Buick and the Grand National nameplate can go together like Forrest and Jenny, but like today Good price or no dice LeSabre proves that this match wasn’t always made in heaven. Let’s see if this ultra-rare NASCAR-oriented coupe is now offered at a heavenly price.
When you consider Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, it’s not hard to imagine a truck like yesterday’s 1985GMC Sierra 3500 be somewhere on the pyramid. Maybe between “Love and Belonging” and “Esteem”. Not only was this GMC the kind of simple truck that many of you would say exemplified such a basic necessity, but at $8,950 it also seemed like an affordable way to achieve that goal. At least that’s the guess we can make based on his 73% win over the Nice Price.
Okay, I want you to think of the name “Grand National” and imagine the first car that comes to mind. It’s a mid-’80s Buick Regal, isn’t it? Probably in black, with a gray interior and deep turbine wheels. Easy-peasey.
Today we’re going to talk about another Grand National – still a Buick, but much less mainstream and a bit more confusing than the Regal edition.
This 1985 Buick Le Saber Grand National was a one-year-old set only and would have sold only 113 examples before being replaced by the T-Type in 1986. I’m pretty sure that makes it the rarest of all existing LeSabre models.
Now, LeSabre and performance never really went hand in hand, and although the Grand National Edition got the heavy-duty FE1 suspension with larger anti-roll bars and stiffer springs, it was still a great FWD car. with most of its weight directed to those front wheels. This allowed it to handle and ride better than the standard LeSabre, but in corners it will still plow like it’s seeding season. The impetus for the model’s existence was due to Buick’s participation in NASCAR and the company’s desire to qualify the larger car as a body model for track use.
To that end, the Grand National has a few model-specific body parts. The most obvious of these is a strange plastic cover over part of the side window. It was meant to smooth the airflow around the car, but it sure looks weird. Other Grand National updates include a front air dam, a set of shameless clearance wheels, black painted trim and a pair of Grand National badges with a two-tone loop arrow.
A similar badge appeared on the Regal Grand National and, as everyone knows, it represented the turbo that gave the Regal edition its power and fame. On the LeSabre, there is no turbo. Aside from the suspension upgrades, in fact, all of the mechanics on the Grand National are straight, unfiltered standard LeSabres. That means a 150-hp 3.8-liter V6 driving the front wheels through a four-speed automatic with a column shift. Ye-awn.
This particular LeSabre Grand National is in black mouse fur on gray which was the only way these models arrived and is claimed to be number 36 out of this total run of 113 units. The body looks straight and the paint is correct. It’s hard to say for sure because of the layer of grime on the car and cat footprints crawling across the hood. The interior looks solid, and obviously built for comfort, not speed. The padded seats have room for three in the back and front, with a low center tunnel that provides space for everyone’s feet.
Yes, there’s a bit of cleaning needed here too, but from the photos in the ad, this Buick looks like a real barn find, so maybe that’s to be expected. According to the ad, the car is coming out of the barn just fine and sports both new tires and a fresh battery. It has 163,000 miles on the odo, which equates to about 4,500 miles per year. As he wears antique plates, it is likely that most of the miles were accumulated early in life and his later years were less active. The title, unlike the current car, is clean.
So, this is an extremely rare albeit uninspiring Buick. What could it be worth exactly? The seller is asking for $15,000 for the sale and expects to get something close to finance the purchase of a 1968-1970 Dodge Charger, which the seller says in the ad is his dream car.
What do you think, is this LeSabre worth $15,000 and therefore bringing the seller one step closer to realizing his dream? Or, is that price just a total nightmare?
Southwest Virginia, craigslistwhere to go here if the ad disappears.
H/T to FauxShizzle for the hookup!
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