Stories about your first experience with a Turbo Regal?

My first experience was after the senior prom in her parents basement - different story :D :cool:.

My first encounter (more like a down home behind the woodshed a** beating) was the summer of 1987 and I'd just gotten out of high school. My buddy's younger brother (Brian) would always talk about this buick "grandnational".

Fast forward - I drove a 71 Nova (which I still own today :eek: )
all through high school typical mild 350, (comp 280 cam, headers 4-barrel Holley, 4-speed w/4:10's) I was able to hold my own against most of the cars cruising the strip in Everett back then.
Crap now I'm starting to sound old :)

So we're down at Seattle Interanational Reaceway for the Friday night grudge drags and I line up againt a GN. It was owned by an
old duffer and his son would take to the drags and help him out and stuff. We'll we pull up to the burn out area and he doesn't do a John Force burnout - nope. I watched the rear tire rotate ONCE. I'm still thinking soooo. Now to the good part: we stage and we're off more like "he's off" :cool:. I wound out second to 6500 and I'm thinking my car always pulls hard in 2nd/3rd well I nail the 3rd gear shift again wound it out to 6500 and you guessed it.

I'm still on the track and he's already hitting the first turnoff. I ran something like a low 14 high 13 and he ripped off a mid to lower 13 sec e.t. I come around to the pits and my buddy Brian is laughing and says: "That was a Grand National!!"

Fast forward to 1997 - I ended up buying my G.N. from my friend Brian because he had just gotten a 93 Cobra and his wife said he couldn't have two hotrods - I think I came out ahead. :cool:

Shortly after buying it, I went to my ten year class reunion and drove it to the SAT Night shirt and tie dinner. All the gear heads from the advanced (picture Al Bundy 4 touchdowns in a single game) auto shop class were asking still got the Nova? Yeah but the Buick out in the covered/valet parking is mine. It was sweet especially the one offer from the guy w/the v-8 vega who wanted to run em after the party. LOL :rolleyes:


well, I have always been instested in axial-flow like compressor thingys. So if it has a turbo, I like it! My friend Jim owned an '83 T-Type, to be honest I don't remember if I was ever in it while he had it. He sold it to his friend Nick who I bought it from. It was OK, I suppose. I had a lot of knock (ingition knock) and the thing would stall whenever it wanted, very annoying. I mean '65 mph Long Island Expresway crusing, and then "Excuse me sir this is Mr 3.8 V6 calling, I regret to inform you that I have shut down and will not start for at least 10 minutes, so what I need you to do is PANIC and figure out how to get from the center lane to the shoulder because YOU HAVE NO BRAKES!!, oh and by the way, I'll run fine for the next few days but I will be calling back when I feel like it". So I guess my first experience was kinda crappy. This was back in '92 I brought it to Buick and got the standard "can't find anything" so I sold it.

I have seen them at the strip and occasionally on the road. I know what they are capable of. I have never been in a Grand National. When I bought my house, this guy had on in his driveway and I asked him about it.

ME: Hey honey, see that car?
Her: Yes
Me: It's a 1986 Buick Grand National with only '87k on the clock, looks stock, he says it doens't run and he only wants $750 for it. Those things are untouchable for under $10000
Her: Get it!

I had it running in a week, I can't wait to drive it!! Boy was he pissed when I told him what the problem was.

The moral of the story: '92 was too early for the site otherwise I would have been able to fix the random stalling problem.

Kinda boring. Sorry.
Very Interesting. . .

Interesting to hear all the different time frames we were in life when we GOT HOOKED on just "V6". Not like most other V6 engines we were used to driving or riding in. You know you stomp the gas pedal, and the only thing that exits fast is a cloud of smoke.

Well then here comes Buick to change History to what a V6 and turbo can do and do indeed.


Back in 1984 -- I wanted to buy a NEW Monte Carlo SS - Blue in color, it was the choice back then for me, but not the right time in my life. While I was senior in HS in 1984, I purchased a 1983 Honda 550 Nighthawk Motorcycle (SHAFT DRIVEN -- NEW IDEAS - looking back now). It was quick, and the ride and noise were totally different compared to chain driven bikes, luckily I am still here today. But then I joined the army for 3 years and stored the cycle. 3 years later, the cycle was sold to friend. During my years in the army I bought a 1983 Grand Prix with just a V6.

Fast forward to 21 yrs old, out of the army and looking for a replacement for the Grand Prix V6. NO Power at all and at 75,000 miles was ready to be sent down the road.

Well, many nights when I was 21 - 22 and drinking beers at the local bars between May 1987 and January 1988. I would drive home and go by the local BUICK dealership where 3 TR's were sitting, 2 T's and 1 GN. This dealership had them parked on an angle, so it looked even better parked. Well here is where it gets better, you know when you drink - the dreams become more enhanced, you know the words -- pipe dreaming -- and boy did i dream -- One day that car will be mine.... almost like clock work every friday and saturday, for 5 months of pipe dreaming. I think my friends were like sure. Have another drink- Live in the now. I had to drive by them every day, sometimes 10 times -- just because the dealership was located 7 blocks down the street from where I lived in a small city named Kaukauna, WI - population 11,537.

I wanted to buy a GN, but didn't want to spend all my money on just a car. But if I did buy it, I knew I could sell in the future to buy a family 4 door car.... yea right!

Well I started saving money from Sept. 1987 until Jan. 1988 with the help of a girl friend who was 16 years older than me (me - 22 and she - 38) plus sold my cycle and grand prix and paid cash for 1 - 1987 Buick Regal Grand National for $17,500.00, Brand New with 00157.0 Original Miles, ONE OWNER TITLE with all Original documentation, including tires and wheels and only 36,067 miles as of Jan 24, 2004, Including the original license plates requested from Wisconsin DMV - "XSTASY" ordered back in 1988 only 6 letters or numbers were allowed. Also, have the truck version "XSTASY" so that means I will tow my GN with license plates the same on both vehciles. Grandfathered clause - No Longer available in Wisconsin.

I am proud to be an Original Owner. I do not want to appear as braggin but this is my story.

THE KICKER - Never released information before - She donated over $12,000 and said it was a Valentine's Present to Me from her on Feb. 14, 1988. I have pictures of the GN wrapped up in a present with a red bow and red ribbons.

We were together for 10 years and then split up. She got the Grand National Jacket as a memory and I kept the GN. I had been with her from May of 1987 through Jan 1988, 8 months and $12,000, but I had known her since I was 10 years old as she was my neighbor (Another song - Staceys Mom has got it goin on).

We decided that the title should only be in my name for insurance reasons -- If her name was on the title and I wrecked the GN she would be liable and could lose her house (paid for), so I was the only title owner. THANK GOD!!!

I did buy a 1995 Ford F150 with both names and never married to each other with the title in both names, and it went like a Country Song. The year -- 1997. I left her and took the truck, she came to my apartment one night and took it back (NOTE: she didn't know where I lived so that means I was FOLLOWED - freaky what people will do). I saw it another night several months later and took it back AGAIN. Couple weeks later, I was at a friends house and she loaded it up on a flat bed and took it back. I had the ignition switch changed to a new key and the "CLUB" locked on the steering wheel with the wheels turned parked up next to the garage at a Friend's. Well they dragged it out of driveway until they could load it up onto a flat bed. My friend's girlfriend was in the house and saw it all happen she was freaked by the entire event. In the end I bought it. But when I went to pick-up pick-up truck, it stil had the club on it in the garage!!

WOW ================== Real Stories do exist....


That's My Story and I am stickin to it.

BTW - My 20th HS reunion is coming up this summer 2004 and I still have my car, I took it to my 5th and 10th year class reunion. I grew up in the 80's and it was the best time. I have had my sad times in life but that is LIFE, it is your time do what you want and follow your dreams and goals. I originally wanted a Monte Carlo SS and then it was a 300 ZX turbo, then no insurance would insure me for the 300ZX, so I bought a 1987 GN, from the local dealership stated above. Was pulled over 6 times my first summer with the GN in 1988. accelerating to quickly was one ticket, I never did exceed the speed, luckliy for that one ticket. window tint not allowed state trooper saw me in one city getting my car washed and then got my plates and was waiting for me when I got home later that day 4 hours later, in another city about 15 miles north. Ejected from a state park for taking photos of my car parked on the grass, The State Warden had a mean look as he walked toward me counting, I was like what is this guy doing. He was counting how many steps from the pavement I was in the grass. It was so funny and then he said you have 2 choices, ticket or leave... V6 Whooooosh Gooooone!
Smoked the tires on Campus at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, should have gotten a test for drinking and driving but only got a excessive noise for power stand.

I would try to drive double the posted speed for turns on roads. if a turn said 35 mph I would try it at 70 mph and there was this one road with turn at 45 mph and the GN digital dash would just blink.. Looking back it was all stock and you know certain bumps in the road can make the car shimmy a little and get loose if not careful. I would not try that today.

Another Story - I was driving and wanted to turn right onto a road well - it felt like I was going to fast and so I hit the brakes well the intersection had stones right where I hit the brakes so it TOOK longer to stop and I was headed right for the STOP Sign with a 4x4 post and the GN kept sliding and sliding and finally it STOPPED and I could NOT believe it, I stopped before hitting it, I think the GN had about 3,000 miles on it at the time. I was so close I got out to look and see, and it was 3 INCHES away, NO B.S. it is etched into my memory banks F-O-R-E-V-E-R. Picture this Summer 1988, 87 GN 22 yrs old 4x4 Stop Sign and post slammed into the hood. NOT Good, but luckily it din't happen.

I took it for cruise up north to visit relatives 50 miles away and made it there in 35 minutes.

Now it is Garage Queen, and it is COLD IN Wisconsin ( -11 to -35)
no need for ice, just need a winter GN now...

Great Stories

Back to what I had planned on doing reserving my hotel for GS Nationals 2004.

Took quite a while to write this one....

Brett Wallace
Co-Founder of

Featured Car # 6 --

My other site
Worked for the Buick dealer in 1985 at the ripe age of 20 when we got the first intercooled models. Was really good friends with a salesman who offered to take me to lunch with a t-top GN. Started pinching pennies that day and one year later the general manager found me a silver 87 T that a dealership in Greensboro "couldn't give away" Loved that car, water leaks, ecm problems and all. Traded for a 95 supercoupe and thus began the era I call "my great sickness" (Still looking for one to replace the two I just sold.)
Back in 95 I'm a junior in HS. My friends and I are out cruising in my beater 79 Pontiac Phoenix. At the time we thought it was fast, 350 with a cam/intake/carb/headers, but it was only a low 14 sec car.

We come up on a nice dark grey 86 T-type. The driver is in his early 20's and asks us to race. "It's only a V-6". Me and my friends thought we were going to wax this thing.

So we go to the same road everyone always raced on. Just so happens your doing your burnouts and staging under an overpass. I do my burnout and wait for the Buick. I hear the Buick spooling up and heating the tires and after the burnout he's about 3 cars back and doesn't pull up. I'm looking in the mirror and he's just waving at me to go.

At this point I knew I was in trouble :) I launch and get good traction. I'm not even at the top of first gear and all I hear is the shrill of a turbo and the Regal blew by me like I was on jackstands.

Fast forward 5 years later to 2000. I'm out in the same area with my cam/heads Camaro SS (ran low 12's at the time) and we see a turbo T/A cruising ahead of us. Shoepolish numbers on the back glass and exhaust smells of race gas. We get up next to him and it's the same guy that beat us 5 years ago with his Regal!

He tries the "it's only a v-6" line again and I tell him I fell for that one allready but I'll race you anyway.

We go out to the same exact road, do our burnouts and stage. He's up on the converter building boost and when we launch he's instantly 3 cars out on me. I pass him on the 3-4 gear change and I'm as happy as I could be because I finally got some 'revenge' on this guy from so long ago. We pulled over and he asked if I had nitrous (I didn't). He wanted to race again so we lined them up in the other direction. He lost big time on that race (probably because of no cooldown time).

Since then I've owned an 84 t-type, 87 Turbo-T, and an 87 GN. I'm keeping a lookout for the perfect 87 Limited, but I've turbo'd by Camaro to keep me occupied in the meantime. ;)
ahhh....I remember it like it was yesterday! lol. I was driving my 1986 regal limited 5.0. It was my fun race/daily driver car, and I had a great time with it. The car had ported irons, hedman headers, and dynomax exhaust, with plush velour interior. That was my first buick and I was hooked. The car ran consistant 14's but they were high, and the car had 156,000 miles on it. One night, at the track, I got my first real close look at an 87 GN. I had fantasized about these cars for a year or two, but never got into it, cuz I never had money...I was 18 years old, and a freshman in college. I looked over the car at Island Dragway, and that owner, if he remembers me, god bless you, you got the patience of a saint. I must uv asked him 500 questions in a matter of ten minutes.
Later on that night, I got to line up with him...I thought, cool, buick vs. buick, this will be close. I mean, come on, he's only got a V6 with a computer chip! Well, the light goes up and he took off like I was standing still. I literally watched his launch from the best seat at the track! I ran a 14.89 to his 11.26. I was so excited to see a car that looked identical to mine but black, could be so fast without an 8. So I had to find one, any one.

A kid in my town, whose father was my baseball coach, had his car on ebay. It was an 84 t-type, blacked out with fresh paint and new tires. I talked with him until the last day of the auction. He told me the car runs, but barely. I gave him 2500 bux cash, he took it of ebay and gave me the title that night. I didnt care what year it was, what condition, I had a grand national. Well, I only drove the car a total of two months in my freshman year of college before every single gremlin came out of the wood work.

Here I sit, 3 years later, and that car still sits in the garage. In the days that I did drive that car, I was never late for work, I never lost to anybody taking off at a traffic light, and best of all, I got no tickets. I am trying my damndest to get that thing on the street, but college got a little pricey for me this year, and I sold
both buicks I had previously, so that I can get a small truck for work. The 86 regal got totalled by a stolen pontiac, and I owned an 87 regal limited 3.8 that was just way too slow for me. It was mint condition, and I got $2000 for it, but it was just real slow.

I am engaged, and my fiance know's I am marring her, with a buick on the side, and she told me, "I will never let you sell that car." Now I know, that is a keeper, and I dont mean just the car.

My husband has already replied to this post, but now it's my turn.

My first hot rod was a 68 Camaro - Nassau Blue with black interior, a built 396 and a factory bench seat. I loved that car. My husabnd, though, had always talked about getting "one of those black cars." Now, I am a big G-body fan, having owned multiple Monte SS's - so I'm okay with it. One day, a local car is advertised for sale. It's a TR, not a GN. We take it for a test ride. We're alone in the car, and my husband (fiance at the time) leans on it a LITTLE BIT. Well let's just say we almost had to buy the car because we came awfully close to a telephone pole. Well, my heart is beating frantically and that was it for me. Now, he did not want to buy this car as it needed body work, and that is not our area of expertise. I thought, however, that it would make a damn good wedding present. So after talking the guy down a bit, I bought it and hid the car for a few months until our wedding day. I gathered all our friends and family around and presented him with the title. Man I have some good pictures from that. I thought he might pass out. That was about five years ago.

Fast forward to today and check my sig. And I can not blame my husband. I bought Old Gray. I bought my Monte (now buick powered). I bought the 1986 TR. (My husband has since taken away my checkbook ) :) Our most recent addition, however, was for him....a real 'black car.'

:D Kristi
Auto Body class 15 years old

I went to an auto body class for two years in high school 91-92. At age 15 I saw it: 87 GN with around 22K on it & 1 too many miles, the school picked it up at a salvage auction. This thing had only slight lower frame damage to the right side. We had an 86 Century with the 3.8 turbo. Instead of pulling the frame out, I decided to switch it with the Century. Yea it took several weeks but I took my time. Once it was complete My instructor took it out for me to verify a good repair (15 still couldn't drive) At the time I was driving a 79 Pontiac wagon with a bored big block. I used to equate loud exhaust with power. Well while I out on the test drive, My instructor would power brake it and I thought man what crap it bellows smoke (tires) just from power braking and it was near silent, it did have a very loud whistle from under the hood. As we launched from where we power braked it, we left two 139 foot black marks in front of my school (yes we went back to measure) The local newspaper had a writeup about my work on the car (my avatar is a scan of the picture that ran in the paper).

Well several years later I sold my lowrider/what I though was quick 95 s10. I took a huge loss on it because no matter what I did to it, it was still just an s10. My wife told me I should look into a GN because I had wanted one since I was in school. I found one last June and sometimes I feel like crying I am so happy :D The best part is, when my wife and I open up the T-Tops and go for long rides through state parks or cruise on the interstate (or when I smoke some rice: I think she knows I've been out racing because I return home late and I talk about how modding cars today is adding LEDs to windshield wipers:)

How sweet is she? We will be spending her birthday at BeachBend this May :)
It was 1986, I was 17 and my buddy's pop just bought a new T-Type....silver on grey. Anyhow, one weekend shortly after he bought it (420 miles on it) he let his son and I go out cruising in it for the night. Needless to say after a tank of gas, countless street races (mostly Mudstangs) and who knows how many thousands of miles burnt off the tires, we returned home and I was sold...I would own one of these cars someday. In 1990-1991 when I returned home from Desert Storm I bought my first GN from the original owner (46k miles) and kept it untill May 2002 when it was sold to purchase my TTA. When I discharged from the service I moved back to my parents place untill I got on my feet. My pop asked to borrow my GN to take to work and "try it out." After 3 nights of "trying it out" he came home and said he wanted one for himself. A few months of looking turned up a local 1986 GN that he bought and still owns.
Here is my first experence with a GN...In 1996 I was at a local salvage yard..While I was there,they brought in on a rollback,a 87 GN,stolen, recovered..missing wheels and radio...I though,that might make a nice car for the wife. At this point,I didn't know much about the cars. I struck a deal with them,and they found a set of GN wheels,and had the car towed home..About five days later,I had it running,and told the wife to take it out for a drive,me riding with her..
It was wet out,and the first time she pushed the gas,about 3/4 way down,we did a 360 on a busy intersection.....
Well,she got out,and said,she was scared of it,and never drove it again, We parked it for 6 yrs,out back...
In 2001,I decided to drive it again...and "fixed it up"..Now atleast she rides in it...
The first time I saw a Gn was a local newscast. They did a test drive on it. I thought it looked really cool. I always liked the 80's G-body style. I really wanted a cutlass or a monte ss. Of course I was only 13 in 87. I liked the look did not care about the power.

There was a place in the Chicago area that called themselves the Grand National Headquarters. It was like a wet dream guys. They would sometimes have about 8 gn's and a couple turbo regals lined up for sale. I would drive past and dream. I almost bought one there but they were selling them for 15000 and up. They had a black GTA there too. I asked the salesman which was faster. He said the GTA was fast but the GN's were faster. I was skeptical, besides you could get a new camaro for the price they wanted for these 6 year old cars (1993). Needless to say in 1993 at 19 I bought a cherry formula with 22000 miles in red for 9000 bucks.

That same Formula and I were cruising down a city street at about 1 am. I was going home from my girlfriends house and I saw a camaro driving really slow ahead of me so I go around him and now I am blocked by a corvette. I am wondering why are these guys driving so slow.So I zip back into the other lane and I see it. A bad @$$ black shiny GN. Just loafing at about 30mph. I think to myself that's why -- they are scared of this GN. Being young and dumb I pull up next to the GN and start to rev. I think to myself this car don't scare me. The light changes and we go he's only about an 1/8th of a car length ahead when I hear the screech of the tires and all I see next is the glow of his brake lights about a quarter of a mile down at the next stoplight. My jaw was in my lap -- I was in complete shock at the way I had just been taught a lesson by this car. I limped up to the light rolled down my window grabbed my nuts off his windshield and mumbled thanks to the guy. I realised that night that I had to have a GN.

Finally in 2000 my dream came true. I bought an 87 GN. I'll never forget the rush I felt the first time I laid into it. I felt like the hand of God had pushed me back into the seat , I was completely unprepared for the rush of power when that turbo kicked in. I whooped like a little kid on Christmas morning when he opens his present and realises -- Yeah, Santa came through! I had never whooped before in my life! I thought that was only cowboy crap they made up in movies. It was a verifiable WOO-HOO! Okay, I gotta end this post 'cause I'm getting way too excited! Later, gotta go get my turbo fix. Sal