Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Muscle Car Memories: The Mid-Year 1970 GSX

It made it debut in the cold of a Chicago winter, but people realized instantly that it was hot enough to melt the snow, and while it wasn't identical to the production version that would follow, it was clear that Buick was about to take the lid off of what had been the best kept secret of the muscle car era- the power of the Buick 455 V8 lurking under the hood. We knew all about that here at Reynolds, but the rest of the world was about to be awakened.

We're speaking of the first GSX- The dazzling white show car that wowed them on the floor of the Chicago Auto Show way back in February of 1970. And it was a dazzler all right- in a special Mother of Pearl White paint finish, with a huge front air dam, twin hood scoops, big dual exhaust ports exiting the back bumpers, an inverted u-shaped rear spoiler, black painted Buick 15" road wheels with sticky G60-15 Goodyear Polyglas tires, and a black and red striping scheme that pulled it all together and announced to the world that one very special Buick was coming, and please step aside.

The attention grabbing color scheme continued on the interior as well, with asymmetrical black and white geometric designed leather bucket seats and door panels, set off with yellow and red accent striping. The GSX logo was stitched into the door panels. The full operating console and dash featured engine turned aluminum trim panels. Loaded with optional equipment including power windows, it was all in all an exhilarating environment for the driver.

The drive train was a basically stock 455 Stage 1 engine, which in stock tril developed 360 HP @4600 RPM,  and a stump-pulling 510 lb/ft of torque @ 2800. It featured a stock 10.5 to 1 compression ratio and was mated to a Turbo Hydramatic 400 automatic transmission. The only special touch to the engine was a set of Kenne-Bell headers.

Amazingly, after the 1970 show season was completed, the car was sold intact to Len Immke Buick of Columbus, Ohio, who sold it to a retail customer. Amazingly, it survived and has been restored to its original as-shown condition and is a fixture at GS Club of America National Events.

(See more photos here courtesy of Buick Parts Directory)

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