The ride of a traditional large American car translates into a floaty ride. Some people over 20 actually appreciate that type of suspension. Not everyone wants a car that rides like a sports car.
I have to attribute statements such as "The Camry is a more solid, better built car" to either a total lack of knowledge about cars, or a result of rather extreme import bias.
Last month USA Today reported that the "better" Camry spent more time sitting on dealer's lots than ANY car. Part of this is, no doubt, due to Toyota having THREE Grand Jury subpoenas in the past year for safety issues, the largest recall in the history of the wheel and falling to TWENTY-FIRST place (out of 33 car makers) in build quality. That is far, far below Ford (which ranks 5th, AHEAD of Honda).
My boss owns a late model Accord. He flatly insists that on business trips we drive my 5-year-old Ford Fusion, because it is so much smoother, quieter and much more plush inside. His Accord has all the ambiance of a tin can. Shutting the door or trunk lid on it sounds much like hitting a metal garbage can with a metal baseball bat.
As a result of riding in my Fusion, he opted to purchase a 2011 Ford for his wife recently. He is now looking at trading for a Ford himself. No one who has ridden in or driven a Fusion, Camry and Accord could possibly say the Fusion is not the most solid and best built of the three. Most car ratings sources totally agree. Consumer Reports has for years rated the Fusion higher in reliability than either the Camry or Accord. The Fusion hybrid is rated as the best hybrid car in the world, and having driven one I heartily agree. It is whisper quiet, responsive, and does not jerk erratically as the Camry and Accord do when switching from electric to gas power mode.
"Not everyone wants a car that rides like a sports car."
I totally agree. I absolutely love Ford's Mustang, and currently own one (my 7th). However the extremely harsh and unyielding ride will make this my last pony. In all fairness, the 2010 and 2011 DO ride a tiny bit better, but since Ford abandoned the beautiful retro styling in favor of the "let's see how ugly we can make it" look, I'll go with a Dodge Challenger instead.
Even at that, why can't car companies build cars that are BOTH sporty and great-riding?? Not all of us are teen-aged street racers. I'd love to see a sporty car that actually rode smoothly. I'd also like to see the emphasis on comfort and styling, rather than cramming in engines with power no one can ever use in the real world.
I've owned a lot of cars in my 57 years of car ownership -- all American and mostly GM. But, the 2001 LeSabre is the worst car I have ever owned. Actually it is my wife's car. Let's see if I can remember all the problems in the last 10 years (only 80,000 miles).
Two window regulators so far.
Gas gauge doesn't work.
No interior lights, as replacement fuses only last a few minutes or hours. I'm told it will take hundreds of dollars to trace the wires and find the short.
Numerous rear light bulbs have burned out.
I had tire problems when the car was new. I never figured that out since the alignment always checked out perfect.
Probably others, but my memory isn't so good now.
Oh, I used to be an automotive engineer. Those window regulators are a piece of crap the way they are built. They should have been changed years ago. Mine failed at a riveted connection. The next time, I will just drill out the rivet and replace with a short screw.
I own a 2001 Buick LeSabre, and called GM about the six window motors I replaced. They denied any problem.
I have had the dash material shrink; looks like crap.
I have had three CV joints go out. One only lasted six months from Buick.
I have had sensor go out, axles, and the latest is the transmission in cold won't go into reverse, and after a 5 minute warm up, it jumps in reverse, and I decided if I was going to be able to use the car, I'd have to get it fixed at $$$$.$$.
I don't know where the quality is, but it isn't in the Buicks. I had a 1980 Buick with 60,000 that the rack and pinion went out in. I have always owned GM, but for sure no more Buicks, and maybe no more GMs. I have had Chevrolets, Pontiacs, Olds, and Buicks, and they had by far been the worst GM products. I can't see how Buick can advertise and make drivers of other types of vehicles feel so bad. My uncle owned Buicks, and had nothing but transmission problems; one detail I failed to remember when I purchased my last one.
Well your experience is not the same as many. Buick reliability has fallen off in some models; the LeSabre and Rendezvous are two that especially come to mind. However, in my opinion Buick still makes good quality, reliable vehicles. I have owned 4 myself, and none of them had any major failures. In fact I think the only engine or transmission issue was a chewed wire by a mouse to my 4th cylinder in my '99 Park Avenue. My last two that were purchased brand new have not had any mechanical issues at all, although my 2011 Lucerne did have some workmanship issues. I know a lot of people (mostly older) that have driven Buicks exclusively for many years.