Buffalo Buick: 1961 Buick LeSabre Convertible – Sold?
April 21, 2021 Update – We just confirmed the listing for this Buick LeSabre “Classifind” expired, so with no replacement found we’re assuming this ride “Sold?” While this one got away, please reach out either by email or call Rudy directly if you’d like to be informed when we come across something similar.
When I came across this vintage Buick, the neighborhood reminded me of a newer development near where I grew up in Buffalo and not any place I’ve come across thus far in Jersey. As it turns out, the car may be listed on a Jersey Craigslist page, but it is located in Orchard Park, New York, a suburb of Buffalo. Following in the footsteps of the wildly-finned 1960 models, Buick’s full-size lineup received a toned-down restyling for 1961 that looks stunning in black-over-red as this LeSabre convertible originally listed in March 2021 on Craigslist in Orchard Park, New York (Buffalo) for $24,500 illustrates. Comparing this price against the Hagerty Insurance Online Valuation Tool confirms this private seller has their Buick convertible priced between the #3 “Good” estimate of $19,100 and the #2 “Excellent” appraisal of $30,400. Similarly, the Collector Car Market Review indicates the current asking price falls between this guide’s #3 “Good” estimate of $16,400 and its #2 “Very Good” appraisal of $25,000.
Buick’s LeSabre was the GM Division’s entry-level full-size model that shared a completely restyled design with the Electra and Invicta for 1961. The new design featured finless rear ends, more restrained use of chrome and boxier sheet metal. Wheelbases remained at 123 inches but the new cars were slightly downsized in both length and width and rode on a new X-frame chassis which included a conventional rear axle and driveshaft replacing the decades-old torque tube design. Inside were revised instrument panels retaining the “Mirrormatic” speedometer and new upholstery trims. The Station Wagons received an all-vinyl interior as standard, with the regular cloth/vinyl combination interior available as an option. Engines remained unchanged from previous years including the standard 250-horsepower 364-cubic-inch V8, no-cost regular fuel 235-horsepower 364, or the four-barrel 300-horsepower option of the same engine available at extra cost. The two-speed Turbine Drive Dynaflow automatic transmission was standard equipment on LeSabres and all other full-sized Buicks this year, although a manual transmission was also available.
This vintage Esso Oil travel film posted on the Osborn Tramaine YouTube Channel features a 1961 Buick LeSabre at the beginning. The best part is how the three kids are allowed to jump around freely as their father parks the car:
We’re not sure why the seller elected to post their Buffalo-based Buick on the Jersey Craigslist page other than possibly to generate more potential buyers. The excellent pictures and honest description point to a pretty early sixties full-size convertible that will likely look even better in person.
Here’s the seller’s description:
“1961 Buick LeSabre Convertible, Great starting, running, and driving Buick. Powered by a 364 cid nailhead Buick V-8 which has benefitted from a new valve job , new lifters, and new pistons and rings. Power is conveyed to the driveshaft by a Buick exclusive Dynaflow automatic transmission which shifts so smoothly its almost imperceptible.
Power steering, power brakes and a power top add to the joy of ownership of this Buick. The bottom of the car is FANTASTICALLY solid and has benefitted from an incredibly thorough cleaning and painting, just stunning. The interior is show stopping, perfect original dash pad, new carpet and a over all awesome look. The engine bay and the trunk are very nicely detailed. The power top works very well, the top itself is in ok shape, very usable-but showing its age, it might be the original unit. The black paint shines up great, and is just right for cruising and cruise-night shows, but closer examination reveals its limitations. If you intend to take the car to big time shows it will need a paint job.AS with any antique/OLD car -sold AS IS WHERE IS. I can be reached at 7one6 6sixtwo 3one six0“
Show or go: What would you do with this big Buick? Comment below and let us know!
I think “Senator and Mrs. John Blutarski” drove off in a 61 Buick convertible in the final scenes of the move Animal House.
The Animal House car was a ’61 Electra 225 with four “vents” in the front fender.