Grand National, T-Type and GNX are three special editions offered by Buick for its second-generation Regal: the Grand National arrived in 1982, the T-Type in 1983 and the GNX in 1987. All three names were dropped once the third-generation Regal debuted. All of you gearheads already knew that, right?
We’re willing to bet that you didn’t know that rumors are floating around that Buick will resuscitate all three nameplates in the upcoming years. All three models will be offered as four-door sedans and will be built on GM’s new rear-wheel-drive Alpha platform, which will be shared with the Cadillac ATS.
Just like in the past, the Grand National and the T-Type will come with the same powertrains and suspension calibrations. The only distinctive feature being the exterior color, as the T-Type will be offered in a full color palette and the Grand National only in a black, staying true to the original. Inside Line reports that the Grand National and GNX will likely be powered by GM’s new twin-turbocharged 3.6-liter V-6 engine with an output in the 350- to 400-horsepower range.
The GNX will be the most powerful version and will likely get a nice helping of LT1 V-8 muscle. We’re not too sure if GM will detune the new LT1 before installing it in the GNX, if it happens, but if not, this would put it at 450 horsepower. We wouldn’t be surprised to see it cranked down to 425 ponies – God forbid, GM step on its precious Corvette’s toes.
All three models are expected to come with six-speed manual transmissions standard with the option of a six-speed automatic.
Muscle car enthusiasts everywhere are now jumping with joy at this announcement, but keep your cool fellas, we don’t expect them to hit the Auto Show scene until sometime in 2014.
Full details on the three models will be revealed in the upcoming month, so stay tuned!
From 1959 through 1990, Buick used the “Electra” name to top off its range of automobiles. It was never an overly powerful or fast car, but in its earlier years, it was known as a full-size ride that moved well and rode like a fine Italian leather sofa. After its downsizing in the mid-1980s, Buick chose to axe the name altogether.
As of late, GM has been on a trademarking binge, with its tagging the SS and ELR, and now we can add another one to the list. You guessed it; GM has officially trademarked the Electra name. This could mean absolutely nothing, but with the huge overhaul that Buick has received in recent years, this does point to a model to come.
With it possibly bearing the “Electra” name, we can only assume that this potential new model would take a slot directly above the Lacrosse, making it the new range-topping car. This is purely speculation, but with the category that GM trademarked the Electra under, 1B , the law requires the owner of the trademark to show true intent to use the trademark for a product in the future.
For now, we only know of the trademark and its category. Maybe OnStar will make another programming boo-boo and post the Electra on its list of qualifying GM cars, so we have a better idea. We will update you the second more information leaks out about the Electra. And yes, given GM’s recent trends, there will be tons of “unintentional” leaks.
Back in 2007, Buick unveiled a cool Riviera Concept which many thought would move on to production form. Nothing has been heard about this concept since then, but on May 3rd General Motors filed a trademark for a Riviera name, citing it for use on automobiles. Although they did not say it would be used for a Buick model, the previous concept makes us consider this as an option.
In fact, last year, it was rumored that GM wanted to produce a sporty coupe, possibly based on the rear-wheel drive Alpha platform. Then, at the 2012 New York Auto Show, the company announced it was considering bringing the Riviera name back, but in a rear-wheel drive form. The concept unveiled back in 2007 was a sporty coupe built on an Epsilon front-wheel drive platform.
So, the Riviera name may be used either for either a production version of the concept which would arrive sometime in 2015, or a new Riviera concept. We’re hoping for the first scenario!
Earlier this week, TopSpeed.com was graciously invited by GM to attend a press event on their famous Detroit test track ’Milford Proving Ground’. In the morning, we completed the safe driving program and test drove several GM vehicles. Later on, we met up for dinner with several other car bloggers and GM’s general manager, Edward J. Peper. Below are the highlights of the event.