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2008 Buick LaCrosse

Source: GM Media

Buick has rekindled a powerful name from its past to mark the beginning of a new level of refinement for the 2008 Buick LaCrosse line-up: Super. The badge is designated exclusively for the most premium LaCrosse available. The Super moniker returns to Buick vehicles for the first time in 50 years.

Along with the V-8-powered LaCrosse Super, the entire LaCrosse lineup features a new look inspired by the Buick Velite convertible concept and an elevated list of standard content. The new front-end appearance signifies the new face of Buick, and is shared across the 2008 Buick vehicle lineup.

“The LaCrosse Super represents an elevation in design, premium content and ride characteristics that are exclusive to the Super badge,” said Buick-Pontiac-GMC General Manager Jim Bunnell. “It’s not just about performance – it’s about added luxury and features only the LaCrosse Super can offer.”

Like the recently introduced Buick Enclave luxury crossover, LaCrosse’s updated design brings the sedan in line with a common Buick appearance. The fascia, hood and chrome waterfall grille are new. LaCrosse Super has distinctive exterior cues as well, including heritage-inspired portholes.

The 2008 LaCrosse lineup offers four new exterior colors: Scarlet Red, Gold Mist Metallic, Dark Mocha Metallic and Dark Slate Metallic.

LaCrosse Super: Design, luxury and performance
The Super badge debuted in 1939 on 1940 model year Buicks and last appeared in 1958. Like its luxurious forebears, the LaCrosse Super lives up to its heritage and includes such design elements as a new waterfall grille, new hood and a new front fascia that incorporates a lower grille opening with chrome trim and chrome fog lamp bezels.

The LaCrosse Super also includes new portholes – four per side – rocker moldings, rear fascia with integrated park assist sensors, 3.5-inch-diameter dual chrome exhaust tips, rear decklid spoiler and a Super badge.

Inside, the LaCrosse Super exudes comfort and style, including front seats with increased seatback bolstering. All of the seats feature new, woven-embossed leather inserts. A unique woodgrain appearance accents the instrument panel, center console, doors and gearshift knob. There are also exclusive instrument cluster graphics – including Super identification – new front sill plates, a silver finish on the instrument panel center stack and Super-specific floor mats.

The LaCrosse Super’s robust 5.3L V-8 small-block is rated at 300 horsepower (224 kW)* and 323-lb.ft (438 Nm)* of torque, helping the LaCrosse Super go from 0-60 mph in 5.7 seconds. The 5.3L small-block V-8 uses GM’s Active Fuel Management (AFM), an engine technology that seamlessly switches between four and eight cylinders to save fuel.

To support the performance capabilities enabled by the V-8 engine, the LaCrosse Super features a specially tuned suspension system for steering precision, improved ride control and feel, and increased braking performance. Bilstein monotube struts, larger front and rear rotors, high-precision steering gear, StabiliTrak, and recalibrated chassis controls help the LaCrosse Super deliver confident handling and road manners, while also maintaining overall ride comfort.

The Super version comes standard with the largest wheels and tires available on the LaCrosse – 18-inch by 7-inch aluminum wheels wrapped by P235/50R18 all-season tires. Chrome-finish wheels are available.

More standard equipment
Besides the debut of the LaCrosse Super, 2008 LaCrosse sedans continue to offer well-equipped, comfortable and quiet interiors with more standard features on the CX, CXL and CXS models. All trim levels now have a chrome exterior appearance package, factory remote start feature, XM Satellite Radio, telescoping steering wheel column, redundant steering wheel controls and dual-zone automatic climate control as added standard equipment.

The LaCrosse CX is a richer entry-level sedan, adding a leather-wrapped steering wheel, theft deterrent system, illuminated vanity mirrors, driver information center with personalization and more. The Comfort and Convenience Package is also available on the CX model and includes factory-installed remote start with a range of 195 feet (60 meters) and remote interior climate control adjustment, multi-language driver information center, dual-zone automatic air conditioning, a theft-deterrent system, steering wheel-mounted radio controls, tilt and telescopic steering column, visor-mounted illuminated vanity mirrors and a cargo convenience net.

The Driver Confidence Package is available on the CXL and CXS models, and features a universal transmitter, electrochromic inside rearview mirror, dual heated and power-operated outside rearview mirrors, six-way power adjustable front passenger seat, Ultrasonic Rear Parking Assist and rear passenger interior reading lamps.

Choice of powertrains
The LaCrosse lineup now offers three powertrains. The CX and CXL trims are powered by the 3.8L V-6, now in Series III form. With more than 25 million sold, it is one of the most proven and reliable engines in the industry. Rated at 200 horsepower (149 kW),* the 3.8L features electronic throttle control to improve engine response and optimize fuel efficiency, along with upgrades for quiet operation.

The performance-oriented LaCrosse CXS has a standard 3.6L V-6 with variable valve timing that delivers 240 horsepower (179 kW).* The premium, all-aluminum engine features dual overhead camshafts and four valves per cylinder. Its fully variable intake and exhaust valve timing achieves outstanding flexibility, delivering 90 percent of the engine's peak torque where it is most useful, between 1,500 rpm and 6,000 rpm. The 3.6L VVT delivers a market-leading balance of good specific output, high torque over a broad rpm band, fuel economy and first-rate noise vibration and harshness control.

Confident handling
LaCrosse delivers a smooth, quiet, confident and controlled ride. A sport-tuned suspension, standard on CXS, has larger stabilizer bars for more responsive handling.

LaCrosse is offered with three levels of traction control, including GM’s StabiliTrak electronic stability control system that helps the driver maintain control during sudden maneuvers or in low traction conditions by applying brake force at any corner of the vehicle independent of the driver’s use of the brake pedal. The system also uses an accelerator pedal position sensor, brake master cylinder pressure sensor and steering wheel angle sensor to interpret the driver’s desired path, Integrated with traction control and ABS systems, StabiliTrak uses these sensors plus a lateral accelerometer and yaw rate sensor to determine the vehicle’s actual path and decelerate if necessary.

Crafted and quiet interior
Buick’s focus on creating a highly crafted appearance is reflected in the LaCrosse interior. Its clean, ergonomic design makes use of high-quality soft-touch materials, as well as tasteful chrome and woodgrain accents. The overall effect is an environment that is elegant, quiet and comfortable, with close attention paid to component fit for a precision feel throughout.

A library-quiet ride is made possible by QuietTuning, an all-encompassing engineering approach aimed at reducing, blocking and absorbing unwanted noise from entering the vehicle’s cabin. Specific examples include the use of acoustical laminate on the windshield and front side glass; steel laminate on the front-of-dash body area; expanded baffles in the roof pillars; extensive use of melt-on sound deadeners throughout the entire lower body structure; a re-tuned exhaust system; and sound-absorbing material throughout LaCrosse’s engine, passenger and cargo compartments.

LaCrosse is available in either five- or six-passenger seating configurations. A 110.5-inch wheelbase gives LaCrosse spacious rear legroom. Front and rear hip room is a spacious 55.3 inches and 54.6 inches, respectively. Five-passenger models are equipped with a wide center armrest with a deep storage area and a console-mounted gearshift lever. Six-passenger models have a column-mounted shifter and feature a “flip and fold” seatback cushion that can be converted into a spacious center console/armrest with a large storage bin and dual cupholders.

Safety features
LaCrosse is built with a strong “safety cage” structure and a full-perimeter aluminum engine cradle that directs impact energy away from passengers. Anti-lock brakes and side curtain air bags are standard on all models.

Dual-stage frontal air bags provide supplemental protection and help reduce the risk of air bag-induced injury. When the air bag system’s control unit detects an impact, it determines whether the crash is severe enough to trigger a deployment, and whether the primary amount of inflation is sufficient. The primary stage alone will deploy in most frontal impacts requiring the supplemental protection of an air bag, while a secondary stage is designed to deploy in more severe frontal collisions.

OnStar service is standard and includes enhanced hands-free voice recognition capabilities to provide more intuitive continuous digit dialing and improved voice recognition accuracy. Using the GPS satellite network and wireless technology, OnStar features core safety services such as remote door unlock, air bag deployment notification, stolen vehicle recovery and Turn-by-Turn navigation. In addition, OnStar Hands-Free Calling allows drivers to make and receive voice-activated phone calls using an externally mounted antenna for greater reception.

Other security and convenience features include a standard PASSLock III theft deterrent system with engine immobilizer; and Ultrasonic Rear Parking Assist, which detects stationary objects behind the vehicle and sounds a warning when the vehicle is being backed up.

The LaCrosse line is built at GM’s Oshawa 2 Assembly, ranked among North/South America’s top manufacturing facilities the past three years, according to J.D. Power and Associates. The plant received the Silver award this year.