Buick Riviera 1963


Buick Riviera 1963


Buick Riviera 1963

  • Origin United States of America
  • Engine 6,571 cc, V8
  • Top speed 120 mph (193 km/h)

One of the cleanest examples of the "Coke bottle" styling that swept across the industry in the 1960s was on the long, low, lithe, luxury 1963 Buick Riviera. After the dramatic "winged" styling of the 1959 model Buicks, no time was wasted in making the 1960 Buicks' appearance more conservative and traditional.

The controversial angled front fenders and angled fins at the rear were flattened out somewhat, and rounded. Fender portholes, the traditional fifties Buick trademark, returned as Ventiports, a squarish version of the porthole. The greenhouse area was unchanged, as it was shared among all five GM divisions. The overall styling seemed to be cluttered, though, and sales fell once again. Under the hood powerplants remained little changed. The main contributor to the drop in sales appears to be the 4-Door Hardtop "Flat-top" body style, as sales fell off in every model line approximately 20 percent to 25 percent.

All-new interiors were designed for 1960, although they failed to be more conservative in style. The new dashboard featured a "Mirrormatic" adjustable speedometer that could be adjusted up and down for different driver heights. A pod centrally located on the instrument panel held the optional electric clock, and at the far end, the dashboard just went away.

There was a small, flat horizontal area that accommodated the glove compartment, but this design left the heater and optional air conditioning equipment within eyesight, although covered by a small "kick panel." The effect was definitely unique, but not one of the better dashboard designs.

Floorpans were redesigned this year on all GM cars, to increase floor space by approximately 20 percent. Specifically, the size of the center floor hump was reduced, and the floor pans were lowered. Elsewhere inside the car, most models had their names spelled out on the lower door panels in the upholstery, a unique feature.