This week we’re looking at the 2006 Buick Lucerne CXS 5 passenger sedan. The CX and CXL V6 and V8 are 6 passenger models.
If you are a golf enthusiast you surely know that Tiger Woods is the spokesperson for the brand. Boy was that a home run for Buick. I had the opportunity to meet Tiger at a press conference before the Torrey Pines Golf Tournament this past month. As well as being the number one golfer in the world today he is a gentleman as well. There were less than 10 automotive journalists invited to this prestigious event to cover the promotion of the Buick Lucerne.
We were required to drive all the Lucerne models on a course around the San Diego area. Did they impress us and make their case, you ask? Well they did. It is one of the quietest and most comfortable passenger cars on the market at any price. Merkel (my engineer and author associate) would tell you that is one of the reasons for accidents these days. Why – well simply put comfort is one of the distractions of driving on our highways and byways. You can see his unedited published study at my website www.atthewheel.com under Point/CounterPoint – Editorials – “WHY ARE THERE SO MANY ACCIDENTS”.
Parts – n/a
Assembly – Detroit , Michigan
Class: – Large
Cars: – Lucerne , LaCrosse, Rainier , Rendezvous and Terraza.
Handling & Performance:
I must tell you this is a worthy competitor of the top recognized competition noted below.
And speaking of handling, we need to look at a new technology – “magnetic ride control suspension”. This is 21st century innovation is one of the reasons this is a great handling car. Have the dealer show you how it works. Buick made a display device to show exactly how the technology works. It is awesome and the simple use of magnetic force and magnetic material makes total sense in the application of shock absorbing and other controls.
Essentially it uses a magnetic material in the shock that is controlled by a magnetic field in variable levels of strength to relax or stiffen the shock motion depending on road conditions. It really works and you can feel it when compared with a car without the device.
Design is distinctly Buick! It is however not the “Roadmaster” bulky design of the 1950s. Those models were called “Road Hogs” by us kids. Digger Odell’s dad (my adopted family) drove one of those road hog Buicks. I have good memories of riding in that Buick to the beach on those long hot summer days of my youth. We’d trek down bean field roads past what is now Disneyland (there were no freeways back then). Digger, by the way, was a nickname us kids gave him based on character of the time – “Digger Odell the friendly undertaker”. Digger’s mom drove a Studebaker and we’d refer to that as a Stupid-Baker. Kids have a way of cutting to the chase. That brand died before most readers were born.
Perhaps carmakers should listen to our kids to avoid future lost sales because of the perception of those who will ultimately be the consumers of tomorrow. For the record, we’d refer to Pontiac as a “Heap” to make fun of the advertising slogan of those days. Picture an American Indian with a flat hand held up to his forehead to shade his eyes from the sun. The slogan – “Ugh, Pontiac heap good car”. I wonder if that ad agency is still in business.
Fit and Finish:
This Buick is put together at least as well as any of the competition but I feel it is at the top of that list.
Perhaps you get the best bang for your buck of those noted below. It is the classiest of the bunch in my opinion.
I believe Buick has never been a better car. But then I felt the same about the Oldsmobile and GM dumped that model. Go figure. Me, I would have kept the oldest car in their lineup (over 100 years of history for Olds) and dumped the Pontiac . But they didn’t ask me. If you’re in the market for a new family car in this price range it is a must to test drive.
Buick Lucerne $25-34,000, Chrysler 300 $24-40,000, Dodge Charger $22-35,000, Mercury Montego $24-29,000, Ford Five Hundred $22-28,000, Toyota Avalon $27-34,000.
Extremely quiet and comfortable, powerful.
4.6 liter 275 horsepower V8 engine, 4-speed auto trans, 4-wheel ABS disc brakes, power rack and pinion magnetic variable assist steering, magnetic ride control suspension, traction control, dual air bags plus front and rear head curtain air bags, on star service, rear child seat anchors and security locks, remote keyless entry, theft deterrent system, tire inflation monitor system, power mirrors, dual zone climate control, stereo with MP3 CD player, cruise control, leather seating and steering wheel and power locks and windows.
17 City and 25 Highway MPG