Buick GL8

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Buick GL8
Buick GL8 2 China 2012-04-14.JPG
GL8 First Land (Up) GL8 (Down)
Buick GL8 II China 2012-04-15.JPG
Manufacturer Shanghai GM
Production 2000–present
Body and chassis
Class Minivan
Layout Transverse front-engine, front-wheel drive / all-wheel drive
Platform U-body: GMT200 (2000-2005)
GMT201 (2005-present)
Transmission 4-speed automatic

The Buick GL8 is a minivan produced and sold in China under the Buick brand name by Shanghai GM (SGM), the joint-venture of SAIC Motor with the US-American company General Motors. The car is manufactured by Shanghai GM Norsom Motors, which is a manufacturing three-side joint venture of Shanghai GM holding 50% and overseeing management, SAIC Motor and GM China both holding 25% of its capital.[1]

Introduced in 2000, the first generation GL8 is similar to the Pontiac Montana. Unlike other GM minivans, a roof rack was never offered. It was redesigned for 2005; however, it has a more aerodynamic look than its American and Canadian counterparts, the Buick Terraza, the Chevrolet Uplander, the Pontiac Montana, and the Saturn Relay.

A revamped edition was released in late 2010/early 2011, featuring 2.4L and V6 3.0L engines.[2] It is based on an old minivan platform from the U.S., but it would likely require costly upgrade to meet current U.S. safety and requirements. Sales amounted to 52,127 units in 2010, and it was relatively stable over past few years. The previous generation is still available as GL8 First Land.[3]

First Generation (2000-present)[edit]

First generation
Buick GL8 China 2012-04-04 2.JPG
Production 2000–present
Body and chassis
Body style 5-door minivan
Platform SGM201
Related Chevrolet Venture
Oldsmobile Silhouette
Pontiac Montana
Opel Sintra
Vauxhall Sintra
Pontiac Trans Sport
Engine 2.4 L LE5 I4
2.5 L LB8 V6
3.0 L LW9 V6
Wheelbase 2,845 mm (112 in) (2.5)
3,099 mm (122 in) (Firstland)
Length 4,757 mm (187.3 in) (2.5)
5,113 mm (201.3 in) (Fir.)
Width 1,847 mm (72.7 in)
Height 1,712 mm (67.4 in) (2.5)
1,730 mm (68.1 in) (Fir.)
Curb weight 1,692 kg (3,730 lb) (2.5)
1,788 kg (3,942 lb) (Fir.)

The GL8 first entered production in China in 1999.[2]

The regular wheelbase GL8 is known as the GL8 2.5 while the extended wheelbase variant is called the GL8 First Land. There are four trim levels available, called the LT, CT1, CT2, and GT (which is only available on the Firstland). In October 2001, the first bunch of Buick GL10s (10 passenger versions of the 1st-generation GL8) were exported to the Philippines where it was rebadged as the Chevrolet Venture.[citation needed] The GL8 underwent a facelift in 2005, receiving a redesigned front end and new clear taillights. While the first generation has been superseded by the new one, as introduced in late 2010, it is still on sale as the "Business Edition" GL8, now only with a 2.4 litre Ecotec four-cylinder engine.


  • GL8 Business Edition: LE5 2.4 L I4
  • GL8 2.5: LB8 2.5 L V6
  • GL8 Firstland: LW9 3.0 L V6

Hybrid Prototype[edit]

In 2001, the Buick GL8 XEA1 or Phoenix was developed as a collaboration between General Motors and Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation (SAIC). The Buick GL8 XAE1 is a hybrid vehicle that uses a 35 kW fuel cell and compressed hydrogen gas to deliver its power. The General Motors Phoenix was officially unveiled at the Pan Asia Automotive Technology Center in China in the year 2001.

Rear view of original 2000 design

Second Generation (2010-present)[edit]

Second generation
Buick GL8 II China 2012-04-08.JPG
Production 2010-present
Body and chassis
Body style 5-door minivan
Platform SGM258
Engine 2.4 L LE5 I4
3.0 L LFW V6
Wheelbase 3,099 mm (122 in)

Introduced in late 2010 for the 2011 model year, the GL8 II has an all-new appearance with a drastic dip in the side design. The wheelbase is the same as for the GL8 First Land, 3,099 mm (122 in). Developed by the Pan-Asia Technical Automotive Center (PATAC), another joint venture of SAIC Motors with General Motors, the vehicle is based on a vehicle architecture of over a decade old.[4]

Engines include a 2.4 litre DVVT Ecotec four-cylinder and a 3.0 liter V6, with an available six-speed automatic gearbox for the V6.[2] To differentiate the new GL8 from its predecessor which remains on sale as a "Business Edition", the new one is sold as the "Luxury Business Edition".


  1. ^ "Shanghai GM Norsom Motors Marks 10th Anniversary". media.gm.com (Press release). 15 August 2014. Retrieved 22 August 2014. 
  2. ^ a b c "Shanghai GM Unveils Revamped Buick GL8 MPV". ChinaAutoWeb.com. 2010-11-28. 
  3. ^ Klayman, Ben (2011-04-26). "GM minivan gone in US, but still thrives in China". Reuters. 
  4. ^ http://mobile.bloomberg.com/news/2012-08-20/china-s-hottest-wheels-for-executives-a-buick-minivan.html China’s Hottest Wheels for Executives: A Buick Minivan

External links[edit]