1954 Buick Skylark

by | Jan 10, 2020

Photo Credit: Nathan Leach-Proffer, Courtesy of RM Sotheby's

1954 Buick Skylark

by | Jan 10, 2020

Photo Credit: Nathan Leach-Proffer, Courtesy of RM Sotheby's










RM Sotheby’s


January 16-17

According to the sales pitch for the 1954 Buick Skylark convertible, “This is the Buick for those with a boundless zest for automotive adventure.” 

Buick built a Skylark in 1953, but this one was on a new, smaller chassis. What sets it apart is yet another dramatic body from the GM design studios of Harley Earle. Buick described the car as having “flight-designed lines, with road-snugging compactness, and corsair-sweep of a finned rear deck.” During this time, designers found aviation to be the new muse to influence their work.

The dramatic profile of the vehicle includes big wheel cutouts that could be painted a contrasting color for emphasis. Tucked inside are the chromed Kelsey Hayes wire wheels with their whitewall tires. Decorative chrome is featured again on the fins in the back, positioned to house the taillights. Finishing the curved silhouette is the rounded barrel slope of the trunk lid. 

Though the Skylark looks rather tall on its wheels, it is several inches shorter than other Buick models. Measuring 206.3 inches long (8 inches more than today’s Chrysler 330), it weighs in at 4,260 pounds.

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The interior reflects the era with its sizeable four-way power bench seats, a large steering wheel, basic gauges straight ahead, a Selectronic push button radio, Easy-Eye glass, an automatic radio antenna, and a Weather-Warden heater sans air conditioning.

Rain won’t spoil a joyride in the Skylark. The convertible comes equipped with a large hydraulically-operated top. The Skylark features 200-horsepower with a Fireball V-8 engine, an Airpower Carburetor, Twin-Turbine Dynaflow transmission and Buick Safety Power Steering. That 322-cubic-inch engine is better known as the “Nailhead” and produces 309 lb-ft of torque.

Also known as the Model 100, the RM Sotheby’s example is one of 836 Buick Skylarks produced in 1954. The original price was $4,4831, and if an advanced feature was on Buick’s options list in 1954, it was included on the Skylark.

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