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Who Says A 1980 Buick LeSabre Isn't A Performance Car?
Jalopnik ^ | Raphael Orlove

Posted on 04/28/2014 11:10:31 PM PDT by nickcarraway

Conventional wisdom goes that you get the most performance potential out of a sports car. Yes, but what about a 1980 Buick LeSabre?P

A sports car is a car you want to preserve, appreciate, enjoy. A car for solitary and thoughtful dries on empty roads. A somewhat serious vehicle for a somewhat serious endeavor of driving quickly.P

A 1980 LeSabre, however, is a car that you use to rip donuts in a quarry. A car for jumping into. A car for running into joyous destruction.P

So who says it's not a performance car?1


TOPICS: History; Hobbies; Weird Stuff
KEYWORDS: cars

1 posted on 04/28/2014 11:10:31 PM PDT by nickcarraway
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To: nickcarraway

P’s on it.


2 posted on 04/28/2014 11:24:21 PM PDT by Misterioso
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To: nickcarraway
Considering the V6 has barely the power of today's economy gas sippers and it had an transmission with a very low horse power to ground ratio, it was no muscle car.

Power & Torque The LeSabre has a peak horsepower output of 104 HP @ 3,400 RPM. Maximum torque available is 185 ft-lbs @ 2,000 RPM.

Engine This car has a front-engine layout. It is a 3.8L 6-cylinder.

Impressive fuel mileage for 1980, however, at 16 mpg city, 22 mpg hwy.


Granpa, can I borrow your car?

3 posted on 04/28/2014 11:33:20 PM PDT by gunsequalfreedom (Conservative is not a label of convenience. It is a guide to your actions.)
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To: gunsequalfreedom

As bad as some of them cars were, I still miss the 1970’s.

And 80’s and 90’s and even early 2000’s.

sigh


4 posted on 04/29/2014 12:58:52 AM PDT by F15Eagle (1Jn4:15;5:4-5,11-13;Mt27:50-54;Mk15:33-34;Jn3:17-18,6:69,11:25,14:6,20:31;Ro10:8-11;1Tm2:5-6;Ti3:4-7)
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To: gunsequalfreedom; F15Eagle; Salamander

In 1980 I had a LeSabre just like the one in your photo except that it was the two-door coupe. Much sportier, eh?

The 231 V6 was barely strong enough to get out of its own way, much less pass anything.

On top of that, at 63,000 miles it holed two pistons clean through. (I had taken it to the dealer numerous times complaining of the pinging, even on premium gas. They assured me there was nothing wrong. They were incorrect. The manifold gasket was sucking air and caused pre-ignition on the whole right cylinder bank. The third piston was just about to go.)

So I had a rebuilt engine installed (GM agreed to pay for half) and traded the car in the next day.


5 posted on 04/29/2014 1:32:35 AM PDT by shibumi (Cover it with gas and set it on fire.)
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To: shibumi

The 80s Buick Grand National turbo V6 outran the stock Corvette in published automotive magazine tests when it came out.

I have seen the regular turbo “T” types modified with larger turbos run extremely fast 10 -11 second 1/4 mile times.


6 posted on 04/29/2014 2:12:52 AM PDT by MikeSteelBe (Austrian Hitler was, as the Halfrican Hitler does.)
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To: MikeSteelBe

I had a buddy who had one of those Grand Nationals.

I recall it was black, had a cool orange logo and was very fast, as you say.

I’m pretty sure it was based on a Buick Regal

I also remember being behind him on the expressway when he decided to nail it and got himself a huge POP! with some multi-colored smoke for his trouble.


7 posted on 04/29/2014 2:22:19 AM PDT by shibumi (Cover it with gas and set it on fire.)
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To: nickcarraway

IMO, if it was designed and built in the ‘80’s with a catalytic converter, it’s not a performance car.


8 posted on 04/29/2014 2:27:11 AM PDT by equaviator (There's nothing like the universe to bring you down to earth.)
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To: shibumi

“I also remember being behind him on the expressway when he decided to nail it and got himself a huge POP! with some multi-colored smoke for his trouble.”

Most forced-inductions have some sort of pressure relief systems to prevent damaging explosions.

There was a very limited special version of the Grand National called the GNX that had a lighter, ceramic impeller in the turbo.


9 posted on 04/29/2014 3:29:17 AM PDT by MikeSteelBe (Austrian Hitler was, as the Halfrican Hitler does.)
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To: shibumi

“and traded the car in the next day.”

I’m curious as to which brand you traded it for. GM dealers of the seventies were astonishingly hostile to their customers. I haven’t owned or driven a GM vehicle since 1977. Now that they’re Government Motors I never will. Once a company has soured a relationship, at least in my case, it’s a permanent divorce.

Foreign car dealerships treat me like I’m visiting royalty. I feel almost guilty drinking their free gourmet coffee. I get asked if they can drop me someplace and pick me up. Heck no. I’m going to sit in the leather chair and sip coffee.


10 posted on 04/29/2014 3:52:19 AM PDT by Gen.Blather
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To: Gen.Blather

~~~Once a company has soured a relationship, at least in my case, it’s a permanent divorce.~~~

I’m with ya on that; my exact feelings towards Verizon and a local Honda dealer’s tricks.

Now I go to a different Honda dealer and use a different cell service.


11 posted on 04/29/2014 4:09:12 AM PDT by F15Eagle (1Jn4:15;5:4-5,11-13;Mt27:50-54;Mk15:33-34;Jn3:17-18,6:69,11:25,14:6,20:31;Ro10:8-11;1Tm2:5-6;Ti3:4-7)
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To: shibumi

Had a Caprice with a 6 in it and slow. Turn on the AC and it got worse.
It was a real lead sled.


12 posted on 04/29/2014 4:15:21 AM PDT by Yorlik803 ( Church/Caboose in 2016)
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To: Gen.Blather

Good question yields an interesting story.

At the time I owned he Buick I was managing a sales office for a (now defunct) domestic manufacturer of computer peripherals. The office was in Dearborn Michigan and my personal accounts included GM and Ford. So needless to say, I drove Detroit Iron.

At the time the engine blew, I had just been hired as Regional Sales Manager for a Japanese company that was breaking into the market for printers (Canon.)

I traded the Buick for a brand new Toyota. The experience I had, both with the product and dealer was so great that I bought another one from them the following year.

That first Toyota was retired about ten years later, with 367,000 miles. The only work done to the motor (other than regular tune ups) was a timing belt at 180,000.

The second Toyota had its service life cut short by an accident at 195,000 miles. Again, with no major engine work. Just tune ups, batteries, tires, brakes etc.


13 posted on 04/29/2014 4:24:59 AM PDT by shibumi (Cover it with gas and set it on fire.)
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To: shibumi

My boss got a regular Regal with the turbo V6, last year that engine was available.
Very nice car, I was not around to find out what happened to the car at 60,000 miles


14 posted on 04/29/2014 4:27:00 AM PDT by Steven Tyler
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To: shibumi

Interesting story. I have adored my Toyota truck, my Honda Accord and my current VW TDI. And, with the exception of the Honda dealer, liked the way I was treated at the dealerships.

I don’t know if American manufacturers have caught up or not in terms of product reliability and dealer service, but why would I go back now and take the chance that they haven’t with a $30,000-40,000 “investment?”


15 posted on 04/29/2014 4:48:16 AM PDT by Gen.Blather
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To: MikeSteelBe

And don’t forget the Stage 1, Stage 2, and the Stage III.


16 posted on 04/29/2014 5:15:56 AM PDT by Rannug ("all enemies, foreign and domestic")
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To: nickcarraway
Heh, my dad had a beat up 1973 Buick LeSabre 4-door that he let me drive around for a year or so after I got out of the Navy.

That thing was the biggest, boatiest car I had ever driven. It was a beater, no doubt, but that was the one car I felt obliged at that age to purchase a cigar just to smoke while I drove it! (with the left elbow hanging out the window, of course!)

It doesn't look big in the picture, but that car was huge. I recall we could easily put four in front and four in back.

As it drove down the highway, the car would slowly go up and down, as if it were floating on air currents.

The body got so ratty looking (originally a custardy-yellow color) that my friends and I went to hardware store and picked up a whole bunch of spray-cans of gray primer and we painted it.

We wanted to get some big cleats and attach them to the car's body fore and aft on both sides, but we didn't even have enough money for cheap ones!

Lastly, we wanted to paint a navy-style "68" on the bow on either side. I think my dad would have laughed if we had...:)

17 posted on 04/29/2014 5:52:33 AM PDT by rlmorel ("A nation, despicable by its weakness, forfeits even the privilege of being neutral." A. Hamilton)
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To: gunsequalfreedom

There’s an Impala hidden in the middle of this Buick.


18 posted on 04/29/2014 6:00:30 AM PDT by Eric in the Ozarks (Rip it out by the roots.)
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To: rlmorel

I’d like to see ya hang the right elbow out of the window!


19 posted on 04/29/2014 6:22:10 AM PDT by SoothingDave
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To: gunsequalfreedom

“Impressive fuel mileage for 1980, however, at 16 mpg city, 22 mpg hwy.”

Actually, only liberals tend to think cars never had good gas mileage. The fact is they had as good as today’s vehicles. Liberals tend to think everything in the 1980’s and before only got 1 mpg when many had 30+ mpg.


20 posted on 04/29/2014 6:28:50 AM PDT by CodeToad (Arm Up! They Are!)
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To: nickcarraway

I have a 2006 Ford F-250 turbo diesel Lariat. The dealer in Casa Grande Az. treats like I am one of their farmer customers. They know my name and, If I have to leave my truck for service overnight (which is extremely rare) I am GIVEN a loaner. I drive 40 miles to the dealership for service.

Thankfully not all American make car dealers are idiots.


21 posted on 04/29/2014 8:06:58 AM PDT by Glennb51
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To: SoothingDave
Heh, damn...


22 posted on 04/29/2014 10:02:19 AM PDT by rlmorel ("A nation, despicable by its weakness, forfeits even the privilege of being neutral." A. Hamilton)
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To: SoothingDave

LOL...I did put the correct elbow in...I guess I was stating the obvious...:)


23 posted on 04/29/2014 10:03:38 AM PDT by rlmorel ("A nation, despicable by its weakness, forfeits even the privilege of being neutral." A. Hamilton)
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To: nickcarraway

Must be trying to sell one......


24 posted on 04/29/2014 10:05:06 AM PDT by X-spurt (CRUZ missile - armed and ready.)
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To: Gen.Blather

It only took me about 25 years before I could utter the name “Ford” without spitting on the ground because I was desperate for a car and bought a used 1983 Ford Escort.

I took a bath on that. My fault, that is what happens when you buy desperate!

I have owned Subarus which I really like, but think my next one will be a Ford.

Never Chevy.


25 posted on 04/29/2014 10:06:56 AM PDT by rlmorel ("A nation, despicable by its weakness, forfeits even the privilege of being neutral." A. Hamilton)
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To: CodeToad

80’s cars did not have as good of milage. I’m getting 38 mpg hwy at 70 mph. The 80’s VW diesel pickup at 50 mpg beat that but you could walk faster than it traveled up a grade.


26 posted on 04/30/2014 7:44:52 PM PDT by gunsequalfreedom (Conservative is not a label of convenience. It is a guide to your actions.)
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To: CodeToad

80’s cars did not have as good of milage. I’m getting 38 mpg hwy at 70 mph. The 80’s VW diesel pickup at 50 mpg beat that but you could walk faster than it traveled up a grade.


27 posted on 04/30/2014 7:44:57 PM PDT by gunsequalfreedom (Conservative is not a label of convenience. It is a guide to your actions.)
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To: Gen.Blather

I get a lot of work done when waiting at my Honda dealer when my car is in for service. I take a cup of coffee to go when done.


28 posted on 04/30/2014 7:47:46 PM PDT by gunsequalfreedom (Conservative is not a label of convenience. It is a guide to your actions.)
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To: F15Eagle

I will NEVER go back to Verizon. I’m with you.


29 posted on 04/30/2014 7:48:48 PM PDT by gunsequalfreedom (Conservative is not a label of convenience. It is a guide to your actions.)
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