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The Last Buick

Summary:
It hasn’t been announced yet, but Buick won’t be around much longer. It’s already mostly gone. GM just announced the cashiering of the Cascada convertible – after less than three years on the market. This follows on the heels of the cancellation of the LaCrosse sedan, which leaves the Regal as the last Buick standing. Well, the last Buick car. There are still three Buick-badged crossover SUVs – emphasis on the badging. They are “Buicks” in the same way that Crest would be Colgate if you switched their boxes. The three models – Enclave, Encore and Envision – correspond to the ChevyTraverse, Trax and Equinox (respectively). None differing in their essentials. Or rather, their mechanicals. Buick – like Pontiac – outlived itself. The

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It hasn’t been announced yet, but Buick won’t be around much longer. It’s already mostly gone.

GM just announced the cashiering of the Cascada convertible – after less than three years on the market. This follows on the heels of the cancellation of the LaCrosse sedan, which leaves the Regal as the last Buick standing.

Well, the last Buick car.

There are still three Buick-badged crossover SUVs – emphasis on the badging. They are “Buicks” in the same way that Crest would be Colgate if you switched their boxes. The three models – Enclave, Encore and Envision – correspond to the ChevyTraverse, Trax and Equinox (respectively).

None differing in their essentials.

Or rather, their mechanicals.

Buick – like Pontiac – outlived itself. The name limped along for a surprisingly long while after GM had sucked any real meaning out of it. Which in a very sad way tells you just what GM pissed away; buyers still came – though not enough to keep it going – even though there was nothing left to buy but marketing.

Buy an Enclave – and get a Chevy Traverse with a different grille and blue rather than white backlighting for the instrument cluster.

Envision an Equinox – without the bowtie.

Buick, Pontiac – and Oldsmobile – were once upon a time car manufacturers in just about every way that term has meaning. They independently designed and built their own engines, which differed from the engines you’d find under the hoods of Chevys. Not that there is anything wrong with Chevy engines, but that isn’t the point. When you paid more for a Buick, you expected to not get the same thing as your neighbor who bought the lower-priced Chevy.

Think about Buick’s great ones – Super 8, Wildcat, GSX, GNX. Did any of them have a Chevy engine? And wasn’t it their Buick engines, specifically, that made them great?

The last truly great Buick engine – the 3.8 liter V6 – was used in Chevys  – and also what was left of Oldsmobile and Pontiac, too. In turbocharged and intercooled form, the 3.8 V6 made a “Pontiac” – the 1989 Turbo Trans-Am – faster than the Chevy V8-powered Corvette.

In a bigger, heavier Buick – the Regal GNX – it was even faster.

Eric Peters
Eric Peters is a freelance car/bike/political columnist. He escaped the corporate-owned media Big Boys years ago. Without the censorship of the corporate tools

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