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2017 Buick LaCrosse Premium AWD — Midwestern Roots Flashback Review
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By: AutoweekUSA On: 12-02-2017 Model(s): Every summer, I spend a couple of weeks at my in-laws' log cabin on Lake Michigan, in Door County, Wisconsin, and each time I try to drive a vehicle that will be admired and respected by right-thinking Upper Midwesterners. 2017 Buick LaCrosse
Author Experience: Expert review

Every summer, I spend a couple of weeks at my in-laws' log cabin on Lake Michigan, in Door County, Wisconsin, and each time I try to drive a vehicle that will be admired and respected by right-thinking Upper Midwesterners. Last year, for example, that car was the 2016 Cadillac CTS AWD 2.0T Premium Collection; before that came the 2015 Ford Focus ST and the 2014 Mitsubishi Evolution GSR. This time I opted for perhaps the most Wisconsonian choice of all: a big Buick sedan.

I was born in Minnesota and left for California (in a '73 Chevy Sportvan Beauville) at age 6, while my wife departed Wisconsin for South Dakota while in her 20s; like so many wandering Americans, we ended up in Colorado. When we return to our ancestral land every August, my childhood accent starts sneaking back into my speech, I develop a powerful hunger for perch, a thirst for Grain Belt beer … and I want to hold my head up high in a luxurious Detroit car, preferably with four doors and lots of chrome. Not an import, not a truck, but something more like the '72 Buick Skylark of my wife's childhood, or the 1949 Cadillac coupe of mine. The LaCrosse fit that need perfectly.

Like the stoic residents of the Upper Midwest, most Buicks have tended toward the conservative when it comes to styling during the 118 years since the founding of the Buick Auto-Vim and Power Co. This car is no exception, though it does have a more generous helping of shiny bits than most 2017 machines.

The LaCrosse went to a new platform for 2017, though it remains a close relative of such machines as the Chevrolet Malibu and Opel Insignia. Inside, you won't find half-hearted attempts at German- or Japanese-style luxury; the LaCrosse's cabin resembles the understated office of a very successful Green Bay attorney. The wood trim on the dash looks good and lacks the grabbing-by-the-throat "this is real wood, sucka!" flash of a more ostentatious luxury car.

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