Here’s Your Chance to Win the Holy Grail of ’80s Muscle Cars

The 1987 Buick Grand National GNX was a legend when it debuted. Now it's nearly unobtainable.

October 17, 2022 1:06 pm
A 1987 Buick Grand National GNX, #51 of the 547 made, which is being given away by fundraising platform Omaze
"Our objective was to build the quickest-ever GM production sedan...that auto writers would never forget and car collectors would want to own."

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In partnership with Omaze

When the 1987 Buick Grand National GNX went on sale, its sticker price was just under $30,000. This month, 35 years later, one example of this remarkable muscle car, which counted just 2,045 miles on its odometer, hit the auction block at an RM Sotheby’s sale. It sold for an astonishing $231,000. Even more astonishing? That’s not even the highest these collector cars have gone. 

What makes the GNX special is that it was a legend the moment it was born. To send off the rear-wheel drive Grand National in style, the Buick team tapped ASC/McLaren to build a juiced-up V6 muscle car that could trounce that era’s Chevrolet Corvette, which packed a V8. When word got out, car fanatics lost their minds. Buick had to up the production from 200 to 547 vehicles, but even then all of them sold out before they even built the first one. Since then, as anyone can tell from the modern-day auction frenzies, that legend has only grown.

In short, unless you’re Jay Leno or a similarly well-heeled collector, the rare Buick Grand National GNX is a unicorn. You can dream all you want, but the odds of you netting one are absurdly low. 

Omaze wants to increase those odds. We don’t know how they did it, but the fundraising platform managed to get its hands on a GNX; and not just any GNX, mind you, but #51 out of the 547 made, a model that has the distinction of displaying just 2,000 miles on its odometer — even less than the one that recently made waves at auction. Instead of raising a paddle of your own, you can simply enter for a chance to win this holy grail muscle car right now. The best part? We scored you a code that will give you 50 bonus entries: just enter INSIDEHOOK50 to boost your chances. (If you’re not a fan of old-school muscle, that code will also work for all the modern cars Omaze has up for grabs.) 

The front end of a 1987 Buick Grand National GNX, a legendary '80s muscle car, that's being given away by Omaze
With some help from ASC/McLaren, this Buick became a muscle car legend.

Be aware: This particular giveaway is only running through November 4, so you have less than three weeks to enter for the chance to become one of only 547 GNX owners on the planet. (Think about that — you, Travis Barker and 545 other lucky stiffs.) Also important to note: This Omaze sweepstakes is supporting the ACLU, so when you donate and enter for the chance to win, you’re supporting an organization devoted to protecting the rights of Americans under the Constitution. A dream car and a good cause? Count us in.

What makes this a dream machine, besides all the aforementioned hype, is that Buick did manage to follow through on all its grand plans with this swan song for the Grand National. The GNX, which stands for Grand National Experimental, features a 3.8-liter turbocharged V6 engine with a maximum output of 276 horsepower and 360 lb-ft of torque, with stats like a 4.7-second 0 to 60 mph time and top speed of 124 mph, which certainly don’t top the charts today, but were enough to leave that day’s Corvette in the dust.

And remember, this is Buick, a brand that was plagued by an elderly image back then and currently only sells SUVs and crossovers. The GNX is a singular sensation. That’s not to say this car isn’t comfortable, should you prefer your speed with a side of ease; thanks to a four-speed automatic transmission and five seats, you would be fully justified in scooting around town with the whole family in tow.

The retro black and grey interior of a 1987 Buick Grand National GNX muscle car
The wonderfully retro interior of this Buick GNX is in prime condition.

But what you do with this Buick GNX is entirely up to you (that is, should you win it). Cruise around town blasting Metallica. Become king of the local classic car meetup. Ferry the homecoming king and queen in your local parade. Lock it away in a hermetically sealed container and wait for auction prices to go even higher. The choice is yours, but you’ll have to enter to have a shot.

As Mike Doble, the advanced concepts manager at Buick at the time, said of the GNX, “Our objective was to build the quickest-ever GM production sedan, a limited-production Grand National that auto writers would never forget and car collectors would want to own.” We’ve certainly never forgotten it, and even if you’re not a car collector now, I’d wager a guess that you could find space in your garage for this.

You have until November 4 to put your name in the hat, and remember to use code INSIDEHOOK50 for 50 bonus entries (though there’s no donation or payment necessary to enter or win). 

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