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Original 1973 Buick Centurion 455 Convertible

The Centurion is one of those Buick names that doesn’t really seem to get widespread attention, and that’s probably due in part to its short production span, which lasted only from 1971 to 1973.  The car was a mid-level full-size offering that replaced the Wildcat in the company’s line-up, and in spite of it having one of the shortest runs in the brand’s history Buick still managed to find homes for more than 110,000 examples, but fewer than 10% were convertibles, making this 1973 Buick Centurion here on eBay not exceptionally rare but not exactly commonplace either.  This fair weather cruiser has been in the San Francisco Bay area its entire life and under the same ownership for the past 30 years, but the car is now seeking a new home with bidding already up to $6,100 so far and the reserve still not yet reached, or you can own it today for the buy-it-now price of $11,500.

To be at the 50-year mark, the Centurion still presents nicely on both the inside and out, with the seller stating his car is mostly all original.  He doesn’t specifically say whether or not the paint is still factory, but respray or not the finish still looks decent overall and I’m sure residing in a friendly climate has helped preserve the exterior.  A few minor door dings are mentioned along with one small dent on the passenger side rear quarter, plus the tires are also 20 years so the seller recommends replacing them.

Another not-too-terrible outside blunder can be found on the driver’s side quarter.  The story goes that at some point in time, the Buick ran over a spray paint can, which is what caused the speckles in this area.  Apparently, the white doesn’t want to scrape off, at least not with fingernails, and who knows if it will damage the green paint if you try something abrasive.  It’ll be up to the next owner to decide if he wants to address this or live with it.

The Centurion has been driven just past the 150k mile mark, and although the seller lists a few items that have been replaced on the mechanical end during the last 5 years, he doesn’t go so far as to say that the engine has ever had a complete overhaul.  But some excellent news under the hood is in the form of size, as there’s a 455 in there, which by ’73 had become optional with the 350 now the standard powerplant.  Some of the newer parts include a timing chain, fuel pump, radiator, and a pre-1973 camshaft has been installed.

On the inside, most everything appears to be nicely preserved and in good condition for all those miles traveled, with the 60/40 seats showing very little wear.  It’s well-equipped too, with power windows, power door locks, cruise control, and air conditioning, but be forewarned the last 2 components are not functioning at the moment.  So while this one’s not a museum piece, it does seem to be a very well-kept driver that’s deserving of a new home where it will continue to reserve the same level of care.  What are your thoughts on this 1973 Buick Centurion Convertible?


  1. Robert Proulx

    A nice example, as per engine mods i see converted to h.e.i. wich is always good for reliability but the a.i.r. system is gone. Pre 73 cam ???

    Like 0
  2. Scrapyard John

    Can’t really go wrong with a convertible and a big block, can you? Would be a fun car to cruise around in. Need to get that AC and cruise working.

    Like 1
  3. Mike Fullerton

    I have a novice question. Did GM have 2 V-8’s? My grandpa had a 1971 Buick Electra 225 Limited. I thought it had a 454 cid. This Buick has a 455 cid. Am I wrong in the 454?

    Like 1
  4. Big_Fun Member

    No, you’re not wrong, just off by one cubic inch. If Grandpa had a Buick, than it was a 455. Same if he owned an Oldsmobile or Pontiac. The 454 was the displacement for the Chevrolet Big Block.
    Your Grandpa had good taste…

    Like 3
    • Bick Banter

      This looks like the notorious Golden Olive that was on the recent ’73 Grand LeMans and ’73 GTO (originally) again. At Buick, it was called Green Gold, but it is the same color with the same 46 paint code on the data plate.

      FWIW, Olds called it Moss Green and Chevrolet called it Green Gold like Buick. There was no Cadillac equivalent. I always found it amusing the way GM used the same colors across the divisions, and just named them differently.

      Like 0
  5. Mike Fullerton

    Thank you Big_Fun. Yes, he did. He also owned a 1957 Packard Clipper, he bought used in 1959 and a 1964 Chevrolet Impala wagon with the 327cid.

    Like 2
  6. BA

    Be still my beating heart ! The last big block to be developed by any manufacturer . Add that this motor prepped equally against BBC, mopar 440 , Ford 460 and won the coveted big block shootout ran by Hot Rod magazine it just seems buick never got the love I thought they deserved . Yes stage 1 did but nothing beyond that.

    Like 1
  7. Stan

    Fabulous Centurion. Big 455ci, 2.90 or 3.23 gearset. This boat will motor.

    Like 0
  8. JoeNYWF64

    Looks like that bumper up front could take more than a 5 mph hit!
    Compare how far it sticks out with the 1 on a ’76 chevette or ’74 vega.
    Unlike today, i believe no power door mirror(s) avail in ’70s & older cars.

    Like 0

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