1500hp Buick Grand National debuts at SEMA 2022

Roadster Shop unveils arguably the world’s best Buick Grand National at SEMA 2022

Photographers: Mark Boxer

The wizards at Roadster Shop in the US have taken the pinnacle of late-80s American motoring and reinvented it in every conceivable way with their 1987 Buick Grand National.

It’d be easy to get sucked in by the 1500hp twin-turbo LS combo (which we’ll get into in a moment), but that’s only part of what makes this Grand National a cut above the rest.

In true Roadster Shop fashion, they haven’t done things by halves. The body came off the chassis and was 3D scanned by head engineer Mike O’Brien, giving the crew the perfect starting point for the build. Scanning the underpinnings meant they could electronically generate every part they needed for the project, before having it made from beautiful billet materials.

The crew went with one of Roadster Shop’s own Fast Track IRS chassis for the Buick, modifying the rear end further to give the car the right stance and room to fit the rear 345 tyres.

Wait, 345? Yep, the Buick now runs factory-style, one-off wheels whipped up by Greening Auto Company, measuring a huge 18×10.5 in the front, and 19×12 out back wrapped in 345 Nitto rubber. A full set of flares help the mammoth rims fit, milled by Roadster Shop to fit the body as if they’re an OEM part.

The LS up front is a 427-cube Dart unit, force-fed by a pair of Precision 64/66 turbos. Using Holley Dominator brains, it’s capable of 1504hp at full noise on Ignite E98.

Behind that is a Bowler Performance 4L80E ’box, which is fully manualised and controlled by the super-cool Hurst Lightning Rod-style shifter from Kilduff Shifters. It may look old-school, but it still has provisions for the line-lock, torque converter lock-up and transbrake.

Other cool features inside include the custom dash that’s another one-off 3D-printed component, and the way the Roadster boys brilliantly integrated all the modern sensors and features with oh-so-cool 80s graphics.

We love the car’s blend of modern tech while still keeping the core Buick identity.