26 years abandoned, will this Buick LeSabre 400 run again?

The 1968 Buick LeSabre 400 looked to have found its final resting place having sat abandoned for 26 years, but Maverick Mechanic managed to resurrect her.

by | Published on 22nd Mar 2023

Some may argue that a Buick LeSabre 400 abandoned in a field is the best place for it.

Others are a touch more sympathetic.

Like this guy, who decided he’d try to get it running again and attempt driving 600 miles back home.

READ MORE: Watch 1967 Ford Mustang get pulled from a swamp after 28 years

The guy we’re referring to is Derek Bieri aka Maverick Mechanic.

In the video posted to the Vice Grip Garage YouTube channel, Bieri explains that his friends’ parents bought the Buick LeSabre 400 brand new in 1968.

In fact, they even filled out the order sheet, speccing the car with loads of goodies including an 8-track player.

Walking around the Buick LeSabre 400, Bieri says it’s not in too bad condition, with minimal rust in the usual places.

Opening the trunk he finds endless rolls of carpet.

Why someone would need this many rolls of carpet remains a mystery, unless they were a carpet fitter or perhaps had more sinister plans.

That wasn’t the only surprising thing about the Buick LeSabre 400.

Bieri lifted the hood to find the engine to be almost 100 per cent complete – a first for the Maverick Mechanic.

Speaking of that engine, the 400 model has the high compression high performance 350 small block, and the turbo 400 transmission.

Bieri set to work on the engine, which appeared to be seized causing temporary alarm, but after a short time, he managed to free it up.

Maverick Mechanic then hooked up a new battery, jacked the car up, and replaced several of the tires which weren’t holding air.

The engine seemed to fire at first attempt, but wouldn’t idle by itself and the longer it was running, the more it overheated.

Overheating issues sorted, the engine idling on its own, and the next thing to look at was the transmission.

Surprisingly the transmission was in good working order, with no trouble finding gears, so Bieri moved it out of its grave and took it for a short drive.

The brakes needed attention, so after changing the brake lines, giving it some fresh brake fluid, and changing out the brake master, she was good to go.

Despite some mechanical issues en route, Bieri managed to drive the Buick LeSabre 400 the 600 miles home from South Dakota.

Once again, it was a successful revival for Maverick Mechanic that’s definitely worth a watch.



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Adam Gray is an experienced motoring journalist and content creator based in the United Kingdom. Using his media accreditation with motor manufacturers’ press offices, Adam test drives the latest cars and attends new vehicle press launches, producing written reviews and news pieces for supercarblondie.com. Before joining the Supercar Blondie team, Adam was Motoring Editor for Portfolio North magazine, North East Motoring Editor at Reach plc, and provided motoring content on a freelance basis to several lifestyle and business publications in the North of England. When he’s not behind the wheel of the latest car, Adam can be found at his local rink playing ice hockey or supporting his beloved Middlesbrough FC.

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