Someone Totally Neglected This Buick Grand National For 34 Years And Now It Looks Brand New Again

Illustration for article titled Someone Totally Neglected This Buick Grand National For 34 Years And Now It Looks Brand New Again
Screenshot: AMMO NYC on YouTube

In the mid-to-late 1980s, Buick somehow persuaded hundreds of people to purchase — and then never drive — its most expensive model. Could you imagine anyone going down to the Buick dealer and buying a new Enclave Avenir today, then storing it in the garage undriven until 2054?

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It seems like every time a Grand National comes up for sale, it has less than 2,000 miles on the odometer. It’s a wild phenomenon that I’ll never understand.

Anyway, back in 1987 when I was but a bouncing baby boy, a couple in Columbus, Ohio, purchased a Buick Regal Grand National. They shoved it into their pole barn and apparently never looked at it again until 2020, when it was sold to a guy from the Big Apple. During those resting years, the car’s tires lost air pressure and the family dog jumped on the door and fender nonstop for what looks to have been a decade. It wasn’t started, it wasn’t cleaned, it wasn’t even looked at. Why on earth?

Thankfully, in steps this story’s superhero protagonist, Larry Kosilla of AMMO NYC. The car has been rescued from a lifetime of sitting under a film of dust getting attacked by a dog. The new owner seems to be only a temporary savior for the car, buying it to clean up, get sorted and then sell to someone who will appreciate it. And you know what? That’s a commendable role for this person to play. Without the space and time to give the GN the attention it needs, at least the car has been rescued and will be on its way to a forever home.

As with every AMMO NYC detailing video, Kosilla does a tremendous job of returning this car to its former glory. There is something so incredibly soothing about the process of watching someone else clean a car. I wonder why I never have the patience to do such a task myself. I’ve always been perfectly happy to let my cars get dirty and grimy and road-worn. Which is exactly what I’d do with this Grand National if it were mine. Drive it until it falls apart, rebuild it, and then drive it again.

As the incomparable Dr. Alan Grant once said, “T. rex doesn’t want to be fed, he wants to hunt.” And the same is true of an apex predator like the Buick Grand National. This turbocharged V6 monster doesn’t want to sit around for decades with 56 miles on the odometer — it wants to spool it up and roast some tires. Now for heaven’s sake, let it!

Jalopnik contributor with a love for everything sketchy and eclectic.

DISCUSSION

ginsunh
Corinthian Leatherface

As an old geezer who was a teenage car nerd in the 80’s, please let me explain the phenomenon of stashing turbo Buicks as future collector cars that was rampant in 1986-1987. In the mid 1980’s, the automotive world was firmly ensconced in that fuzzy, depressing state called the Malaise Era. Cars were slow. Really slow. A Thunderbird Turbo Coupe that could sprint from 0-60 in nine seconds was considered “pretty fast”. Any bright spots on the performance front were looked at as a rebellious last gasp before we were all to be trapped in front wheel drive piss bubbles. It was certain. The GM G-body platform was known to be a dead man walking, and the Mustang was rumored to be next (which was temporarily true). And among all of this gloom and doom came this maniacal fucking rear wheel drive monster from Buick that was not only faster than a new Corvette, it was faster than almost any of the legendary muscle cars from the 1960’s, which at that time were exploding in value as symbols of a far greater era. You see where this is going, right? In short, we were all pretty convinced that the Grand National was the kind of automotive Burning Man that would happen the day after a killer asteroid was discovered heading toward the Earth. Of course, we had no idea that cars would be saved by the silicon chip.

So that thar’s the story. Now you kids put on your PJs and git off to bed!