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About J3Studio

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  • Birthday 05/27/1968

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    Philadelphia 'burbs

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  1. We got ours on May 1st—I know this because I mentioned it to @NC1968Riviera in an email.
  2. Perhaps the October 1962 issue? https://books.google.com/books?id=qd0DAAAAMBAJ&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false
  3. The test I referred to had all four of them and it's in the Google Popular Mechanics archive. With any luck, this link works: https://books.google.com/books?id=SeMDAAAAMBAJ&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false
  4. In base price, more expensive than a Buick SportWagon of the same year and only one inch shorter—the brands were definitely beginning to overlap, something that had not been true earlier in the decade. There's that story—I don't know whether it's true—that the Caprice originally existed because Chevrolet executives were required to drive Chevrolet vehicles, and a Corvette wasn't appropriate for everyone.
  5. I find the different views of what the first-generation Riviera's competition was very illuminating—which is why I asked the question. I also often ask original owners of any collector car about how they made their purchase decision, like @Pat Curran with his 1971 Monte Carlo. The whole first-generation Riviera competition question is an interesting one. Flory (a generalist, but a serious researcher) sees the competition as 300-J/K, Avanti, and Thunderbird. A January 1963 comparison test in Popular Mechanics included the Avanti, Corvette, Riviera, and Thunderbird. Certainly, some weren't ever going to switch from Ford to General Motors. Others wouldn't buy a Buick, no matter what. I'm sure Buick's marketing people calculated that all into their hard limit of 40,000 produced in that first year. Automotive marketers like to talk about "conquest" sales—when a purchaser allegedly moves from one marque to another. Those sales do exist, but I'm not convinced they are a large number. I am mindful of when we bought our first Corvette in 2003. We received several surveys inquiring why we had chosen our convertible over the BMW M3 convertible or the Porsche Boxter S—what was said to be the competition. Those were two good cars, but we never considered anything but a Corvette convertible—the only question was which one.
  6. I like it—it fits my "there's room for one in the world and that could be it" criteria.
  7. That's a good point. Despite being the market leader, four-seat Thunderbirds just don't seem to sell for as much as their later arriving competitors do.
  8. Sixties air conditioning could be crazily expensive. The automatic climate control air conditioner introduced in the middle of the 1966 model year was $484.15—that would be a $3,900 option nowadays. Air conditioning didn't become standard on the Riviera until 1978.
  9. The 1983 XX Anniversary Edition Riviera was expensive, but not quite up to the eye-watering level of the convertible. The option itself was $3,759, making the minimum price for a XX Anniversary Edition $18,987. Of course, many went out the door with thousands of dollars of extra equipment, but so did many of the $24,960 base price convertibles. In today's dollars, a XX Anniversary Edition is about $49,400. The 1999 Silver Arrow was actually more expensive in 2020 dollars—about $59,300.
  10. Here you go—original base prices normalized for 2020 CPI. It does make the raw numbers look much more impressive than normalizing for 1999. And yes, the Riviera convertibles were expensive cars to buy new—you can get a C8 Corvette convertible for about the same price.