Car: Buick Estate Wagon
What makes it special: The Estate was a line of full-sized station wagons manufactured by the Buick division of General Motors. Since its premier luxury division Cadillac didn’t offer a station wagon, the Estate was GM’s most expensive and most fully equipped entry in the market. The 1971 to 1976 Estates were the first Buick station wagons to be built on its largest chassis since the Roadmaster Estates of 1947–53.
What made it famous: The Estate Wagons also featured a new “Clamshell” tailgate design, marketed as the Glide-away Tailgate, where the rear power-operated glass slid up into the roof as the lower tailgate (manually or with power assist), slid into a recess under the cargo floor. Like a top-hinged tailgate, the clamshell design allowed a user to stand directly at the open cargo area, helping in loading and unloading in tight spaces. The rear seat could be folded flat for additional cargo, and incorporated a 60/40 split so that extended cargo and passengers could be accommodated. It was powered by a 455 cu in Buick V8, and mated to a 3-speed, TH-400 automatic transmission.
Why I would want one: I must admit, back in the day I was not a fan of these wagons, but over the years they kind of grew on me. Wagons are becoming very popular with car collectors.
Fun fact: The 1975 and 1976 models were the longest station wagons ever built.