1997 Buick Riviera Reviews

1997 Buick Riviera Coupe Supercharged 3.8 from North America

Model year1997
Year of manufacture1997
First year of ownership2005
Engine and transmission Supercharged 3.8 Automatic
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.7 / 10
Distance when acquired70000 kilometres
Most recent distance102000 kilometres

Summary:

Form, Function, and Art in one unit

Faults:

Master window switch assembly had to be replaced.

Loose rear view mirror had to be tightened up.

General Comments:

95-97 Riviera's are not plentiful in British Columbia Canada. When I first saw one, I decided I had to have that model because they looked so foxy. I found one on Vancouver Island, and actually waited year to buy it, as it was part of an estate.

All I did to this vehicle was change all fluids, and for the sake of safety, I put some high end brake pads on it.

I recently put a cold air intake system on it. I also have a performance pulley for the supercharger, but have not put it on yet. It is really smooth to drive and has lots of power. Very quiet, low road noise. I do notice that the handling of the vehicle when at higher speeds is a little loose. I also was disappointed in the Anti Lock Braking Performance when I had to stop quickly.

All in all, it's a keeper.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 13th September, 2010

1997 Buick Riviera 3.8 supercharged from North America

Model year1997
Year of manufacture1997
First year of ownership2000
Most recent year of ownership2009
Engine and transmission 3.8 supercharged Automatic
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.2 / 10
Distance when acquired11000 miles
Most recent distance115000 miles
Previous carBuick Century

Summary:

I love this car more than my Corvette, does that say it?

Faults:

I have had this car for over 8 years now, and I actually had to go to the "car file" to see what has gone wrong over that period.

Like some of the other reviewers, my fuel sending unit broke down somewhere around 40,000 miles, and since then I have been using the trip odometer to pace my fill ups. Usually somewhere between 350 and 375 is a very safe range.

And like the last reviewer, my Riv developed a small oil leak in the head gasket, but it's more like seepage because I don't even add a quart between my 4,000 mile oil changes.

Recently, after 12 years of service, the sunroof has shown signs of failure. It stops between cycles and you have to keep hitting the button to open or close it.

The most noticeable defect is the exterior paint. It's been an outside car, and I live in sunny South Florida, so the paint job has taken a real beating. It was a beautiful silver, but developed a bunch of scratches like broken glass. I thought that our yard cat had been climbing on it and it almost cost the poor boy his claws. So considering all this, the old girl has been a trouble free car and a great performer.

General Comments:

I loved this car from the first time I laid eyes on it. Couple those looks with the supercharged engine, the glamorous interior, the outstanding creature comforts, and the reliability of Buick, and it's the complete package. This car has never let me down, gives great gas mileage and operated like a much more expensive machine.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 27th September, 2009

1997 Buick Riviera Coupe 3.8 litre supercharged from North America

Model year1997
Year of manufacture1997
First year of ownership2000
Most recent year of ownership2009
Engine and transmission 3.8 litre supercharged Automatic
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.4 / 10
Distance when acquired89000 kilometres
Most recent distance290000 kilometres
Previous carBuick Park Avenue

Summary:

It's a classic personal coupe - GM should make more!

Faults:

This car is a pleasure to drive, however, it has had its share of needed repairs: wheel bearings, belt pulley bearings, radiator, power aerial, water pump etc., but this comes with a high mile daily driver.

The car has a trademark shudder in steering at low rpms and routine brake replacement, but it's still a fast, comfortable car.

We have a problem periodically with no-start issue. Insert key and turn - all the accessories power up but no crank over of engine. Have examined all possibilities including key chip - now have read that maybe it's a security triggered delay. We will be looking into that!

I have had a '91 Buick Regal GS and a '93 Park Avenue when I bought the Riv for myself - then my wife took it for her car. Both other Buicks reached 500,000 kms, neither ever taking a drop of oil (but similar issues as the Riviera is presenting). We also have a mint 1971 Cadillac with 45,000 original miles and a GMC truck. All GMs, but I now also have an '07 Suzuki SX4 (which will fit in the trunk of the Caddie).

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 15th June, 2009

Average review marks: 8.5 / 10, based on 11 reviews