CAR Review: The Buick Lucerne is another
car in a long-list of General Motors' vehicles that seem to remain
anonymous, and I have no idea why. The automotive cognoscenti rave
about the latest from Germany and Japan, yet right here in the good old
USA is one of the nicest cars available, the 2008 Buick Lucerne.
The Lucerne is a stylish, four-door sedan, which
will seat five or six, depending on the front seat option. It can be
equipped with the tried and true, cast-iron, pushrod, 3.8-liter V6, or
an all-aluminum, DOHC 4.6-liter V8. Either engine will do fine.
The V6, although getting a bit long in the tooth,
produces a decent 197 hp, and 227 lb-ft of torque. The V8 on the other
hand puts out 275 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. A higher output V8 thatís
standard in the Lucerne Super makes 292 hp. The V6 is slightly more fuel
efficient, and in this class of car who is going to worry about a
theoretical difference of one or two miles per gallon? All the engines
are rated at 22 to 25 mpg on the highway.
The Lucerne I drove had the standard, 275-hp
engine. It was combined with a good old 4-speed automatic transmission.
GM builds, or used to build, some of the world's best automatic
transmissions, but as good as this transmission is, and the shifts are
clean and crisp, it just does not measure up to the five, six, and even
seven speed automatics available from the overseas competition. Maybe,
just maybe, these engines would get even better fuel economy with a more
The Lucerne is offered in three models, the CX, CXL,
CXS, and Super. Each version gets its own specific tires. The CX has
P225/60R16s; the CXL uses P235/55R17s, the CXS and Super get
P245/50R18s. These aggressive tires highlight a problem with the Lucerne
for traditional (older) buyers.
The Lucerne has a firm ride. Now I appreciate a
firm ride, and it definitely is not a harsh ride, but many traditional
Buick purchasers are more comfortable with the soft, pillowy ride of
years gone by. This is a challenge for Buick; how do you make the
Lucerne appeal to younger buyers, buyers more used to cars that are
meant to go around corners while still retaining those who want to feel
like they are floating on air?
It is a problem I was all too aware of while I
drove the Lucerne. I am a 55+ year old, gray-haired, white male. I know
many looking at me just shook their heads and said, "There goes another
old guy in his Buick." Old Guy and Buick, they seem to go together, like
the horse and carriage does.
I hope that Buick can break the stereotype; the
Lucerne is a darn good car. It handles well, the fit and finish is on
par, or better, than the competition, the styling, although it pays
homage to the past with side portholes, is handsome without being
Price wise the Lucerne is very competitive. The CX
starts at $27,520, the CXL at $30,165, the CXS at $37,375, and the
Lucerne Super at $39,395. And every 2008 Buick Lucerne comes standard
with OnStar. Of course adding to the options list will drive the price
To check out the Lucerne and all Buickís just go to
www.buick.com, or better yet, go to your Buick dealer for a
test-drive and see how nice the Buickís are today.
Hotchkiss © AutoWire.Net - San Francisco
Buick Home Page
Byline: Car Review provided by Tony
Leopardo © AutoWire.Net
Column Name: Price wise the Lucerne is very
Topic: The 2008 Buick Lucerne
Word Count: 647
Photo Caption: The 2008 Buick Lucerne
Photo Credits: Buick Lucerne Internet Media
#: 2008 - 15
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2008 Buick Lucerne
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