1958 Buick Limited Riviera Four-Door Hardtop
Perhaps the most amazing car at the show, even though my favourite was the Packard.
The Buick Limited series was revived in 1958 as the ultimate Buick for the model year, using the GM C platform. In a model year where General Motors's answer to Chrysler's 'Forward Look' was to update its 1957 Buicks and Oldsmobiles by slathering them in excessive amounts of chrome, the 1958 Buicks received the ultimate treatment. This car was more expensive than the equivalent Cadillac at the time. Fashion-Aire Dynastar grille, cast of 160 chrome squares, each, according to Buick PR pieces, "shaped in a design to maximize the amount of reflective light". Buick also added quad headlights and three emblems bearing a stylized 'V', one a medallion on the hood and the other two as gun-sight fender-toppers. The Buick "Sweepspear" side trim, a styling hallmark since 1949, was joined by broad chrome panels attached to the rear quarter panels. Tail lights were housed in massive chrome housings; each trunk lid received a chrome grip in the center. In comparison to the junior models in the Buick lineup, the Limited was slightly more restrained. Each Limited traded its chromed side panel trim for a body-color-keyed insert decorated with fifteen slanted hash marks (three groups of five). The Limited also received its own rear tail treatment that traded the heavy chrome tail light housings for a wraparound tail light lens broken up by four chrome bands. Rear bumper 'Dagmars' housed 'Dual Jet' back-up lights. Available only as a four-door hardtop, two-door hardtop coupe or convertible, the Limited rode Buick's 127.5 inch wheelbase, with its body stretched 227.1 inches, just shy of 19 feet long. Inside, buyers were treated to high quality fabrics in sedans and coupes, full leather in convertibles.