BUICK ROADHAWK HISTORY
The Buick Roadhawk was actually a special edition Skyhawk when Y43 (RPO) or Roadhawk Package Option was included on the order sheet for build out. A total of 450 buyers paid $675 for this special add-on package in 1979 and 1000 paid $695 in 1980. The Roadhawk option was only available for these two model years.
Much of the information for this Buick Roadhawk History page was gleaned from Bryan McCready's website on Buick Roadhawks. There is not much Buick Roadhawk history on the internet other than McCready's site. He promises that he is researching for more Buick Roadhawk history.
According to McCready, life for the Buick Roadhawk began as an attempt by Buick to get the H-body platform into the Nascar circuit. Unfortunately Nascar decided that the Buick Roadhawk's history would not include racing on their tracks as they deemed them unable to handle the required speeds. McCready notes that IMSA Chevy Monza (Chevy's H-body with some minor cosmetic differences) were tearing up their competition in the Camel GT series in the late 70's. Unfortunately Nascar rejected the H-body and went with the GM F-body instead.
Buick Roadhawks were built in the Lordstown, Ohio assembly plant as silver Buick Skyhawks with oyster interiors. Those needing the Roadhawk add-on package were sent to Robin Products Company, Inc.'s production facility in Warren, Ohio. Once additional assembly was completed the cars were then shipped to the dealer that took the order. Robin Products Company, Inc. located in Farmington Hills, Michigan handled the design and fabrication of the Roadhawk components. A search on the internet for a company listing did not turn up anything. Robin Products may have just been a business entity created for this one project.
It would be interesting to know if the design of the rear spoiler and the add-on side panels were actually wind tunnel tested or have any real function with the air.
These side panels have garnered both praise and criticism or as they say applauds and boos from the gallery. I remember reading Car and Driver magazine's review of the 1980 Buick Roadhawk and they referred to them as questionable styling. It is safe to say that most collectors regard them as a artistic brush stroke that gave the Buick Skyhawk a different and more sporty look.
If you have anything information related to Buick Roadhawk history please share it with us or contact Bryan McCready.