate control, a power driver's seat, an aftermarket AM/FM/CD radio, power windows, power locks, power mirrors, and power antenna are on board. A lighter Saddle headliner appears to be losing some of its adhesive and has a few loose areas but remains clean with no tears. Fairly clean tan carpeting with a few stains covers the floors, and carpeted floor mats cover the carpeting.

A little dusty and a little patina can be seen on the 307ci V8, and it is mated with a TH325 3-speed automatic transmission to its rear. A 2.41 geared final drive turns the front tires.

Save for the occasional surface rust on straight steel parts, (mainly suspension), the undercarriage maintains its integrity with plenty of rustproofing coverage on the floor pans, and undercarriage surfaces. Looking underneath the doors we see clean rubber weather stripping, and only the beginnings of rust at the passenger's door lower seam. Giving this Buick its trademark ride is an independent torsion bar front suspension and an independent coil spring rear suspension and for the stopping power we note power front disc brakes and rear power drums. A newer single exhaust system is seen.

This car started right up, ran flawlessly, and is a wonderful comfortable cruiser with a kick. It handled our test track with ease and provided such a smooth ride my cohort, partner in crime, and crack decoder dozed off in the rear seat. All functions working as they should, and every option well placed for ease of operation.

A nice example of a lower mileage Riviera from 1981. Well kept, a few faults, but all in all easy repairs to make the car nearly perfect on the exterior and interior with faults noted. Square and Rectangle late 70's early 80's design mmmmmmmm delicious!

G-General Motors
A-Manual Seatbelts
57-2 Door Coupe
Y-307 CUI V8
8-Check Digit
E-Linden NJ Assy Plant
419749-Sequential Unit Number

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Engine Size
307 V8
Fuel Specification
91 Octane or below
Engine Type
Transmission Type
3 Speed Automatic


Body Color
Silver Fawn
Body Style


Interior Color
Seating Type
Buckets With Console
Seat Material
Shifter Type

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