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WTB Buick Riviera - Olds Toronado Convertible

D Yaros

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Interested in acquiring either a Sixth Generation Buick Riviera Convertible (1979 - 1985)

                                                or a Third Generation Oldsmobile Toronado Convertible (1979 - 1985).


Car must be in very good condition, or better.  Prefer low miles.  Red, or variant thereof, factory paint a big plus. 


And yes, I am aware some/most of the rag tops were ASC modifications.


Any/All leads appreciated!  Thanks -

Edited by D Yaros
Correct Title (see edit history)
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You must know, Dave, that there were no Toronado

convertibles, except maybe a small number that were

converted privately.  You might find, also among those

private conversions, some Cadillac deVille convertibles

from the late 1970's, and some Lincoln ones as well.


The Riviera convertibles were factory-authorized

beginning in 1982, though actually converted, as you noted,

by American Sunroof Corporation.  White or red were the

only paint colors offered, and all had red interiors.

Edited by John_S_in_Penna (see edit history)
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John, not sure where you got your source about no Toronado convertibles but that is erroneous!  We were able to get Toronado convertibles through Hess & Eisenhardt as part of a factory authorized program.  Cutlass Ciera's as well.  I am not guessing, I sold a bunch of them at my dealership.  Many to personal friends.

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I didn't know they were factory-authorized.

They weren't in the catalogue.  Was the level of

"factory authorization" the same as for the Buick

Riviera convertible, or did H&E simply buy a few

dozen of these models at an arranged price and

convert them entirely on their own, printing their

own glossy sheets and making individual arrangements

with Oldsmobile dealers?  Is it true then that

the 1977-up Cadillac deVille convertibles had factory

authorization in the same way, too?


I do remember seeing a Cutlass Ciera convertible

(H & E conversion) at the New York automobile show.

Any insights and details that Steve M. or anyone can

share about this program would be interesting.

(Actually, it would make a good multi-page article for

our national magazine, documenting the times for


Edited by John_S_in_Penna (see edit history)
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John as I stated!  We were able to get Toronado convertibles through Hess & Eisenhardt as part of a factory authorized program.  Those cars like many, many other cars whether they were marketing group cars or late in the year offerings never made it into any catalog.  In the case of the Toronado's we ordered them from the factory and they were delivered to H & E and then to us.  I can't speak for Cadillac.

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On 5/29/2020 at 6:44 AM, 8E45E said:

A 1984-'85 Cadillac Eldorado convertible (also a factory-authorized ASC conversion) would also be an excellent choice.



Correct me if I am wrong, but did not the Cadillac Eldos of this era have the HT4100 engine that was so fraught with problems that Caddy quit offering that power plant?

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D Yaros: Think the engine you are referring to was the 368 engine offered in 1981 Eldorados. It was designed to run in either 4 cylinder mode, 6 cylinder mode or all 8 cylinders. Valves were rendered open or inoperable  by electronic computer. Designed for optimum gas mileage or power as operator determined. Many owners complained that the transitions between the modes were jerky. Operation far from Cadillac smooth. After significant development costs Cadillac dropped the engine for 82. I have heard the HT4100 was considered low on power but otherwise dependable.

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No, the engine I am referencing had aluminum heads on a cast iron block.  It had an aluminum cylinder block with cast-iron sleeves, and unique lightweight block casting .  Problems originating from the used of different metals in the block and head became pervasive, often resulting in head-gasket failures. Additional issues included oil-pump failures and head bolts pulling free of the block.


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Wow. I have an 81 Eldorado with the 368 and i am familiar with all the problems in that engine. I have not had any Cadillacs with the HT4100. I have had 2 Cadillacs (a 2001 and a 2004) with Northstar engines. The earlier Northstar had many of the problems similar to those you related to the HT4100. Headgaskets, head bolts and many coolant leaks. Engine had to be fully rebuilt at 190,000. Not complaining but something was always going wrong. After the rebuild it has been fine. The 04 also has been fine, at least to 160,000. My only point is that it looks like Cadillac engineers designed at least 3 engines that had some serious shortcomings. At least that has been my experience with the 368 and the earlier Northstar.

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