Used 1997 Buick Regal

1997 Buick Regal
List price range
1997 Buick Regal

Pros

  • Full load of standard equipment (including ABS and traction control), superb powertrain, good looks

Cons

  • Unproven reliability and resale value

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Edmunds' Expert Review

vehicle overview

In 1990, Buick released a sedan version of the Regal coupe to do battle with the Ford Taurus, Toyota Camry and Nissan Maxima. Shortsighted in terms of design and engineering, the Regal sedan won few converts from established domestic and import nameplates. Tight times delayed replacement of Buick's lame duck, and by 1996, the Regal's main selling point was a strong 3800 Series II V6 engine. Sales were limited to die-hard Buick buyers and rental fleets.

Now, Buick has released a new Regal sedan. The slow-selling coupe has been excised from the lineup, leaving LS and GS versions of the four-door. The new Regal is larger in nearly every dimension, and is manufactured to reduce squeaks and rattles by tightening the structure of the car with one-piece side panel stamping and cross bracing behind the instrument panel. A full load of standard equipment and reasonable prices make the new Regal very competitive, and should entice buyers who might normally limit themselves to Toyota or Nissan showrooms to at least visit a Buick store.

Think of the new Regal as Park Avenue Light, or Century Deluxe. LS models are powered by GM's tried and true 3800 Series II V6, which puts 195 horsepower to the ground via the front axle. Move up to the GS, and you're getting a real sport sedan equipped with a supercharged V6 making 240 horsepower. Buick says the GS will be the focus car of the lineup, and with good reason. At a starting price of $23,495, the suave, speedy Regal GS is an excellent argument against purchasing a Honda Accord LX V6.

Basic styling is shared with the lower rung Century. Regal gets unique front styling, and barely different rear styling. LS models are distinguished by a chrome accented grille, while GS models get blackout trim and sharp 16-inch alloy wheels. Inside, an attractive interior beckons. Heated leather seats are optional, as is an integrated child safety seat. Both cars get traction control, but the system on the GS works at all speeds rather than at lower speeds like the unit on the LS.

Good things are happening at GM. However, sharing platforms between multiple divisions is likely to continue to be a problem, despite recent efforts at establishing strong brand identities for each division. Pontiac's Grand Prix and Oldsmobile's new Intrigue share Regal's underpinnings and basic structure. Grand Prix is obviously the driver's car with a youthful image. Intrigue is conservatively styled and import-oriented in focus. So where does that leave the Buick Regal? Mark Hines, assistant brand manager, says Buick is focusing on 40-49 year-olds with families who want a blend of performance, dependability, and safety. Basically, Buick is going after buyers who snap up thousands of Camrys every year.

The current Camry is plainly styled, just like the new Regal. The Camry is a safe car, just like the new Regal. The current Camry also has an outstanding reputation for reliability and resale value. Can the Regal compete in this arena as well? Time will tell. For now, we can only say that the Regal is an excellent value, and with 240-supercharged ponies under the hood, the GS model is our recommendation.

1997 Highlights

The complete redesign of the Regal means Buick finally has a viable entry in the midsize sedan marketplace. The standard equipment list is long, including ABS, traction control, dual-zone climate controls, heated exterior mirrors, retained accessory power and battery rundown protection.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 1997 Buick Regal.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

Dangerous
George Connor,02/10/2003
In the last 3 months our steering went out on my family twice putting us in a very dangerous position. Did GMC stand behing there product-"no" my vin identification is not within the range of the federal recall. Please do not buy a GMC product if you value your safety. I have my car waiting for its second repair, but i refuse to put my family behind the wheel(or lack of) again. I have a useless Car.
Rega; GS
fall2696,04/21/2002
The Regal GS is powerful, fun to drive, and a much better value than other sports sedans.
Started Off Bad, Ended Up Great!
Kevin Hoffman,01/21/2010
I bought my Regal GS used with 58,000 miles. I chose the GS over the LS because of it's sharper handling. Less than a month after my purchase, the supercharger went bad and the car wouldn't start! But it was repaired in less than a week. Shortly after, the front passenger footwell began filling with water after a hard rain. It took the dealership two weeks to remedy that problem. But from then on I had no problems. The car's accelleration is great and ride comfort is excellent. Fuel ecomony with the supercharger isn't great, but could be worse. The stereo system has great sound. Leather seats held up very well. Despite my problems, I would still reccomend the Regal,
I love my Regal
GWilson,04/24/2010
Got my Regal GS back in September. I have been very pleased with this $1900 in every aspect except the fuel usage (of 93 no less). I get an averaged combined of 16 mpg. Its up from the 14.5 I got before I changed the fuel filter, air filter, and added injector cleaner @1500 miles ago. But that is unacceptable considering its rated at 19mpg combined. Also the rear windows dont work. The seats are not particularly comfy and the ac blows heat sometimes. BUUUUUTTT its fast for a big ol granpa sedan. Also its very reliable.
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Features & Specs

MPG
17 city / 27 hwy
Seats 0
4-speed automatic
Gas
195 hp @ 5200 rpm
MPG
16 city / 26 hwy
Seats 0
4-speed automatic
Gas
240 hp @ 5200 rpm
See all Used 1997 Buick Regal features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver4 / 5
    Passenger3 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver3 / 5
    Passenger3 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    RolloverNot Rated
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Acceptable

More about the 1997 Buick Regal
Used 1997 Buick Regal Overview

The Used 1997 Buick Regal is offered in the following submodels: Regal Sedan. Available styles include LS 4dr Sedan, and GS 4dr Sedan.

What's a good price on a Used 1997 Buick Regal?

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Which used 1997 Buick Regals are available in my area?

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Can't find a used 1997 Buick Regals you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Buick Regal for sale - 9 great deals out of 22 listings starting at $16,761.

Find a used Buick for sale - 3 great deals out of 23 listings starting at $20,559.

Find a used certified pre-owned Buick Regal for sale - 5 great deals out of 11 listings starting at $8,016.

Find a used certified pre-owned Buick for sale - 8 great deals out of 18 listings starting at $17,546.

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Should I lease or buy a 1997 Buick Regal?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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