1932 Buick Model 57S Special Sedan

As the foundational division of corporate giant General Motors, Buick was positioned for continued success from 1931 onward with powerful and sophisticated new eight-cylinder engines powering them across the board. Ranging in displacement from 221 to 345 cubic inches (upsized for 1932), Buick’s all-new “eights” were technically advanced and featured the marque’s soon-to-be famed “Valve in Head” architecture, rooted in the pioneering work of David Buick’s close early associate and engineering genius, Walter L. Marr. Interestingly, Buick’s new eight-cylinder engines were unique to each series and shared no common parts, with the exception of the upper-level Series 80 and 90. Buick performance was strong by early-1930s standards, establishing a Buick hallmark that continued through the 1990s.

Decidedly upscale in character while other marques withered in the face of the deepening Great Depression of the early 1930s, Buick’s diverse, all-eight-cylinder range included four distinct model lines, giving buyers exceptional choice. At the entry level, Series 50 was derived from Buick’s short-lived Marquette companion line of 1930, with a wide array of eight open and closed body styles available on a versatile 114-inch wheelbase chassis. The influence of Harley Earl’s famed GM Styling studios on Buick’s models was abundantly clear by 1932, with the elimination of dated steel sun visors and the addition of a unique and attractively tapered new grille and windshields raked back 10 degrees for a sleeker look. Longer, more streamlined fenders heightened the attractive presence of the 1932 Buick models.

In addition to Buick’s renowned “eights,” the marque’s sophisticated engineering included smooth-shifting synchromesh transmissions and oil-temperature regulators that cooled motor oil at higher speeds and warmed it in colder weather. Handsome wood-spoke wheels would be eliminated at the end of model year 1932. While Buick production did decline measurably for 1932 from 1931 levels in both calendar- and model-year terms, the GM division remained in sound financial health and benefited from the strength of its gigantic corporate parent, General Motors.

Very attractively presented throughout, this Fisher-bodied 1932 Buick Model 57S 4-door Special Sedan continues to benefit handsomely from a high-quality, well-detailed, and properly maintained older restoration. Finished in a two-tone beige and brown livery, it is an appealing example throughout. The Model 57S Special Sedan had several key features that set it apart from the rest of the Series 50 line. It introduced Buick’s so-called “Wizard Control” vacuum-operated clutch and Ride Regulator adjustable ride control, along with chrome horns and headlamps.

Period correct features and accessories on this 57S include wooden artillery wheels, chrome headlamps and tie bar, dual chrome trumpet-style horns, and a rear-mounted spare. Trimmed in Beige upholstery, the Buick’s spacious passenger compartment remains attractive, equipped with an optional heater and a striking wood-veneer instrument panel with a diamond motif, housing an OEM AC speedometer/odometer/trip odometer, ammeter, and fuel-level, oil-pressure, and coolant-temperature gauges. Passenger amenities include a correct, easy-care rubber floor mat up front, wool carpeting in the rear, and roll-down privacy blinds to the rear-quarter windows and rear window. Residing within the tidy engine compartment is Buick’s renowned  Valve-In-Head eight-cylinder engine, displacing 234.5 cubic inches and factory-rated at 82.5 BHP at 3,200 RPM.

While 9,766 examples of the Model 57S were produced, few remain today, with fewer still in such fine overall condition. Utterly charming, it offers an affordable entry into the wonderful world of pre-war motoring, with plenty of room for friends and family to share in the experience.


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