I never quite understood how GM and a few other automakers were able to make rather large engines with such low horsepower ratings. One of the worst engines I have ever encountered was under the hood of a Buick Lucerne. I was a salesperson at a Buick store and we had customers that would come in for basic Lucernes. They didn’t care about leather or satellite radio or anything like that. They wanted classic Buick: a big, comfortable, quiet American sedan with a column shifter and a bench seat.
While comfortable, these base Lucernes were pretty terrible to drive. A 16 foot nearly four-thousand-pound sedan with a 3.8-liter V6 under the hood made a measly 197 horsepower. While some may say that is plenty of power to get Edith and Doughlas down to Dennys, keep in mind this is mid 00's GM we’re talking about. That means a four-speed automatic. I came to hate test drives of Lucernes because of this paring. GM came to its senses though and ended up putting a 227 hp 3.9-liter V6 under the hood with the optional Northstar V8 on higher trims in the models later years.
We asked readers what were the worst engines they’ve driven. These were their answers.