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Buick Le Sabre (1959 - 1972)

Last updated 20 October 2013

 
3
Bold styling and a real head turner, without the cost of a Cadillac
Despite being an entry level car, it's still huge and thirsty in European terms

Introduction

The Buick Le Sabre was first seen on a futuristic concept car built from cast magnesium and aluminium body panels and powered by a supercharged V8 engine in 1951. When the production car wearing the same name appeared in 1959, its initial promise was fulfilled – the Le Sabre was a radically restyled range with prominent fins that ran from the front to the rear of the body. Available as a saloon, a two-door hardtop, a convertible and an estate car, power came from a 5965cc 250bhp engine.

As the entry level Buick, it proved an immediate success and 165,577 were sold. In 1962, the looked were toned down when the car was completely restyled with clean square lines. Power was plentiful – and output climbed to 280bhp. In 1965, a new body with wider and softer lines kept the Le Sabre as Buick's full sized price leader. A further re-body in 1967, as well as a Custom series, with enhanced levels of trim, and saw the car increase in size, although the car was now only available in saloon and hard top coupe guises. In 1969 a further restyle saw the arrival of the '400' option, which included a 280bhp V8 and TurboHydramatic automatic transmission.

 

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