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Buick LeSabre



  • Do you have an aftermarket alarm system tied into your key fob from buick? Those will have the autolock feature. If not, then you have a problem with the system. Under no circumstances should the power locks automatically lock with the key in the ignition save two ways. 1) You manually hit the lock button, or 2) You have your foot on the brake and shift it into gear. If nothing sounds familiar, take it into buick.

  • keyrowkeyrow Posts: 214
    I am currently in the market for a new car and am considering a Le Sabre and an Infiniti I30. I prefer an AMERICAN car but think the Japanese DO have an advantage when it comes to reliability. I would appreciate any info from those who have chosen the LeSabre over the I30 as I definitely prefer to "Buy American" where possible. BTW my name is Nasuta, a Japanese heritage, so I have no aversion to Japanese cars. I think the I30 is a viable competitor.

    Thanks for your opinions,
  • dimkazdimkaz Posts: 1
    I am looking to buy a 94 LeSabre which supposedly has 38,000 miles on it. What are the problems with that model that I should be on the lookout for? Is 5500 a good price for that car?

  • Doesn't sound like too bad a price for the low milage and all. See if u can find out if milage was short run city type driving. Short runs, where engine never really heats up are much worst than milage that was put on by driving on interstates and such.Be sure to check all electronic stuff (door locks, windows, control for heater air cond., etc. ) they r very expensive to fix.You sound suspicious of milage so trust your instincts and have car checked out throughly by your own mechanic, its well worth it. good luck
  • xnabxnab Posts: 2
    My 2000 Lesaabre custom with 16 inch wheels has 2000 miles on it. At first the General tires were out of round but the dealer trued them and that fixed that. At around town speeds (up to 50)the car is super smooth. At 60 to 70 miles an hour there is a high frequency vibration throughout the car ,steering wheel inccluded, that is more of a buzz at about engine rpm frequency. Definitely not wheel speed frequency
    The dealer checked the motor mounts and found no problems and sent me home, even though the mechanic said he could feel it. Has anyone else experienced this. Any help or suggestions?
    By the way, I understand there is a bulletin out on a wind noise problem caused be the driver side mirror(gasket or something) causes a KAZOO noise
    Other than this the car has been great.
  • xnabxnab Posts: 2
    The I-30 is undoubtedly a good option and a good car. A little more expensive and rightly so. I'm a retired engineer so I "analyzed" and drove a number of Lesabre competitors. For American cars, the Lesabre has a good reliability record(good engine) but in the end I bought the one that I felt good about. More about gut desire than pure critical analysis, or maybe a little of both. Don't buy a car you don't want.
  • I own a 89 Lesabre from brand new time. It has 121,000 miles with very little trouble except for the electronic gagets that breakdown every two years. The seat belt module, alternator voltage regulator module, Air Conditioner control assembly, etc. just fail without warning.
  • Anyone know the specs for this system? (Power, freq response, performance?)
  • Back in late December, I found myself in need of a new car. I was planning on purchasing a new car anyway, so I had already driven several models and pretty much narrowed my choices down to the Chrysler 300M and the Lincoln LS. But just for the heck of it, I drove a 2001 LeSabre just to see what it was like. One test drive and a glance at the brochure were all I needed. I took delivery of a 2001 medium red LeSabre with the taupe interior and every option available except the engine block heater. Needless to say, I think this is one of the best cars Buick has ever made.

    In comparing the other cars I was looking at, the 300M fell short of a few features that I liked in the LeSabre, such as dual zone climate control, rain sensitive wipers, heads-up display, driver side power lumbar support, three additional power outlets, and of course, OnStar. The LS was by far the most fun car to drive, but it felt cramped and didn't even come close to the storage areas found in the LeSabre.

    So why the LeSabre, especially when I was looking at other sport sedans? Well, first off, Buick has built a handsome car in the new LeSabre. There is no mistaking the Jag-type lines all around. The car is sleek and all body components are well integrated. The interior is outstanding -- plenty of room, plenty of storage, plenty of gadgets, comfortable seats, and once again, very well integrated.

    What sold me, though, was driving the car. The 3.8 Series II is deceptively quick. This thing will hit 60 in a shade over seven seconds. Passing on the highway is effortless. The Gran Touring suspension is worth every cent. I can toss this car around and it responds. The LeSabre may not be a sport sedan, and really isn't marketed to be one, but it comes close. It's a shame the supercharged engine isn't available on the LeSabre. Add that, some bigger wheels and tires, and a rear stabilizer bar and you've got a sport sedan. Plain and simple. Nonetheless, this thing is a great highway cruiser -- can't wait for the first long trip.

    Every car has its little nuances and the LeSabre is no exception. The huge center console is great, but the cup holders get in the way of the ashtray and the small storage tray above it. The seats are comfortable, but with the Y56 suspension, the lack of lateral support is glaring. The stereo is basically OK, but it doesn't seem to fill the car with sound very well.

    But overall, the LeSabre is a great value. I'll also get one additional thing with the LeSabre that I wouldn't get with the 300M or the LS - reliability. When it comes to American cars, Buick is the best. Can't argue with that. I actually considered the Bonneville, too, but in the end, it was a little too loud for me. I think that once my warranty is up, I might beef up the LeSabre a little. The Bonneville and LeSabre are based on the same chassis, so hopefully I won't have many problems putting some of the Bonneville parts onto the Buick. Should be fun!

    If anyone is considering a new car, give the 2001 LeSabre an honest look. Power, handling, smooth ride, comfortable interior, reliability. What more could you want.

    Any replies would be great. This forum doesn’t seem to get many responses. I’ll do my part to keep it going.

    - vtech83
  • tpkentpken Posts: 1,108
    Best wishes for years and miles of safe and enjoyable driving.

    I presume you have the Limited model based on your description above - yes it is truly a wonderful automobile and certainly one of GM's best success stories ever.

    I have the '00 Bonneville SE model (see my pic on the Bonneville 2 forum and in the "Showcase Your Car" section of "News and Views". The bucket seats and console were items I really wanted this time around and the styling is a bit more assertive IMO - otherwise the LeSabre would have been on my list too.

    If you have a digital camera or access to a scanner, put some pics up for us - I'd love to see that car. Keep us informed on your experiences It's good to see some activity here - the car is so darn reliable that there just aren't a lot of complaints that seem to drive the other forums.

  • You are correct - I have the LeSabre Limited model. It literally has everything except the engine block heater. It also has one other nice little touch. I had the dealer swap the wheels and tires with a Park Avenue that had chrome wheels. What a difference! Chrome wheels on a dark red car. It looks stunning.

    Actually, my LeSabre does have bucket seats, if you want to call them that. Technically, there are two separate seats with the huge console in the middle. It doesn't have a bench seat with the fold-away console. It would be nice if they were REAL bucket seats, though. They're a little flat and don't any lateral support, but they are firm and comfortable. Are you listening, Buick?

    I'll get some photos up soon. Just got done putting some Meguiar's #7 Show Car Glaze and #26 High-Tech Yellow Wax on it. WOW!

    Enjoy the Bonneville. I actually like the SE model the best; the other two just look too cheesy.
  • tpkentpken Posts: 1,108
    I love the look of my Bonnie SE and agree that the SLE and SSEi are visually overdone. The SSEi boys over at Bonneville 2 will disagree - to each his own!

    I'd forgotten about the individual seat option on the Limited - if they had only put in a nice console with shifter - perhaps like the Aurora (or better yet - an old Wildcat!) - man what a nice set up that would be!

    Those chrome wheels must be gorgeous - can't wait to see your pics.

  • Vtech 83, If you don't mind, what kind of price did you pay for the LeSabre? Is the 3.8 still an iron block and head setup?

  • Hey Fordnightmare:

    Basically, I paid cost for the car, about $30,000. I knew the guys at the dealership, so there was no haggling over price or anything. They actually had to get the car from another dealership with the color and options I wanted; otherwise I might have saved another $500 or so. Oh well.

    The 3.8 is pretty much the same pushrod, cast-iron engine they've had for decades now. Pushrods may be living a short life span, but they still work and GM has been making this engine better and more reliable as the years go by.

    Here's a link to the 3.8 specs from

    Good luck.

    - vtech83

  • jimsxnjimsxn Posts: 108
    I am 36 and my other car is a Honda Civic which too I love.
    I bought a 1994 LeSable Ltd last month for two reasons; it has one of the best reliability records (period) and I could get one for C$ 7,300 (taxes included).
    Now that I have been driving it for about a month, my admiration for the car has actually grown. It's one tough car..with a very strong chassis and a responsive engine. I drive it like I drive my civic and the car responds. Ofcourse, the turning radius is long and the V6 just gulps the gas. By the way, my LeSabre is giving me 16 litres to a hundred it too high? I drive fifty km both ways in traffic.
    This car is absolutely comfortable and is fun to drive (I guess I am the only one making that claim). Also, it is much more stable in the snow than my Civic.
    Any suggestion on making it even more fun? I can't afford to add a super charger mainly because then it will need premium.
  • Jimsxn:

    Supercharger would be the best way to boost performance, but it will run you probably over $5000 to get the unit and have it installed. And you're right, you'll probably need the good stuff to keep the engine from knocking.

    Some other things you could do: switch to a K&N air filter, install a 180 degree thermostat, and look at some type of performance exhaust system. One little catch with all of this, especially the exhaust. It could screw up your computer. Cars don't seem to be very much fun to work on anymore.

    I don't know if your LeSabre has the Gran Touring package or not, but adding additional suspension components can make curves alot more fun. Check out the Bonneville forum; LeSabre and Bonneville have pretty much been based on the same chassis for decades now. I'm certain that some of the Bonneville parts should fit on the LeSabre. Spring for some bigger wheels and tires, too. You can't imagine how better your car will handle with the right set of lower-profile rubber.

    Good luck.

    - vtech83
  • I sat in a friend's new 2001 LeSabre and noticed that the seatbelts were different than those in my cars (Mercury Sable and Honda Odyssey).

    The LeSabre's belts are 2 separate belts tied into the buckle tongue with 2 retractors. The lap belt was too tight for me to buckle comfortably.

    I don't have this probblem in my cars which have the seatbelts with 1 retractor on the door pillar and a continuous loop for the seatbelt.

    Two questions:
    1) Do all recent GM cars have the type of belts used on the LeSabre
    2) Does anyone know if Buick sells seat belt extenders and how long they are?

    Thanks for the info.
  • jimsxnjimsxn Posts: 108
    Appreciate your advice.
    One more issue I would like to seek advice on is the cloud of white smoke given out by my '94 LeSabre in the morning. As the car heats up, it comes back to normal. It has automatic climate control (is the engine working extra hard to bring the car up to the required temperature?). I bought this car emission tested from a dealer.
  • I remember in going through the LeSabre owners manual that there are seat belt extenders available, I believe for free.

    I know that most, if not all, GM full size cars now use this same type of seat belt. It's nice in that the seat belt stays in the same position when you move or recline the seat, but I've had problems too in finding complete comfort with these belts. My problem is that the seat belt rides too low over my left shoulder; it would be nice if you could adjust the height. I believe that the Park Avenue has this feature, but not the LeSabre.

    - vtech83
  • jimsxnjimsxn Posts: 108
    vtech83 - my '94 LeSabre has belt height adjuster..I am sure your's would have one too.
  • jimsxn:

    Nope. They don't have them. Kind of a pain, but no car is perfect.

    - vtech83
  • the 2000 and 2001 LeSabres do NOT have seat belt adjusters for height and the free extension will not change the comfort level on your shoulder. When buick went to the "All belts-to-seat" design on the LeSabre in 00, I believe it was a mistake not having adjusters on it. I only sell them, I don't build them though. The reason your 94 had them was because the seatbelts were tied into the car, not the seat. Having them tied to the seat is actually safer. The seat is designed to shift a small amount in a front end collision to help absorb some of the force. If the seat belt was tied to the car, you would be strangled by it. They also came with the "Catchers Mitt" seat. This is designed to have the side bolsters come in (kind of like a hug) during an accident to help hold you in the seat and protect you from the air bag. Because of this design, there was no room to put the motor in the seat for the seat belt adjuster. And now you have the rest of the story...good day! (I always wanted to do that!)
  • Hey Woodybuick:

    I was wondering what, if any, kind of latitude we have in modifying our cars and not void the warranty. I've been considering some suspension modifications and some larger wheels and tires. The LeSabre I have right now handles great with the Gran Touring Package, but a few tweaks here and there would really make a difference. I've been considering a larger and stiffer front stabilizer bar and one for the rear as well since it doesn't seem to have one.

    Also, I was wondering about the stereo. I have copies of the service manual and I was looking through the stereo section, but I saw no mention of a seperate amplifier. It doesn't seem to show up anywhere in the wiring diagrams. I'm assuming that there is an amplifier in this thing somewhere; I didn't think that the actual head unit on the dash contained an amp at all. The stereo in the LeSabre is marginal at best; it could use some improvements too.

    Let me know. Thanks.

    - vtech83
  • I'm the original owner of a '97 LeSabre Limited purchased in June 1997 (fully loaded w/Gran Touring, etc.) Car ran fine for almost 2 years. Then, just after the 3/36k warranty expired (around 39k miles), the tranny would slip at 55-60 mph and then bottom out. Buick dealer said it needed a new valve body and/or torque converter (at least $1200). Escalated to GM Regional rep to see if they would cover under a TSB or "secret warranty." Not helpful at all! GM offered only to pay for the part ($200) and nothing more. Needless to say, I took it elsewhere and had my friends (master mechanics)try to figure it out. We sequentially replaced torque converter,valve body,entire tranny, changed sparks and wire harnesses (which were fried at 39k miles!), computer control module, etc. After a few weeks the problem came back and continues to this day.
    I obviously bought a lemon, and GM didn't care about customer goodwill. I usually keep my cars for 120+k miles or 7-10 years, mostly highway miles, and often get good $$ when I sell them. I'm a stickler for good maintenance and service intervals. But there's no hope for this car. It's a shame, as it's an attractive and comfortable sedan. However, this persistant tranny defect is unbearable. Now it's basically a manual transmisson, for lack of a better description. We will soon rid ourselves of this jinxed LeSabre. Has anyone had a similar problem with Buicks or other GM sedans with the 3800 engine??? Anyone seen the new Hyundai XG-300L (loaded "luxury" sedan from Korea)? I hear it's very well-received by former Camry and LeSabre owners.
  • tpkentpken Posts: 1,108
    Thank-you for the info on that "Catcher's Mit" seat design. I have the '00 Bonneville SE which also has that seat per the brochure and I've wondered how it works. I understand that there is also a rear end collision function to the seat - I wonder if it's the same "hug" feature or something additional.

    Thanks for your informative postings.

  • tpkentpken Posts: 1,108
    That was such a great car in the 60's - all the power of the old 454 4 bbl coupled with a smooth automatic and fitted into a big chrome adorned highway cruiser. My favorite was a '68 silver coupe with black buckets and black vinyl top - a gorgeous chrome covered console really made the interior and those flashy road wheels (were they chrome too?) perfected the exterior styling. I can see that car today - brand new in the dealers showroom - remember opening the enormous door and settling into that comfortable power seat and looking out over the enormous hood past the Buick hood ornament - man what a day that was - and I was 12 yrs old and in love for the very first time (how appropriate for Valentine's Day).

    Now wouldn't it be great if Buick brought that idea back on a specially optioned LeSabre - the performance package, the buckets and console, the supercharged 3800, special paint ( my choice would be the Royal Blue that Maxima offers on the 20th anniv edition). I tell you - I'd be ordering one of those babies in a NY minute.

    What do you think?

  • If you want to order one, you'll have to wait behind me first! I'll take mine in medium or dark red. If only GM would listen to their customers.

    Someone asked me the other day if my LeSabre was a Jaguar. No kidding. He couldn't believe it was a Buick. Told me it looked like a big Jag S-type.

    Pictures coming up soon.

    - vtech83
  • teoteo Posts: 2,508
    Are the American Jaguar...really nice styling...enjoy your rides.
  • Vtech, the only amp is in the head unit. No aux amp anywhere that I am aware of. And I know that there is 53 pounds of paint on the car! (I happen to know all the useless knowledge also)

    tpken, you are very welcome. Yes, the catcher's mitt design helps out in rear end collisions.

    Any other product knowledge questions, fire away. As far as service goes, can't help ya I said before, I can sell 'em, not build 'em.
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