Anybody familiar with Buick will instantly recognize the Riviera nameplate. Historically, Rivieras have been categorized as “personal luxury” vehicles — a genus of long coupes that included vehicles such as the beloved Cadillac El Dorado. The original 1963 Riviera was a 208-inch, rear-wheel-driven V8-powered head turner, while the 1973 model was even larger, at an incredible 223.4 inches long. Then came the front-wheel-drive V6 models of the 1980s, a trend that continued until 1999, when Buick retired the name.
Fast forward to 2007, when Buick showed off an Epsilon II-based concept Riviera at the Shanghai Motor Show in China. The rakish concept was designed by the Pan Asia Technical Automotive Center (PATAC), and featured futuristic gullwing doors and 21-inch wheels. Now, a recent United States Patent Office Filing shows that GM has once again trademarked the Riviera name.
So, why did GM decide to register the Riviera name now? Well, it could be nothing. Or in the case of the Chevy SS sedan, it could mean we’ve got a Buick coupe coming our way. With Opel’s desire to launch a coupe, it’s possible that the two may be a package deal. But do you think it will fit into the brand’s current direction? Buick reads the comment section, so feel free to let them know.