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2011 Buick Lucerne

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2011 Buick Lucerne Review

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Although not quite an image breaker like the legendary Grand National, the Lucerne, along with its new stable mates the Regal and LaCrosse, is nevertheless changing people's mind about the Buick brand. Gone from the company flagship is the stereotypical cushy ride, soft seats and numb steering, replaced by a Cadillac-derived chassis outfitted with two potent engine options and a sophisticated sense of style. Although classified as a "near-luxury" car, the Lucerne's combination of affordable pricing and rich content offers those considering a Lincoln, Acura or Volvo a legitimate alternative with some serious cost savings.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're a current or former large Buick sedan lover, or have been away from roomy, comfy big American sedans for a while and would like a good reason to return, Lucerne is easily the best full-size Buick ever and one of the nicest full-size American cars of any brand.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you can't get comfortable with the idea of picking a domestic brand versus a higher-image import, you may not care for the 2011 Buick Lucerne. This cleanly-crafted four-door looks good enough to earn more youthful (read fiftyish) buyers than the previous Park Avenue, but it's still no kids' cool cruiser.

What's New for 2011

All 2011 Buick Lucerne models gain GM's StabiliTrak stability control system, while five-passenger models are fitted with a console-mounted USB port.

Driving the Lucerne
Driving Impressions

We spent quality time on freeways, around town and on challenging two-lanes in both base V6 and top-line V8 Super Lucernes and found much to like and little to criticize....

... The standard car allows relatively spirited driving (more aggressive than its buyers will likely attempt) with adequate power, good control and solid braking. Only its ultra-light power steering disappointed us, yet it might please typical buyers. The V8-powered Super would be our choice for its full complement of features and outstanding ride and handling – although its magnetic power steering also struck us as a bit light and devoid of feel. Especially impressive were the unusually low noise levels inside both cabins, thanks to Buick's standard QuietTuning.

Magnetic Ride Control (with StabiliTrak and Brake Assist)
Using magnetically charged particles suspended in a synthetic fluid, the Lucerne's shocks continually adjust to varying road surfaces and driving conditions, this remarkable feature responds far faster than conventional valve-damping systems to provide the rare combination of exceptional twisty-road handling and silky smooth highway ride.

Remote Vehicle Start
GM's remote start lets you start the engine and warm or cool the cabin (while the car stays securely locked) well in advance of departing. Once you've tried it you won't want to live without it.

2011 Buick Lucerne Details
Interior

The Lucerne's 203.2-inch overall length gives Buick engineers plenty of leeway in designing a roomy, spacious interior. Compared with the old Park Avenue known to so many Buick loyalists, the Lucerne offers an inch more rear legroom as well as more supportive seating. This compares well to Chrysler's 300C and Ford's Taurus, as well as the much pricier Lexus GS. The Lucerne is also one of the last cars to offer a 60/40 split bench front seat. The highly refined interior fits are tight – materials and finishes are premium with excellent attention to detail – and Buick's "QuietTuning" substantially reduces most road, wind and powertrain noise.

Exterior

Compared to the new Regal and LaCrosse, the 2011 Buick Lucerne's once ground-breaking styling now appears a bit subdued. The shapely interpretation of the marque's signature waterfall grille is flanked by jewel-like projector-beam headlamps, while the taut sheetmetal is athletic, graceful and upscale American with a touch of Lexus. Twin under-the-bumper front air intakes sport a single horizontal chrome rib apiece, while traditional Buick portholes (non-functional) adorn the front fenders. The sleek roofline holds a distinctively-shaped rear pillar. The wheels fill their wells for a muscular stance, and the portholes are set at a slight angle to accentuate the body's wedgy profile.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Lucerne's six standard airbags include side-impact thorax and roof-rail air-curtain bags, a dual-stage driver bag and a GM-patented dual-depth front passenger bag. Also standard are a power driver's and passenger seat, power windows, mirrors and door locks with remote keyless entry, six-speaker AM/FM/CD with auxiliary input jack, XM Satellite Radio, four-spoke tilt steering wheel with speed and audio controls, PASS-Key III theft-deterrent system, 17-inch alloy wheels and tires with tire pressure monitoring, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes (ABS), traction and stability control, Buick's QuietTuning (which includes laminated steel and laminated windshield and side glass) and GM's OnStar convenience and security system.

Optional Equipment

The mid-range CXL adds automatic climate control, eight way power and heated front seats with power lumbar support and a heated leather steering wheel, while the EXL adds to this the Driver Confidence Package with ultrasonic rear park assist and remote start. The Super boasts the Northstar V8, 18-inch wheels and tires, Magnetic Ride Control, heated and cooling front seats, heated steering wheel and rear park assist. Beyond the trim-level equipment, stand alone options include remote start, Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity, six-passenger seating (with a 40/20/40 split front seat), power sunroof, touch-screen navigation and Side Blind Zone Alert and Land Departure Warning (available in conjunction with the Driver's Confidence package.

Under the Hood

GM's 3.9-liter overhead-valve V6 provides an acceptable balance between power and fuel economy, while its FlexFuel component allows the engine use E85, a blend of gasoline and ethanol. In a rare appearance outside of a Cadillac, the smooth and powerful 292-horsepower dual-overhead cam Northstar V8 offers substantially stronger performance at a one- to two-mile-per-gallon sacrifice in fuel economy. The standard four-speed automatic could use another ratio or two to better compete with the five- and six-speed automatics found in upper-level imports and some domestics.

3.9-liter V6
227 horsepower @ 5700 rpm
237 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/26 (gasoline), 13/20 (E85)

4.6-liter V8 (Exclusive to Super)
292 horsepower @ 6300 rpm
288 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/22

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2011 Buick Lucerne Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.8
Out of 10

Based on 392 Ratings for the 2006 - 2011 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.9/10
    Quality
    9.0/10
  • Reliability
    9.2/10
    Performance
    8.9/10
  • Comfort
    9.1/10
    Styling
    9.0/10

Not bad for the money, v6 cxl , 156600 miles ,

By on Wednesday, May 18, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 157,000

10 4.0
overall rating 4 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
4/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
4/10
Quality
4/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "size and ride"

Cons: "parts dont last"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5

"replace trans at 144000 miles, engine mounts dont last, v6 has oil leak. Air shock compr out,driver door handle break off,super glue.Have F41 suspension firm ride for big car handles good with flaken 950 tires on star is great. car not bad ,but have to keep replaceing same parts , front drive has to much maintance ,at this time i have to replace radiator,breaks shocks tie rods ball joints. alternators dont last 3rd one. starter replaced and batt. best thing about car is size and ride."

6 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Most comfortable car ever, always garaged.

By on Friday, November 27, 2015

I owned and sold this car
Reason: bought a Corvette

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Great older car with no problems."

Cons: "None"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

First day driven home.

"Completely reliable, never had any problems. With the built in remote car start it's a great winter car. The front wheel drive delivers good traction in snow. Rarely driven in the winter so no rust found."

12 people out of 14 found this review helpful

First day driven home.

Very reliable car.

By on Wednesday, November 25, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 51,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Nice looking car design"

Cons: "None"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"We enjoyed the luxury amenities of the heated steering wheel, 6 heating options on the driver and front passenger seats, the ease of steering, the extended sun visors, the back up sensors, inside or outside trunk release, the car's locator beep system, easy to use cruise control, radio and CD's and the comfortable, adjustable lumbar seat positions."

6 people out of 8 found this review helpful

Great car love it.

By on Tuesday, September 15, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 87,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"There is only 2 things I do not care for that my car has and they are the Rainsense wipers and the lane departure system. the rain sense wipers adjust the speed of the wipers automatically. Now as for the lane departure system. my front camera is out that little baby is $400 and some change. Other that those 2 items I love my Buick."

12 people out of 19 found this review helpful

HAS ONLY 60080 MILES, ONLY DRIVE IT HALF A YEAR

By on Monday, August 31, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 60,080

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "GAS MILAGE GOOD, GOOD ACCELERATION,"

Cons: "OIL CHANGE IS DUE"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"THE CAR ALSO HAVE DUAL TEMP. SETTINGS, POWER SEATS ALL LEATHER, HEATED SEATS/STEERING WHEEL, CD PLAYER, ONSTAR, 29,900 MILES LEFT ON A EXTENDED WARRANTY (PLATNIUM)WARRANTY PROGRAM. (TRANSFERABLE WARRANTY) COSTS ONLY $40. BRAND NEW BATTERY PURCHASED 8/28/15 TIRES OVER 75% LIFE."

9 people out of 15 found this review helpful

Have owned 4 Buicks; had good service-few repairs

By on Wednesday, August 26, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 94,480

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
Not Rated
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Good service record - very few repairs necessary"

Cons: "GM quality not as great as it could be"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"I owned Buick Riviera 3 different times until they were no longer manufactured. I would've bought another if they were still available. They were all reliable and drove very well. My fourth one was a 2007 Lucerne. Going from a Riviera to a Lucerne seemed like I was going into an "old lady's car" because it was my first 4-door! Except for the fact that it did not have the quick "kick" the Riviera had, (it had been a turbo) I have no complaints on the Lucerne and recently bought a Lacrosse, although I was super-tempted to buy a Lexus. I think the Lacrosse styling is second in line to the Lexus ES, but much less like an "old lady's car" than the Lucerne. I was VERY disgusted with GM for taking the federal government bail-out and said I would not buy another GM, but I did. However, if I don't get the same good service from the Lacrosse, I will not buy another GM and will definitely turn to Lexus."

3 people out of 11 found this review helpful

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