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In the Garage: 1968 Buick GS 400

1968 Buick GS 400 owned by James Hoffman.

1968 Buick GS 400 owned by James Hoffman. Credit: Handout

THE CAR AND ITS OWNER

1968 Buick GS 400 owned by James Hoffman

WHAT MAKES IT INTERESTING

When Pontiac launched the early ‘60s muscle car craze with its GTO, conservative Buick jumped on the bandwagon with the 1965 Gran Sport option on its mid-sized Skylark.  By 1968, it was a separate model sporting a “GS” badge and selling in fairly small numbers.   “It is one of 2,014 made,” Hoffman says of his ride. The convertible’s 340-horsepower engine could move the car to 60 miles per hour in less than eight seconds. 

HOW LONG HE’S OWNED IT

For more than 25 years

WHERE HE FOUND IT

Hoffman found it at an eastern Long Island car show.

CONDITION

“I pulled the engine and transmission and had them rebuilt,” he says, “and I cleaned and painted as much as possible.”

TIPS FOR OWNERS

“These are old cars.  They need lots of ‘TLC,’” he advises.

VALUE

Hoffman says he insures the Buick for $32,000.  Hagerty, the classic car insurer, places an “average value” of $25,716 on this model before options, with versions in top condition worth closer to $60,000.

THE BOTTOM LINE

“I had a 1968 GS 400 when I was a kid,” Hoffman says.  “When I saw this GS, it was the same color and eventually I had to buy it. I must have gone back and forth four times trying to make up my mind. When I went back the last time, it was gone. I don't know how many times I kicked myself. When I got home, I called the number and he (the owner) was still selling. I bought it on the spot. He drove over and that was the beginning of a new life with my 1968 Buick GS 400 convertible.”

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