Finding a review of today’s new cars is easy. The internet is filled with video reviews, lengthy expose, and quick-hitting listicles that distill essential automotive knowledge. However, for those of us with a penchant for cars made before we were had a love of cars, finding a review can prove challenging. That’s what makes the RegularCarReviews YouTube channel so much fun—they review an eclectic collection of vehicles with wanton disregard for when they were made. Yes, they could, in theory, review the latest and greatest from today’s automakers, but everyone is doing that. It’s doubtful few, if any, are discussing a 1990 Buick Estate Wagon with the flair of gonzo journalism.
In typical Mr. Regular fashion, the video is more of a review of the people who drove such a vehicle as opposed to the car itself. Cars are personalized machines that often reflect the personality of the person behind the wheel. Yes, these generalizations are often stereotypes, but for a car like the 1990 Buick Estate Wagon, enough time has passed where we can look back through nostalgic lenses and understand a vehicle’s purpose.
New, the Buick Estate Wagon sported a V8 engine producing 140 horsepower and 255 pound-feet of cushy torque. It’s a 1990 model year car in name only, according to Mr. Regular, who talks about the cars 1971 driving characteristics as it hems and haws through turns, nose-diving with just the thought of hitting the brakes. It’s comfortable inside and out, but didn’t have the functionality of the minivan that debuted in 1984. In 1990, the wagon was living on borrowed time.
Today, wagons are enjoying a resurgence in popularity—even if it is ironically so, as the video purports. The average car-buyers love—love—crossovers and SUVs. But there are some who look back at the wagon with fondness. Millions of Americans grew up riding in the back seat or rear cargo area heading across the country on family road trips. The wagon may feel old, stodgy, and boring, but there it does exude a charm we can’t get today.