Buick Grand National – Everything You Need to Know | Up to Speed

Buick Grand National – Everything You Need to Know | Up to Speed


– It’s fast, it’s black and just like my dad it only
stuck around for three years. It’s one of my favorite cars,
it’s the Buick Grand National. (engine racing) For years Buick has kind of been the General Motors family’s
weird uncle or cousin. In fact, today’s Buick
entire marketing strategy is based on people not even knowing what a Buick looks like. – That’s not a Buick. – That’s what I told him. – There is one fabled
Buick that broke the mold. It redefined the muscle car, and proved to America that there is a replacement for displacement. It started as a publicity
stunt in branding only, then became a legitimate
history-making collectors car. It was made in limited quantities, has a ravenous fan base and for a brief window in the 80s… – [Narrator] The race went off the line and beat a Corvette. – And my favorite part, you
can get it any color you want, as long it’s black. – Make it black. – This is everything you need to know to get up to speed on
the Buick Grand National. (video game music) Historically, when
thinking about performance American’s prioritize muscle. On the outside you could have a (Southern accent) sweet ‘Stang dude. But if she only had a V6, you’d have nightmares about
people popping the hood. – I don’t know what’s underneath the hood, and I don’t give a shit. I’m insatiable. – In the early 80s, Buick
was shamelessly rolling out underpowered V6 street cars, which is really weird
because in 1981 and 1982 they won the NASCAR Grand
National series back to back. Knowing that what wins on
Sunday, sells on Monday, Buick tried a quick
rebranding of their Regal, and they sent 215 charcoal gray units to Cars and Concepts
of Brighton, Michigan. There they retrofitted the Regals with the Grand National package. It was a rush job. It’s like they woke up, checked
their calendar and said, special car project due today? Oh crap, I need to read the book. The guys at C and C did their best. They added light silver fire
mist paint to each side, red pin stripes and
billboard shadow lettering proclaiming Buick. All the trim was blacked
out with black vinyl tape, and a front air dam and
rear spoiler were installed. True to Buick form this 82 Grand National came with a naturally aspirated V6 engine that made a whopping 125 horsepower. Yahu! Yes, 1982 Buick fans they did make 35 of these with a
turbo-charged 3.8 liter V6, that bumped it up to a 175 horsepower. As much as a 90s GTI, but the car weighed in at 3,500 pounds. But we said everything
you need to know so, I told you about it. – Gee, that’s nice thanks. – The Grand National treated
1983 like the off-season. Buick gave it a break so
it could return faster, stronger and with a
clearly defined mission. In 1984, things started to get exciting. The Grand National came
charging back with new uniform, all black like the Raiders baby, and a new powerhouse. The turbo-charged 3.8
liter became standard and was refined with
sequential fuel injection and distributor-less
computer controlled ignition. To make room for this new technology, hoods on the Grand National were defined by the iconic power
bulge, or me in a Speedo. (laughs) I swear I didn’t make that up, it’s actually called a power
bulge, it’s in the brochure. And this technology
squeezed 200 horsepower out of a little V6. Big deal James, you cry,
my 2010 Honda is a V6 and it makes 200 horsepower all day. Friends, you gotta remember, that the Grand National
was doing this at a time when new emissions regulations were handcuffing manufacturers
and choking horsepower. The Grand National made
200 horsepower with a V6, when the same year Corvette
only made five horsepower more. On the track, a Buick was
making the quarter mile in 15.9 seconds, just short
of the Corvette’s 15.2. Two thousand Grand
Nationals were made in 1984 and they sold out quick. Buick started to realize
that people actually liked badass cars, weird. In 1985, the Grand National
changed little under the hood. Outside they ditched the
chrome because badass. Again, compared to its
contemporaries it was holding its own and the boys at Buick could
let the previous year’s performance and its sick black paint job buy them some time while they figured out the next step for their new poster child. By the next year, Buick
had it almost perfected. The 86 Grand National’s
engine now produced 235 horsepower and 330
pound feet of torque. But how? Technology my man. The new Grand Nationals were outfitted with air to air intercoolers
and a more refined sequential port fuel injection system. This Buick was now making the quarter mile in under 14 seconds, and rocketing from zero to 60 in under five. A Buick was now the fastest
American production car. It was dominating the 86
Corvette, Camaro, Mustang, Firebird, and it was
doing it with a V6 engine. Buick announced that 1987
would be the final year of production for their
badass Darth Vader vehicles. And as a send off, GM created
the least appreciated, greatest car of all time, the 1987 Buick Grand
National Experimental. 547 of these Grand National’s were chosen to become monsters. Buick send 547 Grand Nationals with a special GNX interior
trim package to McLaren. Yeah, dude that McLaren. Where they would become the Grand National to end all Grand Nationals. At McLaren, they were
fitted with bigger turbos, bigger intercoolers, a new ECU, better suspension
components, bigger exhaust. It was louder, faster and
100 times more badass. They took a really cool
car, they handed it over to Bruce McLaren, and he
made it even (bleep) better! – Jesus Christ. – The only thing that they
did to it that was kinda lame, was they kept it from doing wheelies. They had to keep it from doing wheelies! On paper, Buick alleged
that the GNX would produce 276 horsepower and a very substantial 360 pound feet of torque,
but as the car started track testing, the GNX
finished the quarter mile in 12.7 seconds at 113.1 miles on hour. That is .3 seconds faster
then the Ferrari F40. Almost a second faster then a Porsche 930, and it went from zero
to 60 in 4.6 seconds. The only car that was faster then it was the Lamborghini Countach. In the (bleep) world. Pretty much everyone agrees
that Buick kept this a secret because it would have tarnished the image of GM darling, the Corvette. That’s (bleep) so sweet. I mean not only is this guy
like the most powerful guy in the universe, he’s humble too and he cares about his
friend the Corvette. Darth Vader doesn’t brag, he just does this with his hand, and
then you start choking. (dramatic music) I think I like the GNX even more now. Not only is it super powerful, but it cares about his friends. Just like Michael Clarke
Duncan in “Green Mile.” I’ll leave you with this, you may have noticed that
we’re in something of a last hurrah of American muscle right now. Mustangs, Hellcats, Lemans, Camaros, one upping each other year after year. We haven’t heard anything from Buick. Well here’s a bit of excitement for the rabid fans of the Grand National, less then three years ago
GM renewed the trademarks on the names, Grand National and GNX. Is the Grand National coming back? I don’t know. – You sandbagging son of a bitch. – But I honestly don’t think it needs too. After years of getting
shit on as a third-tier quality family car, Buick
quietly and triumphantly drove the GNX to the pinnacle
of untouchable performance and ruthless bravado only to
clap their hands together, wave goodbye and retire the champion. Let the kids fight over scraps. The GNX means Buick has
nothing left to proof. That’s everything you need to know to get up to speed on
the Buick Grand National. Please subscribe and comment below. What do you think the
most underrated car is? What did we miss in this? What other cars do you
want to see us cover? What kind of Buick did your Grandma drive? Yeah.

100 comments on “Buick Grand National – Everything You Need to Know | Up to Speed

  1. psssh. no Up to speed Monte Carlo. sacrelig my dooders. smh . bout to unsub JUSTPLAYING. but foreal tho get me some MC love out here aint no one got time for this GN sheeeet mane

  2. And I know where there are at least 50 of them on the same lot of land including the lowest mile one and the one mad for McLarens CEO of the time that had a sunroof installed.

  3. I was lucky enough to have an 85 hot air T-Type when I 19 yrs old in 1989, when I see a G body Regal I don't think about a Grand National and I'm a big fan of all G body topics and builds, cars shinny black look amazing, but Buicks GN with that grill, headlights with blacked out shroud, turn indicators, taillights on that color on that car is spontaneous magic that will never happen again, the car has no bad angle or profile, just pure uncut beauty

  4. Wait… what if the reason why the Camaro is being killed off in a few years time is so a new Grand National can replace it?

  5. Bro… Love all your contents… And love the way u host.. I would love to see a video about the Indian ambassador… If possible… Keep on making such videos…

  6. I bought my GN new in 87 for 18,500$ which was a lot of money back then. Bone stock it ran 14.40 Qt. Mile by the end of 95 I got the car down to 10.10 at 136.

  7. Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!

  8. Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!Monte Carlo!

  9. Guys with small egos drive flashy cars and jacked up trucks. I drive a stock S10 Blazer. Never had any complaints. A few compliments though. Actually got a nickname the other day from a chick. She called me "shooter" because I got it on face from across the room. #camouflagepimp

  10. New to ur channel…….. thinking I'm gonna stick around…….thanks…… keep doing what you do…….. stay safe……..PEACE

  11. Not only did this guy rip off a huge chunk of the Classic Car and Driver review of this car, he also inaccurately said ASC/McLaren was the actual McLaren Automotive. The body of the GNX was upgraded by ASC/McLaren and had nothing to do with the super cars… this video sucks.

  12. My dad had a 70 gsx when I was a kid, alot of people forget that buick did almost the same exact thing in the early 70s with the gs and gsx

  13. Hey man, great channel you've got. Good car stuff and a keerap-load of laughs. Have you ever done anything on the '67 Z/28 Camaro? My chum had one back in the day and it was 'Hell on wheels'. Small high-end power band that would nearly take your head off and that was stock. Anyway thanks for the info and entertainment. Garth.

  14. man….watching these videos now, they are extremely tame compared to your new videos! I love your new videos….much more personality in them! I'd love to see this Grand National video redone in your new style of presenting.

  15. I was fortunate to get a 1987 gnx for graduation back then. I wish I never had mentioned it the interior fell apart and the motor was junk. I should have stuck with my 1971 ls6 chevelle and 1969 a12 Road Runner they both where faster big time and lasted decades

  16. Can anyone tell my why i always get the same dove men sport care (in spanish for gods sake!!) Before every one of his videos?
    Plz help

  17. The Corvette has nothing to do with the death of the Grand National. The Regal’s last production year as a RWD G body was 1987.

    The GNX was produced by ASC/McLaren. Same developmental group, different production group.

    Your hometown of Louisville used Grand Nationals as unmarked patrol cars.

  18. Actually it wasn't THAT McLaren, it was a company that was otherwise known as Mclaren U.S. Sunroof & only did interior work, not the supercar company.

  19. How about Hurst’s unholy alliance with Oldsmobile. Lightning Rod Shifters in the ‘83. The Hairy Hurst Olds is completely nuts. Two 425 Olds engines with two Tornado trans axles jammed into one 442 Cutlass. Burnouts the entire length of the track.

  20. I.have.owned.2.
    1987.gns.my.first.
    I.purchased.in.
    1990.had.kenny.
    Bell.updates.it.
    Run.great.my.
    Second.one.i.
    Purchased.in.
    2012.the.guy.
    That.sold.it.to.
    Me.spend.
    $30,000.on.the.
    Engine.trans.rear.
    End.it.would.run.
    Quarter.mile.at.
    125mph.these.
    Cars.had.cheap.
    Made.interior.
    Most.of.them.
    Had.paint.
    Issues.from.the.
    Factory.they.
    Were.fun.to.drive.
    But.in.1990.
    The.trans.am.
    Came.out.with.
    A.turbo.v8.it.
    Would.out.run.
    The.gn.one.
    More.thing.about.
    The.gn.insurance.
    Cost.the.same.as.
    A.corvette.the.gns
    Had.a.smooth.
    Ride.on.the.
    Interstate.but.wasa.rough.ride.on.
    Back.roads.the.
    Buick.regal.t.type.
    Is.my.favorite.
    At.least.it.had.
    Quality.interior.

  21. My most underrated car was my 1981 chevy chevette diesel . A whole whopping 1.8 litre with a smashing 51HP Baby !

    TOTALLY UNDERRATED !!!!!! My Fucking 1994 Polaris Snowmobile has more HP's than the Chevy Shuvit !! Ha Ha Ha Ha !!!

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