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Buick LaCrosse



  • rerenov8rrerenov8r Posts: 380
    I don't want to contribute to too much drift, but I could not help but be flabbergasted by what I saw yesterday, Tax Day, April 15...

    I had just sunk $30 / 16 gallons into fueling up my '01 Bravada, and having really nursed along the MPG in uncharacteristally heavy stop-n-go commutting ( there was a prairie burn that caused gawkers and few fender benders -- ARGH!!) I felt pretty good to stil have my AVG MPG above 18 MPG.

    I went to a carryout place to pickup dinner and the only space open in the lot was between a HummerH2 & and an Expedition. These beasts literally TOWERED over the Bravada! To make matters worse the H2 driver was sitting in it and IDLING!!!

    Why do I mention this in a forum about an upcoming sedan? Simple: I really doubt that folks will shift from SUVs into sedans. The feeling of being "dwarfed" is huge, probably 90% of SUV buyers don't give a damn about fuel economy, and with the ridiculous tax treatment that the 6000GVW+ SUVs get the owners actually feel like they are getting a bargin...
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    We will need a third car in 2.5 years, when our son will turn 16. Year 2007 models will be available than.

    We have a 2000 Regal GS. We like it very much, and would consider another one.

    LaCrosse is positioned as a natural replacement for Regal. However, it looks like a used 2000 Regal GS will have a better powertrain than LaCrosse.

    Both the new 3.6l engine, and the old supercharged 3.8l have the same power, 240hp. However, the new engine have substantially less torque: 235 vs. 280 lb*ft.

    To my understanding, for comparable acceleration, the driver needs to rev. the new engine to 6000 rpm. Of course, it depends also on transmission. However, it looks as LaCrosse will be noticeable slower in city, and somewhat slower on highway.

    By the way, from 1997 till 2001 or 2002, Regal GS was practically the fastest cars, with most powerful 6-cylinder engine. To go faster, you need to buy a sport or lux. car with V-8. From 2002, Honda, Nissan, and other manufacturers are providing engines with the same or higher power. Including small 4-cylinder Subaru Impeza.

    Gran Prix supercharged engine was upgraded to 280hp last year; nothing comparable will be available with LaCrosse.
  • mbukukanyaumbukukanyau Posts: 200
    You sure know your GM powertrain! I am impressed
  • rctennis3811rctennis3811 Posts: 1,031
    Same here. The Buick lot at the Dallas Auto Show was DESERTED. But it's not their cars, just their location. Can you believe GM stuck them right next to HUMMER!?! Of course everyone's going to see the H2 rather then the LaCrosse!
  • venus537venus537 Posts: 1,443
    in terms of smoothness and refinement i would say the new 3.6l will have it all over the powerful but "lazy" 3.8l engines. and out on the highway or when you're pushing your car on a curvy county road the 3.6l again will be more appealing.

    the lacrosse ain't going to weigh as much as a hefty SUV or is it going to be expected to haul like a truck so what's the point of having blobs of low end torque. once the car gets moving it's horsepower that counts in the end.

    if you really want to go to the extreme for low end torque you can get a tractor to cruise around.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    I wonder just how accurate those power and torque figures are. The same unit in the CTS/SRX is rated higher- significantly higher- but what exactly are the changes that GM made to bump DOWN the output of the LaCrosse application? What I'm saying- mfrs. have been know from time to time to dumb down numbers when NOT doing so might otherwise infringe on the status of other model lines.

  • rctennis3811rctennis3811 Posts: 1,031
    Maybe the muffler/exhaust system is smaller?
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    that "breathing" is the issue, but is the 3.6L in the LaCrosse so constricted as to lose 15 horses and 17 foot pounds torque? Seems like a lot...

    (The CTS is rated at 255 and 252 respectively)

  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    May I ask you, please, to explain how to compare refinement of two engines? Is it a value we can measure, or some subjective impression?

    SC 3800 have maximum torque at 3600 rpm. Not exactly low-end.

    I use the power for:

    - changing lanes moving from full stop at traffic light;

    - passing with changing lanes in city traffic, at low speed, something like 25 to 45 mph. Need to do it fast, while there is still a "window" in traffic.

    - merging on highways. Very few motorists yields to merging cars in New England.

    - passing on highways, again with changing lanes and using small "windows" in traffic. The traffic is somewhat dense in Connecticut and around (Boston, NYC).

    In all of these cases, I do not rev engine to red line. A burst of 3600-4000 rpm is more than enough. I have to watch the speed, though. For example, in performance shift mode my GS accelerates on highway from 75 mph to 96 mph in 2 seconds. This is way too much. GM deleted the mode starting from year 2001.

    I do not understand why I need to push the car on a "curvy county road". I mean two-lane road, one lane in each direction. I definitely would not pass on curves. Big risk of a head-on collusion.

    Our local roads are not only winding, but rather hilly. A powerful engine lets drive with constant speed. Most of cars are losing speed when driving uphill. For example, on CT route 15 (state highway). Especially between exit 59 and exit 58 in direction to NYC. This is not a safety issue, like merging or passing. However, not a pretty picture.

    Driving uphill will not be a problem for LaCrosse with new 3.6l. I am not so sure, though, concerning the normally aspirated 3800.
  • venus537venus537 Posts: 1,443
    i suppose you can call it speculative but most people would say OHC designs will be more free revving and responsive throughout the rev range emitting more "pleasant" sounds than OHV designs.

    from edmunds on the lacrosse: "The 200-horsepower, 3.8-liter (3800) V6 returns to the lineup as the base engine, but the company says that engineers took extensive measures to ensure smoother, quieter operation"

    apparently the engineers from GM believe the existing 3.8l could use some work in the refinement area.

    this is just my speculation mind you, but GM decided not to supercharge the 3.8l engine for its top model because they believe the 3.6l would compete better with the competition.

    i found myself not needing to rev past 4000 rpms in the driving conditions you indicated either.
  • dispencer1dispencer1 Posts: 489
    Several people compared the LaCrosse to a Taurus, Lexus, etc. The LaCrosse does resemble a Taurus but it also resembles the present mid-size and full-size Buicks. It looks as if Buick went into the parts bin and threw together what was loose. You have the old oval grille and other bits and pieces. At least they didn't put the silly Roadmaster holes in the hood. The Cadillac 2005 STS illustrates a real design breakthrough and so does the XLR roadster. The LaCrosse just looks old hat. It could be any year from 1997-2004. I can't believe the folks on this list are so enthusiastic about it. I guess Buick wanted to continue to attract the people who bought the Century and Regal and keep the bland rounded Buick "look". It will make a comfortable rental car.
  • 14871487 Posts: 2,407
    yes the lacrosse lacks the compelling design of such class leaders as the camry and accord. The midsize sedan segment is known for avant garde styling.
  • johnclineiijohnclineii Posts: 2,287
    Hmmm. I never realized the Aztec was a midsize.
  • dispencer1dispencer1 Posts: 489
    Why Buick - when they had the opportunity to launch a completely new car - made it look like an old one.
    I understand that the interior is nice and the engines are better than the old 3.1. The car unfortunately just doesn't look either elegant or even sporty. I'm not crazy about the swoopy look of the Camry and Solara (last year's Solara was better looking) but when you put out a new car that doesn't really look like a new car it is strange.
  • johnclineiijohnclineii Posts: 2,287
    Or comforting to the old buyers, which matters not to new buyers when they had been paying exactly ZERO attention to Buick. Midsize buyers are allergic to high style. They do NOT want it.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    You do realize that your opinion on styling is just that- an opinion on a purely subjective (not objective) measure? My dad, at the NYIAS, thought the LaCrosse looked "really sharp". He wants an AWD vehicle, and I dont know that hed go back to GM, but that was what he said, nonetheless.

    If the LaCrosse competes in ride, handling, NVH, safety, and reliability- AND is marketed correctly (seem to be doing a good job so far) I think it could be EXACTLY what Buick needs- a good midsize entry, NOT a ground-breaking, crazy hot, Queer Eye avant guarde design. Remember when Ford tried that for the 1996 model year?

  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    We have a Regal in our family, and would like to buy a second one.

    The exterior of Regal exactly fits our tastes. A generic car which does not attract attention. Can label it bland, or "such a character". Substance only, no flash at all.

    The best colors are maroon, followed by navy blue. For the same reason - the colors fly under radars. Both of our cars are maroon.

    BTW, our second car is 98 Chevy Malibu, with even more generic exterior.

    Probably, GM knows, that there are millions of peoples with similar tastes, and they make reasonably good customers? Who like discounts and rebates, but let GM save on advertisements?
  • dispencer1dispencer1 Posts: 489
    Actually I think the Regal (and Century) are nice looking cars. I also have a Malibu (a 2001) and a 2003 Deville > I think the 2000-up Devilles were very nice looking -properly proportioned -nicest looking ones since the 1965-67 models. My mother in law (82) drives a '99 Century. I think that getting in is a problem -the roof seems too low -but that is subjective too. I had a 2000 LeSabre. I thought the design of the 1992-1999's was better (I had a '94).
    Anyway - there are lots of people who like the design of the present Buicks. The company has branched out with the new SUV's and the van which are differently styled but I suppose that they know pretty much what Buick mid-size and full size buyers want and will continue to build cars that appeal to them. Who am I to knock success? It would be nice, however, if once in a while Buick tried something different to appeal to a different group of buyers. Remember the Grand National? I think that was the name of the Buick muscle car. The Deville was a 30k mile ex-rental car. It cost about as much as a new LeSabre so I thought it would be nice to try one out. It was certified and came with a 6 year 100k 0 deductible warranty and 4 new Michelins.
  • fastdriverfastdriver Posts: 2,273

    HOW ARE YOU!! Since I never got the Regal, I don't go into the Regal topic here. Glad to see that your cars are holding up well. I agree with you. Not everyone wants edgy styling or look at me cars. GM seems to be doing okay for themselves.

    I will be looking at the new LaCrosse as the lease on my Acura CL-S expires in September. Just not sure if I want to subsidize the oil companies when they play games with their gas prices. Might just get a Toyota Prius and get 50 miles per gallon instead of in the 20's on REGULAR gas!!!


    PS Remember I had that red "Car of the Year" 99 Chrysler 300M! Pics in my profile above! ;-))
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    Hi! Glad to hear you! How are you?

    I am fine. Bought a home since we eat together the Louis hamburgers :-). 3 stents were installed in my heart :-(.

    Both our cars are fine.

    No problems at all with Regal, except it was rear-ended once on Route 15. Nothing serious, only the muffler / pipes assembly and bumper cover were replaced. Just yesterday put a set of new tires @34k miles. Bridgestone Potenza E950.

    The Malibu is a lemon. Replaced transmission in beginning of 2002, @ 47k miles, and replaced half of a/c the last summer. However, when in order, it runs very nice. Malibu was a mediocre car with OEM Affinity tires, but with Firestone Firehawk SH30 it has completely different character. I would say, almost sporty. Put the tires @37k miles. Currently the car has 64k miles on odometer. Good car for commuting through suburbs / city and for short trips. I am using the Malibu at least 95% of time, while the Regal is mostly my wife's car.

    My son is growing, he is 13.5 already. This is why I started to research new cars, and went to the LaCrosse forum. We like our Regal, and would like to buy another one. LC looks as a natural extension. Have some doubts concerning the engine power, though. Any case, I am not in hurry: will need the third car only in 2.5 to 4 years...

    P.S. When we met, you already had the nice Acura, not 300M.
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