Buick Park Avenue Origins
New York's Park Avenue is a name associated with the finer things in life—it is a place where the rich go to spend their money on frivolous things. Most likely, Buick chose the Park Avenue name to represent its popular line of full-size cars to conjure up images of high-class living. However, there is nothing frivolous about the Park Avenue.
The Buick Park Avenue was a long-running, full-size vehicle made by General Motors. The first Park Avenue nameplate was used in 1975 for the top line of the Buick Electra vehicle. The Park Avenue became its own model in 1991 when it replaced the Buick Electra completely. This is now known as the first generation of the Park Avenue. Since this time, the Buick division of General Motors has introduced two more generations.About the Buick Park Avenue
The 2010 Buick Park Avenue was the last model available to American and European consumers. A 2012 model was introduced in Shanghai, China and is widely available there.
In China, the 2012 model has rear drive, contains a lot of interior space, and is a monster of the road. The seats adjust eight ways, allowing for a comfortable ride. The vehicle has a high-speed communications system and a GPS programmed with information for over 300 Chinese cities.
Buick has fitted the model with a 3.6-liter, V-6 engine which can go from zero to 60 in 7.8 seconds, an amazing feat considering the size of the vehicle.
There are five Park Avenue models available in China, including the 3.6-liter flagship model, the 3.6-liter Elite, the 2.8-liter Luxury, the 2.8-liter Elite, and a 2.8-liter Comfort vehicle.Buick Park Avenue Evolution
The top model Buick Electra was the original Buick Park Avenue. These are rear-wheel drive vehicles that maintain the Electra model but have the Park Avenue nameplate attached. Buick built them before a Park Avenue line existed.
The first generation of the Buick Park Avenue was introduced to the public in 1991 and ran until 1996. The first generation was built on the old-school GM C-body. Originally for rear drive vehicles, it was also used for the front-drive Park Avenue. The first generation was powered by a 3.8-liter, 3800 Series V-6 engine—an engine that Oldsmobile and Chevrolet also use in their vehicles. Buick also offered an Ultra model of the Park Avenue that had a massive supercharged engine.
The car’s design is elegant and smooth. The front of the car has a large, wide grill not unlike Jaguar models of similar size. The body itself has a sloping curve that increases aerodynamics and lowers fuel consumption. A European version of the base model has different headlamps and turn signals and better safety devices fitted to the interior.
The second generation of the Park Avenue was introduced in 1997 and ran until 2005. The first models released also have the C-body of the first generation. The base model contained an updated version of the 3800 Series engine, with the Ultra models featuring a supercharger. The Ultra models were quick, going from zero to 60 mph in 7.6 seconds, but they showed signs of sloppy steering and poor braking.
The second-generation Park Avenue's exterior designs featured only minor changes in 2003, when a new grille was introduced along with new and improved lighting. The second generation was discontinued in favor of the Buick Lucerne in 2005.
Buick introduced a third generation to China, which replaced the luxury Buick Royaum. It runs on a version of the GM High Feature engine. The engine controls are built on top of a Bosch E77 32-bit ECM Processor, giving the driver greater control over the vehicle and improving gear shifting. A new powertrain was introduced to the Chinese models in 2010.
Used Buick Park Avenues are known for their reliability and sturdiness. Although most would expect poor gas mileage from such a large vehicle, the Buick Park Avenue is capable of going the distance without cleaning out drivers’ wallets. Add to that the incredible size of the Park Avenue and you have a good family vehicle for a splendid price.