Lot 299 - 1965 12874 401 Riviera 'Wildcat'

Lot 299 - 1965 12874 401 Riviera 'Wildcat'

Lot 299 - 1965 12874 401 Riviera 'Wildcat'

Lot Number 299
Registration 4 RXY
Chassis Number 494475H916613
Engine Number 1196914
Odometer reading 51,707 miles
Estimate £12,000 - £18,000

Buick revealed the new 'Riviera' at the 1963 Paris Auto Salon as 'the car of tomorrow' and the design took the critics by storm. The elegant flowing lines were an entire departure from the fins and chrome which had characterised US culture in the previous years. Consequently the 63-65 Riviera has been described by historians as a styling landmark and this shape is frequently credited by car enthusiasts as being amongst the most desired in America. The 1965 model is widely referred to as the most distinguished thanks to the 'Clamshell' shutter design which was a first for retracting the headlamps into the body-shell and thus emphasised the distinctive rake of the nose.

This is a 1965 'Clamshell' 401 Wildcat example (6.6 Litre) imported over from the US by a local private collector in 2011 and declared by the US owner as correct mileage (51,000)when sold. The elderly US resident who had cherished the car for the last 28 years also declared the car as having had two owners prior to him with all details supplied within the history file. US paperwork is insufficient to provide a concrete guarantee to the mileage although the condition of the vehicle appears to substantiate the declaration.  The original Owners Protection Plan Booklet and Service record remains with this Riviera, along with the metallic ID 'Protect-O-Plate'. The original Owners Guide Book is also present, as is a large 1965 Service Book and two sets of keys.

This example is finished in Metallic Starflake Turquoise with contrasting white upholstery, black carpets and wood veneer trim. There are various luxury period extras including power steering, tilt steering column, power windows (which fold away for a fully pillarless profile), air conditioning and cruise control.

This is a numbers matching example which has not been modified but for the paintwork, side exit exhaust system and a modified replacement motor to improve reliability and function of the feature 'Clamshell' headlamps (fitted Nov 2011). The vendor describes the car as being in very good show and cruise condition and a fine example of the marque. It is complete including the slender edge trims around the wheel arches and flanks which are free of dents and distortions. These parts are often either damaged or discarded, even on show standard vehicles. The shut and reflection lines on this car are of excellent quality. Mechanically the car is described as reliable with a healthy engine burble. Power is smooth and plentiful. The steering is light and fluid with no creaking or whine. Transmission is smooth and progressive and the driving experience comfortable and rewarding.

There have been new brake hoses and shoes plus the servo has been rebuilt recently by specialist Past-Parts in Suffolk. Mileage was 30 miles between the first two MoT's. The most recent MoT test certificate expires on the 18th December 2013 and the certificate has no advisories. According to DVLA this car is one of just five Clamshell Riviera's licensed presently in the UK,  so this most certainly represents a scarce opportunity to own a striking and highly collectable example of a true American icon.

Interested parties might like to note that the four digit pre-suffix transferable Cherished Registration number '4 RXY' is included in the sale.


Interested parties should satisfy themselves as to the description and condition of each lot prior to the sale. Accordingly, buyers are on notice that each vehicle is offered ‘as is/as seen’ subject to the Terms and Conditions for the auction. Buyers are advised to inspect the vehicle in person or use a professional to carry out this service. Historics will not entertain disputes over descriptions.

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