• Dec 7, 2006
Flickr member cmanmt got us all excited when he submitted pix of his 1995 Buick Riviera. These are pretty, luxurious and quick. 1995 was the first year of this bodystyle, and it set the media atwitter when it debuted. GM went out on a limb with the the 1995 Riviera's styling. The previous-generation Riv had started life as a stubby little thing, and while it eventually got more graceful hindquarters, it was still pretty conservatively styled. It was a car that featured the "over 50" set in its advertising, so you know who the target demo for that one was. For the 9th (and sadly final) generation of the Riviera, caution was thrown to the wind. These were big cars, long, with lines that polarized people in to love it or hate it camps. The shape is definitely swoopy, and the style was seemingly inspired by Bill Mitchell's fine work for the General. The looks have certainly aged well, so these Rivs still turn heads out on the road today. The lucky ones that got the supercharged 3800 could turn out some quick sprints, too.

More after the jump.

cmanmt has done extensive upkeep to this mint-looking example of a cruising machine for a badmuthashutchamouth. The great thing about the Riviera is that it's got all that swaggering American styling on top of GM's excellent G platform. The G platform was extremely sturdy and was originally developed for the Oldsmobile Aurora. The Riviera was a less expensive Aurora that was more on the "personal luxury" tip. When GM does lux, they do it old school - big plush seats, power everything, loads of sound deadening, you know, your Father's Oldsmobile. With the huffer sitting atop the already-torquey 3800, there's 220-plus horsepower at the command of your right foot. If you're really creative, the G platform lives on as the Buick Lucerne with V8 power. Hmmm. Honestly though, with a Riv, it's not about brute force, it's about STYLE. Sure, it won't embarass itself when it needs to hustle, but just park it and look at it. Dig that crease that runs front to rear at the top of the fenders, through the doors and blends into the rear quarters. Style in the 90's was sometimes a misnomer, but the last generation of Riv's doesn't fall into that category.




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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 39 Comments
      • 8 Years Ago
      As an owner of a 97 Park Ave, I must add my 3 cents. I average 25-28 mpg, seat 6 VERY comfortable, Fit a 6' spruce Christmas tree in the closed trunk, And other than oil and regular maintenance, havent spent more that $200 since new.Does it excite me to drive it? No. Does it impress the neighbors? No. BUT, It will always do what I want it to without a whimper, and If I left in Compton with the keys in it and the doors open, I would return to a locked car, and a note that would read" Please dont do that again"
      Works for me.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Great Car!
      • 8 Years Ago
      GM had better interiors than everyone(EXCEPT HONDA & the first TOYOTA CELICA SUPRA) up until about 1994, when the bean-counters invented an absolutely ridiculous molded plastic and slathered it over Pontiacs and then everything else they could get their greedy, grubby hands on. Thank a young Rick Wagoner for that!
      However, if your last car was from the 90s, then GM's current interiors are head and shoulders above the bullshit you were rolling around in. It's just that, along the way, VOLKSWAGEN/AUDI HAPPENED, rendererd the entire industry obsolete. Toyota and Honda JUST CAUGHT UP, and Hyundai is TRYING, but not there yet, so since we know GM is slow, their next generation cars will be up to speed.
      Go take a look at the production Buick Enclave on the GM website. It's interior and exterior are AWESOME!!!
      • 8 Years Ago
      I've always liked the style of these cars. nice flowing lines.

      What kind of performance numbers are these capable of?

      • 8 Years Ago
      "Lithous, cars have gotten heavier and heavier because of better materials and better safety."

      nc60, in that sentence you just stated that one of the reasons cars are heavier is for better safety. Remember that.


      "Of course a 2300lb Civic can get better mileage or equivalent to a 2800lb Civic."

      So what about the Fit which is 2400lb and gets 33/38 which is lower than the claimed 44mpg? Remember, advances in metal, fuel injection systems, etc.


      " And, there you go assuming your big car is going to protect you better in a crash."

      I stated thin and light and nothing about small. And you stated earlier that heavier can make for safety gains. So, hmm, I don't know if I am assuming anything you or others wouldn't going by what you stated earlier.


      • 8 Years Ago
      I suppose all of the major reviewer's love of imports doesn't mean anything to you?

      Edmunds, consumer report, motor trend..

      There are good domestic cars, yes, but who's dominating the lists?

      Imports

      I don't see how you're more qualified than people who drive cars for a living, Phil. =)
      • 8 Years Ago
      Subaru Legacy/Outback
      compact 74 24 98

      When was the 1 millionth Legacy/Outback made?

      This is a dishonest stat sheet. Explain why NYC has fewer vehicular (non-pedestrian) fatalities than most other large US cities. Average rate of speed that vehicles travel. the West Side Hwy. and FDR Drive have most of the vheicular fatalities. Also more urban fatalities occur in the hours when there are fewer vehicles on the roads, facilitating higher rates of speed. See a trend developing based on rate of speed at time of impact?

      Now, cars sales in the US tend to take on a regional trend.

      Domestics and larger cars & trucks sell more in the ruralwide open spaces. Compact and sub-compact cars are more of an urban choice (part of the reason the imports numbers are so skewed, higher concentrations of folks in urban areas).


      1. Accidents in ruralwide open spaces often occur at much higher rates of speed than accidents in urban areas. Hence, it is expected that there will be a higher rates of fatalities.

      2. People who live in rural areas, tend to have longer commutes (unless you live on the farm where you work). Longer commutes translates to greater chances of being in an accident.

      Again, when you provide statistics, be sure that they are unimpeachable.

      What ever happened to the power of thinking for one's self. Letting other people think for you is not only stupid, it can also be dangerous.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Why does every post have to degrade to domestic/import bashing?

      I guess I'll join in.

      "Interior design and material qualities continue the high-caliber standards established by previous-generation Accords."
      "Unfortunately, there's still a lot of the worst of GM in the Cobalt SS Supercharged. This short-coupled coupe offers the least usable passenger package in the group, and its interior materials (aside from the Recaro seats) are far below the quality level set by the other contenders."

      When was GM known to have better interiors than anyone? Last time I checked nearly every major car reviewer put even Hyundai cars over GM when it comes to quality and interior materials. The Sky, the Solstice, the Cobalt, the G6, etc have all received bad marks on their interior and build quality!

      Lithous, cars have gotten heavier and heavier because of better materials and better safety. Of course a 2300lb Civic can get better mileage or equivalent to a 2800lb Civic. And, there you go assuming your big car is going to protect you better in a crash. Why don't you look at a the front end crash pictures of a light, little Mini Cooper vs a big, powerful Ford F150. The passenger compartment of the Mini is unscathed, but the F150's crushes in horribly! You can't assume bigger is safer. Nor can you assume bigger is always better..but that's another story altogether.

      Anyway, so I don't sound like a domestic hater I'll list a domestic car or two that I'd love to own.

      A Pontiac GTO or Cadillac SRX would be nice..
      I wouldn't mind an old foxbody mustang..
      I also share Jeremy's Clarkson's love for Ford GTs..




      • 8 Years Ago
      I'm not a fan of GM (Mopar Geek) but that Riv is one that, had they continued with the design, could have been a brilliant 'poor mans Aston' in appearance.

      Just a beautiful car...well, not as hot as the Boat-Tails, but close
      • 8 Years Ago
      The Rivi was a fanstastic car and very underated when it was around. I had for a demo for a while and it was true grand tourer. Nice style and interesting interior. It's a shame it sold so poorly.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Anyone else notice that the "Supercharged" badge is peeling off?

      I do like the exterior styling on the last Rivs, but sadly the interior and drivetrain are the usual '90s GM disaster. If I wanted a big cruising coupe like that, I'd look for one of the half-dozen manual SC300s.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Great car! I have a very similar 1997 Riviera. I would like to contact the owner of this car to ask him some questions about maintenance/repairs etc. Can you contact me at chrisgreenla@gmail.com? Thanks.
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