I checked out the link for the Grand National... I actually like the styling of the 80's GN better than the current Regal! As I was coming to work yesterday there were two Buicks righ in front of me and to the right. Both gold and Regal/Century but I couldn't tell which was which from looking. My first clue was the tailpipe. The car with one pipe I guess was the Century; the dual pipes I figured was the Regal. Sure enough as I passed my guess was right.
But that's the problem. As jackjt said, you can't tell the difference. Most will never see both a Regal and Century, the exact same color, at the same time except at dealerships. But I was disappointed to see how hard it was to tell them apart.
That being said, if I can't get another Intrigue in the 2002 model year (I've got a 98), the Regal GS is my 2nd choice.
As far as the differences btwn the engines goes, you have to make an apples to apples comparison. If you have the Regal LS, give the Ingtrigue 3.5 a whirl. Go uphill and pass someone. I did this and was at 85 and climbing. Didn't feel it and didn't realize how fast I was going. I put a K&N in my Intrigue (mine is the 3800) and it has improved throttle respone at high speeds and pulls better. But it doesn't compare with the 3.5
I also drove a SC3800 Regal GS. To be honest, all else being equal, I'd probably pick the SC3800 for obvious reasons. BUT, since everything isn't equal (like gas prices), I'd take the 3.5. Uses regular gas and at the high speeds performs on par with the SC. Not the same, but close enough considering the cost btwn regular and premium gas. I used to down the 3.5 just like a lot of Regal owners. But I took it for an extensive test drive and I have to say, once it's gets past 1500 rpms, you won't even be thinking about a supercharger.
GS does not stand out in crowd - till the driver steps on gas. Perfectly "generic" car body.
Most of our friends did not notice we bought a new car till we told. They thought this is our 98 Chevy Malibu of the same color. And, after looking on the both cars, a neighbor asked if we bought a second copy of the same. Even a mechanic, when we changed oil (not at dealer), did not realized what engine have the car till he opened the hood.
Though, what you like and dislike in the car appearance is very personal. My wife and I like our dark-red Regal for its modest view as much as for its power, comfort, and auto-dimming mirrors. Do not like attracting attention. I would even prefer it to be delivered without the "GS" letters, not "Supercharged" plaque. We know the difference, and it is enough. Why advertise it, except to the closest friends and relatives?
By the way, it is rather easy to tell Century from Regal from the rear: the tail lights of Century are enclosed in a chrome frame. But if people cannot see the difference between Regal and Malibu...
The 3.5 is a high-revver and only makes power at high rpms. At 3K, the 3.5 is barely making 120hp. However, compared to the NA3800, the 3.5 is a better highway cruiser, and has comparable torque although not as sustained.
Against a SC3800, there is just no comparison I can see. I don't drive over 80mph, and the SC3800 gets there from any speed faster than the 3.5 based on my test drives. I'd like to find some comparitive numbers on this.
Also, I still think the 3800 in either form will always be more bullet-proof in the long run. The more times the crank turns, the more potential for wear. The 3800 is very forgiving in its old age.
Only 17 and you bought your own Aurora? You really must work hard....congratulations!! Your parents must really be proud of you. I have a brother and several cousins that could learn a lot from you!!! Excellent choice of car!! Enjoy it!!!
When I was in college, my best friend's mother had an Aurora, and her dad had a DeVille Concours. I used to love to go to her house for a visit. She drove everywhere!
I was only 24 when I bought my 1999 Century! I even traded a 1997 Subaru Legacy GT in rio red for my new white Century. I agree...a car needs to fit your budget and suit your driving needs. I drive a good bit for work, and the Century makes a great highway cruiser. For about the same money as my friends were paying for Altimas, Civics, and Carollas, I got a V6 six passenger car, that is quiet enough to have a conversation while driving down the road. Sure...I get teased that I drive a grandmothers car...in fact my Gram now owns her third Century since 1989! They are great cars. I do not care what anyone says! It is very low maintence, and the insurance is only $600 per year....compared to the $1000 I was paying for the Legacy. Plus, the car is almost invisible on the highway, which is a good thing. I have blown past state troopers doing 75 in a 55 zone...and they don't even blink an eye! Try doing that in an Altima or Accord!! Don't get me wrong...I would love to trade up to a Regal GS---in dark blue. But, right now I cannot justify the extra money. I have the Century almost paid for...and then I can start saving for my Rendevous!!
I agree with you on driving an "invisible" car. I have an Intrigue which many would say is more stylish than a Regal or a Century, but I have blown past cops doing 20 mph over the speed limit and they didn't flinch. Hopefully, this doesn't ruin my streak of good luck:) And I'll come clean, I fly sometimes. Now, think about this. I've been dating this girl who drives a little Escort ZX2 and she's had two tickets recently and wasn't going as fast as I typically drive on the freeway. Now alot may be luck of the draw, but I do think that driving an "invisible" performance car has it's advantages. The most fun though is embarrassing these guys who sit at traffic lights revving their little 4 banger Honda Civcs and rocking them until the light turns green. I sit there calmly silent and then when the light turns green, I unleash the 3800's fury. Sometimes they probably don't even know what hit them it will take off so quickly. I can only imagine what a supercharged 3800 would be like.
I also know what you mean. I use to drive a Dodge Avenger and everywhere I went a cop would at least look at me if not stare. Now in my Aurora I drive by cops and they dont even look.
I was driving recently when a younger guy in a Grand Am GT flew by me w/ his girlfriend. When he drove by I think he realized I was a teenager and slowed down to qait for me. He must of dropped his car ind 2nd cause he kept flooring it and slowing down trying to get me to race. I p[ulled up even with him and mashed it. Kepp in mind we were already doing about 35mph. There was no comparison. All I could hear was this noise that sounded like p!ssed of bumble bee in a tin can but it was drowned out by 250hp flowing out of my dual exhaust. Theres nothing like mashing on the gas pedal of an aurora at 35mph.