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2006 Buick LaCrosse

Source: GM Media

Buick’s LaCrosse premium midsize sedan gets even higher levels of standard safety features for 2006 to complement its contemporary styling, powerful engines and exceptional degree of comfort, quietness and responsive handling.

Side curtain air bags are now standard on all 2006 LaCrosse models, including the well-equipped CX, elegantly appointed CXL and performance-tuned CXS. The side curtain air bags are in addition to LaCrosse’s standard dual-stage frontal air bags, which provide supplemental protection for front seat passengers. All 2006 LaCrosse models also receive standard anti-lock brakes.

Additional changes on 2006 models include a leather-wrapped shifter added to five-passenger CX and CXL models and a bold, refreshed 16-inch wheel design featuring polished spokes. Three new exterior colors also are available: Slatestone Metallic, Sandstone Metallic and Platinum Metallic.

Among LaCrosse’s available features, the popular Silver Convenience Package is now called the Comfort and Convenience Package, which establishes consistent terminology with other Buick models. Available on CX models, the Comfort and Convenience Package includes factory-installed remote start with a range of almost 500 feet and remote interior climate control adjustment (a first for any Buick car), multi-language driver information center, dual zone automatic air conditioning, a theft-deterrent system, steering wheel-mounted radio and interior temperature controls, tilt and telescopic steering column, visor-mounted illuminated vanity mirrors and a cargo convenience net.

LaCrosse’s Gold Convenience Package is now called the Driver Confidence Package, and is available on all CXL and CXS models. In addition to the steering wheel-mounted radio and temperature controls now standard on CXS models and included in the Driver Confidence package on CXL models, this package includes a universal transmitter, electrochromic inside rearview mirror, dual heated and power-operated outside rearview mirrors, six-way power adjustable front passenger seat, Ultrasonic Rear Parking Assist, and rear passenger interior reading lamps.

Finally, the new Luxury Package available on LaCrosse CX models includes a tilt and telescopic, leather-wrapped steering wheel, steering wheel-mounted radio and temperature controls and automatic dual zone climate control.

Potent powertrain choices
As Buick’s newest entry in the premium midsize segment, LaCrosse signals the future direction for Buick, with the emphasis on smooth power, elegant design, expertly crafted interiors and a comfortable yet controlled ride.

LaCrosse is offered with two powertrains. The CX and CXL are powered by one of the most renowned engines in GM’s lineup, the 3800 3.8L V-6, now in Series III form. Rated at 200 horsepower (149 kw), the 3.8L features electronic throttle control to improve engine response and optimize fuel efficiency, along with upgrades for quiet operation.

The performance-oriented LaCrosse CXS has as standard a 3.6L V-6 VVT (variable valve timing) that delivers 240 horsepower (179 kw). One of a new generation of “high feature” GM powerplants, this premium, all-aluminum engine features dual overhead camshafts and four valves per cylinder. Its fully variable intake and exhaust valve timing achieves outstanding flexibility, delivering 90 percent of the engine's peak torque where it is most useful, between 1500 rpm and 6000 rpm.

Smooth and agile ride, handling
LaCrosse delivers a smooth, quiet and controlled ride, with significant suspension, steering, and engine cradle and mounting upgrades over its Century and Regal predecessors. A sport-tuned suspension, standard on CXS, has larger stabilizer bars for more responsive handling characteristics.

LaCrosse is offered with three levels of traction control, including GM’s StabiliTrak electronic stability control system – a first for a midsize Buick sedan. StabiliTrak helps the driver maintain control during sudden maneuvers or in low traction conditions by applying brake force at any corner of the vehicle independent of the driver’s use of the brake pedal. The system also uses an accelerator pedal position sensor, brake master cylinder pressure sensor and steering wheel angle sensor to interpret the driver’s desired path, and whether to accelerate or decelerate the vehicle. Integrated with traction control and ABS systems, StabiliTrak uses these sensors plus a lateral accelerometer and yaw rate sensor to determine the vehicle’s actual path.

QuietTuning for new levels of quietness
Like other Buick models, LaCrosse benefits from QuietTuning, Buick’s all-encompassing engineering approach aimed at reducing unwanted noise and vibration levels throughout the entire body structure to provide best-in-class quietness. Specific examples include the use of acoustical laminate on the windshield and front side glass; steel laminate on the front-of-dash body area; expanded baffles in the roof pillars; extensive use of melt-on sound deadeners throughout the entire lower body structure; a re-tuned exhaust system; and sound-absorbing material throughout LaCrosse’s engine, passenger and cargo compartments.

Sculpted exterior, handcrafted interior feel
LaCrosse’s exterior has a sculpted, sleek shape with design cues that are unmistakably Buick, and an elegant presence from any angle. Precision body panel fits and a tight fender-to-tire relationship underscore LaCrosse’s high quality engineering and provide an agile appearance. Chrome accents and the jewel-like design of the headlamps and taillamps add touches of elegance.

Buick’s focus on creating a highly crafted, attention-to-detail appearance is reflected in LaCrosse’s interior. Its clean, ergonomic design makes use of high-quality soft-touch materials, as well as tasteful chrome and woodgrain accents. The overall effect is an environment that is both elegant and comfortable, with close attention paid to component fits for a precision feel throughout.

LaCrosse is available in either five- or six-passenger seating configurations. A 1.5-inch increase in wheelbase gives LaCrosse more rear legroom than previous midsize Buicks. Front and rear hip room is also increased. Five-passenger models are equipped with a wide center armrest with a deep storage area and a console-mounted gearshift lever. Six-passenger models have a column-mounted shifter and feature a “flip and fold” seatback cushion that can be converted into a spacious center console/armrest with a large storage bin.

Premium features throughout
In keeping with LaCrosse’s position as a premium sedan, standard features on all models include remote keyless entry, a power driver’s seat, automatic programmable power door locks with lockout protection, power windows with express-down driver’s window, six-speaker stereo radio with CD player, and full interior illumination with delayed entry/exit lighting and theater-style dimming.

Available comfort and convenience items include a power sliding sunroof; heated front seats; steering-wheel-mounted audio and climate controls; and stereo system upgrades such as in-dash six-disc CD changer, MP3 player, Concert Sound III and XM Satellite Radio (continental U.S. only). XM provides more than 120 coast-to-coast, digital-quality channels of original commercial-free music and premier news, sports and talk as well as advanced traffic and weather information for select major metropolitan areas nationwide. Consumers can subscribe to the basic service for $12.99 a month. In addition, GM customers with GMAC financing can choose to include the XM subscription in their car payments.

Safety and security features
The 2006 LaCrosse includes standard features to provide comprehensive occupant protection – before, during and after a crash.

BEFORE: LaCrosse has a strong “safety cage” structure and a full-perimeter aluminum engine cradle that directs impact energy away from passengers.

DURING: In addition to standard anti-lock brakes and side curtain air bags on all models, every LaCrosse has dual-stage frontal air bags that provide supplemental protection and help reduce the risk of air bag-induced injury. When the air bag system’s control unit detects an impact, it determines whether the crash is severe enough to trigger a deployment, and whether the primary amount of inflation is sufficient. The primary stage alone will deploy in most frontal impacts requiring the supplemental protection of an air bag, while a secondary stage is designed to deploy in more severe frontal collisions.

AFTER: LaCrosse features OnStar dual-mode (analog-digital) equipment. OnStar’s digital equipment also includes enhanced hands-free voice recognition capabilities including more intuitive continuous digit dialing and improved voice recognition accuracy. OnStar is the leading provider of in-vehicle safety, security and information services in the United States and Canada . Using the GPS satellite network and wireless technology, OnStar features core safety services and OnStar Hands-Free Calling that allows drivers to make and receive voice-activated phone calls using an externally mounted antenna for greater reception.

Other security and convenience features include a standard PASSLock III theft deterrent system with engine immobilizer; and Ultrasonic Rear Parking Assist, which detects stationary objects behind the vehicle and sounds a warning when the vehicle is being backed up.