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Buick LaCrosse



  • mbukukanyaumbukukanyau Posts: 200
    The radio on the 500 is from the Ford parts bin. Not my cup of tea
  • rctennis3811rctennis3811 Posts: 1,031
    "The radio on the 500 is from the Ford parts bin. Not my cup of tea" why would they do that? Maybe because it's a Ford???
  • The Radio on the Montego is better, like Alpine perhaps?
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    It came to my mind today, that it is better comparison, than comparing LaCrosse with Century/Regal. Let us compare 99 Intrigue with 2005 LaCrosse.

    Three trim with similar names:

    base: LaCrosse CX vs. Intrigue GX;
    both have 200hp 3.8l engine; cloth seats, etc.

    better: LaCrosse CXL vs. Intrigue GL;
    200hp 3.8l engine, fog lamps, upgraded seats, mirrors, etc.

    top: LaCrosse CXS vs. Intrigue GLS:
    240hp 3.6l variable timing DOHC vs. 215hp 3.5l DOHC. Leather, optional StabiliTrack.

    In other words, the two mass-market trims of LaCrosse will have the same engine and transmission that the now defunct Intrigue had 6-7 years earlier, and dropped in year 2000. The top of the line trim gained 25hp in 6 years.

    Olds switched to the 215hp 3.5l engine in all 3 trims during the model year 1999.

    Electronics was improved during since 1998-2000. CD player replaced cassette, more speakers are available for LaCrosse, and even MP3 is optionally available for the top trim. Additionally, GM promise that Buick cabin will be less noisy.

    I do not want to say, that LaCrosse will be a bad car. Rather the older cars it replaces, Intrigue and Regal, are very good. So good, that it is not easy to improve them substantially. However, no gain and even loss in power/torque in 5-8 years, depending on trim, is inexcusable in my mind.
  • The 3.8 is old but still an appropriate engine. It generates 205 hp and good low end torque all on regular gasoline while delivering 30+ mpg. Yes, it is a push rod design - but so is the Corvette engine that is blowing the socks off of everything else. As push rod engine it is narrower so it will fit in tighter confines that a wide DOHC engine. It is cheaper to build (~$800 per engine). And the fact that it produces such good low end torque means that the final drive ratio can be lower numerically thus keeping the engine rpm at cruising speed low (~2000 rpm) and hence great highway mileage. In contrast, look at the new Bonneville GXP with the Northstar. Much higher numerical final drive ratio to compensate for less low end torque and it is lucky to get 25mpg and on premium. And the auto writers complain that it still doesn't come off the line fast enough. Bottom line, the push rod engine has lots of life remaining but car buyers have been conditioned to believe that newer is always better. Sometimes it is, but not always.
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
    According to GM, the two LaCrosse engines will provide very close maximal torque. Unfortunately, only maximal ones are available. GM stopped to put the torque curve on Internet, or at least I cannot find it anymore.

    Let try to estimate. At low RPM, the air flow is not a limiting factor, and the low end torque mostly depends on displacement. 3.6l is rather close to 3.8l, about 5% difference. So the low end torque had to be close too. I'd guess, the difference in torque will be less than the 5%, due to variable timing.

    Comparison with supercharged 3.8 will be a different story. The 3.6 must have much lower torque after about 2000 RPM, when supercharger engages. LaCrosse will compensate the lack of torque by higher RPM at given speed, with more aggressive final gear ratio. Is it good enough to be equal to 1997 Regal GS? I am not sure. Zero gain in power in 8 years.

    However, I believe that overhead cams are more progressive technically than pushrods. Just hard to compete with really great implementation of older technology.
  • yurakmyurakm Posts: 1,345
  • jj347jj347 Posts: 1
    The 3.6L DOHC VVT is not supercharged
  • bigdaddycoatsbigdaddycoats Posts: 1,058
    CX $22,835
    CXL $25,335
    CXS $28,335
  • mrrogersmrrogers Posts: 391
    Thanks for the MSRP pricing. Any idea when the invoice pricing and option pricing will be available?
  • dan165dan165 Posts: 653

    C$25200 for a 3.8 CX is about US$19000. Canada gets a better deal on the Allure. I was shocked how low they priced it.
  • has the option and invoice pricing for the 2005 Buick LaCrosse up on their web site.

    It is interesting how Canada will get better deals on some GM cars. I was tempted to try and get a Canadian Cadillac CTS, it was several thousand cheaper. I thought I would have to change out the speedo for a mph one. I then bought a 2004 Pontiac Grand Prix and discovered that you can change between kph and mph on the computer, no physical changed needed. Turned out the CTS used the same system. The LaCrosse has the same speedometer as the Grand Prix.
  • Buick wants to move upscale, shedding its fuddy-duddy image to appeal to buyers who want a powerful, quiet, elegant, expertly crafted, and luxurious car priced under $30,000. In fact, Buick spokespeople have openly discussed their intention to take on Lexus head-to-head in the future. Serving as the first volley on this front is the 2005 Buick LaCrosse, an upscale midsize sedan that replaces the Century and Regal. Whether or not they’ve put the ball over the net remains to be seen.

     Upon first inspection, the 2005 Buick LaCrosse is clearly a better vehicle than the Century or the Regal. However, we wonder how serious Buick can be about achieving its ultimate goal of competing with Lexus when the standard LaCrosse is equipped with an old-tech engine configuration, a four- rather than five-speed automatic transmission, express-down functionality for only the driver’s window and 16-inch steel wheels with composite wheelcovers. And get this: antilock brakes are standard only on the top trim level. On paper that sounds like a rental car special and nobody shopping a Lexus, let alone a Volkswagen Passat, wants a rental car special sitting in the driveway.
  • ehaaseehaase Posts: 328
    The 2007 Buick RWD sedan on the Zeta platform will be the car that saves Buick. I have read that neither the LaCrosse nor the Lucerne (2006 LeSabre replacement) are anything special. If the RWD Buick sedan is a disappointment, then I think that Buick's future is in danger.
  • I agree with you. If Buick does want to compete with Lexus then they better get their act together. What you mentioned above in your post is right on. I currently own a Regal GSE, and I am not the typical Buick buyer. I am 33 years old and I bought the car in 1999 when I was 28.
    I don't think the LaCrosse will be on my list of cars when I start looking in a couple of years for the very reasons you stated, like ABS not standard across the board, only a four speed auto, and other things. It is a sad day at Buick when you can get a new Chevy Cobalt with ABS standard but it is an option on a Buick. Get real, Toyota/ Lexus is not even going to be worried about these new cars from Buick. Until someone at GM sees the light nothing is going to happen. At least Cadillac is starting to "get it".
  • I ran numbers on a Ford 500 SE with the safety option (side impact air bags, canapy airbags, heated rearview mirrors), it was $23,590 list $21,658 dealer cost. The Buick LaCrosse CX with aluminum wheels, anti-lock brakes and the side impact airbags was $24,840 list, $22,751 dealer cost. The Ford has 17" alum. wheels instead of 16", a 21 cu. ft. trunk, a CVT transmission and 203 horsepower. Unless the Buick does bigger rebates, the Ford looks like the better deal. (And I am a GM fan.)
  • Mrs. Rogers and I are looking to replace her 1998 Regal LS with 99K miles. She is interested in both the LaCrosse and the Lexus ES330. Some people bad mouth the Buick for only having a four speed transaxle vs the Lexus five speed. If you look on the Edmunds Lexus ES330 board, there is a whole area devoted to transmission problems with the 2002 through 2005 Lexus ES five speed. I think a smooth four speed is preferable to an indecisive five speed. The Lexus dual overhead cams only yield about one mpg (29 vs 28 highway) over the Buick overhead valve design. To the best of my knowledge, Buick has never had the sludge problems that Lexus has had with their V-6. The LaCrosse is based on a Century, but the ES330 is based on a Camry so I don't see a big difference. The invoice of the CXL that my wife likes is only $25,346. The Lexus she likes has an invoice of $28,755. I am not sure that the Lexus is worth the extra money. Maybe a twenty four hour test drive of both cars will help us make a decision.
  • Concerning the discussion of the LaCrosse having just a 4-speed transmission:

    I'm a little confused about what constitutes a 4 or 5 speed transmission.

    I owned a 1996 Regal, which was marketed as a 4-speed. It had 4 gears, then a torque-converter lockup position that gave it a fifth ratio -- you could feel it engage, and see the RPMs drop another 200 or so at 70 mph.

    I now have an Accord, marketed as a 5-speed. But from what I have read, it's engineered the same as the Regal -- four gears, followed by a fifth "position," i.e., torque-converter lockup.

    Two cars, two transmissions, both operating the same way, with one marketed as a four-speed, the other a five-speed. If the Accord can be called a five-speed, why not the new LaCrosse? (Assuming it will have four gears and a lockup position like the current Regal)
  • jpstax1jpstax1 Posts: 197
    I found a link that describes the Zeta platform in detail: - - - - - ry2/C90B23606C59F9C6CA256E45001580AB

    It looks promising. If Bob Lutz gives it his full support, and can convince GM's top brass, it just might work. The idea worked for the bringing back the GTO, so why not for saving Buick from the same fate as Oldsmobile? I'm sure Buick fans would be very angry if that were to happen.
  • The new Zeta platform sounds real cool. Buick needs a RWD car(s). I hope all these ideas come to fruition, but if they do, I don't have much faith in GM being able to properly execute a good car.
  • Can't wait for the Lucerne - let's just hope it doesn't look like the LaCrosse! Buick really seems to be going through an identity crisis. :-\
  • setzersetzer Posts: 127
    " Can't wait for the Lucerne - let's just hope it doesn't look like the LaCrosse! Buick really seems to be going through an identity crisis. :-\ "

    Like Mercury was/is. Hopefully Buick can get its sales up so it doesn't slump down to Mercury's level and, even worse, Oldsmobiles level. But I'm guessing the future products Buick is offering will probably help it somewhat. Even the LaCrosse, even though it's not too groundbreaking, will get some buyers who want a comfortable American vehicle and could care less about all of the fancy features other cars have. I could see where this car would be perfect for my Grandparents who would probably want something simple they could use to drive to the store or their families' homes.

    But only time will really tell what Buick's future will be like.
  • If your particular Accord has a 5-speed trans, then it has five different forward gear ratios. Torque converter lockup does not count as an additional ratio. Honda does have both 4 and 5-spd transaxles. But their 5-spd trans is not simply a 4-spd trans with a torque converter clutch. In fact, both their 4 and 5-spd boxes have clutches.

    The torque converter clutch simply locks the converter's impeller (output from the engine) to its turbine (input to the trans). When the clutch is not engaged, the converter is a type of fluid coupling with the trans turning slower than the engine, even if only a little. Enging RPM drops a little when the torque converter clutch is engaged because the converter no longer is allowed to slip. There's now a direct physical connection.

    Some transmissions may, in fact, lockup the torque converter in more than one gear! For instance, in a 4-speed trans, the torque converter clutch might be engaged in third gear in specific situations, as well as fourth. This still would be a 4-spd trans, not a 6-speed trans.

    If I remember correctly, the Lacrosse is using GM's 4T60E transaxle, which has only four forward gears, and so is only a 4-spd trans. The Honda 5-spd, again, does indeed have five forward gears, not four.

    Hope that helps.
  • I have seen a couple on the road. Two red and one in white opal. The white one looked very sharp. I am looking forward to driving one. They look better in person, but do not stand out much.
  • Thanks for your comments. I already understood the technology of the fluid coupling in the torque converter and the lockup clutch mechanism, but your description was interesting nonetheless.

    However, my question about the Accord transmission remains unanswered. I talked with a technician at my dealership today and he couldn't answer the question. He faxed me a transmission system description, which references 5 "speeds" forward and a lockup mechanism. It's also a very complicated document.

    Anyway, this is not a forum about Accords, but about the new LaCrosse!

    I thought this thread had died. Almost two weeks went by between recent messages.

    Does anyone know when LaCrosses will be available at dealerships? I liked my '96 Regal and may migrate back to Buick if this new one is a decent car.
  • dan165dan165 Posts: 653
    I think the La Crosses are being built now. I have heard of sitings in the Toronto area (near the Oshawa plant).
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    Every car Ive seen in advertising/marketing materials for the LaCrosse has been black, which I personally think looks great.

  • I called my local dealer Saturday asking when the new LaCrosse will be available. The salesman told me late October or early November. He did not even ask for my name or phone number.
         I called a second dealer, and was told that they would have one in the first week of October, but it is already sold. I asked when I could have one for a 24 hour test drive, and he said it may be months as this is such a hot car right now. Does this make sense? If it is such a hot car, do you think the dealers will be able to get full sticker for the car? He told me that the 2005 Century will be built for five more months, and that this is limiting LaCrosse production. Do you think that there will be discounts by year end?
  • Hot car? Find another dealer. 99.999 percent of the American public (or more) hasn't even HEARD of the car. What a nutcase! :)

    Dealers don't discount new models until they find out if they can get full sticker (or more) for them first. It is, after all, a business.
  • 307web307web Posts: 1,033
    Most people do not know that the car exists, so it is not "hot."
    However, the fact that you are asking them about it before it has been released or advertised on tv indicates to them that you may be desperate to have it and will pay premium to get one of the first available.
This discussion has been closed.