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1940 BUICK SPECIAL SERIES 46-C CONVERTIBLE COUPE Chassis no. 13671295 Engine no. 69365104

Estimate: US$55,000 - US$65,000
Lot 177

Chassis no. 13671295
Engine no. 69365104

248ci OHV Inline 8-Cylinder Engine
Single Carburetor
107bhp at 3,400rpm
3-Speed Column Shift Manual Transmission
Front Independent Suspension – Live Rear Axle
4-Wheel Drum Brakes

*Excellent example of Buick's last pre-WWII Convertible
*Two door, five passenger convertible coupe with full-width rear seat
*The Special Series 40 - 121 inch wheelbase
*Micropoised Dynaflash valve-in-head straight eight
*Body by Fisher


All of the 1940 Buick production was described by the maker as "new". For the Buick Series 40 Special the wheelbase was increased by one inch to 121 inches, which in turn enabled dual (spare wheel) side mounts to be installed and front doors capable of being fully opened to coexist on the same car. The front fenders incorporated the headlamps, and the front grille was more dominant with its horizontal bars. There were minor interior changes over the previous year although the fitment of a dual diaphragm fuel pump that would facilitate windshield wiper performance improvement should not be overlooked. In spite of being Buick's entry level series, the car was full-size and met the market's expectation for comfort and performance.

Buick Specials featured an all-steel construction that was a rigid I-beam frame, both front and rear stabilizer bars, a thermal circuit breaker which eliminated the need for fuses, and an Aerobat carburetor on the iconic 248ci OHV straight 8-cylinder Dynaflash engine. It operated quietly and gave off a very luxurious feel, thanks to its aluminum rockers, and the rubber shims between its Fisher-built B-body and the frame. The torque tube on the live rear axle gave a very comfortable ride and responsive on-road behavior. The Model 46C Convertible (there were both 2- and 4-door versions) was designed for open-air family driving.


This Convertible Coupe's early history is unknown although it is believed to have sat outside a gas station as early as the 1970s. It was purchased possibly from either its second or third owner, some 23 or 24 years ago, by a Jerry Larson. Larson took it to well-known hot rod restorer Bruce Smith of Big Lake, Minnesota for a frame-up, stripped-to-the metal restoration. It needed everything: exterior, interior, and all mechanical systems had to be dealt with. The rebuilt motor is correct for the car, although not the original. The result was as you see it today, truly excellent. It then sat in a climate-controlled warehouse for eight or nine years, only having been uncovered within the past 12 months. It was re-commissioned in late 2014 and a new black Stayfast top was installed.

Today it starts easily and runs strongly – the 3-speed column-shift manual gearbox is buttery smooth and the 4-wheel hydraulic brakes pull it up sharply and in a straight line - and presents well in its original Sequoia Cream (one of eight colors available in 1940 mixed by Ditzler Color Company of Detroit) and black interior.

The odometer reading of 73,917 miles is believed to be correct, although only approximately 1,000 miles have been covered since restoration, making this striking car "near new" once more.

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