Buick Regal Grand National
Since big-block V8s were largely eliminated by the mid-1970s, Buick engineers experimented with turbocharging for their 231-cubic inch V6. Their first high-profile effort, the 307 hp Century that paced the 1976 Indianapolis 500, marked the first V6-powered pace car in the event’s history.
The downsized Regal intermediate debuted for 1978, providing the ideal platform for Buick’s first series-produced turbo V6. Its attractively chiseled lines were perfect for NASCAR speedways and helped Buick win the manufacturer’s title in 1981 and 1982. To celebrate, the first Grand National Regal appeared in 1982 in naturally aspirated and turbocharged form.
The option returned in 1984, now with an all-black exterior, aluminum wheels, Lear-Siegler seats, Gran Touring underpinnings and special identification badges. The 200 hp turbocharged V6 featured sequential-port fuel injection and a distributor-less ignition. The tough automatic transmission included overdrive, and the rear end housed 3.42:1 gears. By 1986, an intercooler bumped output to 235 hp, followed by 10 more horses for 1987, making the Grand National America’s quickest production car. So much so, it also inspired a limited run of turbo Regals for FBI use.
This car was auctioned off by RM Auctions in June of 2010 at the Town and Country Resort & Convention Center, San Diego, California.
245 bhp, 231 cu. in. V6 engine with sequential-port fuel injection, air-to-air intercooler and GNX-specification turbocharger, Turbo-Hydramatic 200-4R automatic transmission with overdrive, independent front suspension with unequal-length A-arms, coil springs and stabilizer bar, live four-link rear axle, front disc and rear hydraulic drum brakes. Wheelbase: 108.1".
Source: RM Auctions
Photo Credit: Copyright Darin Schnabel