Monday, October 27, 2014

Born in 1941 : Buick Eight Century

In this article I will introduce the Buick Eight Century 1941, one of the legends of American auto industry. Today this car travels through the streets of Yerevan resuscitating the spirit of 1940's. No-one can resist being mesmerized by the charm of this retro miracle. In spite of its 70-year existence, the Buick Eight Century is no inferior to many modern cars in the quality of assembly materials, comfort, design and many other standards.


The history of this car started in 1936, when Harlow Curtice, the head of the Buick division of GM, decided to rename the entire model lineup for the 1936 model year to celebrate the engineering achievements and design advancements over their 1935 models. Buick's Series 40 model range became the Special, the Series 80 became the Roadmaster and the Series 90, the largest and most luxurious vehicles of Buick, became the limited. As for the Century, it took the place of the Series 60.


The basic principle for the 1936 to 1942 Century was established by mating shorter wheelbase Buick Special bodies to Buick's 8-cylinder engine.Whereas the Special was equipped with Buick's 233 in³ engine with a capacity of 93HP at 3200 rpm, Centuries manufactured between 1935 to 1942 were equipped with Buick's inline 320.2 in³ at 120 HP, which made them the fastest Buicks of all times capable of accelerating the car to 160 km/h. This engine supported by 3-speed automatic transmission earned the Century the nickname "banker's hotrod".



The production of the Century was stopped at the end of the abbreviated 1942 model year, when total model production only accounted for about 10 percent of Buick's total productivity.
To my utter amazement, the owner of the car allowed me to make a few laps...
My impressions-no words can adequately convey what I felt during the ride. That was probably the brightest moment in my life.