HomePick of the DayTwo-tone paint gives this Riv a special look

Two-tone paint gives this Riv a special look


For the 1966 model year, Buick redesigned the Riviera. Gone was the car’s angular bodywork, replaced by bodywork that was sleek, graceful and elegant. 

For 1971, Buick would again redo the Riviera, this time with dramatic boat-tail styling. But the sleek coupe wouldn’t give way without something special for its 1970 finale.  

One of those cars, a 1970 Buick Riviera GS Stage 1 model, is Pick of the Day and is being advertised on ClassicCars.com by a private seller who is the car’s fourth owner.

The seller is in Phoenix, Arizona, and reports that the previous owners had the car in Oklahoma or Texas. It was one of those previous owners that had the car repainted in its stunning two-tone motif.

“Otherwise the car is original including the factory vinyl top,” the seller reports.

1970 Buick Riviera, Two-tone paint gives this Riv a special look, ClassicCars.com Journal

“I was able to speak with two prior owners who collectively have knowledge of the entire life of the car. Both reported the car has been well cared for its entire life and always garaged. It is essentially an original survivor in astonishing condition inside and out, evident in the photos and when you drive and see it in person.”

The seller adds that the car has “the rare optional bucket seats, center console shifter, and factory three-note jazz chord horn.

“The 1970 Riviera was a one-year-only body style with a brand-new grille design, fender skirts, and swooping side spears,” the seller notes. “First year for the monster 455 motor, 370 hp, 510 torque, 10:1 compression. These 4,360 lb. beasts would do zero to 60 in 7.9 seconds, a quarter mile in 15.1 seconds, and had a top speed of 132 mph. The stock carburetor was a 4 bbl Rochester Quadrajet. Transmission was the Turbo-Hyromatic THM 400.”

The seller adds that of 37,337 Rivs, only 3,505 were Gran Sport versions with posi-traction, self-adjusting power brakes with finned aluminum drums, and “AccuDrive” suspension, and other features.

“From researching many Buick Forum sites and studying the original 1970 Buick specs literature, all 1970 GS Rivieras were essentially Stage 1 ‘High Performance’ motors, though not designated with Stage 1 emblems.  (Stage 1 badging was not installed on GS Rivieras until 1973). As you can see in the photos, my Riviera GS has Stage 1 emblems added to the grille and air cleaner, done by a prior owner. No harm no foul, they look cool and actually are descriptively correct.”

1970 Buick Riviera, Two-tone paint gives this Riv a special look, ClassicCars.com Journal
455cid V8 provides 510 pound-feet of torque

The seller reports that in recent years the car has a new air-conditioning compressor, electronic ignition, drive shaft, alternator, window motor, weather stripping and other work. 

“Tilt steering, PS, PB, PW, PDL, and Power driver’s seat all functional.”

The car is for sale for $17,500. To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.

Larry Edsall
Larry Edsall
A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.


  1. Larry…another winner (your article AND this lovely "monster" Riv…I can recall 3 gliding past the Cheyennd C.C. pro-shop I worked in as an assistant to the PGA Golf pro…).
    I had no motion as to the truly epic mechanicals…you literally could use them to pull one of the large cottonwood trees lining the entry drive out by the roots (510 ft. lbs. torque…sheesh!).
    Looking forward, as always, to your offerings; and wishing your clan a peaceful and harmonious gathring of thanks…


  2. Owned a 70 Riviera, bought it used at the local Buick dealership in March 1974( oil embargo time) dark brown, brn brocade interior full power with Riviera wheel’s. Likely the ugliest Riviera built in that timeframe and the only Riv ever with fenderskirts. It was always more Electra than Riviera, but I got a very good 1 owner nice car at age 19. Drove it till 1979, and my brother sold me his 73 Toronado with less Miles , but it was not as good as the Riviera that I sold to my cousin’s good friend


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