Vehicle Registration – OYT 47
Chassis Number – 4959889
Engine Number- 51500307
CC – 4064
Body Colour – Blue
In 1948 the fourth generation ‘Roadmaster’ Convertible was the Buick Motor Company’s top of the range. Powered by a 5.2 litre (320cuin) Fireball 18, it was 18 feet long and weighed 2,100kg. The car was styled by legendary Harley Earl and it was obvious from his re-introduction of chrome and the return to ‘flamboyant’ swoopy lines that the austerity of World War two was becoming a memory.
For the ’48 model there were a number of changes including a ‘Series’ script on the front wings and the white ‘Tenelite’ steering wheel that had been used previously was traded in for a black one, in order to match the change from a two-tone wood grain instrument panel to a two-tone grey one with silver instruments. A new optional custom trim option was offered, consisting of cloth upholstery with leather bolsters with the robe cord cover and lower door panels trimmed in leatherette. Convertibles acquired power windows, seats and top as standard equipment. However, the biggest advancement was the introduction of ‘Dynaflow’, the first passenger car torque converter transmission. Optional on the Roadmaster in its first year, it was so popular that by the following year it was standard equipment.
This 1948 Roadmaster is fitted with the much hyped Dynaflow transmission and has been in the previous owners possession since 1974, with the accompanying V5 informing us that it was imported into the UK from Belgium on the 21st June 1954. As can be seen, it’s in classic ‘barn find’ condition and requires total restoration. The validity of such a large undertaking is aided by the fact that as a result of a ’49 Roadmaster Convertible starring in the film ‘’Rain Man’’ with Dustin Hoffman and Tom Cruise, Roadmaster Convertibles from the late forties/early fifties are now seriously ‘cool’. Consequently a number of these, comparatively uncomplicated cars have been, or are being restored and there is now very good availability of parts and panels, which is good news as some of the interior and most of the chrome appears to be missing.
The restoration is one for the brave, however, when finished this stylish American film star would be welcome anywhere.