Why did you choose '86 vs '87

TommysGN

New Member
If this is the wrong place for this question, I apologize. I have narrowed down my search to the 1986 GN VS the 1987 GN. I would like to know why you chose what you chose. I love the the "low production" numbers of the 86, but I love the higher HP and Torque of the 87.

I understand grills can swapped out from year to year and Aftermarket Mods can far exceed any "factory claimed" performance numbers.

I am a purist when it comes to how the car left the factory (ONLY EXTERIOR WISE). I will MOD THE CRAP, out of anything I've owned, but I really like to keep the car with the factory look. For this reason I wouldn't want to install a 87 grill in a 86.

Please let me know your thoughts. I am still in the process of learning about these cars and I am looking for that ONE LITTLE GEM of info (like were all the GN's built in the same factory or ??? ) that will push me to one year or another. Thanks in advance.
 

grass doctor

Dream Catcher
i have these notes from a previous thread....the horse power rating is most likely due to the chips were a tad different to comply with emissions laws, also, black door pull handles on 86's gray on 87's, wiring harness behind dash was a tad different on 86's than on 87's, decale on coil pack differences, and I believe the dot on the wastgate solinoid is a different color. power steering reservoir is different as is its cap. The grill as someone already mentioned, power seat motors are different, power seat switches are different, seatbelt DOT tags are different, Cruise Control Diaphrams different, 86 has metal retaining clips on the main dash harness where it plugs into the ECM, plastic on the 87's, aluminum bumper supports on 86 gn's. Electronic climate not available on 87's, fuel pump wiring a bit different, more checked paint on 86's. Lastly the 86 was used as a prototype GNX, In fact most of the press photos, including those in the hardbound GNX book are actually an 86 GN converted to a GNX.
 

TommysGN

New Member
sorry tommy ...didnt really answer your original question ...just gave you some more ammo... :p

You can never have enough AMMO, (but that's for another section of the forum) :p . I appreciate all the info. I really love both years.

I'm looking for that one piece of info like....... The 86's were built in a different factory then the 87's or some cool historical fact..... I'm a sucker for a cool story.
 

1986 Buick GX1

GX1 #001 [The One and Only]
I purchased an ‘86 because the ‘87’s weren’t out yet.
I ordered mine May 10, 1986. The salesman had no idea what a GN was so I dealt with the general manager of the small multi-brand dealership.
I picked the car up July 10, 1986. It seems like it had between 3 and 5 miles on it but not quite sure.

There may have been a small performance difference between the two, but when aftermarket vendors (Kenne-bell Performance and Applied technologies and research) ran their baseline tests both years put out 264 hp.

I've seen videos of higher ups at GM telling of the rivalry between Buick and Chevy management, where the GN’s hp was released after the Corvettes.

The 1986 Corvette released hp of 230 and Buick says 235 hp for the GN and the 1987 Corvette one upped it at 240 hp only to have Buick say 245 hp, knowing the whole time the Turbo V6 was good for the 245 hp rating form early on.
 
I am a purist when it comes to how the car left the factory (ONLY EXTERIOR WISE). I will MOD THE CRAP, out of anything I've owned, but I really like to keep the car with the factory look. For this reason I wouldn't want to install a 87 grill in a 86.

Please let me know your thoughts. I am still in the process of learning about these cars and I am looking for that ONE LITTLE GEM of info (like were all the GN's built in the same factory or ??? ) that will push me to one year or another. Thanks in advance.
About swapping grilles between '86 and '87, no one else than you would ever know (or care)... And why did I buy an '87?... well for no particular reason other than it was July '87 when I bought my car so too late to buy an '86.
Claude.
 

Hunter Dog

Active Member
I am unusual in that we actually have one of each. Got the 87 as my first new car in late 87 and we take it to shows and drive it here and there on nice days only and it has over 110,000 miles.
We bought an 86 for our 25 year anniversary about a year ago and it had to be towed to our house. With help from a couple of great people, we now have it running and only a few minor things to do before it goes to the shop for some minor body work and a nice paint job (unless we paint it ourselves). We like both cars for different reasons..One plate says SHOW CAR, the other says RARE 86...one is a one owner, immaculate show winning car that is almost 100% stock where we do worry about a door ding..ie hands off..lol... vs the 86 which has had many owners, has been beat up some, but has been restored with a lot of hard work but a lot of learning has taken place. We will be calling the 86 the Evil Twin and driving it more than the 87 because we want to enjoy all the hard work and not worry as much about it being perfect all the time. Cars are made to drive and enjoy, not just sit in a garage forever..just mho. Good luck, you cannot lose on either one.
 

TommysGN

New Member
I love hearing that guys are really DRIVING these cars. I see 70, 80, 100K mile examples that people are still enjoying. Thats great to hear. Thank you for your responses.
 

Nigel

Well-Known Member
I personally would not prefer one over the other. The HP level in reality for the stock production cars is identical. Your chances of finding a good condition 87 are higher simply due to numbers. If i was in the market for another, I would just find the best example I could afford regardless whether 86 or 87.
 

RED LS1

SENIOR MEMBER
I chose the '87 because to me it's the cleanest and most refined version of the model. The fact they changed the grill over to all black was like the final thought in making it the way the designer(s) had visioned it. I share that same vision and think the black grill and '87 model year is the best representation of the car.
 

'87 Turbo T-Type

What a complete shitshow!!
I got my '87 over the summer. Was built in late'86.

For me I have a base Regal with a turbo A.K.A. a Turbo T. May be a bit sacrilegious, but I like the fact I don't actually own a GN. Although I basically do with a few differences. I like the fact that they're a bit more under the radar, not all blacked out, lower production numbers in '87 compared to the GN, & a bit lower on the price scale.

I'll be keeping mine stock on the interior/exterior but I'm in the process of doing performance mods. Plus who doesn't love the body style of the "Brick". Not of any help to you :ROFLMAO:, just my $.02.
 

kidsixpack

Active Member
I bought the nicest example I could afford. It's an 87. I wouldn't have thought twice if it had turned out to be an 86.These are the only cars I can think of where the lower production numbers don't equate to more value. I do prefer the black grill.
KID
 

V6sleeper

Well-Known Member
I purchased an ‘86 because the ‘87’s weren’t out yet.
I ordered mine May 10, 1986. The salesman had no idea what a GN was so I dealt with the general manager of the small multi-brand dealership.
I picked the car up July 10, 1986. It seems like it had between 3 and 5 miles on it but not quite sure.

There may have been a small performance difference between the two, but when aftermarket vendors (Kenne-bell Performance and Applied technologies and research) ran their baseline tests both years put out 264 hp.

I've seen videos of higher ups at GM telling of the rivalry between Buick and Chevy management, where the GN’s hp was released after the Corvettes.

The 1986 Corvette released hp of 230 and Buick says 235 hp for the GN and the 1987 Corvette one upped it at 240 hp only to have Buick say 245 hp, knowing the whole time the Turbo V6 was good for the 245 hp rating form early on.
Definitely under rated hp numbers do to GM corvette politics , i have seen a bone stock 87 put down 256 rwhp so do the math on 15-20% drive train loss. also i think i remember the 87 ecm-chip allowed for 2 psi over the 86..
 

grass doctor

Dream Catcher
Definitely under rated hp numbers do to GM corvette politics , i have seen a bone stock 87 put down 256 rwhp so do the math on 15-20% drive train loss. also i think i remember the 87 ecm-chip allowed for 2 psi over the 86..
in the beginning it was all dependent on the factory set waste gate which had vacation....hence why some where faster than others and the recall on some which received the adjustable one...
 
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