If the word association of Buick and “Grand National” doesn’t get your blood pumping, then we suggest you may want to turn in your American-petrol head card at the first opportunity. The Buick Regal Grand National is a muscle car that upended the industry in an era of tightening emissions regulations thanks to its use of a smaller V6 engine with a turbo. This GNX (which stands for Grand National Experimental) run-out special edition was created for the Grand National’s final production year. And it’s no exaggeration to say that Buick pulled out all the stops. A limited run of only 547 cars were transformed by none other than McLaren, with a host of upgrades under the hood. This 1987 Buick Grand National GNX that is for sale has reportedly been garage kept and maintains the original mileage.
The exterior of the Grand National was available in just one color. Like a Model T, you could only have one in black, while later cars even had their chrome deleted. The car for sale sticks to that philosophy, and reportedly maintains its original paint—a menacing tribute to the beast underneath. The Grand National was also famous for its “Power Bulge”—a not so subtle addition to the hood that was required for the turbo V6 to fit under.
The Grand National’s engine was famed for shining at a time of reduced outputs from a host of other sports and muscle cars. Wining out against restrictive emissions regulations, the Buick Grand National added a turbo to its 3.8 liter V6. With electronic fuel management and a blower replacing displacement, the Grand National GNX was one of the most powerful muscle cars of the era. The special edition was rated at 276hp, although the actual output was rumored to be greater. This was thanks to the engine work done by McLaren, who added larger turbos amongst other things. Amazingly, the Grand National GNX was faster to 60mph and over a quarter-mile than the supercar of the era, the Ferrari F40.