Could a 1986 Buick LeSabre Really Be Worth $15,000?

We’re suckers for ‘80s muscle cars, but that doesn’t mean they should be overpriced. Is the 1986 Buick LeSabre actually worth the steep price?
Written by Elaine Duvet
Reviewed by Kathleen Flear
Updated on Jul 17, 2022
You remember
Buick
’s ’80s-era sorta-sporty models? Stylish and reasonably competent, these muscle cars were the talk of the town. But just because a
muscle car
is from our favorite era, it doesn’t mean it's worth draining your savings.
Jerry
, the
car ownership super app
, investigates the high asking price of a rare 1986 Buick LeSabre. 

Evolution of the 1986 Buick LeSabre

When you think of a Grand National, a black mid-’80s Buick Regal may come to mind. However, the 1985
Buick LeSabre Grand National
is a rare breed that’s a bit more confusing than the Regal edition. Though to be one of the rarest LeSabre models of all time, the one-year-only package sold 113 units before the T-Type replaced it in 1986.
“Now, LeSabre and performance never really went together, and while the Grand National edition did get the heavy-duty FE1 suspension featuring larger anti-roll bars and stiffer springs, it was still a large FWD car with most of its weight oriented over those front wheels,”
Jalopnik
tells us. 
Luckily, that made the overall ride and handling better than the LeSabre. But around corners? Not so much. Allegedly, the “impetus for the model’s existence was owed to Buick’s participation in NASCAR and the company’s desire to qualify the larger car as a body template for track use,” Jalopnik reports.
The Grand National sports some model-specific body pieces like a peculiar plastic cover over part of the side window glass. Apparently, it's supposed to smooth airflow around the car. Updates also include black-painted trim, alloy wheels, a front air dam, and a pair of Grand National badges featuring a two-tone looping arrow.
There’s actually no turbo on the 1986 Buick LeSabre. The auto features a 3.8-liter V6 engine with 150 hp paired with a four-speed automatic with a column shift.

A rare and interesting find

Jalopnik found a LeSabre Grand National that’s black over gray mouse fur (the only way these models came) and was the 36th model to be made out of 113. Located in Glade Spring, Virginia, the Buick appeared to be in overall good condition.
With straight bodywork and exposed paint that looked decent, the vehicle has an interior that prioritized comfort over speed. The seats are overstuffed and can fit three in the front and in the back. There’s also lots of room for your fee thanks to a low center tunnel. 
While this barn-find Buick does need a good cleaning, its tires and battery are new. It’s also only clocked 163,000 miles, equalling about 4,500 miles per year. 
With antique plates and a clean title, how much is this rare yet uninspiring Buick actually worth? According to Jalopnik, “The seller is asking $15,000 for the sale and is banking on getting something near that to fund the purchase of a ’68-’70 Dodge Charger, which the seller notes in the ad, is the car of their dreams.”
On one hand, some
car collectors
would be thrilled to turbocharge the Buick themselves, others may question the car’s legitimacy since the Grand National badges have been changed
If it is the real deal and drives like new as the dealer claims, it would have to take a real enthusiast to drop $15,000 for this sad Grand National. Now if you can find one for a couple grand, that’s a different story. 

Insuring your muscle car

Whether you’ve got a 1986 Buick LeSabre or not, you’re going to need protection when you’re out on the road. Having an awesome car insurance policy doesn’t have to break the bank. In fact, most Americans are overpaying for the coverage every month! Don’t let that be you.
If you’re got questions, the friendly folks over at the
Jerry
app have answers. The savings keep coming even after Jerry finds you great insurance at the lowest price. Before every policy renewal period, you’ll be presented with new competitive quotes, which means you’ll always have the best coverage at the best price. Jerry can help cancel your old policy. Users save an average of over $800 a year.
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