Next week we will be going to SEMA. At SEMA there will be countless beautiful cars, tons of restorations to be seen and other cars that represent the top 1% of builds. Prior to SEMA everyone is being teased by wonderful cars like Ford’s “7 Mustangs”, the fine works the Ring Brothers put out and countless others like the Chevrolet Hot Wheels Camaro. But today we look at something quite the opposite. These next few weeks all anyone will hear about is the story behind the transformation of the car. In this writeup we will do the opposite, we will talk about the mentality behind not changing it. In fact, we take a look back at something that would be overlooked by many or quickly taken to a paint booth to make into a show car. Today we look at a 1955 Buick Century.
Fan Car Friday is a segment where we want to share with the world the automobiles that our fans restored. These cars are not for sale and we have absolutely no affiliation/relationship with the cars, the build or the owners, we saw the photos and felt they should be shared with the world to inspire others on their build. Or, simply put, its great eye candy for those of us who can’t make it to car shows or meetups as often as we would like. This post was written with verbal consent from the owner.
This vehicle was found in a barn about a year ago. Scottie had a friend come across it and immediately called him. A quick drive and some negotiating later the Buick changed hands to someone who could take care of it and off to its new home it went. There were two things changed on this car, and for good reason. The first is the headlights. This car is going to be driven frequently, so something safe and modern had to be bolted on. The second is the wheels. Again, it came to safety and a little bit of vanity. They had to match the look of the car, and it was well executed. Don’t worry though, these 6 original parts are stored safely in a box and can be reverted back to original in under 30 minutes.
People often like to take a car of the past and turn it into something new and modern. They want to put on some new suspension, drop in a big engine and turn it into something that looks old but feels new. Don’t get us wrong-That can be tons of fun, it can allow you to overcome the technological limitations of the past and turn something that was a Sunday driver into something that can be driven across the country to your friend’s wedding or on a whim to your kid’s graduation because the weather is nice. But there is something to be said about driving a car the way it was. And you hear that phrase often “the way it was” in the car building community. People remember the hardwork and fun that went into the cars of the past but the modern conveniences of today replace the ill remembered troubles from back in the day.
Cars today are so quiet, they drive so smooth, they accelerate without issue and you can often hit 80 on the highway without realizing it because of how solid everything is put together. Sometimes, though we need a reminder of how everything used to be, that’s where this Buick Century comes in. Sure, those restomods are fun and really let you live the dream you had when you were a kid. But also getting to sit in something that makes you really feel the road, doesn’t allow you to drift off and day dream, something that requires you to be in tune with the car is fun in its own kind of way.
If you do a quick google search you will see a great deal of restored Buick Century cars. They have disk brakes, they have an engine swap or maybe an EFI system and often have replaced parts. But that’s the issue with them. They have some modern components, but some are still old. And that’s where you run into problems. They may have a monster engine, but the car cant take it and it controls a little funny. They may have a great new transmission, but it changes the feeling of the car or it shift heavy. It may have disk brakes, but they now require you to apply more force than before because the system wasn’t designed for that and the owner didn’t properly replace the assisting power. It be able to go 100 miles an hour, but everything feels like its about to come apart. You get the picture.
Something is to be said about taking the car the way it was, and driving it the way that teams of men and hundreds of thousands of work hours intended it to be. Sure, the paint job may not be great. But I guarantee you park this behind any modern Corvette or Mustang and more people will be looking to talk with you or grab a quick photo before they do those other two cars.
Today we want to thank Scottie. Not for this being a time machine back into the past. Not for being some well preserved, near pristine, all original car. And not for even letting it sit as a perfect example of mother nature and father time working together to make this car as it sits today. But for taking ownership of this car and letting it continue to be an old relic of the past. Taking something many would add to their collection to brag about and instead turning it into a car he drive whenever he feels like it.