The Coloured Tri-Shield Is Back

This is the 2017 Buick Lacrosse. There’s more to it than a return of colour to its badge.

2017 Buick Lacross: thetruthaboutcars.com
2017 Buick Lacrosse: thetruthaboutcars.com

The Detroit Free Press and Kelley Blue Book have reported the unveiling of the 2017 Buick Lacrosse. As well as echoing aspects of the Buick Avenir concept last year, the 2017 car also allegedly harks back to the 1954 Buick Wildcat concept car. Personally I can’t see any obvious links. Missing from the new car are 130 kilos. The chassis, seats and sound-proofing all felt the engineer’s scalper in the quest to

2010 Buick Lacrosse: edmunds.com
2010 Buick Lacrosse: edmunds.com

trim the previous car’s lard. I particularly noticed that sound deadening materials contributed a lot to the change, about 25% of the difference. The car is much sleeker than the predecessor with a fastback roof line and more luxuriously sculpted surfaces. The exterior designer refers to a theme called ‘swept sphere’ to explain this but I feel this doesn’t add very much to one’s understanding of the shape. Once a sphere is deformed it’s not a sphere or you could say any organic shape could be conceived of as a deformed sphere.

Oval grills, big fenders and round wheels - the 1954 Buick Wildcat concept - ultimatehotwheels.boards.net
Oval grills, big fenders and round wheels – the 1954 Buick Wildcat concept – ultimatehotwheels.boards.net

The wheelbase has grown as has the track, for the usual reasons. Thus it’s a car which is nice and big in the Buick tradition. Fuel efficiency hasn’t been a Buick tradition but this car features cylinder deactivation (first seen on Cadillacs thirty years ago) and stop-start engine management. The 3.6 litre V6 petrol produces 305 hp and can manage 29 mpg on the highway. That seems acceptable for a big and comfortable car.

Culturally revealing is a feature to control teen-age drivers. The sound system won’t play at full volume until all the seat belts are fastened. Then it goes up to full whack and the kids can slam into an oak as soon as they are able to find one. Another aspect of this is a monitor to record speed transgressions. Concerned parents can set a maximum speed and the car will dutifully record when those limits are over-stepped. We don’t have these kinds of things in Western Europe. Isn’t that intriguing?

2017 Buick Lacrosse: kelleybluebook.com
2017 Buick Lacrosse- the pretty photo hides a rotten panel gap above the headlamp. The thicker chrome at the top of the grille is as daft as Lincoln’s little tab on the Continental: kelleybluebook.com.

Author: richard herriott

I like anchovies. I dislike post-war town planning.

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