New York Preview: 2008 Buick LaCrosse Super rolled out
Yes, yes, this is the only LaCrosse we enthusiasts care about, otherwise there wouldn't be much cause to mention this car's name in daily conversation. Buick has revived the "Super" moniker after a fifty-year absence on the 2008 LaCrosse (and Lucerne, which we'll get to next) to demarcate its most premium and powerful models. As such, the LaCrosse gets a major power boost from the addition of GM's 5.3L small-block V8 that produces 300 horsepower and 323 ft-lbs. of torque. As we'll tell you a little later, that's more power than the Lucerne Super's Northstar V8 can manage, making the LaCrosse Super somewhat of an entry-level luxury rocket with a 0 to 60 time of just 5.7 seconds.
We also get portholes on the LaCrosse Super, which is a given at this point – four on each flank signifying the eight cylinders pumping on the other side of the sheetmetal. The suspension has been upgraded with Bilsteing monotube struts, the steering made more precise and the brakes given larger rotors. The LaCrosse Super also benefits from the biggest wheel/tire combo you can get on this vehicle – 18-inch aluminum rims (chrome is also available because, hey, this is Buick).
Again, pricing was not made available, but we'd have to guess the LaCrosse Super will be a tad more expensive than the Chevy Impala SS that also sports the 5.3L V8 and starts at $28,655. If Buick decides to keep the LaCrosse Super under $30k, it will stand with the Impala SS as a incredible performance value. Of course, torque steer comes at no extra charge.
Check out GM's full press release after the jump and our gallery of desktop wallpaper-sized high-res images.
BUICK RETURNS 'SUPER' NAME TO DESIGNATE PREMIUM MODELS
Exclusive Buick Models Elevate Design, Power and Performance
NEW YORK –Buick has rekindled a name from its storied 20th-century past to mark the beginning of a new level of refinement: Super. The badge is designated exclusively for Buick's most premium, powerful models and returns to Buick vehicles after 50 years. It will debut on the 2008 model year LaCrosse and Lucerne sedans.
"We're bringing back the Super badge to represent our most premium models," said Steve Shannon, Buick general manager. "Our Supers are not just about increased horsepower; they represent an elevation in design, premium content and ride characteristics that are exclusive to the Super badge."
The Supers are engineered for Buick by the GM Performance Division to inspire performance on demand. The LaCrosse Super is powered by a 300-horsepower (224 kW)* 5.3L small-block V-8 with GM's Active Fuel Management technology. The LaCrosse Super's chassis has been sport-tuned to deliver responsive handling characteristics, and the vehicle maintains Buick's renowned quietness inside.
The Lucerne Super adds a more powerful version of the legendary 4.6L Northstar V-8. It is rated at 292 horsepower (218 kW)*, an increase of more than 6 percent over existing models. The Super has an enhanced chassis with a specially tuned version of Lucerne 's Magnetic Ride Control system, for a refined, premium ride that simultaneously enables crisp, responsive handling.
Buick Super: elevated design, power and performance
Design elements on the LaCrosse Super and Lucerne Super denote the new face of Buick. Design cues echo those seen on the popular Velite convertible concept vehicle – and recently introduced on the Buick Enclave luxury crossover SUV – including a new waterfall grille and portholes. The LaCrosse Super is the first and only LaCrosse model offered with Buick's iconic portholes; there are four per side to highlight the V-8 engine.
In addition to distinctive design, the LaCrosse Super and Lucerne Super deliver leading-edge performance and refinement. The 5.3L and 4.6L V-8 engines are renowned for balancing performance and fuel economy. They are complemented by specially tuned suspension systems.
Like all Buick models, LaCrosse and Lucerne Supers are built with an exclusive engineering process called QuietTuning to reduce, block and absorb noise from entering the interior. Laminated side window glass, sound-deadening material in the body structure, hydraulic mounts in the engine compartment and more reduce interior noise. Even exhaust nodes have been tuned for overall sound quality. These features contribute to a quiet, refined driving experience.
While the LaCrosse and Lucerne represent the first production models of the reborn Buick Super series, they will not be the last. Future models will share elements that reinforce the Super ethic, including:
- Exclusive exterior and interior design appointments
- Powertrain enhancements
- Enhanced driving dynamics, with specifically tuned steering, braking and suspension systems for responsive and confident handling
- Leading levels of interior quietness through Buick's exclusive QuietTuning engineering effort.
The LaCrosse Super is distinguished from its sibling models with a new exterior appearance that is highlighted by a new waterfall grille, new hood and a new front fascia that incorporates a lower grille opening with chrome trim and chrome fog lamp bezels.
New portholes, rocker moldings, rear fascia with integrated park assist sensors, 3.5-inch-diameter dual chrome exhaust tips, rear decklid spoiler and a Super badge also make the LaCrosse Super instantly identifiable from any angle. LaCrosse Super is offered in four exterior colors: Black Onyx, Platinum Metallic, Dark Mocha Metallic and Red Jewel tint coat.
Inside, the LaCrosse Super exudes comfort and style, including front seats with increased seatback bolstering. All of the seats feature new, woven-embossed leather inserts. A unique wood grain appearance accents the instrument panel, center console, doors and gear shift knob. There are also exclusive instrument cluster graphics – including Super identification – new front sill plates, a silver finish on the instrument panel center stack and Super-specific floor mats.
The LaCrosse Super introduces a V-8 engine that has the fuel efficiency of a V-6. Rated at 300 horsepower (224 kW)* and 323-lb.ft (438 Nm)* of torque, Buick's new V-8 can propel the LaCrosse Super from 0-60 mph in 5.7 seconds. The 5.3L small-block V-8 uses GM's Active Fuel Management (AFM), an engine technology that seamlessly switches between four- and eight-cylinder power to save fuel.
To support the performance capabilities enabled by the V-8 engine, the LaCrosse Super features a specially tuned suspension system for steering precision, improved ride control and feel, and increased braking performance. Bilstein monotube struts, larger front and rear rotors, high-precision steering gear, StabiliTrak, and recalibrated chassis controls help the LaCrosse Super deliver confident handling and road manners, while also maintaining overall ride comfort.
The Super version comes standard with the largest wheels and tires available on the LaCrosse – 18-inch by 7-inch aluminum wheels wrapped by P235/50R18 all-season tires. Chrome-finish wheels are available.