My Dad went into assisted living a few months ago. He has a 2003 Buick Century that he can no longer drive due to poor vision. I can buy it for the Blue Book price of $5600.
With diesel almost $4.00 per gallon, I'm considering buying it. The Buick is rated 20/29 the old way and 18/26 the new EPA ratings. This is considerably better than the actual Blue Beast mileage. It's WAY more comfortable than my wife's Corolla. It looks reasonably aerodynamic, and I can bump up the tire pressure a few psi, and perhaps get over 20 mpg city figure.
Anybody have real world hypermileage data on Buicks?
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My dad in law offered us his 2003 Buick LeSabre for whatever we could sell a 1991 Subaru Legacy for (which was starting to rust bad), so even though I really didn't like the idea of having such a big car as a family car we opted to do it, also because of safety reasons (we have a two year old).
It has the V6 in it and I think it has the same EPA rating you mentioned.
I inflated the tires to 50 psi and started driving 60 miles and hour with it when taking longer trips. It has been a while since we took a longer trip but the on board trip computer told me we had made an average of just over 40 mpg on a 220 mile trip. This was in the summer, driving slow as mentioned and driving (a safe distance) behind trucks if possible.
My dad in law didn't believe me
In the winter and with mostly city driving however there isn't too muich you can do to make it much mor ufle efficient and I think I end up getting around 22/23 (short trips to grocery store, library, shopping mal, you know the drill).
Hope this helps with your decission.
On a side note; if you look on sites like Craigslist you will see that the actual market value of cars like that are usually well under the Blue Book price, so a realistic market value would probably be more in the $4800 range.
The buick V6s, whatever they're in, always seem to get 35mpg or better on the highway when driven with a light foot.
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my mom has a 2002 century 3.1 and it's pretty good on the highway. 30ish or a little more going 75-80 pretty much regardless in town is 17-18 and she's pretty light on it... more air pressure, some engine tweaking and an even lighter foot and you could squeek out 20 mpg. I don't like driving it cuz it doesn't feel like driving. I can burn more calories typing at my computer. there's a reason for the term "handles like a buick" used to describe a distinct LACK of handling ability
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A few of my friends drive this big "old people" cars, and do manage to get stellar gas mileage. It's not going to make you feel young again, or provoke any desire to perform any evil knevil stunts. But GREAT on the highway. Perhaps this complete lack of fun to drive ness is what makes them so fuel effeicient?
I have a 2001 Pont. Grand Prix GTP (supercharged 3800) and I easily get 32 mpg on the highway cruising around 70 mph. And thats manual calculations, not using the computer calculated mileage from the drivers information center.
I have not tried over inflating the tires yet but I would bet that 35 mpg is not out of the question. I have a tuning package for it to go in and change the computer up and I hope to be able to lean it out some this summer. My first track passes in it showed it running a bit rich. I have a Wideband O2 sensor package for it as well so that I can hopefully dial it in real good.
My goal is upper 30's if not 40 mpg. It may or may not be lofty, but Im sure gonna try.