Pick of the Day: 1991 Buick Reatta, an Allante at half price

The 2-seat coupe has become a rare but inexpensive collector opportunity

8
6220
buick
The Reatta was Buick's attempt to market an exclusive 2-seater

Wouldn’t you really rather have a Buick?  So asked GM’s marketing team in a series of TV commercials promoting the Buick lineup in the 1980s and ’90s. 

The Reatta was Buick’s 2-seat coupe (and later convertible) from that era, and it packaged smooth styling and advanced technology into a car that provided a lot of the same luxury of the upmarket Cadillac Allante, but for about half the price.


Unfortunately for Buick, the Reatta never quite hit its sales target of 20,000 units per year.  In fact, over the course of the Reatta’s four-year lifespan, it only sold about 20,000 units in total

The Pick of the Day is a 1991 Buick Reatta coupe from the last year of production in a nice shade of Polo Green – a color offered only for that model year.  The private seller in Darien, Illinois advertising the Buick on ClassicCars.com said that the car has been well cared for and always garaged.  It has just a little over 100,000 miles on the odometer, but “runs strong and starts in an instant with Buick’s reliable 3800 6-cylinder fuel-injected engine.” 

buick

Powering all Reattas was that same Buick V6, which produced 170 horsepower and was always paired with a 4-speed automatic transmission.  Inside, Reatta’s technology in the seemed to be ahead of its time.  Early models in 1988 and 1989 had a touch-screen Graphic Control Center (GCC) that operated as a command platform for climate-control, audio and trip-computer operation.  The 1990 and 1991 models abandoned that interface for a more conventional system with buttons and knobs. 

RELATED:  Pick of the Day: 2007 BMW Z4M, rarity, reliability and fast fun

The Reatta was intended from the beginning to be a specialty car, offering exclusivity and status to those who could afford it.  Three decades later, that exclusivity has heightened to an even greater extent.  It’s difficult to estimate how many of the 1,214 Reatta coupes from 1991 remain on the road today, but for $6,800, this coupe seems like a nice collector opportunity. 

buick

Notable recent maintenance items include new tires, an upgraded stereo system, and recently serviced air conditioning, the seller says.  The Buick’s tan leather interior looks to be in great shape as well. 

Today, there are communities focused on the recognition and preservation of Reattas.  One of them is the Reatta Division of the Buick Club of America (BCA).  The buyer of this 1991 will surely turn some heads and enjoy the attention at upcoming activities if they choose to join the club. 

To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.

Advertisement
Tyson Hugie grew up in a family of gearheads and enjoys anything to do with automotive and motorsports. He is a contributing editor to Redline Reviews, a YouTube channel with coverage from major auto shows. He also writes for Arizona Driver Magazine and holds leadership positions with a number of car clubs. Tyson has lived in Arizona for 10 years and his current obsession is Japanese cars from the early 1990s which, though hard to believe, are now becoming classics. Tyson can usually be found exploring offbeat and obscure road trip destinations on his blog "Drive to Five," which started as a way to share travel stories and experiences with his now-550,000-mile Acura.

8 COMMENTS

  1. Readers might be interested to know that some of the body engineering for the Reatta was done in Britain by an engineering and design company called IAD, based on the south coast of England. The same company also did the early structural work on the Mk1 Miata body for Mazda. Because the now late boss John Shute was into MGBs, the company used the roadster shell as the baseline for the Mazda, the MG being structurally quite sound. The idea was to improve on it of course, which was duly achieved. IAD no longer exists, but it also produced a few interesting concept cars including the Lancia Magia from the early ’90s.

    • It has had a respray in the original color by the previous owner, who used the clay method. throw a towel on the hood and it rolls down, It is not perfect has one ding behind the left taillight and the front foil is a bit rough. Overall it’s at least an 8 on the 10 scale…

  2. Tyson. Thanks for choosing our ride for Pick-Of-The-Day. It was a Hoot to see us on an e-mail we read every day. Thanks and Have a Happy Day…

  3. Reatta by Buick made one of 60 all white my brother bought one convertible he should of kept it do you remember

  4. My stepfather hung out with another (to me, anyway) old guy that had one of these in the mid-’90’s; his was red. Steps was an Eldorado guy, bought a new one every other year ’til GM killed ’em, and they would drink coffee and argue the Reatta v. Eldo “personal luxury” thing da** near every time I saw them together. As a big motor/smaller car guy (can you say “GTO”?), I kept my peace.
    I did like the styling, and the GM, not “Buick’s” 3.8 was one of the very best engines ever built by anyone. Had over 240k miles on the 3.8 in my ’94 Bonneville; never a problem, never shoulda sold it, miss the anvil like reliability.
    Someone is going to steal this. Wish I had the disposable income and space.

  5. Good color and a final year car, but having had both an 89 reatta and an 89 allante, the Cadillac is a far superior car. The Buick is all Buick – cheapo feel throughout, not nearly as solid as the allante. I sold my reatta after a year and I kept the allante. If caddy had put the 89 out in 87 and not been perpetually one step behind Mercedes the whole run, the story may have been different

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here