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Hemmings Motor News Blog

Hemmings Motor News has been around since 1954. We're proud of our heritage, but we're also more than the Hemmings full of classifieds that your father subscribed to. Aside from new editorial content every month in Hemmings, we have three monthly magazines: Hemmings Muscle Machines, Hemmings Classic Car and Hemmings Sports and Exotic Car.

While our editors traverse the country to find the best content for those magazines, we find other oddities related to the old-car hobby that we really had no place for - until now. With this blog, we're giving you a behind-the-scenes look at what we see and what we do during the course of putting out some of the finest automotive magazines you'll ever read.

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Did GM Really Sell Specially Equipped Buick Grand Nationals to the FBI?

Posted February 07, 2022 7:17 AM by dstrohl
Pathfinder Tags: Buick Regal

The year: 1986. The place: America. The problem: Bad guys drove fast cars, faster than anything the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) had in its motor pools, and they were getting away with murder. The solution: ...call Buick?

The notion of FBI-ordered Buick Grand Nationals (especially when reading the above in a Don LaFontaine/Redd Pepper voice) certainly sounds like an Eighties action flick come to life. Throw in an agent who bristles at authority and doesn't play by the rules, a straight-laced family man partner, and plenty of explosions and you're halfway to a Hollywood script. But it may actually have some basis in the truth, even though the details are hard to confirm and sketchy at best.

We jumped down this rabbit hole after a recent Regal T Turbo Hemmings Find of the Day elicited a couple of comments on the topic of federal turbocharged Eighties Buicks.

Indeed, the very existence of turbo Buicks in the FBI seems to be hotly debated among fans of the cars. Were they GNXs, Grand Nationals, or well-optioned Turbo Ts? How many were ordered? How were they equipped? Where are they now? Even Dennis Kirban, in his Guide to 1986 and 1987 Buick Turbo Regals, notes that it "has always been tough to prove" how many such cars went to government agencies at any level, claiming that some were even titled to car rental companies to prevent anybody from tracing the cars back to those agencies.

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Re: Did GM Really Sell Specially Equipped Buick Grand Nationals to the FBI?

02/08/2022 3:39 PM

Urban legends always have some veneer of plausibility. How many car chases does the FBI get involved with? Perhaps other than a slow-speed chase around Los Angeles.

No Chevrolet can out-run the two-way.

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Re: Did GM Really Sell Specially Equipped Buick Grand Nationals to the FBI?

02/12/2022 2:56 PM

No Chevrolet can out-run the two-way.

Not without one of those warp bubbles...

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