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Old 10-01-2007, 09:33 PM   #1
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Default Buick Regal opinions

Yesterday my wife and I went and looked two Regal GSs. The first was a 2004 with 36,000 miles.


The car was not very clean (dust on the seats, dirt on the floors, dirty rockers, grime on the steering wheel, dusty dash, etc., etc.). There was some sort of a leak just below the supercharger. Appeared to be a mild coolant leak. Otherwise, it all checked out (while at idle). The air conditioner blew cold. All electrical features worked without an issue (including the heated seats and moon roof). The car had new tires and "new" brakes.

So, we took it on a test drive. My basis for checking the power of a SII L67 is based on my experiences of a SI L67. So, since we were alone, I drove it ....like a SC car should be tested.. Well, the car had an obvious problem. It had no nuts. Like none. Our L27s and L36s faired better than this low mileage L67. It was so odd that I even pulled over to make sure the SC belt was hooked up. Sure enough, it was. So, I flipped through the digital dash and found the digital boost guage. Back on the road....punched it and let her rip to the floor...built up to 7.2 lbs of boost but it felt L-A-M-E. Go to stop abrubtly and the car shook. Brakes were definitely needing to be replaced. Take off again and stand on it from a stop and it wouldn't brake the wheels loose.

So, we get back to where I met the guy and put the car in reverse to put it back into the parking spot - CLUNK. The trans made a clunking noise. Put it back in drive - CLUNK. Back into reverse and CLUNK. I just left it in reverse and put it in the parking spot. I questioned the owner about the clunking and the brakes. He claimed he did notice the braking issue but never the clunking.

The rims were filthy and the chrome plating was flaking off the barrel of the rim. Seems to be a common problem based on what I learned from regalgs.com.

So, my question to you guys - what would the clunking be? Expensive and invovled to fix? Common issue? Almost seemed like a mount of sorts to me. What about the lack of power issue? (Possible old 87 octane affecting KR?) Brakes are no big deal. I can address that. SC gasket leak - fixable. Cleanliness I can fix too. All bargaining points.

Asking price is $13,700. NADA is $15,900. It'* part of an estate sale. Apparently his dad passed away and it was his. So it must be sold to close to settle the estate. He'* had four other people look at it and everyone else has passed. I'm willing to bet he'd bit on an offer of $12,900ish.

On to the next one... (not as noteworthy )


2001 GS. 99,500 miles. Owned by a younger guy. Drove extremely well and built up power very quickly. Felt like a SC car to say the least. Broke the tires loose easily. Everything worked well.

Price at $6000. He seemed anxious to sell so I'd imagine I could get it closer to $5,000.

So, it'* a gamble - what should I do? I really like the 04 since it has lower miles, is newer, and has heated seats. Buying another high mileage car just feels risky to me (but so does buying a lower mileage car with issues)...

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Old 10-01-2007, 09:38 PM   #2
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the higher mileage one. You know that L67s are very resistant (look at Travis!)

You said it'* cleaner and well-cared for. That'* enough for me.
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Old 10-01-2007, 09:40 PM   #3
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Mark, if you really like the 04, take it in to a trusted service advisor and really see what the issues are (besides the obvious) and use that as leverage on the list price.

Personally though, bang for the buck, perhaps the older one is the way to go.
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Old 10-01-2007, 09:49 PM   #4
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I would take the older one. You have all the help here with any problems you may have with it. Not to mention that it could be had for $6,000 + less then the '04. While the older one may have some problems, you just saved $6,000 and any repairs needed would likely not exceed the money you saved.

Also, like you said, the new one has issues. Probably just mounts for the clunking, but who knows how long they have been bad like that, and what else they might have stressed with the extra movement. No power also, the car was owned by an old man, the engine is probably all gunked up and needs a very good cleaning, and I have heard horror stories about cars like that.
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Old 10-01-2007, 10:02 PM   #5
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go with the older one, its not going to depreciate as bad.

Plus throw a trans in there and be good for another 100,000 miles.
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Old 10-01-2007, 11:59 PM   #6
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i hes going to spend the money to put in a trans he might as wlel spend it on the newer car.

lke someone else suggested, take it to a shop and have them look it over. give you a signed estimate of problems and prices to fix, subtract that from the price. maybe you can catch the guy in something he knows is wrong.
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Old 10-02-2007, 01:45 AM   #7
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The issues with the lower mileage GS sound like they are easy to fix. That clunk could just be a trans mount. And with regards to the lack of balls it probably needs a tune up, or the driver isn't using premium like they should be . As for replacing that */C gasket I'd replace the LIM gaskets while there too.

Go for the 04! Sounds like an afternoon of wrenching and cleaning would be all it would take.

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Old 10-02-2007, 02:24 AM   #8
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Frankly, I'm shocked anyone here would vote you spend $13k for a car with such obvious problems. Not counting the bad brakes and cosmetic issues, it'* got a clunking tranny, leaky coolant, poor power...heck, this car could need a whole new powertrain. Is it worth that chance to spend so much for such a common car?

This guy'* desperately looking to unload the junker he inherited. He'* already gotten three rejections (hopefully four) trying to sell this as a running car. Tell him it looks like it needs a new motor, tranny, brakes, etc...but you'll take his problem off his hands for around $3k or $4k cash. Worst he can say is no; on the other hand, maybe you'll get lucky.


As to the older car, you should be able to get that down around $5k easy. And since when is 99.5k miles on a cared-for car "high mileage"?
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Old 10-02-2007, 03:37 AM   #9
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Condition is more important than mileage here. Older car is a much better value and smaller risk.
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Old 10-02-2007, 04:52 AM   #10
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Why settle for either one, hold out for the car that is exactly what you want.
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