CC Capsule: The Colonnades of Melbourne Part 1 – 1973 Buick Century Luxus 2-Door Coupe

Welcome to another semi-regular series from me. I have – at last count – captured six different GM colonnades around town. That’s quite extraordinary given they weren’t officially imported here. Even more extraordinary when you consider their immediate A-body forebears, particularly the performance variants, should theoretically be more popular. But I don’t think I’m up to six on those.

The last GM intermediate to reach our shores in an official capacity was… never. We got the fullsizers in very small numbers, but this middle range was inadequately covered locally by the Holden Brougham, then more adequately by the Holden Statesman. There was just no reason to bring the colonnades over here.

Instead we got it on television.

At that time, though, I was not of an age to watch Kojak – according to dad at least.

Thanks to Corgi Toys, however, I was not denied the pleasure of a Buick Century.

A particularly guilty pleasure. This shape is not considered a classic, but in truth I really like it and I think the Corgi version got it just right. I never actually had one, but spent many hours gazing at such wonders at Robbies Toys in Chapel Street, Windsor. Now long gone.

Only thing is, I always thought it was a fullsizer. That might have something to do with it being perhaps a tad oversized compared with its playmates. Of course, a prolonged exposure to CC has set me straight.

As the cover shot shows, this example was first glimpsed from afar; up a driveway and deep into private property. I did manage to catch the eye of its owner, who allowed me to get closer and photograph the car. Unfortunately it was parked in such a way as to cramp my profile shot opportunities.

This very clean example in Bamboo Cream sported the more formal roofline in the coupe class.

Consulting this eye chart leads me to the conclusion that our hero car is a Luxus and not a Regal. Interestingly, both examples here appear not beslathered in vinyl up top, and yet all the brochure shots for this roofline that I could find sport that extra skin.

Like this one. The rear lights seem to have some pinstriping missing on our example, or is that the work of an overzealous brochure retoucher?

I prefer the four-door shape; the two-door looks a bit too truncated in the middle.

71, 712 Luxus coupes were made for 73, fewer than the 91,557 Regals. Ours is naked up top.

And it has a front bench which, along with the 350 under the hood, makes me think this is one of the more strippo examples of that year’s formal roof coupe production run.

This one was purchased over here in the mid-1970s, so it must have had a short first ownership before being sent away on a ship. As per the laws in this state back then, it was converted to RHD and still sports its original licence plates. It shares a garage with a 1948 Buick four-door (no, I haven’t had the pleasure), but it’s not getting much road time at the moment.

I’ve managed to capture at least one colonnade from each of the CPOBs, so stay tuned for more in this enthralling series.

Further Reading

1973 Buick Century Regal CC by Perry Shoar

1974 Buick Century Regal Capsule by Jospeh Dennis