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Buick Century



  • Hi Everyone!
    Just wanted to tell anyone who cares to read that we did afterall get the Century with the sunroof put in by an outside source. I talked a long time on the phone with these people and they made me feel comfortable about it and I get a lifetime gurantee so I guess I can't go wrong there. We picked our car up tonight and I must say I am very impressed with the way it looks and handles. I didn't even realize about the roadside offer which is great and I don't know if Buick does this or just the dealership we went to but we get lifetime oil changes for free and since we waited so long for them to find a car with our options we also got the added rebate that are now being offered...something to do with that was a nice bonus to bring the price down. Anyways, I feel I got a fair deal and am very pleased with my car.

  • I have read a lot of posts here and elsewhere about people saying a certain car is better looking than another. This is a waste of space. Everyone decides for himself whether they like the styling. No two people have the same taste. If you think the Century looks nice then you should check out the options, price, and reliability; if you think it is ugly then check out something you like. Personaly, I think the Century is very attractive, much more so than the Japanese cars. I'll admit, I don't like the rear end (too much tail light, and I don't like that bump on the trunk lid). But, the front end is beautiful to me. I think it is inspired somewhat by the Jaguar XJ series. If, you disagree with me then buy a Camry (in my opinion, the "plain vanilla" of auto styling).
  • tomodell,
    Yeah, it does look a bit funny. It's done for aerodynamics though. The little 'lip' on the back helps improve airflow over the trunk. The oval Tauruses had little black ones on the back and the Stratus/Cirrus has a HUGE one on the back of it. Kinda circumvents the need for a spoiler.
  • regfootballregfootball Posts: 2,166
    I really do like the exterior of the Century and Regal, especially in darker colors.

    But it's the interior I'm disappointed in.

    Maybe after being in a family with 4 Buicks its either that I'm tired of them, or my tastes just aren't that sort of thing. I like more contemporary interiors like those in Audi's, VW's, Fords, etc. I guess though, I won't criticize someone who does like Buick interiors. They seem to be okay.... for the target market.

    I just think the exterior looks of the Regal and Century are very contemporary but the interior seems a little more old fashioned.

    One of my favorite cars was my 1977 Century Coupe.
  • Bdreggors: You're right about the bump being similar to a spoiler, but I would argue whether either one has any real function. Spoilers, as far as I am concerned are simply an expression of style (like the big fins of the 50's). They are derived from race cars that used them for better traction. When the Century was redesigned in 1997, spoilers were at their height in popularity. Buick knew that most of their buyers were conservative enough not to want a spoiler, so it was never available. But, they made that little bump to give it a little spoiler appearance. Spoilers are now going out of popularity, so the next time they remodel the Buick, I will be willing to bet the bump will be gone.
    Regfootball: The interior of the Century is a bit old fashioned, but that's why I like it. I, love bench seats. I think they are comfortable and roomy. What makes bench seats so roomy is that it forces the manufacturer to put the gear shift on the column, where it belongs. This eliminates the console and makes for lots of room for oversize butts and feet. As far as I am concerned, all auto shifters belong on the column, stick shifts are the only ones that should be on the floor. If you like bucket seats and consoles, look at the Buick Regal. It is the same as a Century, but with the bucket seats and a larger engine.
  • Tomodell,
    You're probably right about the bump on the trunk disappearing.

    Spoilers are the most vestigal of all aftermarket add-ons, though, and the one Buick offers are hillarious (IMHO). I remember seeing a faux T-Type LeSabre with T-Type badging and (ominous music) a spoiler! And I've seen them on Centurys and Regals, too. Speaking of Regals, I saw--get this--a Regal LS with whitewalls, wire wheels, a vinyl top, and a spoiler. I bet he could have gotten a Park Ave for that money!
  • regfootballregfootball Posts: 2,166
    I myself can't stand shifters on the steering column. It seems a completely unnatural place to put a shifter. But I respect your opinion and choice. That's what's nice about the USA.

    And at least that's what nice about the Century and Regal. At least you have the choice as the buyer, whether you get the floor shifter or column shifter. Now if GM would let me have the choice to get a DOHC motor in the Regal, that would be nice, too.
  • Bdreggors: When I was a lot younger, I used to buy after market stuff, but I learned my lesson. I bought this really cool luggage rack that went on top of my trunk lid. After installing it I discovered that my trunk lid was so heavy it wouldn't stay open. Then, a month later the thing started rusting. I eventually took it off and had to have the trunk lid repainted. I have never seen any aftermarket goody that was made as well as original equipment. After market spoilers look ridiculous, but they make teenagers happy. But I can't imagine one on a Buick.
    Regfootball: Most people agree with you about the shifter on the floor. But, there are enough people like myself who like bench seats, that more manufacturers should make them available. When I bought my Ford Expedition, I wanted the bench seat, and it was an available option. When I went to look at one at a dealer, none of them had a model with the bench seats. One salesman even told me they didn't make them. I had to place a factory order to get my bench seat. Of course with a large vehicle like the Expedition there is actually room for three adults in the front. With the Century, it is just a matter of more room. (maybe you can squeeze a child in between two adults there).
  • Bdreggors: When I was a lot younger, I used to buy after market stuff, but I learned my lesson. I bought this really cool luggage rack that went on top of my trunk lid. After installing it I discovered that my trunk lid was so heavy it wouldn't stay open. Then, a month later the thing started rusting. I eventually took it off and had to have the trunk lid repainted. I have never seen any aftermarket goody that was made as well as original equipment. After market spoilers look ridiculous, but they make teenagers happy. But I can't imagine one on a Buick.
    Regfootball: Most people agree with you about the shifter on the floor. But, there are enough people like myself who like bench seats, that more manufacturers should make them available. When I bought my Ford Expedition, I wanted the bench seat, and it was an available option. When I went to look at one at a dealer, none of them had a model with the bench seats. One salesman even told me they didn't make them. I had to place a factory order to get my bench seat. Of course with a large vehicle like the Expedition there is actually room for three adults in the front. With the Century, it is just a matter of more room. (maybe you can squeeze a child in between two adults there).
  • lukeohlukeoh Posts: 1
    We recently purchased a used 1999 buick century. It has 20,000 miles on it. Before we purchased it I noticed an oil leak. The dealer said they would fix it since it was still under factory warranty. They replaced the intake gasket to remedy oil leak. When we got the car back the motor now idles real fast and then idles down and then back up and down repeatedly for about 10 to fifteen minutes before it runs normally. We took it back to the dealer and he said he thought it had run out of gas. It had a quarter of a tank but we filled it up with high test (92) octane anyway. It still does the rushing occasionally. Also it now has a noise that sounds like a rod hitting lightly on something in the motor until the motor gets warmed up. Also now the low tire light comes on and no matter how much air we put in the tires the light stays on. I have checked the pressure in each tire several times and it is equal.
    We are getting discouraged because we have had the car for 9 days and it has been in the shop for 6 of those 9 days and now we have to take it back. Is this normal behaviour for the century? Do we have any recourse to maybe have them take the car back? We love the car other than these few problems. Thanks
  • nickpernickper Posts: 28
    My mom had an '84 Century sedan. It ran for forever with no problems. My grandmother still has her '85 Olds. Ciera (Century's old cousin '96 and -) and it has a lot of miles and is the families "extra" car while ours are in the shop. You cant kill a Century.
  • walliswallis Posts: 4
    Regarding your tire pressure light, you need to reset the monitor after you inflate the tires to the right pressure. There should be a button in the inside fuse panel. (on the passenger side, or check your owner's manual. Hope this solution helps this problem.

  • I have a 97 Buick Century, and so far, I've had to have the water pump and power steering fluid pump replaced. I noticed something leaking from the car this week, and now they tell me it is leaking at the gasket and the intake manifold (?) has to be replaced. Anyone else have this many or type of problems with their Century?
  • My parents have had a Century for almost 10 years now with what I would consider minimal problems. It survived a crash (due to slick pavement), and the only real maintainance necessary other than that was for a squeaky front brake and a bent axle (yeah, we thought that was weird too, but it was a cheap fix).

    Currently looking for a Buick of some type for my own.

    Note: Before the Buick, they went through a few Fords, one of which an Escort which cost more in repairs than the car cost new.
  • I rented a Century for two weeks last year and found that I liked it. This week I visited our local Buick dealer and drove 2000 Century. The seat adjustment in this car is fantastic! I'm 6'5" and really have a problem finding a car that has enough leg room, this one has it.

    So the Century dosen't have the most powerful engine available, it works just fine and getting 30+ MPG on the highway isn't hard to take.

    If there was only a Century station wagon, I'd be driving it today.
  • george5george5 Posts: 23
    I'd sure go for a Century Wagon as well. The Saturn LS wagon just doesn't cut it for me. It's too small for a wagon, and it only seats five because of the gear shifter that's in the middle of the front two seats. People buy a wagon because they like the roominess of it. Buick/GM! Please give us a Century Wagon!! PLEASE.
  • bdreggorsbdreggors Posts: 143
    A Century wagon and a Regal Sport Wagon? Pretty good idea for those sick of SUVs!
  • Wouldn't it be great, a 30+ MPG Century wagon instead of a 15- MPG SUV! But how long would it take to produce one? The Buick Century fits like no other car i've tried on, if they had a wagon for about $25,000 it would be in my garage.
  • bdreggorsbdreggors Posts: 143
    If GM does do it, it would probably be when the Century changes its platform in about 4 years. It's a great idea, though. Say I'm way out of touch with my generation, but I still would rather have a 96 Roadmaster Estate than a Lexus RX300...
  • If you have a manual transmission the gear shift should be on the floor where it is readily at hand and easy to use. If you have an automatic transmission it dosen't matter if the selector is on the floor or on the column. I have a column mounted selector on my Taurus and it works just fine, there is plenty of leg room and a place to move my foot when it is in cruise. I have a floor mounted selector in my 2000 LHS and wish that I did't, it's just taking up floor space.
    The Century selector is in the correct location.
  • bigjoe3bigjoe3 Posts: 2
    after really lookin hard and long for two months,i just leased a 2000 century se for the family vehicle.with a minimum out of pocket and $279 a month we got a mid size car with abs and traction control,v6 great mpg,power everything,upgraded stereo w/cd. tons of room, the wife could not be happier.i would recommend this car to any one.
  • macarthur2macarthur2 Posts: 135
    Unfortunately we will probably not see a Buick station wagon because Buick is jumping on the SUV bandwagon with an SUV of its own. It will have the 3.4 GM generic engine. It will be called the Rondezvue (my spelling is wrong, but it is pronounced RON DAY VUE. Rather strange looking. You can see it in some of the new car magazines.
    I agree Buick would do better with the station wagon. Something like 28 different SUVs out there to choose from, do we really need one more?
  • macarthur2macarthur2 Posts: 135
    By the way if you want bucket seats and the 3800 V6 in a Century you can't get it but one step up the ladder is the Buick Regal - different front grille but same chassis and body (you can't tell them apart from the rear)bigger engine and buckets seats. It's worth a look, couple of grand difference.
  • sciguy_71sciguy_71 Posts: 1
    My wife and I also purchased a used 99 Century with 30 K on it that had to have the intake manifold gasket replaced and I have noticed a slight knock in the engine when the car is first started. No problems with the other things you mentioned though. My concerns with our car at this is road and wind noise. Has this been a problem for you or anyone else? We also have had the car in the shop a lot, but mostly for cosmetic stuff. I am still not convinced of GM's workmanship. Time will tell I suppose.
  • krplace21krplace21 Posts: 1
    I have a '98 Century that has been trouble from the start. Noisiest car I've ever owned. Rubber around windows fell out. Have had a vibration from day one. Dealer replaced a front end bolt, put on new tires, etc., then told me it was transmission lockup and was inherrant to all Centuries. Am in the process now of trying to make some kind of a deal to get out of this vehicle and into an Accord or Camry, which I should have done in the first place.

    I bought a Buick for the Quality and am very dissatisfied.
  • When I test drove the Century the salesman advised that for "a little more" I could buy a Regal with more power, better seats and other great things. I tried on every Buick they had and found that the Century had the best seat for me. I'm 6'5" and I need a lot of leg room, the Century has it. The seat position and adjustment in the Century is great.
  • duraflexduraflex Posts: 358
    I had the opportunity to drive a 2000 Century that we have on rental for a day while my wife's Camry is in for routine maintenance. Very nice car.
    Drives smooth, quiet and fast enough - similar to a 99 Lumina I had on rental in CA last Sept.

    I just finished reading all your posts and am looking for some feedback on 2000 model Centurys.
    1- How is the standard fabric upholstery holding up?
    2- How is the radio/cass/CD? Good bass?
    Clear highs? Warm, realistic sound?
    3- Does the rear seat fold down? I didn't get a chance to check.

  • sifsif Posts: 1
    Just bought a 2000 Buick Century Custom with 14K miles. We needed a car sitting six adults. After a short driving the light went on on: SERVICE ENGINE SOON. We took the car to the dealer, got it back, passed the DC inspection, drove about 100 miles and the same light went on again. The car is back with the dealer. Do we have a lemon? Any one else have had this problem? ...any other recurrent problem with the 2000Century?
  • ka2cpska2cps Posts: 1
    We purchased a 2000 Series in Feb. So far the rear strut holder has broken, air cond pump exploded internally and lost the car for over 2 weeks. Now we have a service engine light on, what's next???
  • I bought a 2000 Century Custom in January 2000. So far I have taken it back to the dealer for a transmission leak 3 times. First time, the transmission pan gasket was replaced--still leaked. Second time, the transmission pump seal was replaced--still leaked. Third time, Monday, June 12, the dealer said the whole transmission must be replaced. As of today it is still in the shop awaiting a new transmission. Luckily the dealer has provided me with a rental car, but not much else--service sucks--I guess that I was pampered when I bought the car, and now I am just another number to the dealership.

    Is anyone out there experiencing this same problem? My next step, unfortunately, is to meet with an attorney to give our state's Lemon Law a shot. Wish me luck!!!
  • duraflexduraflex Posts: 358
    I'm sorry for your problems with the Century.

    In our state, I believe dealers only get 3 chances to fix the same major problem - like a trans. Then the lemon law kicks in for a replacement vehicle.

    I know exactly what you mean about the big kiss-up when you buy and the lousy treatment afterward.
    My saleswoman promised to get me a front bumper license holder and try to remove my spoiler (not a Century). 4 months later. Never happened.

    She did send a overly "sweet" thank you card and a cheapo basket of candy and crackers - threw most of it away. Would MUCH rather that she kept her simple promises.

    Saturn dealerships seem much different. Hence the Saturn loyalty.

    We've have had excellent after-sale service from the Toyota dealership where I bought my wife's 98 Camry. They kept every promise. If every Toyota dealer is run like that, it's got to be one of the reasons Camrys are #1 or 2 in sales.

    GM - listen up and learn.
  • macarthur2macarthur2 Posts: 135
    It's still one of the nicest looking -non performance cars on the road. Very areodynamic. It is nice to drive, power is better with the 175hp engine that is now standard. Quiet and soft, or smooth, riding. I can see why it appeals to so many people. We drove it three times, compared with Ford Taurus and would have picked the century. Then decieded to go to a larger car and bought a LeSabre. Except for the size I could have lived with the Century easily. The Limited comes with leather standard and lots of nice features for just over 20k - if you drive a hard bargin and know dealer cost. I don't sell them, just encourage you to test drive one and make up you own mind. Pick a couple of cars to compare it with and see how it suits you personaly. Sometimes there is a lot of negativism in these conferences so no matter what the car drive it yourself before you deceide to take it off your list based on what you hear here.
  • occupant1occupant1 Posts: 412
    The state of Ohio owns hundreds of Century sedans and Century wagons. They are all 1994-1996 models and will be eventually up for auction, the auctions are every month or so on the west side of Columbus, Ohio. Just contact the state fleet management and they will let you know when the next auction is, usually a Saturday morning, once a month. Take I-270 to the Broad St. East exit on the west side of Columbus, go east on Broad to Phillipi Rd, turn left (north) then immediately after the Pontiac dealer's lot ends, turn left onto I believe Janitrol Rd? There is a sign for the state fleet mamangement compound, this is also where they sell all the highway patrol Clown Vics.
  • occupant1occupant1 Posts: 412
    I think it is Surface Rd. not Janitrol Rd., but it is the first street you can turn on after Haydocy Pontiac. I went a few times when I lived in Columbus, they sell everything from Cavaliers and Escorts, to big sedans, to OSHP cruisers, to Blazers and Suburbans! I would think the Buicks will sell cheap, maybe $2000-$3000 for a 1994 up to $5000 for a 1996.
  • sungoldsungold Posts: 1
    I just purchased a new Century Custom on June 22, silver, with the Premium Option Package (most power options), whitewalls, CD, and split rear seatback. Although it is still very new, I was happy with the buying experience, and am so far happy with the car. I see the problems that others have had, and will keep you posted on my experiences. I got the Custom because I live in the Northeast and don't care for leather seats. I hope other Century owners will keep us all informed on how they are doing with their cars.
  • teamstewteamstew Posts: 1
    I just purchased a 96 Century Wagon,I previously owned a '88 Chevy Celebrity Wagon,and it took me a year and a half to find anything comparable.Well the 96 Wagon has 34,000 miles and it is like new!I purchased it from a dealer for $7625.00. It is an incredible car!It has such minor convienences that seem so major! Reclining power seats,keyless entry & power mirrors.My Chevy went 220,000 miles before blowing a head gasket.If my Buick Century Wagon goes just as far,I will be deliriously happy!I read quite a few letters commenting on how GM should make a mid-size wagon again,well I think buying used is the answer!
  • duraflexduraflex Posts: 358
    I strongly believe there is a strong market out here for a medium size wagon like a Buick Century wagon.

    I would certainly like to own one. It's a nice compromise between a smooth riding sedan and an oversized SUV or not-so-mini-anymore-van.

    I would use it to haul top soil, small shrubs, antiques and such. I have a friend who plays a harp and hauls the harp in an old Toyota wagon. She'd love to replace the Toyota with a GM equivalent in size.

    We almost bought a new 2000 LW Saturn wagon (new model) but the bad side impact crash test nixed it. My wife said absolutely not - I had no good counter argument.

    The Century sedan is a charmer - a strong seller - the wagon would be even better.
  • I owned a Century before and I hated it total junkpile!! Constant trouble!!! It was in the shop over 30 times in just 10 months!!! The car is guyl, dull, and baldn styling. Forgot those Century commericals you see they lure you into buying these turkeys. All I can say is get a Camry much more reliable!
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    The "fastfoodman" recently posted on the Olds Intrigue board, Buick Regal board and Grand Prix board. Every time the same song.

    It is hard to believe he owned all this cars, and bought again and again the cars from the same family - the GM "W" midsize sedans. Likely just a slander.
  • bdreggorsbdreggors Posts: 143
    I also have reason to believe that he owns a Camry, although his profile says he owns a Chrysler (which leaves him no room to talk about reliability).

    "The car is guyl, dull, and baldn styling."
    Guyl? Wow, strong words! The Century is probably the Guylest car out there! And apparently its bald, too! ;)
  • PAmanPAman Posts: 207
    Maybe fastfoodman's Camry (message #89) comes with a spell checker, some manners, a little class and a scholarship to a good college.

    Nahhhh!! I didn't think so.
  • proy33proy33 Posts: 1
    I bought a 2000 Century last October and for the first 2-3 months the left cornering lamp worked when I used the left turn signal as it should.
    Then it suddenly stopped working. I took to the car to the dealer where I bought the car and the Service manger told me that the functionality was not there on the driver's side - only on the on the passengers side where it was needed more. He led me to believe I "imagined" it was working before.
    I went to the Buick website ( - did a search on "cornering lamps" and it returned a hit
    with that item listed under the Safety featues.
    I e-mailed the info to the web-based service department covering the feedback from Buick's website and received a e-mail back from this gentleman who claims he cannot verfy that the 2000 Century has dual cornering lamps and recommended I see the dealer. I then called 3 area Buick dealers and the Sales or Service managers could not tell me either. So, any 2000 Century Custom owners out there who can tell me if they have both lamps and both lamps are functioning properly? I cannot believe I cannot get a straight answer from anybody associated with Buick on this issue.
  • wbell2wbell2 Posts: 1
    I'm getting ready to purchase a vehicle, most likely a 2000 Buick Century Ltd. I've used Edmunds and Kelly Blue to get invoice $ amounts, but the dealership has something listed I can't find. "Does anyone know what 'Vehicle Enhancement Protection Package' is? It's not listed in the brochure, nor is it listed anywhere that I have searched through here. Please respond quickly.
  • bdreggorsbdreggors Posts: 143
    "Vehicle Enhancement Protection Package" sounds to me a lot like some type of paint protection that you don't really need.
  • duraflexduraflex Posts: 358
    It's BS - another dealer add-on trick to add profit to their bottom line.

    Years ago, I went back to pick up a car I ordered two days earlier. I had not signed any paper work but had negotiated the final selling price.
    In the meantime they (Lenihan Olds in NJ) added a cosmetic canvas top to enhance the look of the car and add $450 to the my price. I was ticked and they thought they had me because that car was what I wanted. I left and went elsewhere.

    I was very disappointed but wound up buying an identically equipped car (sans top) with a different interior color from another, more honest dealer. I suggest you do the same. If they're trying to con you before you even buy the thing - imagine what lies ahead in terms of service and everything else.
  • bigjoe3bigjoe3 Posts: 2
    had our 2000 se century for 3 months now,7000 miles.not a problem with it.wife loves the room and the ride.there is cornering lamps on BOTH sides.with the fold down seats we can carry just about anything.gas milage could be better but LOVE this car.
  • We just bought a 2000 Buick Century Custom. We are very happy with the size and feel of the car. However, two weeks after purchase, the car has developed a "pinging" noise that comes from the underside of the car. It happens when the car is idling as well as after turning the ignition off. It happens whether or not we run the air conditioning. The dealer has told us this is "normal." I've never had a car do this or heard this is "normal." Has anyone had a similar problem? know of the solution?
  • ratoxratox Posts: 12
    Glad you like your Century. My wife's grandmother has one and it is a very comfortable car. The pinging noise you hear is most likely the same noise I hear from my Olds Intrigue. Quite normal when the exhaust system is cooling down. The converter really makes the exhaust system extremely hot while running and you can hear the pipes "ping" as they contract and cool. It tends to be more noticeable when the car is new. Nothing to worry about.
  • thank you ratox for your quick reply. i'm glad we don't have to worry about this...
  • rickeymrickeym Posts: 2
    Bought a 2000 Century Custom this past July. Has anyone gotten the power driver seat and the 'manual lumbar' on the passenger side as listed on the window sticker? My Toyota Cressida has manual lumber support so I was excited about it. Except Buick messed up and did not put it on mine as listed on the window sticker. Dealer's trying to get Buick to do something about it.

    Also, the website and the brochures indicate there's supposed to be a hood light; car doesn't have it and the dealer says it hasn't been done since 1997! Has anyone had one? Buick says they don't have to put it in since 'specifications can change without notice'. Three years is a long time to update the specs! Very arrogant responses I've gotten from Buick on these two issues.

    Customer service and respect is certainly lacking. Is anyone else encountering this type of treatment from Buick?

    Fit and finish leaves me wondering how smart a buy this was. If Buick can spend more time on quality, they wouldn't have to constantly offer confusing rebates.

    Car rides good so far. Dealer service sucks, though; no spare door key and when I finally made an issue out of it, they gave me a spare door key that opens nothing.
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