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Flybrian

1953 Skylark turns out to be very special

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Custom Skylark Found in Sarasota
It's 1953 Again as One-Off Buick Skylark Convertible Surfaces
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Link to Original Article @ Edmunds


SARASOTA, Fla. — It dawned slowly on collector and restorer Eugene Cohen: The 1953 Buick Skylark convertible he was working on was a one-of-a-kind. He already knew the car was one of only 1,690 built by GM, but details found on none of those other Skylarks made him realize this one was built as a showcar — or as a special treat for some VIP or employee of Buick.

Cohen said the "general consensus among retired GM executives...at vintage-car meets" is that it was probably an auto show display model. The big tipoff was the blank trim and paint codes on the Skylark's ID plate, indicating the car was destined to get individualized paint and upholstery.

True to the idea of '50s high style, those original individualized colors were seafoam green on the exterior and emerald green on the front fender wells and interior upholstery. The convertible top frame was a matching emerald green, whereas the standard '53 Skylarks had tan or black. Perhaps the most interesting departure from production Skylarks was the chrome-plated dashboard.

GM used to build one-offs regularly before the era of government regulation of production models; such celebrities as TV-western star Dale Robertson, GM President Harlow Curtice and King Ranch mogul family the Klebergs got 'em. Cohen's Skylark, he eventually learned, had been made for one Muriel Dalgell. Who she is, and why she got such a special ride, is lost to the mists of history.

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Love those red inner wheel wells. Reminds me of the GTO. :wub:

The grille/dagmar/bumper on these cars is so overwhelmingly chrome-gazmic!

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Wow! Beautiful, beautiful car!

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The article is right; lots of these specials were built- and not just for show. In the heyday, any GM division would build you just about anything you wanted if you kicked in a little extra $.

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The article is right; lots of these specials were built- and not just for show. In the heyday, any GM division would build you just about anything you wanted if you kicked in a little extra $.

I wish that could still be done.

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A gorgeous car. Is the car in the photos the same car in the article? If so... why on earth change the colors of a one-off?
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Well, since there are no color codes on the data plate, who's to say it's wrong? ;) Plus, red & black usually go over a hellva lot easier than 2-tone green.

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