Saturday, September 11, 2010

Saturday Night Special—Skylark's Return

You know the drill, slap a Buick grille on every new European Opel that's introduced. This is the recent GTC concept for this month's Paris show, remade into a subcompact Skylark hatchback. I made the rear side window come to a point, like the '68-'69 Skylark coupes did, but other than slight things here and there, this is still the Opel/Vauxhall GTC. The color is supposed to evoke those 'glamorous' mink stoles of the 1960s, with a natural baseball-leather interior. That's my little town in the background, lol.


  1. I know most of you will think I'm crazy for saying this, but this is the first Buick I've seen in the last 10 years that I would even consider buying! Their current lineup just doesn't generate any excitement in me whatsoever. But this car does! I love everything about it. Love the baseball leather concept for the interior. The styling exudes a high end luxury look while still maintaining a sportiness as well. I even love the color. My only concern is whether the Skylark name suits this car - I'm thinking this car may have transcended it.

  2. I agree, Skylark may have run its course, lol. So many Buick names just seem too 'big' for today's cars, Invicta, Centurion were two others I was thinking about.

    Maybe it should be Dynaflow or FIreball Eight!

  3. There was a British car called the Sparrow I believe.

    ! runner-up to Edsel comes to mind now, "Utopian Turtletop."

  4. Apollo would be good! I'm holding Wildcat for something wicket. Apollo, before the Nova clone, was a bespoke car in the early '60s that used Buick V8 engines I believe. There were several desirable 4 seat bespoke cars in that time period, with similar styling to the Facel Vegas of the time.

  5. Well, I learned something new today. I didn't know anything about the first Apollo until I just googled it. Since there was an Apollo GT, I think that would be a perfect name for this car.

  6. i kinda fell down in the research factor for that reference, lol. i've made a note to do some and then make a future post of those cool cars. So good looking and adventurous.

  7. There were only 88 total built from 1963-65. Italian coachwork, Buick 200HP V8 3.5 liter Aluminum Alloy engine. Really a gorgeous car.

  8. Casey should be given a monument by the GM big wigs for coming out with this design. The Buick faces fits perfects into a very tangible/youthful body!

    Love the color combo too!!!!

  9. Casey, et al,

    My first thought was Wildcat, but I think I suggested awhile back that Buick should use that for a hot convertible. Invicta is a cool name that Buick adopted from a British car of the prewar period. The company tried to restart production after the war with the Invicta Black Prince (what a cool name!) but things didn't go so well.

    "1946 Invicta Black Prince.
    This car was the first of only 17 produced in over 4 years of trading. KPK 75 was the show demonstrator and the only one with this body style. The other cars being mostly two door open tourers. There are 14 known survivors worldwide. Cost new in 1946: £3,000.
    Technical data
    Wentworth Saloon 6 Light. Charleswoth Bodies Ltd.
    Engine: Henry Meadows Ltd . Type PC 180, 3 Litre six cylinder DOHC.
    Twin plug head, triple carbs. Two distributors, two batteries, 24 Volt Dynastart.
    4 wheel independent suspension.
    Torsion bars front and rear."

    I got this info on Flickr where there was a picture of the 6-window sedan mentioned.

    I love the name Skylark but it acquired a much different vibe than what it started out with. I'm sure we can some up with something worthy! In any case, the car is amazing.

    Paul, NYC

  10. Thanks for that info, Paul! I bet my friend Nigel, the journalist from the UK knows all about the history of the Invicta.

    It's too bad that a name like LeSabre has such old-fogey connotations now. I always think about the original showcar from '53. I've read so many articles about it you'd think I helped design it, lol. in the original context it was quite a sporting name.

  11. Casey,

    Yes, LeSabre is one of the most famous and spectacular "dream cars" as we called them in the olden days. But Buick devalued it as the years went by. But, hey, wasn't there a Buick Wildfire dream car sometime back in the 50s -- I think it had headlights that were actually cowl-mounted spotlights. Or I could be sadly mistaken about this!

    Paul, NYC

  12. I remember a Woodhill Wildfire, an early fiberglass build-it-yourself special:

    I can't find anything in 'the googles' about a Buick Wildfire, but that doesn't mean much, lol.