1994 BUICK LESABRE LIMITED
Used Car - 1994 Buick LeSabre Limited in Houston, Tx
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1994 Buick LeSabre ReviewThis car review is specific to this model, not the actual vehicle for sale.
One thing most car buyers know is that the Buick Division of General Motors makes big, comfortable sedans.
Buick may not be on the cutting edge of the auto industry, but it usually builds cars with the solid handsomeness that mature, more conservative buyers seem to find attractive. This year's LeSabre Limited is no exception.
Buick's sales leader underwent substantial restyling two years ago, and there are just a few additional changes this year. One welcome new feature, standard on both the Custom and the more expensive Limited models, is a passenger-side air bag.
The LeSabre is classified as a full-size sedan and shares the competitive arena with the Ford Crown Victoria, Mercury Grand Marquis, Chrysler Concorde and Dodge Intrepid.
Both the LeSabre Custom and Limited are fron-twheel drive, four-door sedans with 3.8-liter V6 engines that produce 170 hp at 4,800 rpm and 225 pound-feet of torque at 3,200 rpm. Independent front and rear suspension and anti-lock power front disc and rear drum brakes are standard.
Our test vehicle was the LeSabre Limited, finished in an attractive Light Blue Metallic. Standard equipment included electronically controlled four-speed automatic transmission, dual air bags, air conditioning, a power antenna, cruise control, power windows and door locks, an AM/FM stereo with a cassette player and four speakers, and, among other standard safety features, security locks to prevent kids from opening doors.
Our test car was equipped with an option package that included leather seats, 16-inch aluminum wheels, a CD player, six-way power passenger seat and the Gran Touring suspension. Last but certainly not least, our LeSabre had a dual automatic climate control system that made it possible to customize temperatures for both the driver and front passengers feature that may have strong appeal for twosomes who fail to agree on a common temperature.
The total price of our vehicle, including options and destination charges, was $27,146.
The LeSabre does not indulge in dramatic styling statements; on the contrary, styling is very straightforward. There is a hint of the old Jaguar in the hood and grill presentation, but that is a design to which we are all accustomed by now. More LeSabre-like is the protective chrome and hard-rubber beltline that encircles the automobile. On the sides, it provides a more than adequate shield against other doors in a parking lot. In the front and rear, it is substantial enough to form the fascia of the bumpers.
Because of its clean, unencumbered design, there's not much doubt that this car is aerodynamically sound. The large door handles do stick out, but that is what we've come to expect from a Buick. On most cars, handles are recessed and hidden in the door. On the LeSabre, they stick right out, as if to announce there will be no nonsense involved in getting into this car.
The trunk offers a substantial 17.1 cubic feet of space with easy access at bumper level, and it's deep enough so that luggage can stand upright. A trunk net is a nice option to keep cargo from being tossed around. The trunk's interior was finished with a molded felt-like material that we wished was more substantial.
Large, attractive reverse lights and taillights span the rear of the car, split in the middle for the license plate holder.
One nice feature that has come to be expected on upscale full-size sedans such as the LeSabre is the electronic remote that allows owners to unlock the car doors, open the trunk or turn on the interior lights from approximately 30 feet away.
The LeSabre will seat six as honestly as any car that bills itself as a six-passenger sedan, but the front and rear seats in our test vehicle were bucket-shaped. Four passengers would be very comfortable traveling coast-to-coast. However, shorter trips to lunch or to the golf course would be as far as we would want to go with six.
The analog instruments have traditional black backgrounds with white numerals-very neat and easily visible. Controls on the driver's left armrest operate the power windows, six-way seat and outside mirrors. The dash curves deftly into the front door panels and contains headlamp and emergency blinker controls as well as heat and air vents.
Cruise control and wiper controls are set in the turn-signal stalk to the left of the steering column, an arrangement present in all GM vehicles and one we've come to dislike because it is cumbersome.
The sound system, including AM/FM radio and, in our option package, a CD player, are on the right of the instrument cluster, as are the controls for heat and air conditioning. All are within reach, have large controls and are easy to operate.
The LeSabre is a roomy, comfortable car. A tall person will find plenty of headroom even with the driver's seat raised to full height. A console storage bin between the front seats provides ample room for CDs, tapes and coins. The visors have vanity mirrors with adjustable lighting and double extensions-one to swing to the side and one to fold down. The height of the three-point seat belt is adjustable. Map or reading lights are available to front- and back-seat passengers. Visibility was good all around, except that through the rearview mirror we couldn't see precisely where the trunk ended. Our driver had to learn to make that judgment.
We found the LeSabre's independent front and rear suspension system, supplemented by automatic level control and optional variable-effort power steering, provided sure control and a stable ride in various driving situations. Our LeSabre carried us over an unpaved road, quietly leveling out the bumps. In city traffic, it maneuvered smartly with the firmness of a sportier car. At highway speeds, we cruised smoothly, very much in control, appreciating the quietness of the ride even when encountering potholes in a construction area. The low center of gravity and automatic level control, part of the Gran Touring suspension package, resulted in stable cornering and sure handling with no noticeable roll.
The 3.8-liter V6 engine produced adequate power with excellent acceleration, both from a standing start and when passing. Gear transition was very quiet, very smooth.
The anti-lock brake system was sure and earned our confidence after repeated testing at both low and high speeds.
There are few new bells and whistles on the 1994 Buick LeSabre - dual air bags and an improved traction control system top the short list. However, we weren't disappointed with the lack of change; the LeSabre, in all its glory, is still a satisfying and comfortable family car.