2006 Buick Lucerne

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Front Drivers Side View

The 2006 Buick Lucerne puts a new face on a well-known GM formula: a front-drive sedan with a 3.8-liter, pushrod V-6. This engine is nearly as legendary for longevity as the Chevrolet 350, and just about as ancient, too. If you feel that pushrods are a bit outdated, you can also choose a 275-hp, 4.6-liter, DOHC V-8, making the Lucerne the first V-8-powered Buick sedan in over a decade.

Under those engines is another old piece of metal, a GM front-wheel-drive chassis that has seen more than its share of duty since beginning life in 1995 under Oldsmobile Aurora and Buick Riviera bodywork. But here it can be had with Magnetic Ride Control straight from the Cadillac parts bin, as well as StabiliTrak stability control.

Inside, you will find an interior much improved over the outgoing LeSabre, with more elegant wood, more civilized styling, and a set of new treats, including DVD navigation, heated and cooled seats, a Harmon Kardon audio system, and rain-sensing windshield wipers. The most notable interior feature, though, has to be GM's new dual-depth air bags, which are a step above current dual-stage bags. Those use one size bag with different pressures, while the new GM system found in the Lucerne uses two different sized bags in addition to different air pressures. The system uses seat position, safety belt usage, and crash severity to calculate the proper bag and pressure, and is claimed to be the safest frontal air-bag system yet.

Styling is a step above recent Buicks (especially the cheaper LaCrosse) and a glance at the side even evokes a bit of the lovely Infiniti G35. Traditional Buick fender portholes make a stylish comeback here after a half-hearted attempt on recent Park Avenues. Some Buick traditionalists will object when they see four portholes adorning the side of a mid-level Buick, but on closer inspection one will discover three portholes denotes a V-6 model, while four represent a V-8 Lucerne. Makes sense to us.

Passenger Side View

Rear Passenger Side View

Interior View Steering Wheel

Passenger Side Front Fender Marker View

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