I am the Buick Grand National: Hear me Roar
Buick Grand National: Last Muscle Car of the Century?
Circa 1987:I can remember driving to lunch during my high school lunch break with my friends packed in my piece of rice-burning crap Toyota Corolla hatchback and seeing this punk ass rich kid that went to my school hotrod around in the car of my dreams......a big, bold and black Buick Grand National. I could hear the turbo-charged engine scream as he raced down 9 mile road in my childhood burb of Southfield, Michigan. Oh how I looked on in envy as I walked by it in the school parking lot but if i gotta be honest here......I would have liked to punch the kid in the face and steal his car and go for the ultimate joy ride of my teenage youth :) But alas, I did not because I don't do things like that but come on people.....jealousy is a powerful emotion....am I right? Anywhoooo, circa 2007 and guess what? I finally get the car of my dreams. I have scraped and saved for years waiting patiently for this moment and it is finally going to come to fruition. I see a great deal for a 1987 Grand National with some extra modifications on e-bay and I decide to copy down the VIN number and research the car using carfax online. I discover the car is clean and I make my 1st bid on the car. Of course other people see this great deal and make bids also but I am determined to get what I want. I have waited to long to get screwed over in the bidding process. The auction goes on and I put in a maximum bid of just over $13,000 and it seems to do the trick and I win the auction. I put down my deposit and secure the car and get ready to drive down to Ohio to pick up the black beauty. So I rent a car and drive down there and lo and behold.....the seller picks me up from the rental car company in my future car.......the Buick Grand National in all its splendor. He scoots over to let me drive ( i demand it ) and I gotta tell ya, I have never felt such raw power in all my life when I pressed down on the accelerator. My Grand National has the turbocharger turned up to 25 P.S.I. ( pounds per square inch ) and the average is 10-15 P.S.I. so you can guess what I felt when that turbo kicked in and screamed. It put me back in my seat and i hear the back tires squelch. I was up to 90 MPH in no time at all. I made the seller real nervous on the way to the office where we would handle the final transactions. But hey....I had to know it had all he said it would have. The car was in pristine condition inside and out and was very clean. This guy I bought it from was a car collector but his wife made him sell some of his cars off. Why? I don't know but I am happy she made him because I got a great deal. The car was pretty much stock but had some extra modifications on it such as a Stage 2 computer chip which reprograms the car to change certain measurements with the air and fuel flow and increases horse power ( HP ). My Grand National also sports hi-performance headers, a 40 pound fuel pump and 40 pound fuel injectors. And as I said before, the intercooled turbocharger was turned up to 25 P.S.I. The car came with its own racing tires ( slicks ) and a nice car cover. But the best part was that it had Centerline chrome rims on it and the back tires were wider then the front, giving the car a much meaner look. I knew I got a great deal on the car when me and my friends ( the same ones from high school, 20 years later ) were cruising down Woodward Avenue during the 2007 Dream Cruise and a couple guys offered me $20,000 for my Grand National right there on the spot and they were dead serious. I could have made a profit of over $6000 right then and there. But man, I just got the car of my dreams and I was unwilling to part with it but its nice to know I made a good decision with the purchase of the car. Another plus was that the insurance for the car was actually pretty cheap for a fast car like that. I only pay just over $300 a year for full coverage and no deductible but this company I go through knows the car is stored in the winter and is only driven occasionally in the warm months of Michigan. So as i write this hub, my dream car sits in my detached garage waiting for me to get it ready and cruise around town. We just got 6 inches of snow the other day so its still not time but I am waiting patiently. And so is she ;)
Buick Grand National: A Brief History
In the year 1982, the Buick Grand National was born. The very 1st Grand Nationals had a 4.1 litre V6 engine and were all painted a 2 tone grey. The Grand National was not built at all in 1983 but made a roaring comeback in 1984 with a new stunning solid black paint job and most important of all.....a new turbocharged 3.8 SFI V6 engine that is also dubbed "; The V8 Killer ";. The new engine had decent gas mileage, somewhere at 17 mpg for the city and 25 mpg for the highway. The rarest Grand Nationals ever made were in 1986 when Buick put a LeSabre front wheel drive platform on it and the 3.8 V6 engine was NOT turbocharged. So not all Grand Nationals have posi-traction rear wheel drive systems. There were only about 115 made of this type of GN so that makes it very rare indeed. The turbocharger also was upgraded in the 1986 and 1987 models when Buick put a intercooler on the turbo and increased the HP from 200 net HP at 4400 RPM to 235 net HP at 4000 RPM just by adding that part. Buick also added a "; INTERCOOLED "; emblem on the Grand National to celebrate that fact. But all good things come to an end and in 1987, the final assembly plant in Pontiac, Michigan ( that's right, another badass muscle car from Michigan!! ) stopped production of the Grand National but little did Buick know the impact this car would have on America and overseas. 1987 was the year that the most Grand Nationals were built, just over 20,000 were made but the 1987 model is popular with collectors because the car is intercooled and had some extra cool emblems on the car and some other exterior modifications. So why did Buick stop making this car at its height of popularity? One of the most popular phrases back during the reign of the Grand National was "; We brake for Corvettes!! "; and "; B-B-B-B-Bad to the Bone!! "; from the TV commercials back in the 1980s. You have to remember back then that GM's flagship sports car was the Corvette, not the GN. But in the last year of production for the Grand National ( GN ), the GNX was created and it beat the Corvette hands down on the 0-60 times and the 1/4 mile times, making it the fastest production car EVER made at that time. The GNX had a 0-60 time of 4.7 seconds and a 1/4 mile time of just over 13 seconds and it was a sedan!! So GM pulled the plug on the Grand National because of the Corvette. Like I said earlier, jealousy is a strong emotion, even for a car!! The Grand National X or GNX was only built in 1987 and only 547 GNX's were built but they left their mark and is one of the most sought after classic muscle cars today sometimes going for $100,000 for a GNX in mint condition and low miles. The GNX was produced by the McLaren/ASC company for Buick and sported certain upgrades and mods like an improved intercooled turbocharger, transmission and improved suspension. The exterior was also amped up with vents on both sides of the front fender and bigger and better tires and rims for that eventual street race!! The GNX also had analog Stewart/Warner gauges for the interior dashboard including an analog turbo boost gauge. The only bad thing about the GNX is the unavailability of parts. It is VERY difficult to obtain parts because the car was so rare. Well I hope you enjoyed this little history about my favorite car in the whole world, the Buick Grand National. I will post some links, videos and pics of my personal car for you to enjoy. Maybe i will see you on the road ;) Bad news for you my friend. All you will see is my tail lights. He hehehehehe. :)
Classic Grand National Commercial
1000 plus Horse Power Grand National!!
- TurboBuicks.com - TurboCharged Message Board Turbo Buick Grand National, T-Type, Turbo TransAm
- GN REGISTRY :: THE OFFICIAL BUICK GRAND NATIONAL & BUICK GNX REGISTRY
Buick Grand National Registry, GN registry, GNX Registry, Turbo T Registry, T-Type Registry, Turbo Trans Am Registry, GNregistry.org web site
- gncollector.com - Buick Grand National Collectibles!
Buick Grand National Collectibles, Grand National, GNX, T-type, Turbo T, Limited, Turbo Regal, Sport Coupe, ASC, GM, 1987, 1986, 1985, 1984, 1982.
- TurboBuick.Com - The World Wide Web under BOOST! - Buick Grand National, GNX, T-Type
- Musclecarclub.com - Muscle Cars - Buick Grand National and Regal T-Type