the Great Gazoo google, cognitive dissonance is described as “the state of having inconsistent thoughts, beliefs, or attitudes, especially as relating to behavioral decisions and attitude change.” What does this have to do with models you say? Well, I grew up in the Midwest during the Malaise Era. And so while I had posters of Porsches, Ferraris and Lambos on the wall just like any other young gearhead, the “performance” cars I was exposed to were quite a bit more pedestrian. One of those cars was the top dog of the General Motors “G-body” cars; the Buick Regal GNX. The GNX, which stood for Grand National Experimental, was the culmination of 10 years of turbocharged Regals. The first one in 1978 only made 165hp, but by the time the GNX was released in 1987 power had climbed to an even 300, although they were alleged to be closer to 350. It was the only available in black GNX that inspired Car and Driver to give us the “Lord Vader, your car is ready” line that’s still in use today.
But back to the psychology lesson. So as a fan of the Regal, one should have been in my collection, but the only one available at the time, made by GMP, was sealed save for the engine bay. Just as I don’t like sealed models now, I certainly didn’t like them in 2003 or whenever. I thought Jada had come to the rescue with their Regal, but that’ll be a rant for another day. However, despite my displeasure with the Jada, I couldn’t bring myself to get the GMP. Even as my stance softened and sealed models from Otto, BoS and others entered my collection, I could still never pull the trigger on the GMP. Thankfully, I eventually became aware of my cognitive dissonance, and finally added a GNX to my collection.
Astute readers will see that my only available in black GNX is most certainly not black. You could even say it is the opposite of black. That’s because this GNX is the XRay version. As the story goes, an American Sunroof Corporaton employee (ASC performed the GNX conversion for Buick) by the name of Rick Hunt asked GM if he could buy the parts that were leftover after production ended. GM agreed, and he converted his white Regal T-Type to a GNX.
As indicated by the year reference above, this is an old model, with production probably dating back to the 90’s. As such, its lacking a few features that would be expected in the current market. First off, the interior has no carpet or headliner, and the seats have an overly glossy appearance to them, insert your own GM plasticky interior joke here. Those complaints aside, the interior details are faithful to the 1:1.
That faithfulness continues on the outside, but the headlights and front turn indicators give away the models age. Under the hood is a too chromey for belief engine, but it could be accurate to this particular car. The wheels look good and the tires are branded. They roll and steer, but the steering isn’t connected to the steering wheel. If you have any experience with building 1/24 scale plastic kits from AMT or Monogram, this Regal will feel like a 1/18 diecast version of those. Unfortunately no one else has decided to make an 80’s Regal, so the GMP remains the best version available.