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Buick Lucerne

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Comments

  • vic10vic10 Posts: 188
    So, after reading the epic stories on HID's, is it safe to assume that the car thieves have moved on to something else, unlike in 2005 when they were ripping out the front ends of Maxima's to get at the headlights....and my car dealer strongly recommended that I NOT buy them if I was living in or parking in a large U.S. city...???
  • fzhou99fzhou99 Posts: 1
    I agree! These lights are very bright and irritating to other drivers (especially at night and when a car is on your rear with the light on you all the time)

    Better convenience for the driver but not other people - typical of rich people let me go ahead of you mentality
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,251
    The lights on my 03 LeSabre are different in brightness from my 1998 LeSabre. The 03 is fine. I don't need to blind on-coming drivers to see myself. If I'm overdriving the lights and need brighter ones at night, I probably should slow down.
  • finfin atlantaPosts: 588
    My comments address only the lighting issue, vic10. Theft of the light itself, as you mention, is another problem. No doubt some people will not buy a car with HID's just because of the potential theft of the units, as with the Maxima. But some don't care. They want the lights.

    Again, theft is a problem waiting to be solved. As someone posted above, HID's are probably the "light of the future" so someone needs to make them more theft resistant. All ideas would be welcome at Nissan, GM, Toyota, etc....
  • fsmmcsifsmmcsi Posts: 792
    I found a CXS equipped exactly as I thought I would want it (all options except the sun roof and navigation), including the discontinued glacier blue exterior and tuxedo interior. Before seeing that car, my wife and I stopped at the nearest Buick dealer just to look at Lucernes in general. We have very briefly sat in one before, but it was still wrapped in shipping materials, and we saw one at the auto show. This time we looked more closely.

    First, I am looking for a car for business use. We carry a full-sized digital camera, files and papers, and other things, plus tools and equipment to inspect buildings for toxic materials. Real estate agents, insurance adjusters, and various other business people would have similar needs. People traveling and families with children also need places to keep things.

    Five things ended our consideration of the car:

    1) The lack of interior storage, something especially strange for such a large car. The center console is tiny, the glove box is tiny, and the door pockets are small and shallow, so things would fall out. It is quite a contrast to something like a Ford Five Hundred / Mercury Montego with large door pockets with bottle holders, a large glove box, a very handy compartment on top of the dash board, and a nice big center console.

    2) The trunk is not big enough for my 15' Little Giant ladder (55" x 22" collapsed). I could replace it with a shorter ladder, but again, the ladder fits in the Montego with no probelms.

    3) The back seat does not fold, so carrying the bulky items we sometimes need to tote for work or personal tasks would be difficult or impossible. Again, the Montego and many other much less expensive vehicles, such as the GM Chevrolet Impala, have slit folding rear seats.

    4) There is torque steer. While the Northstar V8 sounds nice, it is very jumpy, as it appears to be programed to be very sensitive upon initial throttle application. My guess is that they want it to seem faster than it is. Still, the engine is powerful enough that I could overlook the four speed automatic. However, torque steer is just not acceptable in a car which, even with a price well under sticker, would have cost me $35,000 plus taxes. Where is the rear wheel drive and/or the all wheel drive?

    5) The fuel mileage from the 4.6 V8 is not very good, and they want owners to run it on premium. Why? Other engines do better. For example, the Ford 4.6 V8 produces more power than the GM 4.6 V8 and is designed to produce full power and mileage on regular.

    The positives are the availability of cooled seats, a dimming exterior mirror, rain sensing wipers, and the electronically adjustable suspension dampers (shock absorbers).

    I have a car with On Star now, and it is OK, but Bluetooth would be superior, as the cellular minutes on my Cingular phone are less expensive and there are are forwarding options not available with On Star. XM radio is good, but XM or Sirius radio is available in just about any car from the factory or as a simple aftermarket addition.

    My wife does not like the "whale mouth," as she interprets it, front end. We both think that the fake wood looks far worse than that in the Malibu, a far less expensive car.
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    Well, I own a Seville with the Northstar engine and same drivetrain, torque steer is nearly nonexistant compared to my 83 Buick Skyhawk. Compared with the 95 supercharged Riviera I had, the northstar has almost no sensitivity from a dead stop. I can start off on icy roads without engaging the traction control. As for fuel consumption I average about 29 MPG on long trips.
  • That certainly is a thoughtful evaluation of negative points about the Lucerne. I have looked at the Ford Five Hundred and it indeed has a lot of attractive ergonomic features. I do however have to discount your comment about the Northstar. Most auto reviews give the Northstar power train high marks, and it seems to have a very good reputation. As for the "whale mouth" grille, that is a styling cue that is as individual as the clothes one likes to wear. I personally like the whale mouth grille as it is the one thing that says "Buick".
  • rooskierooskie Posts: 26
    I just finished a three-day stretch in a V-8 Lucerne and didn't notice the slightest bit of torque steer. Just to make sure I wasn't paying attention, I read two professional reviews of the Lucerne V-8, both of whom drove the car extensively, and neither one of them mentioned torque steer. IMO, it does not exist, and in the reviewer's opinions, it doesn't exist , either.

    As for premium gas, it is "recommended" for maximum performance on the V-8, but not "required". My Supercharged 3800 Buick recommended premium, but I used regular for over 100k miles without a problem. The V-8 will run just fine on regular, with no harm at all. If that's being used as a reason not to buy one, that's stretching it a bit.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,251
    The grill on the Montego is unbalanced for the rest of the car. The headlights make it look like a tree frog. Now what is it about the Buick grill? I don't see that the Montego has a better appearance. The taillights appear oversized for the car also. That's probably a result of trying to hide the 500 that it's built from.
  • rake2rake2 Posts: 120
    I must say I disagree, in that there is a torque steer. I have over 4,000 miles on my CXS, and have noticed it. As for the sensitive acceleration mentioned earlier, I would have to disagree with that assessment. If anything, the car is a bit slow from the start, but really kicks in at about 4,000 to 5,000 rpm.

    As for the interior storage, I haven't notice a problem, although I don't carry that much stuff that I need to look at while I'm driving. The trunk, however, is the largest one I've seen since I got rid of my '68 New Yorker many moons ago.
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    All FWD vehicles have a certain amount of torque steer. How well it is contained varies. RWD vehicles are better in this sense, and steering feel and precision should be better. I think that GM's big FWD sedans have well contained torque steer, but steering feel is somewhat less than great.
  • poncho167poncho167 Posts: 1,178
    The Ford 500 and Mercury are not considered luxury cars unlike the Lucerne. The Cadillac NorthStar engine is a world class engine, unlike the Ford 4.6L.

    As far as the grill goes this is Buick trademark, why change it.
  • rake2rake2 Posts: 120
    I don't disagree with you there, and I'm certainly not complaining about it. Just recognizing it does exist. Quite frankly, I wanted a front wheel drive car for days that I have to drive in the snow. Rear wheel drive cars do not handle the snow as well, and you pay for the four wheel drive option in cars that could be considered to be luxury cars.
  • lbesserlbesser Posts: 2
    How could GM release a nice car like this without Navigation? Even the Toyota Prius has it.
  • prigglypriggly Posts: 642
    How could GM release a nice car like this without Navigation? Even the Toyota Prius has it.

    No HID lights, either!

    A luxury car? I think not.
  • 62vetteefp62vetteefp Posts: 6,048
    Navigation should be available soon. Should be available your are right with this vehicle!

    It now does have the OnStar Navigation system which will be better for most. YOu push the button, tell the person where you want to go, they look it up and input it, it downloads to your car, and then gives you verbal commands as it watches where you go. Sweet! The only thing you do not get is a cool looking screen to imprress your buds!

    However the penetration on vehicles under $30k is almost nil. Few want to pay flr something that is almost 10% of the total costs of the vehicle!!
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    The Navigation system became available for orders at the very end of February, so dealer orders for them could begin to appear in showrooms sometime in April. Or, sold orders now could get them by sometime in late April or so.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,251
    >How could GM release a nice car like this without Navigation?

    The answer if because most people don't want it. If you want one buy the portable; they're easily updated.
  • 14871487 Posts: 2,407
    How can this not be a luxury car just because it didnt have two features at launch? Now that it has navigation I presume you are saying it isnt luxurious because it has no HIDs. In case you haven't noticed Acura is the only brand that makes HIDS standard. That means there are $50K+ Audis, BMWS, Cadillacs and MBs riding around with standard halogen lights. If those brands can sell cars at that price range without making $500 HIDs standard then please explain to me why the Lucerne isnt a luxury car because it lacks this feature. The bottom line is most luxury cars sold do not have HIDS, they are optional and many people opt not to buy them. As I said, if you live in an urban area HIDs servce little purpose other than to blind oncoming drivers. I like HIDs because they make oncoming cars look better at night, but they are not important enough to make or break a car buying decision.

    Now if we can find a Lexus or Acura that doesnt have one feature found on the Lucerne can we say that model isnt a real luxury car? The TL doesnt have cooled seats, 18" wheels, rainsense wipers or remote start but I'm sure you still think it's a real luxury car.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,251
    >rainsense wipers

    I love rainsense wipers. There's a large part of time when mist or spray occasionally hits the windshield and rainsense wipes when it would be a pain to touch the one-swipe button or to have the wipers on longest delay where they wipe when there's nothing on the windshield. Instead it does it when it's needed. AND that sensitivity is adjustable!!!

    How could a car like the Tl not have them if it's luxury. My LeSabre has them!!!
  • prigglypriggly Posts: 642
    How can this not be a luxury car just because it didnt have two features at launch? Now that it has navigation I presume you are saying it isnt luxurious because it has no HIDs. In case you haven't noticed Acura is the only brand that makes HIDS standard. That means there are $50K+ Audis, BMWS, Cadillacs and MBs riding around with standard halogen lights.

    You are a prime example of the effectiveness of advertising psychology. I am saying the Lucerne is not a luxury car because the Lucerne is not a luxury car! For that matter, neither is the TL, Cadillac, the Audi, BMW's or the presently mechanically unreliable M-B's. These are all upscale automobiles whose respective companies have been successful in marketing them as luxury cars. The number of real luxury cars is properly very small and relegated to the likes of Rolls-Royce, Bentley, Ferrari and cars of this ilk.

    Now as far as the issue of HID's is concerned you can rationalize all you want about how they are not necessary, too bright, etc. The fact of the matter is that they are the next standard in automotive lighting, are being made at least optional by other upscale purveyors of cars, and the more forward-thinking of these are beginning to make them standard, viz. the TL. The others, as previously noted, at least have them as optional as the market adjusts to this innovation just as it has to what previously have been considered "luxury" features in the past such as dual-zone HVAC, sunroofs, and automatic transmissions, all of which (and many more) features were once considered "luxury" and non-essential features.

    The point is that if Buick is going to appeal to a wider perspective of buyers, which it and GM's other divisions must if GM is to avoid bankruptcy, it must discover the concept of offering more and increasingly desired and market-driven features for less money such as Acura has done in the TL. It is very much an issue of exceeding market expectations, not merely meeting them, and at a better price point to boot. In my view, a car which does not even have HID's available at any price in this day and age most certainly is not exceeding my market expectations.

    By the way, cooled seats, 18" wheels and tires and rainsense wipers and remote start are in no way analogous to HID lights. If you live in a hot climate, cooled seats are nice but in the North or in Canada they are a convenience whereas it gets dark everywhere. 18" wheels are a styling trend, one which leads to more expensive tires with stiffer rides and more easily bent wheels when hitting potholes. If one is too lazy to flick a windshield wiper control stalk when one sees water on the windshield, well, what more can be said? Remote start is a convenience, hardly a safety and performance issue.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,251
    >Most newer Japanese cars have stability control standard or as an option on all trim levels

    When is the Honda TL a competitor for Lucerne? The Edmunds shows 300, 500, Marquis, Avalon
  • 62vetteefp62vetteefp Posts: 6,048
    I would say the TL and ES330 are competitors to the CXS model except the Lucerne is a larger vehicle inside and out.

    Competitors are very hard to quantify because you have to look into the minds of many, many consumers. I can easily see a Lucerne buyer looking for a sporty yet comfortable ride looking at the ES. The Lucerne would get a few more points for ride, handling and interior comfort and roominess.

    TL has a very harsh ride and would be a tougher sell as a competitor but I could still see someone looking for a premium vehicle with sportiness looking at the CXS.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,251
    Now I'm with you on the info. That helps me put it into perspective. I'd never shop the Honda TL after test driving an Accord in 03 for my last purchase. But I can see a driver wanting a sportier car than I need or want could consider both despite the size difference just as they might shop the Avalon.
  • sls002sls002 Posts: 2,788
    It does not matter what sort of headlights you have, you will not see as well as you do in the daytime. Still, I would buy HID headlights if they are available. What Cadillac is doing with HID headlights is most puzzling: standard on the DTS; CTS and STS only offer them as part of an expensive sport package. I did not look beyond this. The Corvette offers HID low beams with halogen high beams :confuse:
  • rake2rake2 Posts: 120
    LOL. Now you're not only biased, you're a snob as well.
  • rake2rake2 Posts: 120
    You never answered my question as to whether you've actually driven a Lucerne to test the lights. Seems that you probably haven't. Just drove my 2001 SS Camaro last night for the first time at night since I bought the Lucerne. The difference in the lights is remarkable, both low beams and high beams.
  • prigglypriggly Posts: 642
    You never answered my question as to whether you've actually driven a Lucerne to test the lights. Seems that you probably haven't. Just drove my 2001 SS Camaro last night for the first time at night since I bought the Lucerne. The difference in the lights is remarkable, both low beams and high beams.

    I've driven the Lucerne CXS but not at night.

    Specifically, how are the Lucerne's halogen lights better than the Camaro's?
  • finfin atlantaPosts: 588
    To those of you who have one and drive daily:

    We went to the dealer again. It had rained hard shortly before we arrived. When we opened the front doors we found a lot of water in the weatherstrip V channel rubber seal on the door sill. Soaked a leg getting in. When this rubber V strip gets dirt in it from everyday use, it looks like even more of a problem.

    Anyone else notice this? A problem? Or not. It did not appear the doors could have been left partly open during the rain. Thanks.....
  • 62vetteefp62vetteefp Posts: 6,048
    I have driven neither the Camaro nor Lucerne but have spent considerable time developing the headlights on the LaCrosse and other GM vehicles. Sometime in the late 90's/early 2000's GM revised their lighting philosophy to be more european. This is due partially to the fact that GM started using european headlight assembly suppliers.

    The europeans use a distinctive hockey stick pattern that has a very distinctive cutoff at the horizontal plane with a kick up on the rh side. Before that the beams were a bit more rounder with the center of the beam directly forward of the driver. It can take some getting used to when you drive in the country (dark everywhere) and on hilly roads with the new system. Above this horizontal line it is pitch dark and as the car bobs this horizontal cutoff moves up and down. With the old way there was no distinct cutoff and light lit up higher but faded off. Hope this makes sense.

    With the HID's you must follow this pattern or you will blind/haze oncoming traffic.

    A little technical here now. A light bulb only puts out so much energy/light. How you project it makes a big difference. You could make a pencil beam and put light down a mile like a spot light but this would be very dangerous. The new horizontal cutoff lets the designer use the unused lighting pattern above the line down below giving more energy/light to project.

    The old Camaro was the old way. The LaCrosse (which CR drove at night and actually made a very positive comment) and GM cars beyond it uses the new way.

    Also the LaCrosse, and I assume the Lucerne, use 4 bulb burn. this means that when using your high beams all 4 front bulbs are on. This allows both a very bright pattern way down the road and right in front of the car. Doubt the Camaro has this. YOu can simulate this on some cars by holding the high selector in high position (flash to pass).
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