1939 Buick SpecialSport Coupe
Year of manufacture1939
Buick’s fresh 1939 look spanned the entire model range, from pricey Series 90 Limited Limousines to the much more attainable Series 40 offerings. For just $950, buyers could enjoy new Art Deco styling and eight-cylinder power in the form of the Series 40 Special Sport Coupe. Riding on a 120-inch wheelbase, the Special Sport Coupe enjoyed a respectable 107 horsepower from the overhead-valve straight-eight engine, which was paired with a three-speed manual transmission.
Offered out of enthusiast ownership, this Special Sport Coupe wears a well-preserved older restoration in dark green over a grey striped interior. Red wheels with trim rings and chrome hub caps provide a nice exterior contrast; they are fitted with wide whitewall tires, contributing to a period-correct appearance.
The cabin, equipped with a heater and electric clock, features a richly woodgrained dashboard; this woodgrain detailing is continued on the window surrounds. A central dash insert echoes the new-for-1939 “waterfall” motif of the car’s grille. The rear decklid, meanwhile, features light-up turn signals that are contained within the Buick Eight emblem.
Much of Buick’s prewar success was built on the quality of its Series 40 models, this car among them. Boasting fewer of the latest bells and whistles than anything from General Motor’s Cadillac division, but solidly built and certainly priced within reach of a wider swath of the American driving public, cars like this Special Sport Coupe offered buyers power and style, with many fine details found both inside and out. These same qualities are no less attractive today, making this Buick an appealing and enjoyable addition to any collection. To view this car and others currently consigned to this auction, please visit the RM website at rmsothebys.com/en/auctions/hf21.