By on March 10, 2013


 Even though these full-size, front-wheel-drive GM offerings seemed to carry a stigma of being cars that the grandparents preferred, they undeniably had some virtues that just about any passenger car-type motorist would appreciate.

While certainly making no pretensions toward being any kind of “performance” vehicle, they did indeed perform well for their intended purpose: that being—at minimum—an efficient, four-passenger (with seatbelts for six), open-road cruiser.

The example featured is a normally aspirated 3.8L-powered (they offered a supercharged version of this engine in the “Ultra” variant) 1991 Buick Park Avenue. The 3.8 V-6 from this approximate generation was my favorite version of this engine. From about 1988 on they were offered with balance shaft (a huge improvement over the earlier non-shafted units) and roller camshaft. Later versions of this engine were de-contented through the use of plastics (the intake plenum being the biggest offense, in my opinion), a more difficult to service serpentine belt arrangement, and somewhat less serviceable componentry, in general.

Coupled with the 4T60-E transmission—a goodly improvement over the non-electronic 440 assemblage—and a rather “tall” final drive ratio, coupled with good body aerodynamics, the Park Avenue was a fairly ideal tool for gobbling up large portions of Interstate at speed, in comfort, and in company. I had an ’88 Pontiac Bonneville (a “stripper” model with some performance mod’s) and I can vouch for the fact that it did just that—even with the wimpier 440 trans.

Now being in excess of twenty years old, most of these capable steeds have been used up and sent to the “glue factory”. I got a chance to check the mileage on this particular P/A, and that pretty much explained why this one is still not just rolling, but looking mighty good in the process.

The original paint is still in good shape, with just a few scuffs here and there; and the leather seats and the rest of the interior still very serviceable.

This “Bodacious” P/A is just hitting its stride, and should provide its owner with a lot of smiles to go with the miles!

Phil has written features and columns for a number of automotive periodicals and web-based information companies. He has run a successful Auto Repair Business in the past for many years (See “Memoirs of an Independent Repair Shop Owner” on this ttac site). He can be contacted through this very site, or http://www.linkedin.com/

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59 Comments on “BODACIOUS BEATERS—and road-going derelicts: PARK AVENUE CONDO...”


  • avatar
    mikeg216

    My father got one of these for free in about 1992, he had a friend that was a sales rep. It had about 280k on it, it was a 1998 Olympic edition lesabre. He took it everywhere for at least a decade with just the bare minimum of used tires and yearly oil changes, the headlight alignment screws had long since rusted away and it looked like a rusty white and gold trimmed cockeyed gecko going down the road. Towards the end it was such a heap we left it at a train station unlocked with the windows down the for two weeks with the keys in it, it was still there when we got back. Dad gave it away to a friend of mine that needed transportation when we jacked it up to change a tire and the jack broke the nub where you place the jack and punched a hole through the floorboard. Truly probably the best used car buy in history and the second best engine ever made!

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      So it was:
      -Years newer
      -A different generation
      -A different model
      -Had a different engine generation
      -A special edition

      None of these things make it a 91 Park Avenue.

  • avatar
    mikeg216

    *1988

    • 0 avatar
      rnc

      Think my grandmother’s was a 90′ or 91′, with every option the dealer could stick in it (lesson: It might not be the best idea to let your grandmother walk into a dealership with a copy of ‘Good House Keeping’ and let her say I want this one, quick credit check and they realized she would be paying cash) once a week I had to fill up the gas, re-adjust the side mirrors, etc. When she passed away, my mom and aunt bidded for the car (my mom didn’t know that my aunt was playing with my uncle’s money), so he had about a 3 hour commute at the time, know it was somewhere north of 400k miles when my bother (owns large shop) recommended it was a good time to start looking. And it was a nice car, everything a buick should have been, like the original Aurora, if GM would have had the resources to build cars for each division along this line, they didn’t have the resources though. (R. Smith left them in the worse shape imaginable), so each division got one great car (maybe) and then a bunch of crap. “It’s not about market share in NA or EU, just look at China (GM’s equiv. to the V2)” Became the corporate mantra, china will save us.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        I like the V2 comparison, although I just finished a detailed book arguing it was the U-boats which the high command believed would save them, not the other so called “wunderwaffe”. If you’re interested in a deep dive on that period of history, I recommend “Hitler, Donitz, and the Baltic Sea” by Howard Grier.

        http://www.usni DOT org/store/books/history/hitler-donitz-and-baltic-sea

  • avatar
    Gannet

    Truly great cars.

    One of the odd things (to me) about the evolution of auto enthusiasm over the last 50 years or so is that the definition of “performance car” or “enthusiast’s car” has come to refer strictly to the car’s capacity for tear-assing around. Driving as a motoring enthusiast or enjoying a fine automobile has come to be a synonym for tear-assing around. Our world-view used to be broader than that.

    There was a time when a car that could eat up the miles in quiet, smoothness, and comfort was very much considered a car a conniseur could appreciate. I’m (barely) old enough to remember Tom McCahill’s reviews in Mechanic’s Illustrated. Tom could appreciate all kinds of cars, not just hot-rods, and I think he would have loved the Park Avenue.

    I have nothing against tear-assing (although it’s only a shadow of what it once was, in our new ultra-humourless and over-policed world). Heck, I have a 2009 Z06 in the garage. But I also dearly love my 2006 LS430 – undoubtedly the finest car I have ever driven. I consider the LS very much an enthusiast’s car. And so is that Park Avenue.

    • 0 avatar
      bumpy ii

      Almost all cars can do that these days, so there’s not much to be enthusiastic about. It’s like being excited about air conditioning, or tires that don’t blow out.

      • 0 avatar
        potatobreath

        bumpy ii, while I do agree with you that modern cars have come a long way for comfort and quietness, I don’t agree that all modern cars will satisfy everyone’s expectations of comfort — comfort which has become irrelevant when car shopping. I feel this rings especially true for compact or even midsize cars, and I’ve driven many cars in the rental fleet. Personally, I found an old early nineties Lexus ES300 much quieter, better insulated and smoother than a new Toyota Corolla. You may be less sensitive (or picky) than I am though and prefer the Corolla. Your mileage may vary.

        Quietness and comfort are qualities I will pay a bit extra for, that I don’t expect to find in a smaller or cheaper car. Maybe I’m one of those people who are willing to pay a bit more for a Lexus ES versus a Toyota Camry platform-mate. Quietness and smoothness is something I am still enthusiastic about, even if I like riding motorcycles and can appreciate a soul-stirring engine note as much as the next guy.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      I respect the LS400/430, seem to be the only “Lexus” style cars Lexus still sells/sold.

      • 0 avatar
        SoCalMikester

        they need to go back to their roots, if its possible.

        the original LS400 was a total game changer- an (almost)S class with modern features and a reduced price tag, with legendary japanese quality. i even loved how they copied the mercedes styling.

        idk how they could pull off that trick again, or if.

    • 0 avatar
      joeveto3

      @Gannet: What you wrote strikes a chord. I “get” what others have said about certain qualities being as ubiquitous, and expected as A/C. But the execution of said qualities leaves a lot to be desired. A car can be fast, but that doesn’t mean it’s “good.” A car can be reliable, but that doesn’t mean it’s “good.” A car can be cheap, but that too, does not mean it’s “good.”

      And so on it goes.

      A car needs to be executed well to be “good.” And I agree that these Park Avenues and platform mates, were really “good” at hitting their target. They were comfortable, powerful, reliable, stylish, and not exorbitantly expensive.

      I guess the Avalons of the world fill in the spot left by these cars. But I feel like something is missing. Todays offerings leave me cold. There’s a certain, hard to describe charm that is absent from the market.

      I never thought I’d say this, but I miss the column shifter and potential 6-passenger seating these cars offered.

  • avatar

    These were, and still are, wonderful cars. I have a good friend who tends to buy older cars and just the other day I told him that if he is in the market for a good, older used car, he needs to be looking for a 3800 Buick.

    They just seem to last forever.

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      The Park Avenue had a plush ride, was reliable with either the n/a Series II 3800 OR even the FI one, and was a quiet peaceful place to swallow miles.

      The biggest drawback was the dashboard, gauges & switches that were designed and fabricated by Fisher Price.

      • 0 avatar
        modelt1918

        The 3800 is as dependable as any engine ever built by GM but, how is the transmission? Is it the same as most in those days? 80K and gone…

        • 0 avatar
          nickoo

          The 3800 was a good motor for a few years in the early 90s. Once they started using plastic intake pieces and went to dex-cool it wasn’t that reliable. Also, the timing chain needed replaced at 100k or you risked a break and destroying the engine. The LT LS series of v8s were miles ahead of the 3800, which was an engine that was designed in the late 70s by taking a v-8 and chopping 2 cylinders off of it and attempting to make it work.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I think you’re confusing 3800 with the 4.3 V6, which was in fact a SBC minus two cylinders as you describe.

            The Buick V6, initially marketed as Fireball at its introduction in 1962, was a large V6 engine used by General Motors.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buick_V6_engine

          • 0 avatar
            APaGttH

            What 28-cars-later said. You’re mixing up the 3.4L V6 and the GM 3.8.

            The plastic manifold Dexcool was an issue in the Series II engine but not as common as the 3.4, which was a pretty God awful engine. Think about as common as say oil gelling in Toyota engines during the same era. Yes, some 3.8s ate the manifold gaskets, enough for comments, but not as common as say ignition coil and oil leaks I. VWs of the same era.

            By 2003 the issue was resolved and an 11 year old or newer 3.8L is pretty much bullet proof, bows at the altar of torque, has a nice exhaust note, and is efficient – 20/30 real world MPG not out of the question.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I find with Mobil 1 and fresh tranny fluid/filter, I avg 19.x-32.x, and on consistent cruise @ 55 the computer reads between 35-37. Parts availability, wide array of examples left, intense reliability, fuel economy, ULEV emissions, cheaper initial investment than the competition, 3800 is THE engine to have in the used market.

          • 0 avatar
            probert

            @28carslater

            I think it is the same v6. At some point GM sold the rights – american motors I think – and then bought it back – added counterbalancers etc and put it back on the road. Ateupwithmotor wrote about it. A long history (not so glorious) and this was its last roundup.

          • 0 avatar
            redmondjp

            nikoo – you are indeed confused regarding the 3800 timing chain issue. The earlier 3800, VIN code ’3′ used up through 1987 (and maybe in some 1988 Buick/Olds C and H bodies), did indeed have a disintegrating plastic-coated pot metal cam gear which tended to go away at or before 125K miles.

            The balance-shaft-equipped 3800, VIN code ‘C’ used in 1988+ cars, had no such issues and could easily hit 200K-300K miles without touching the timing set.

            Ask the man who owns one!

          • 0 avatar
            ponchoman49

            The 3800 did not have timing chain issues anytime from 1988-2009. The early build 3800′s series II had an issue with the EGR tube being undersized and melting the plastic intake manifold which caused antifreeze to get ingested into the cylinders. This was remedied by late 1999. The 3100/3400 engines had the famous intake manifold scrubbing effect due to dissimilar metals (alloy and cast iron)that was remedied by newer improved gasket materials that flexed with the different expansion/contraction rates.

    • 0 avatar
      billwat

      My mom had a ’97 PA and it was a great cruiser. Transmission finally gave out with about 360k miles on the clock. Only other major mechanical issue was a cracked intake manifold at about 200k.

  • avatar
    AFX

    The Buicks are probably the best used cars to look for out of the all GM cars. They’ve got the 3.8 liter engine that’s reliable and easy to get parts for, and their original owners are usually 50+ geezers that took care of them and didn’t drive them hard. If you looked for a Pontiac or a Chevy chances are the previous owner was cheap on the maintenance, or was some redneck that beat it to death. My dad was a Buick mechanic, and every time I’d go to the garage where he worked at to get my car inspected I’d be the youngest one sitting in the waiting room, and I’d be surrounded by people who were 50+.

    What happens with the used Buicks is that they either get traded in for another newer Buick, a Cadillac, or something like a Lexus, or their owners get too old to drive and have to give up their cars. You usually wind up with a fairly low mileage car that’s been treated well. What will happen then is that the Buick will then be sold to some broke white trash family who beats the living hell out of it, and neglects to do any maintenance at all, so you wind up with nasty looking older Buicks still driving around on the streets that are like cockroaches and refuse to die.

    The Buicks are great for interstate travel because they have more sound deadening than a Chevy or a Pontiac, and are advertised as having a “quiet tuned” ride. The floaty suspension helps over expansion joints and potholed roads, whereas a car with a firmer suspension would beat you to death and just be fatiguing. They’ve got that nice “grandma’s sitting room” interior too, and with any luck you can find one with the plastic still on the seats. My dad had a Century coupe with the 3.3 liter V-6, the car had 160hp and only weighed around 2,800lbs, and it had some shit-and-git out on the roads and going up long hills.

    • 0 avatar
      SaulTigh

      If I was not in a long term, committed relationship with a 1996 Panther, I’d totally want one of these. One of the many reasons I’ve held on to my current ride is that I just can’t stand to see a car I’ve kept so nice for 10+ years go into the hands of some white trash family. I see them every day. *shudder*

      • 0 avatar
        nickoo

        Keep your panther, there is no comparison. These cars are only “great” when compared to the other junk that GM was putting out at the time. The early 90s ones were ok, but still not comparable to the bubble B-bodies, (which was GM’s best car until they killed it off), as the years went on, these cars just kept getting worse. I would pick up a 1995+ Lexus LS (the earlier ones had some mechanical issues) over one of these, they can be found for a reasonable price and there is no comparison in quality.

    • 0 avatar
      The Dark One

      I wonder if “broke white trash family” was replaced with broke BLACK trash family, would it be considered racist?

  • avatar
    nickoo

    Between me and my family, we had about 5 of these 90s H bodies over the years. The largest redeeming quality these had was that these cars were better than most of the other garbage that GM was putting out at the time. I prefer the 1991 LeSabre Limited’s body style and interior over the bubble park avenue, although both had terrible, back killing seats for long road trips, at least you could get them without leather so they wouldn’t look like complete garbage in a few years.

    These are the cars that GM left Buick with as it slowly rotted until it was all but dead. From about 1989-2010, each generation of these H bodies seemed to get a little bit worse than the previous one.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      I thought the Lucerne was okay (if woefully old), but the ’00-’05 H-bodies can be pretty trashy.

      • 0 avatar
        nickoo

        The Lucerne always seemed like a cynical half baked car to me, which doesn’t surprise me as the Buick team had a car they were getting ready to put out and Maximum Bob killed it and forced them to start over, the result being the Lucerne–which was sad because it could have been a hit with a little bit more work. Things it needed: better brakes (I recall an article about it having the worst stopping power in it’s class, something like 186 feet 60-0), better designed interior, a completely new front clip as the car is pretty good looking body with a butter-face syndrome, an extra gear or two in the transmission (which wouldn’t fit the top trim due to the genius idea of dropping the northstar in the engine bay), dropping magneride and northstar and instead sticking with the tried and true reliable 3.8L supercharged and regular strut setup.

        That was the appeal about Buicks, everyone I know who bought them, bought them because they didn’t want a Cadillac and all the problems/costs that came with owning a Cadillac, another brand that GM left to rot from the intro of the early 90s Seville up through the second gen CTS.

        You’re right about the generation of H bodies from about 2001-2005 (park avenue/le sabre). They were completely cheaped-out feeling pieces compared to the early 90s ones, my mother owns one.

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          I don’t disagree with anything you said about the Lucerne, but I felt like it had a couple of big things going for it.

          -It was better than the Impala, Grand Prix, or I4 Lacrosse.

          -It fixed a lot of the problems on the ’00-’05. I didn’t own my Lucerne for very long, but I’ll probably end up with another one in a few years. I wouldn’t say that about a ’02 Lesabre.

          -The V6 versions will likely be the most reliable vehicle that GM has ever built.

        • 0 avatar
          APaGttH

          Had a Lucerne as a rental and it still remains on my top three worst rental car list. On paper it was a nice car, and the model I had was well equipped, but the detuned 197 HP 3.8 V6 was woefully inadequate to drag the Lucerne around.

          The car desperately needed another 40 to 60 HP.

      • 0 avatar
        supremebrougham

        Believe it or not, the H Body was discontinued in 1999. The 2000-up LeSabre was based on the G platform, from whence the Aurora came…

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          Granted Wikipedia is not the ultimate source of truth, but according to it G-body only consisted of the Riv and the two Aurora platforms.

          http://en.wikipedia DOT org/wiki/GM_G_platform_%28FWD%29

          • 0 avatar
            supremebrougham

            Well I am afraid that this time the nice people at Wiki Wiki are wrong. Look at the hard points, and if that doesn’t convince you, notice where the fuel filler is on the quarter panel, it’s in the exact same place. Now granted the LeSabre does not handle as nice as the Aurora, but no doubt Buick figured their customers wanted more float and bob, and tuned the platform accordingly…

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            What about the Bonne and the later Lucerne, I was under the impression they were supposed to be H-platform sisters with Lesabre, also G?

          • 0 avatar
            supremebrougham

            They too were based on the G, along with the Caddy Deville, and I want to say the Seville as well.

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          Well, GM still called them H-bodies, and kept the H-body VIN character, so that is what I’ll stick with.

          But you’re right, engineering-wise they had more in common with the Aurora than an ’86 Lesabre.

        • 0 avatar
          nickoo

          That doesn’t surprise me that the 2000 and up is on a different platform. My mother owns one of the newer ones and it seems like 2 steps backwards from the 1993 park avenue that my father had once owned. My favorite would have to be between the 1997 delta 88 or the 1991 le sabre, as I have owned both :-)

  • avatar
    ajla

    Well, my current two cars are an ’89 Electa and a ’92 SSEi, plus I’ve owned EVERY version of the FWD Buick V6 except for the Supercharged SIII.

    My personal favorite are the LN3-powered H-bodies (3300 A-bodies are a close second). Although I’ve heard of problems with the 440-T4, I’ve never personally experienced them in any of my cars.

    The owner of that Park Avenue should think about getting rid of those Magnavox coils though.

  • avatar
    jz78817

    serpentine belts may be more of a pain to R&R, but they definitely have their advantages e.g. longer life and less stress on the accessories they drive. further, with automatic tensioners they keep people from trashing their water pumps and alternators from over-tensioning the belt.

    • 0 avatar
      golden2husky

      And they eliminated one of the top five warranty claims for new cars – loose belts. And they make assembly quicker. I’d never want to go back to the old style of belts. Because of these reasons, they are here to stay, unlike those damn gooseneck hinges which have come roaring back due to beancounteritus…

  • avatar
    Mandalorian

    I would not want to ever own a Buick. They just seem like a punishment for being old. If you have a bad back and want a comfortable car with chiropractic seats, a Volvo is better.

    • 0 avatar
      probert

      Funny thing is you get into one of these cars and they are r00000my and comfy and move in a relaxed manner. No euro sedan stiff and rear set cramping. It’s really very nice.

      If your friends give you guff just invite 4 of them in with you and have them stretch out in splendor – next time 2 if them are in the back seat of a volvo with their knees pressed against the seats, they’ll remember the buick fondly, though they’ll never say it out loud because it’s a secret shame.

  • avatar
    cargogh

    My Mom still drives a ’98 LeSabre. Dad bought it used with 8,000 miles a year before he died. It has 90K on it now. They had an ’88 and ’90 LeSabre, then a ’96 Park Avenue, before this one.
    I drove it Christmas. It seemed identical to how it was 14 years ago. Other than the headliner material looking a little sun beaten on the C pillars, a good detailing would render it new. Well, with the exception of the pwr window button surround that has the paint flaking off like some clawed animal couldn’t make the decision of up or down. But all of these Buicks I’ve seen fail here.
    It seems like she had a couple of coil packs replaced and an alternator but that’s it.
    I’ve never driven it without her in there, so I don’t know what it is like to drive aggressively, but overall it makes me want to drive more sedately.
    From day one, new or older, all feel like they need new shocks and a sway bar. Quiet is fine, but comfort is a driving experience full of confidence and control. If some texting idiot pulls out in front of me, I will not be comfortable yanking the wheel to avoid them and jumping back in my lane. I’m sure Buick offered an FE3 type suspension option. It was never checked on any I’ve driven.
    Mom’s is close to the color shown here, but she has a newer design alloy wheels. With whitewalls. In Western Kentucky, that was an extremely popular combo. She always got it mixed up in the Wal-Mart parking lot with the other identical 15. Either most owners cherish them and keep them garaged, or they were well made, because when I’m visiting down there, they are still out in shiny numbers.
    Dad used to check the mileage at every fill up, and it wasn’t full until it dripped. He routinely got around 30 mpg out of all of them. I think the dk blue ’90 was the best of the lot at a consistent 32. Both the early ones with backward raising hoods always impressed me with that design and the fact that they upholstered like a coffin interior, but still had a tach.
    I never drove a Lucerne, but that thing was huge. From the rear and sides, I considered it GM’s VW Phaeton. Unchromed and understated until you got around front, and the cheesy head lights let it down. I didn’t like that front end on the Q45 either though.

  • avatar
    stevelovescars

    My dad has been a Buick driver for as long as I can recall. Our ’78 Regal self-immolated while sitting on our driveway one day so he replaced it,
    Temporarily, with an ’84 Skyhawk (J body, horrendous car but as I was 16 at the time I thought it was fun for what it was). Then got an ’85 Park Ave, silver with a grey vinyl roof… That was a great car. Two accidents, stolen and recovered twice, just wouldn’t die. The early 3800 was a strong engine.

    He now has a Lucerne. He loves it (he is now 72) but when I first drive it I was disappointed. I flew in Detroit and borrowed the car for a 3-4 hour drive to northern Michigan. I was expecting quiet and comfort. I was surprised at how the car felt isolated by a lack of feel of anything going on and with vague steering yet every bump seemed to reverberate through the whole structure. I am a healthy 42 but my back was aching an hour into the drive. Wow, a car designed for elderly drivers without any adjustable lumbar support… Or any back support to speak of?

    The Lucerne seemed like a sorry phoned-in attempt to design a luxury car… As if the only competition considered were all two decades old.

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    The supercharged version of the Park Ave as well the Bonneville SSEi were quite ahead of their time. Especially since other GM models of the era were bean countered to mediocracy.

    If only they offered AWD versions of H and C-bodies like the A-Body Pontiac 6000 STE AWD.

  • avatar
    SixDucks

    One of the best snow/inclement weather cars of all time. Must have been reliable, they built a mess of them and it seems that most are still around.

  • avatar
    supremebrougham

    Two years ago I found a one-owner 1995 LeSabre Limited in Saginaw, Michigan. 103k, little old lady owned. Other than a few small scratches, it looked and felt like a brand new car. The leather was of very high quality. Everything worked like it was supposed to. I would still have it but shortly after I bought it my father fell ill, and after all the trips to the hospital and eventually to the funeral home and trips to the cemetery the memories got to me. I didn’t drive it during the winter because I didn’t want to mess it up. The next spring I sold it to a lovely older couple who took it down to Florida to give it the kind of life it deserved.

    From a reliability standpoint, these Buicks from this point in time could easily be compared to the Camcords of the era for being trouble free cars. Even up here in Northern Michigan, it’s not at all uncommon to see these with WELL over 200k on the clocks and still running strong.

  • avatar
    Spartan

    I had a friend that owned a 04 Park Avenue Ultra back in ’06 and what a car. I was 22 then and I thought it was a pretty nice ride.

    If I had to buy a Park Avenue, it’d be an 05 Ultra in white. Beautiful car. It’s too bad we don’t appreciate these kinda vehicles anymore. All the car rags preach about slalom numbers and 0 to 60 times, but damn, not everyone cares about that.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      That version had the goofy portholes at the end though :/ I’ve also heard they nickel and dime you with sensors and electrical faults, unlike these older ones.

  • avatar
    RatherhaveaBuick

    Amen to Buick love.

    I have a 93 Regal GS with the sporty suspension. Great car. 3800s are some of the best engines ever. Torque-y. Solid as a brick. And even with the Gran Sport suspension the ride even now is pretty smooth.

    The best used cars are (like 3800 Buicks) one’s previously owned and driven by old people. With the passing of years (and elderly people) there’s a lot of great used Buicks out there with barely any mileage.

    Judging by the reliability of the cars themselves, I suspect there will be a good supply of those deals for years to come.

  • avatar
    Lee

    Truly awful cars. Just horrible.

  • avatar
    Junebug

    My mother in law had 1997 Park Ave. She bought it new, dealer did all the maintenance and in 15 years, that was 2 batts, 1 alternator, belts, hoses and AC. It had 90k miles and although the white paint had faded, the leather inside was perfect, she sold it in her yard for $4,000 and went out and bought a 2013 SRX. She looked at the new Buicks and decided that they just weren’t what her Park Ave use to be. She likes the Caddie and after a little help with the CUE – she’s really enjoying it. I took it for a little drive and damn – she was right, that SRX drives good! Good-by Buick…

  • avatar
    Phil Coconis

    You guys ROCK!!

    Regarding the comment on the 3.8′s exhaust note: I can attest to the sweetness of it–with the right muffler installed, that is. I put a Dynomax Hemi Super Turbo on my Bonney, and got this beautiful, semi-subdued rasp, with no cabin resonance penalty!

    Regarding the comment on the car’s winter weather prowess: I can also attest to that. With the wide track, proper weight distribution, and rather mellow off-the-line power application these cars posessed, I could go a lot of places in snowy weather without the need for cable-chains. Of course, with the cables, it’s abilities were pretty amazing for an FWD vehicle.

  • avatar
    oldyak

    after all the cars I grew up with..Buick still does ‘what it does’ best.
    Good looking and reliable.


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