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    Drew Dowdell

    ...Buick will be an all SUV lineup after 2020...

    Well the inevitable finally happened, Buick has confirmed that the Regal will not be returning to the U.S. after the 2020 model year. After that, Buick will be an all-SUV brand.  The move comes as light-truck sales take 70% of the U.S. market and 90% of all Buick sales.  While the Regal retreats from these shores, it will still continue to be sold in China where demand remains strong. 
    As of the end of Q3 this year, Buick moved only 8,849 units of Regal year to date. That's down 19.6% from the year prior. Regal's demise was hinted at during the Los Angeles Auto Show where no Regals were on display.
    The Buick Lacrosse sedan and Buick Cascada convertible were canceled earlier this year.
    Starting next year, the Buick Encore GX will join the lineup, a slightly larger iteration of the Buick Encore, but on a new platform and using a new 3-cylinder engine. 

    Drew Dowdell

    ...Could these styling updates be coming to a dealer near you?...

    China is by far Buick's most important market. More than three quarters of all Buicks sold are sold in China.  To that end, it should be no surprise that China gets updated models before the U.S. and also get variants that never will see our shores. Even models that are dead in the US, like the Lacrosse and Verano, continue on selling well in China.
    The Buick Enclave is one example.  In the U.S. it is a full-size model, but in China it is downsized to a mid-size model approximately the size of the current GMC Acadia. Buick just debuted the new Enclave in China and while it is unlikely we'll see it over here, the U.S. model could get many of the same updates when it bows for 2021.
    Outside we see a revised front fascia with a new grill. The running lights have the familiar boomerang shape while the headlamps have moved lower into the bumper area.  A new grille insert is there with a wider horizontal slat that gives the Enclave more visual width.

    The inside is where the real story is at. Greatly updated, the infotainment system is seamlessly integrated into the dash and a new set of buttons takes the place of the Precision Control shifter. The console is the floating type with storage underneath. (Click image to enlarge)
    The Chinese Enclave is powered by GM's 2.0-liter turbocharged LSY engine making around 230 horsepower and coupled to a 9-speed automatic transmission. 
    What do you think of the Chinese Buick Enclave and would you like to see these updates in the U.S. version?  Let us know in the comments below.

    Drew Dowdell

    ...for an all three-cylinder lineup...

    When the Buick Encore GX debuted in late May 2019, it was originally reported that it would have a Turbo-4 cylinder with more power than the current Buick Encore.  That turned out to be both true and false.  The engine will be more powerful than the current Encore, however it will be in 3 cylinder form rather than 4-cylinder.  GM Authority uncovered the fleet order guides yesterday and published the stats.
    The Buick Encore GX will be offered with a 1.2 liter three-cylinder turbo that produces 137 horsepower at 5000 RPM and 166 lb-ft of torque at 2500 RPM. That is 1 less horsepower but 18 lb-ft more torque than the current base 1.4 liter turbo four. The 1.2-liter will only be available in front-wheel drive trims and paired only with a CVT.
    The step up engine is a 1.3-liter three-cylinder turbo that produces 155 horsepower at 5600 RPM and 174 lb-ft of torque at 1500 rpm. That compares roughly the same to the offered but not often ordered 1.4-liter direct injected turbo offered in the Encore Sport Touring at 153 horsepower at 5600 rpm and 177 lb-ft at 2000 - 4000 rpm. This engine is offered with a CVT on front-wheel drive models and with a 9-speed automatic on all-wheel drive models. 
    The Encore GX is the slightly bigger brother to the Encore, offering five more cubic feet of cargo room.  Built in China, the Encore GX will arrive in dealerships this fall. 

    Drew Dowdell

    ...a bit less chrome, and a bit more tech...

    Buick is introducing a Sport Touring package for 2020.  The ST is available on the Enclave Essence trim and includes a unique grille with body color surround, 20-inch machined aluminum wheels. The ST remains powered by the same 3.6-liter V6 producing 310 HP and 266 lb-ft of torque, the same unit in all other Enclaves. 
    Other features added to the rest of the Enclave lineup include a new next-generation infotainment system with 8-inch diagonal screen. When equipped, the system supports SiriusXM with 360L which combines satellite and streaming to deliver more content. The setup requires a subscription to both SiriusXM All Access and GM Connected Vehicle services (on-board WiFi). 
    The rear vision camera has been upgraded to High-Def and a High-Def Surround vision system.  Standard on the Premium and Avenir, the driver and front passenger seat are upgraded with 4-way power lumbar and a massaging seat. 
    Three new colors are available: Champagne Gold Metallic, Dark Moon Blue Metallic, and an Avenir only Rich Garnet Metallic.
    The 2020 Buick Enclave goes on sale late summer with a starting price of $41,195 including destination charge.

    William Maley

    ...I'm looking for something in between an Encore and Envision...

    The crossover fever has really hit Buick as they claim "almost 90 percent of U.S." sales come from their utility lineup. So why not add another crossover to their lineup?
    Buick announced today the Encore GX which will go on sale early next year. Coming from China, the model will slot between the Encore and Envision. Not many details were provided aside from the cargo space being " almost 5 cubic feet larger than the Encore and about 3 cubic feet smaller than the Envision."
    Car and Driver reports that the GX will have a slightly more powerful turbo-four when compared to the Encore; automatic transmission, and the choice of either front or all-wheel drive.
    “As we look to the future of Buick, the Encore GX positions us strongly as a consideration for those who want to purchase small or compact SUVs,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president, Global Buick and GMC.
    More details are expected as the we get closer to the launch.
    Source: Buick
    Press Release is on Page 2

    2020 Buick Encore GX Expands Brand’s SUV Family
    All-new model will strengthen Buick’s position in the most popular vehicle segments DETROIT — When the Encore GX arrives in early 2020, Buick will offer four premium SUVs across the three segments customers are shopping in most: small, compact and midsize. The Encore GX will be positioned between the smaller Encore and the larger Envision and Enclave models. It will offer new standard safety technologies* and its style and functionality will be just right for many of today’s buyers.
    “As we look to the future of Buick, the Encore GX positions us strongly as a consideration for those who want to purchase small or compact SUVs,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president, Global Buick and GMC.
    Today, almost 90 percent of U.S. Buick sales come from SUVs.
    The Encore GX’s new standard safety and driver assistance features* will include Front Pedestrian Braking, Automatic Emergency Braking, Forward Collision Alert and Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning. It will also offer the Enclave’s innovative Rear Camera Mirror, which provides a wide, less obstructed rear view while parking and driving, and High Definition Surround Vision camera system.
    Its spirited and efficient performance will be paired with a purposefully designed cargo space that’s almost 5 cubic feet larger than the Encore and about 3 cubic feet smaller than the Envision.
    Product specifications and pricing will be announced when the Encore GX begins arriving at U.S. dealers.

    Drew Dowdell

    ...New crossover coupe coming...

    Buick is reportedly working on a crossover coupe to add to its lineup in the US.  This vehicle would be in addition to, rather than replace, any vehicles in the current lineup. 
    Most of Buick's recent lineup has been a rebadge of some other brand's designs, this new vehicle would be a departure from that with Buick leading the design process from the start. CarDesignNews was shown some sketches and models of future Buicks and what they saw would "turn everything you think about Buick on its ear".  It is a bold design that will shock people both inside and outside the industry.  The designs would feel familiar without using specific cues. 
    Buick also took the time to insist that Buick would not become a China-only brand even though 4 out of every 5 Buicks are sold there. The bulk of the design work takes place in Warren, Michigan, while smaller design teams work in Shanghai, Melbourne, and near Seoul. 
    As far as the name, Buick has trademarked Enspire for the U.S., so that has a strong possibility of coming to fruition. No timeline is set for the release of the new crossover, but the overhaul of the Buick look is well underway.

    Drew Dowdell

    China's importance to Buick is going to show up in their product direction.

    For the last decade or so, Buick has relied on imported designs and vehicles to fill out its product portfolio.  Largely that came in the form of designs by GM's European subsidiary, Opel.  The Buick Verano, Regal, Encore, and Cascada all started life as Opel products subsequently modified for North American tastes and branding.   Now with the Opel sold to PSA, Buick's product focus is going to turn towards Chinese tastes. 
    With the pending end of production for the Buick Lacrosse and the cancellation of the Buick Cascada, it leaves Buick with a light product porfolio of just one 4-door hatch, one wagon, and 3 crossovers. According to a report by Automotive News, Buick is looking to draw on Chinese models, but not necessarily import them like Buick does with the Buick Envision.  
    China is Buick's, and GM's, largest market.
    One area that Buick can draw on is in the electric vehicle segment. While it would be difficult to justify the cost of an EV for Buick just for the North American market, it is absolutely essential that Buick sell EVs in China in order to meet local regulations. Such a vehicle built for China could be shared with the U.S.  
    Buick executives are unconcerned with Buick's shrinking car lineup. The spread has shifted from 33% SUVs in 2011 to 84% in 2018. 
    So what happens if Buick becomes an all SUV brand? Does that step on the toes of GMC where Buick shares showroom space?  Buick executives are not concerned. They insist that GMC has a more rugged and "crafted" look while Buick is more elegant and "quiet luxury". 
    What do you think of Buick's shift from European sourced designs to Chinese ones?  Sound off below.
    *2018 Buick Enspire EV SUV concept shown above

    Drew Dowdell

    Slow selling convertible has reached the end of its life-cycle and won't be returning

    Buick's compact convertible, the Buick Cascada, won't be returning for 2020.  Buick has informed dealers that final orders for the car need to be in by the end of the month as production of the car is scheduled to end in the summer. The Cascada is produced by GM's former Opel division, now owned by PSA, in Poland.
    The Cascada was Buick's first convertible since the the Buick Reatta.  Approximately 17,000 have been sold since the car went on sale in 2016.
    The discontinuation of the Cascada, along with the pending departure of the LaCrosse, mark Buick's slow creep towards being an all-crossover brand.

    William Maley

    That 25 percent tariff could really hurt the Envision

    The Buick Envision finds itself in a tough spot. General Motors has been exporting the model to the U.S. since 2016. But with the on-going trade-war between the U.S. and China, it means the Envision could smacked with a 25% percent tariff. That is why GM is asking for exemption on the model.
    In a statement provided to Reuters, GM said that it filed the exemption request on July 30th to the U.S. Trade Representative. In the request, GM makes some sound arguments as to why the Envision should be excluded.
    Price is major factor. If the vehicle is hit with a 25 percent tariff, GM would be forced to pull it from the U.S. unless it wants to a take serious loss on each model.
    Why not build it here? The Envision has been a target of critics of Chinese-made goods, including leaders of UAW. GM explains that the sales volume of the Envision doesn't justify moving it to the U.S. Last year, Buick only sold 41,040 Envisions in the U.S. In China, Buick moved about 210,000 models. In addition, the current Envision is reaching the end of its current lifecycle before the company could make the preparations to build the model here.
    GM also makes the argument that the loss of the Envision would put them in a distinct disadvantage against foreign competitors such as Acura and Volvo.
    You can check out GM's request on regulations.gov website, which is tracking requests for exclusions from the Section 301 tariff.
    If the Envision does get hit with a 25 percent tariff, GM has already taken some steps to relieve some of the pain. Before the higher import tariffs went into affect, GM shipped in a six-month supply of Envisions that would be hit with the much smaller 2.5 percent tariff. This should keep dealers happy in terms of stock and not having to deal with a higher price. 
    Source: Reuters, Regulations.gov

    William Maley

    Making for a more luxurious Regal

    Buick is making their Regal Sportback a bit more luxurious with the introduction of a Avenir model for 2019. We first learned about this model thanks to General Motors’ 2019 fleet order guide last week.
    The Avenir transformation on the Regal begins outside with a three-dimensional mesh grille, 19-inch wheels finished in Pearl Nickel, LED headlights, and Avenir badging on the doors. Step inside to find either a ebony or beige design theme with diamond quilt-stitched front seats; embroidered headrests, an 8-inch touchscreen with navigation, 8-speaker Bose audio system, and a wireless charging pad for your smartphone.
    A driver assistance suite of features that includes blind spot monitoring,lane change alert,  rear-cross traffic alert, and rear parking sensors come standard. Adaptive cruise control is standard.
    Buick will only offer one powertrain configuration on the Regal Avenir; the turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder producing 250 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque. This will come paired with a nine-speed automatic and front-wheel drive.
    Pricing hasn't been announced, but we're guessing it will slot between the Essence and GS. The Regal Avenir arrives at Buick dealers this fall.
    Source: Buick

    2019 Regal Avenir Offers Sleek, Versatile Luxury
    Premium Line Extends to Buick’s Freshest Face SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY — With the addition of the Regal Avenir — the fourth Buick globally to get an Avenir trim in less than a year — the momentum behind Buick’s highest expression of luxury continues to grow. Since its introduction last fall, Enclave Avenir has set the pace for Avenir, selling faster than all other Enclave trims and comprising 20 percent of total Enclave sales in the United States. A similar story is unfolding for the new LaCrosse, where Avenir is selling 70 percent faster than other trim levels.
    “Avenir sales have exceeded our expectations,” said Phil Brook, vice president, Buick and GMC Marketing. “Buick customers value the exclusive styling, premium features and convenient experience Avenir provides, and we are excited to extend that successful formula to Regal.”
    Half of all Regal Sportback buyers are choosing the top trim level, and within the midsize car segment demand is growing for more premium vehicles. Over the past four years, demand has risen 30 percent for midsize cars priced from $30,000 to $40,000, reflecting the increasing customer demand for more luxury, convenience and safety without compromising overall value.
    Buick’s first cloud-connected1 Infotainment System debuts on Regal Avenir, enabling embedded apps and enhancing how customers interact with vehicle features such as profiles, available navigation, voice recognition system updates and applications. Owners will now be able to personalize their user preferences and seamlessly take that profile with them into any compatible vehicle.
    “Innovation comes standard with Avenir,” said Chris Hay, Product and Pricing director, Buick and GMC. “It is a place for us to showcase our latest ideas to promote occupant well-being before we roll them out to other vehicles in our portfolio. The Enclave Avenir was the first Buick with Evonik Acrylite exterior lighting, a Rear Camera Mirror and an ionizer, and now Buick’s latest infotainment interface will come standard with the Regal Avenir.”
    Other Avenir-exclusive interior details include a Whisper Beige interior theme with Ebony accents, unique diamond quilt-stitched front seats, embroidered first-row headrests and Avenir-scripted sill plates.
    An Ebony interior theme is also available on Avenir models.
    On the exterior, Regal Avenir’s more dramatic look features the unique Avenir three-dimensional mesh upper grille inspired by our award-winning concept cars. Avenir script badging on the front doors and exclusive 19-inch Pearl Nickel wheels create more visual differentiation and complement the Regal’s timeless design.
    Numerous safety and driver assistance technologies2 available on other Regal Sportback models come standard on Avenir, including Rear Park Assist, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Lane Change Alert with Side Blind Zone Alert, LED headlamps with auto leveling, cornering lamps and driver side auto-dimming mirrors. Additional active safety technologies, including Adaptive Cruise Control - Advanced, are also available.
    A 250-horsepower 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine producing 260 lb-ft of torque, a nine-speed automatic transmission, ample cargo space with a discreet rear opening and tri-folding 40/20/40 rear seats, wireless charging, navigation and Bose eight-speaker premium audio also come standard on Avenir.
    Pricing will be announced early fall 2018 when Avenirs arrive at dealers.

    William Maley

    And Regal makes for three

    As we reported earlier this week, Avenir has proven to be a success for Buick. The trim makes up about 25 percent of Enclaves sold and has raised the average transaction price by $5,000. It should come as a no surprise that the Buick is planning to expand Avenir to another model.
    The Truth About Cars stumbled across General Motors’ fleet order guide for 2019 and found that the Regal Sportback will be offered with the Avenir trim. It will only be available with the 2.0L turbo-four with front-wheel drive - meaning 250 horsepower and 260 pound-feet (down 35 lb-ft when compared to the AWD variant), but coming with a nine-speed automatic.
    The Regal Avenir will come loaded with standard equipment. For the exterior, a set 19-inch wheels come finished in what Buick calls Pearl Nickel,  LED headlights, and a set of cornering lights The interior gets an 8-inch infotainment system with a Bose audio system. Also standard is the Driver Confidence Package 1 that brings four-way lumbar adjustment, heated mirrors, wireless charging pad, rear parking sensors, rear cross traffic alert, and lane change alert with blind spot monitoring. 
    Optional is the Driver Confidence Package 2 that brings adaptive cruise control, Lane Keep Assist, automatic emergency braking, and front pedestrian braking.
    TTAC expects the Regal Avenir sometime towards the end of summer. We're expecting it sometime later in the year.
    Source: The Truth About Cars, GM Fleet Order Guide

    William Maley

    One out of every four Buick Enclaves sold is the Avenir premium model.

    Almost a year after Buick introduced their Avenir subbrand, it has proven to be a big success for the brand's big crossover.
    According to Automotive News, one out of every four Enclaves sold is the top-line Avenir. That's pretty impressive when you consider that the base price for the Avenir is $54,495. GM says demand from dealers is outstripping their supplies, despite a new investment earlier this year.
    Sales of the new Enclave have risen 15 percent in the first half of this year, and the average transaction price has risen $5,000 - putting it in line with the likes of the Acura MDX and Infiniti QX60.
    "We saw the need to provide even more for Enclave, and it was a direct result of sales of the first generation. They were asking for even more options and equipment," said Jace Stokes, manager of product marketing for the Enclave.
    Stokes went onto say that the success of Avenir for the Enclave has them thinking about what to do for the next-generation of the subbrand. 
    "We certainly have more technology planned. I think next generation is where we're going to push Avenir further." 
    Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)

    William Maley

    Will be a China-only affair

    Buick is expanding their electrified options in China with the introduction of the Velite 6 plug-in hybrid and electric. They'll join the the Buick Velite 5 - a rebadged Chevrolet Volt.
    The design is interesting to say in the least with a fair number of creases and a blacked-out rear pillar on this hatchback body. 
    Arriving first is the plug-in hybrid which is comprised of a 1.5L four-cylinder, two AC permanent-magnet synchronous motors, and lithium-ion battery pack. With a full tank of gas and fully charged battery, Buick estimates a range of 700 kilometers (about 435 miles). Not much is known about the electric variant, aside from Buick saying the model "will adopt a new-generation pure electric drive system to offer customers a smooth, quiet and natural driving experience." The electric variant will arrive next year.
    Both Velite 6 models will come with Buick's new eConnect cloud connectivity system. Different drivers can setup their own accounts to personalize settings for navigation, audio, and internet use. eConnect will also provide real-time intergration of WeChat, a Chinese social media service. Owners can use their smartphone as the key for the Velite 6.
    Source: Buick
    Buick VELITE 6 Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle and Enspire All-Electric Concept SUV Make Global Debut in China
    WUZHEN – The Buick VELITE 6 plug-in hybrid electric vehicle and the Buick Enspire all-electric concept SUV made their global debut this evening at a launch event in the scenic Chinese city of Wuzhen, Zhejiang.
    Buick also announced that the VELITE 6 plug-in hybrid electric vehicle will be launched this year and its sibling, the VELITE 6 electric vehicle, will be introduced in China at a later date.
    Buick VELITE 6
    Buick is focused on electrification, connectivity, intelligence and sharing in line with its Buick Blue new energy vehicle strategy. The VELITE 6 represents the latest application of this strategy.
    The two VELITE 6 models leverage electrification and connectivity technology from SAIC-GM’s parent companies, including Buick’s newest electric propulsion technology and connectivity technology. They are based on the VELITE Concept new energy vehicle that was unveiled in November 2016.
    The VELITE 6 has a dynamic posture coupled with a wide stance. The modern, streamlined shape aptly represents the innovative exterior styling that matches the new nameplate’s exciting technological character.
    The high-performance propulsion system of the VELITE 6 plug-in hybrid electric vehicle is composed of an EVT electronically controlled variable transmission, two AC permanent-magnet synchronous motors with a high-performance lithium-ion battery, and a 1.5L naturally aspirated engine especially tuned for hybrid vehicles.
    The motors and engine efficiently optimize power in different driving modes – such as the hybrid-driven mode of the motor and the engine, the single-driven mode of the motor, and the single-driven mode of the engine. It has a range of 700 km and combined fuel consumption of 1.4 liters/100 km.
    The new-generation modular high-performance ternary lithium-ion battery pack will be assembled at the new state-of-the-art SAIC-GM Power Battery Development Center in Shanghai. The battery incorporates leading battery heat management technology, providing independent and uniform temperature control of each battery unit via liquid cooling. This will ensure a longer life cycle and more stable performance.
    The VELITE 6 electric vehicle will adopt a new-generation pure electric drive system to offer customers a smooth, quiet and natural driving experience.
    The flexible and open cloud-based Buick eConnect technology in both models enables cutting-edge services and over-the-air update capability. With exclusive accounts, users can personalize their settings for OnStar, navigation, internet use and more. Music and destinations can be sent to the car display screen via WeChat in real time, for one-button navigation and listening. Users can also directly receive information about their vehicles’ condition and recommended maintenance.
    VELITE 6 users’ smartphones serve as a virtual key to enter and start the vehicle. They can authorize others to use their vehicles through their phones as well. Additional functions and new features will continuously be added to improve the user experience.

    William Maley

    That's a Buick. No, seriously it is.

    Describing a Buick as being bold seems somewhat strange, but the Enspire concept that debuted today in China is just that. Describing a Buick as being bold seems somewhat strange, but the Enspire concept that debuted today in China is just that.
    The overall shape is very different from Buick's current crossover lineup with a pronounced front end, deep cuts in the bumper, cameras mounted where the side-view mirrors would be, flared-out rear fenders, and a sharply raked rear end. The only interior shot provided by Buick is of the front. It looks very futuristic with the dash wrapped in microfiber suede and wood trim, OLED display, and a heads-up display featuring augmented reality technology.
    Power comes from Buick's eMotion electric powertrain producing 410 kW (about 550 horsepower). 0-60 mph is said to take about 4 seconds. On a single charge, Buick claims the Enspire can travel up to 370 miles. The concept supports both fast and wireless charging - the former providing an 80 percent charge within 40 minutes.
    Buick will be showing off the Enspire concept at Auto China 2018 in Beijing later this month.
    Source: Buick
    Enspire All-Electric Concept SUV Debuts in China
    Sculptural beauty meets advanced battery electric technology in Chinese concept SUV WUZHEN, China — The Buick Enspire all-electric concept SUV, an exploration of Buick’s bold design ideas and innovative technologies for future mobility, made its global debut in China. Key features include:
    Experience Features:
    Exterior feature lines and advanced aerodynamics accentuate the exterior’s strong, sculptural look. A “surround skyline” interior theme and suspended theater-type seating give the Enspire a bright and spacious interior. The center console and armrests are made from natural wood grain and microfiber suede. Cutting-edge technologies include an OLED display screen and an intelligent augmented reality technology-based head-up display system. 5G super high-speed network concept. Performance Features:
    Buick’s eMotion electric propulsion technology generates a maximum power of 410 kW, enabling the concept to sprint from 0-60 mph in 4 seconds.  The Enspire is able to travel up to 370 miles on a single charge. Supports both fast and wireless charging — the battery can be charged to 80 percent of capacity within 40 minutes. The Enspire all-electric concept SUV will be on display at Auto China 2018 in Beijing from April 25 to May 4.

    William Maley

    Debuts on April 17th

    Later this month, Buick will be debuting an all-electric concept SUV named the Enspire. The teaser picture released by Buick shows off a rakish back window and a taillight that runs the full length of the rear.
    "The Enspire leverages GM’s global resources and is an exploration of design and new technologies. It is the brand’s latest example of innovation and application of future electric smart mobility," Buick said in a press release.
    We're not surprised that Buick is showing off an electric concept in China. Last year, Chinese buyers bought 1.18 million Buick models - compared to the 219,231 sold in the U.S. China is also pushing automakers to build electric vehicles to help reduce emissions in the country.
    We'll have more information when the Enspire debuts on April 17th during Buick Brand Night.
    Source: Buick 
    Press Release is on Page 2

    Buick Enspire Concept SUV to Make Global Debut in China
    SHANGHAI – Buick today announced that the Enspire, its new all-electric concept SUV, will make its global debut at Buick Brand Night on April 17 in Wuzhen, Zhejiang. It will also be on display to the public at Auto China 2018 in Beijing, which begins later this month.
    The Enspire leverages GM’s global resources and is an exploration of design and new technologies. It is the brand’s latest example of innovation and application of future electric smart mobility.

    William Maley

    That's a Buick, even it doesn't say so on the back. 

    The 2019 Buick Envision has an omission that no other Buick model has at this moment, the lack of the 'Buick' name on the back. At the time, we thought this wasn't a big deal. Maybe someone at GM forgot to put the name badge on the Envision. But this is a bigger deal than we first thought.
    Late last week, GM Authority learned from brand reps that Envision will be the first Buick model to drop the name badge. Other Buick models will follow in the 2019 model year. Since then, Automotive News has gotten confirmation about this decision.
    "It was a small running change that we didn't view as especially worth announcing to the world, but I've been pretty amazed by the interest in it in the past couple days," Buick spokesman Stuart Fowle told the publication.
    Fowle explained the reason for dropping the 'Buick' script is consistency across marketplaces. Models sold in China don't have the 'Buick' name on the vehicles. Market research also showed "that 3 out of 4 consumers recognize the tri-shield badge as Buick without seeing the name."
    "We are in the minority of brands that have their badge in addition to having their name on the back of the vehicle. It was like we were saying Buick on the back of the car two times," said Fowle.
    Source: GM Authority, Automotive News (Subscription Required)

    William Maley

    The changes make for a better crossover

    Buick has pulled back the curtain on the refreshed 2019 Envision crossover. It may seem crazy for a brand to refresh their model only a couple years after its debut. But we need to remember that Buick has been selling the Envision in China since 2014, so it is about the time when a refresh takes place.
    The big news is with the transmission. A nine-speed automatic becomes standard on turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder. It's a nice pairing, especially since Buick has upped the torque figure from 260 to 295 pound-feet. Horsepower remains at 252. Sadly, the base 2.5L four-cylinder sticks with a six-speed automatic. 
    There are some minor changes for the Envision's exterior with a new winged front grille, HID headlights becoming standard on all trims, larger taillights, and new designs for the alloy wheels. 
    Pricing for the 2019 Envision is about $2,000 less on all trims compared to the 2018 model. This means the 2019 Envision begins at $32,990 (doesn't include destination).
    Source: Buick
    Press Release is on Page 2

    Customer-Driven Updates Define 2019 Buick Envision
    New design, performance and tech features starting at $32,990 DETROIT — Refined design cues, responsive performance enhancements and intelligent technology expand on the Envision’s growing popularity.
    The 2019 Envision features a newly sculpted front and rear, signature grille and new wheel choices. With a focus on quality and safety, the design and engineering teams also welcomed input from current Envision owners to enhance the vehicle.
    “Some of the 2019 Envision’s most notable changes are the results of listening to our customers,” said Elizabeth Pilibosian, Envision chief engineer. “Beneath the updated exterior are a number of changes guided by a goal of offering the most refined and pleasant driving experience possible.”
    Envision highlights
    New nine-speed automatic transmission for 2.0L turbo models. Buick now offers this innovative transmission on five models across the lineup. 2.0L turbo engine offers increased vehicle performance of 252 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque. The engine and transmission updates produce 0-60 mph acceleration just under a half-second quicker than the 2018 model. Engine stop/start deactivation switch — a Buick first in North America. Single rate brake booster for improved overall brake performance that requires less effort. Flexibility to switch between Adaptive Cruise Control and conventional Cruise Control. Enhanced visibility on Rear Vision Camera. Improved hands-free microphone for better call quality and better voice recognition. The seat heating system warms up more quickly. Next-generation wireless charging with wattage capability for fast and efficient charging, including iPhone8/iPhoneX compatibility. Lighting upgrades across all trims: HID headlights standard on 2.5L models, bi-functional LED headlamps on 2.0L turbo models and LED wing signature lights on every model. In-vehicle air ionizer that helps eliminate odors, reduce bacteria and provide better air quality. Focus on the customer
    Initial owner feedback and solid sales growth indicate the Buick Envision is delivering the luxury and features desired by compact SUV customers. Refinements across the 2019 Envision are aimed at providing the best that the vehicle offers, plus the flexibility and options customers desire most at a price point true to Buick’s attainable luxury promise. Pricing starts at $32,990 (excludes tax, title, license, dealer fees and optional equipment). All trim levels have been adjusted toward the heart of the premium compact SUV market, further positioning the Envision to capture the interest of loyal Buick owners looking to move up to the next-sized compact SUV and conquest buyers who are considering Buick for the first time.
    “The Envision brings a tremendous growth opportunity for the Buick brand,” said Sam Russell, Buick marketing director. “The new pricing strategy not only puts the Envision in the heart of the industry’s largest segment, but also better positions it in relation to Encore, our top-selling nameplate.”
    Nearly 60 percent of all Encore buyers come from outside General Motors. These new-to-Buick customers are increasingly return buyers, with nearly half of them likely to trade in their vehicle to buy another Buick SUV. In addition to attracting new customers to the Buick brand, the 2019 Envision is designed with these existing Encore customers’ evolving needs and preferences in mind.
    Thoughtfully refined, inside and out
    The Envision’s exterior has a sculpted front fascia, new grille and headlamps that align with the new face of Buick. Crisp horizontal lines on the front create a more premium look and feel, while redesigned taillamps, reflectors and side markers give the back end a wider and more athletic stance. New optional 19-inch wheels provide an expressive and distinct profile.
    Premium lighting technology is featured on every 2019 Envision. HID headlamps with LED Buick signature lighting come standard, with the enhanced performance of bi-functional LED headlamps standard on the top two trims.
    Under the hood, the Envision offers a balance of performance and efficiency with a nine-speed transmission on 2.0L turbo models that allows for an increase in torque from 260 lb-ft to 295 lb-ft and an improvement in acceleration.
    A 2.5L inline four-cylinder engine mated with a six-speed automatic remains the standard powertrain for the 2019 Envision and goes unchanged from previous model years. It is offered in front- or all-wheel-drive configurations.
    Driven by customer feedback, the 2019 Envision is equipped with a non-latching stop/start deactivation switch on the instrument panel that allows the driver to choose whether to use the auto-stop function. The calibration of the Envision’s stop/start technology has also been refined for an even more seamless experience.
    The 2019 Envision offers a Buick-first Tire Fill Alert that lets a driver know when a tire has reached its recommended pressure level.
    Other standard features include Buick’s signature QuietTuning; 10 airbags1, including side curtain and knee airbags; Rear Park Assist; and newly added Rear Seat Reminder2. Available features include Surround Vision, Safety Alert Seat and Forward Automatic Braking, among others3.
    Every Envision comes equipped with an 8-inch diagonal infotainment system with Apple CarPlay4 and Android Auto5 compatibility, a 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot6 (an unlimited data plan for $20 per month7 is available through AT&T after trial period), a limited trial of OnStar8 and connectivity access at no additional cost. Along with other benefits such as the myBuick app9, the connectivity access features Smart Driver, an opt-in service designed to help Buick owners become better drivers.
    The 2019 Envision goes on sale in the spring of 2018 and will be available in five trim levels starting at Envision ($32,990), Preferred ($34,495), Essence ($36,795), Premium ($41,695) and Premium II ($44,595). Prices exclude tax, title, license, dealer fees and optional equipment.

    William Maley

    Avenir Grows By One

    Currently, Buick only offers their upscale Avenir trim on only the Enclave crossover. But that will be changing in the coming weeks as the brand has announced the 2018 LaCrosse Avenir.
    The LaCrosse Avenir stands out from its brethren with new mesh grille inserts, chrome "wings", 19-inch wheels (20-inch wheels are optional), and Avenir badging. Inside, Buick went all out by using chestnut-brown leather upholstery, embroidered headrests, and special sill plates. Like the Enclave Avenir, the LaCrosse Avenir comes fully loaded with a Bose audio system, panoramic moonroof, and the 3.6L V6 with 310 horsepower. Optional equipment includes all-wheel drive, a suite of active safety equipment, and Dynamic Drive Package.
    Pricing will be announced closer to the LaCrosse Avenir's launch.
    Source: Buick
    Press Release is on Page 2
    Buick LaCrosse Avenir Makes World Debut
    Buick’s highest expression of luxury expands to flagship sedan LOS ANGELES ― With the arrival of the 2018 LaCrosse Avenir, Buick’s new sub-brand expands its offerings and provides customers a way to experience the highest expression of Buick luxury, regardless of whether they’re shopping for a car or SUV. First introduced with the 2018 Enclave that went on sale in October, Avenir features unique styling cues, an extensive set of standard features and exclusive premium materials for customers who want more.
    “Nine out of ten LaCrosse buyers are choosing one of the top two trim levels — customers are signaling they want more from Buick,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global Buick and GMC. “With even more content and an elegant look, Avenir adds a unique name and appearance for those who want the best of our attainable luxury.”
    Like the Enclave Avenir, the LaCrosse Avenir’s design details were channeled from our award-winning concept cars for a more dramatic look, expressed through a unique three-dimensional mesh upper and lower grille paired with chrome wings. Avenir script badging on the front doors and exclusive 19-inch Pearl Nickel or available 20-inch Midnight Silver wheels create a commanding road presence and complement the LaCrosse’s timeless design.
    “Exterior styling is very important to LaCrosse buyers, and its sculpted beauty withstands passing trends,” says Bob Boniface, global director of Buick Exterior Design. “For Avenir, we focused on maintaining the timelessness of the LaCrosse, while giving these customers subtle and tasteful details that elevate this car to a new level.”
    Inside, Avenir-exclusive details include a Chestnut interior color theme, embroidered first-row headrests and Avenir-scripted sill plates.
    Features available on other LaCrosse models come standard on the Avenir, including a powerful 310-horsepower V-6, nine-speed automatic transmission, navigation and Bose Centerpoint Surround Sound premium audio, as well as a panoramic moonroof.
    Additional available features include Ebony interior, Intelligent Twin-Clutch AWD, Dynamic Drive Package featuring continuous variable real-time dampening control and a suite of advanced safety features.
    LaCrosse Avenir will arrive at dealers in early 2018.

    William Maley

    Slow and steady

    GMC's Denali subbrand has been a huge success for General Motors. According to GM CEO Mary Barra, Denali-badged models now account for almost 30 percent of GMC retail sales, bringing in higher margins and average transaction prices. With Buick launching their Avenir subbrand, GM hopes for the same success.
    "Avenir already seems to be capturing the imagination. It just seems to have something maybe in the same way Denali has something," said Duncan Aldred, GM's vice president for Buick and GMC to Automotive News.
    But Buick knows they have to go slow and steady with the rollout of Avenir. One of the key reasons Denali has enjoyed immense success is that GMC allowed it to grow organically and slowly. Like GMC, Buick has only introduced one model with the Avenir trim, the 2018 Enclave. There are plans to roll out Avenir to other models, but Buick hasn't decided if it will do all of their models like GMC does with Denali.
    "Whether we make the investment for what would be a somewhat limited volume, we'll see," said Aldred.
    Buick is also making sure that it prices Avenir correctly so it doesn't push customers away. According to Automotive News, the base price of the Enclave Avenir ($54,410 with destination) is 33 percent higher than the base model. That may seem like a lot, but it pales in comparison to the 55 percent premium the Acadia Denali has over the base model.
    "We certainly didn't want to price it too high. We weren't going to overprice this to begin with, for sure," said Aldred.
    Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)

    William Maley

    What goes on in China doesn't stay in China.

    Last month, General Motors announced an ambitious plan to launch 20 electric and hydrogen vehicles by 2023 with all of their brands playing a role. But Buick could be playing a prominent role in this plan.
    Duncan Aldred, vice president of sales and marketing at Buick-GMC tells Wards Auto that Buick will play a "huge part” in the coming years when it comes to EVs.
    “We will have multiple entries in a fairly short period of time. We’re GM’s biggest brand in the world’s biggest market. You’ll see a number of different technologies to go toward (our) zero-emissions objective,” said Aldred.
    That biggest market Aldred is referring to is China. In 2019, the country will require 10 percent of an automaker’s sales to be made up of low and zero-emission models. This rises to 12 percent in 2020. 
    “A lot of the electrification adoption will be driven by legislation.”
    Already, Buick sells a hybrid version of the LaCrosse and rebadged Chevrolet Volt as the Velite5 in China. Rumor has it that Buick is working on an electric crossover using the Chevrolet Bolt as a base.
    Aldred wouldn't go into what Buick's plan entails, only saying that will not only be electric vehicles.
    Source: Wards Auto

    William Maley

    Buick could be getting a new EV using the bones from the Chevrolet Bolt

    General Motors CEO Mary Barra said something interesting about the Chevrolet Bolt EV earlier this year.
    “…the Bolt is our platform that we’re going to continue on and have a huge range of vehicles.”
    Now, a new report from InsideEVs has possible details on one of these new models. According to a source that attended a focus group in California, the vehicle in question is a new Buick crossover that is said to look like a next-generation Encore. The model will use the Bolt's structure and powertrain, but come with a different design and features such as a floating roof and a push-button drive selector. 
    The Buick crossover will be about the same size as the Bolt, but offer slightly more rear legroom. It will also be slightly slower than the Bolt - a 0.4-second difference in 0-60 mph time.Bolt, but offer slightly more rear legroom. 
    No timeframe was given as to when we might see this new Buick EV crossover.
    Source: InsideEVs

    William Maley

    That's a Regal GS!

    The Buick Regal GS has been one of the worst-kept secrets in quite awhile. We learned many of the key details such as the powertrain and how it would look months only a short time after Buick debut the Regal Sportback and Tourx.
    Today, Buick has finally unveiled the 2018 Regal GS and given out the juicy details. First up, the Regal GS will use a variant of the 3.6L V6 that powers a number of GM vehicles. Output is rated at 310 horsepower and 282 pound-feet of torque - an increase of 61 horsepower and a decrease of 13 lb-ft when compared to the turbo 2.0L used in the current GS. Power goes through a nine-speed automatic and a twin-clutch all-wheel drive system that not only splits power between the front and rear axles, but also to each rear wheel.
    Buick has fitted the second-generation Continuous Damping Control system and Interactive Drive Control to allow a driver to tailor between driving dynamics and comfort. A set of Brembo brakes helps bring the GS to a quick stop.
    Outside, the Regal GS looks the part with aggressive front and rear fascias, rear decklid spoiler, and 19-inch wheels. The interior features a set of sport seats that are heated and cooled, flat-bottom steering wheel, and metal pedals. An eight-inch Intellilink system with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay compatibility comes standard.
    How much for all of this performance? Quite a lot. When the GS arrives at Buick dealers later this year, it will carry a base price of $39,990 with destination.
    “This is a sport sedan designed for everyday driving, but one that makes every drive special. The new Regal GS is in the sweet spot of the market: more refined and luxurious than the mainstream, more value for the price with style and premium features on par with higher-end competitors, and with standard features like AWD with active twin clutch and a rear sportback design that will surprise customers with its usefulness,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global Buick and GMC.
    Source: Buick 
    Press Release is on Page 2

    2018 Buick Regal GS Makes World Debut
    Premium sport sedan offers all-new 310-horsepower V-6, nine-speed transmission and intelligent AWD with active twin clutch DETROIT — Where spirited driving meets attainable luxury and sleek, sporty design meets modern usefulness, you’ll find the 2018 Buick Regal GS – a car for commutes that are anything but common. As the brand’s most dramatic expression of design and dynamics, this all-new model balances these key characteristics to provide customers excellent driving performance every day and in every season.
    The 2018 Regal GS advances the nameplate with 51 more horsepower than the model it replaces, more refined transmission and AWD technology, all-new, heated/cooled and massaging performance seats and the added functionality and style of a five-door sportback design. Starting at $39,990 with destination charges, the Regal GS offers luxury features at a price more attainable than competitors from Audi and BMW.
    “This is a sport sedan designed for everyday driving, but one that makes every drive special,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president, Global Buick and GMC. “The new Regal GS is in the sweet spot of the market: more refined and luxurious than the mainstream, more value for the price with style and premium features on par with higher-end competitors, and with standard features like AWD with active twin clutch and a rear sportback design that will surprise customers with its usefulness.”
     Regal GS Highlights:
    New 3.6L V-6 with 310 horsepower and 282 lb-ft of torque featuring direct injection, cylinder deactivation and stop/start technology Standard nine-speed automatic transmission and intelligent all-wheel drive (AWD) with active twin clutch for improved vehicle control, and five-link rear suspension GS-specific, AGR-certified, performance seats that are heated, cooled and massaging with adjustable seat and seat-back bolsters as well as thigh support Second-generation Continuous Damping Control (CDC) capable of 500 adjustments per second and Interactive Drive Control with GS and Sport modes Unique sport front and rear fascias, side skirts and rear spoiler Standard 19-inch wheels Performance brakes with Brembo front calipers Sport-tuned exhaust system Sport flat-bottom steering wheel and metal pedals Available head-up display Buick’s most advanced new propulsion components come standard on the new Regal GS. With 310 horsepower, its refined 3.6-liter V-6 provides more power than an Acura TLX A-Spec or a Lexus IS350 F-Sport but offers seamless auto stop/start technology and can cruise on four cylinders. The V-6 engine is complemented by a sport-tuned dual exhaust system.
    Regal GS’ intelligent AWD system with an active twin clutch can precisely transfer torque between the rear wheels for more refined and efficient performance, and the GS receives one of the first applications of the nine-speed automatic transmission in the Buick lineup that’s mated to AWD. This advanced new transmission will soon be offered across five different Buick models.
    Every Regal GS also features Buick’s Interactive Drive Control, allowing the driver to tailor the car’s dynamics based on different drive experiences through a standard setting or Sport and GS modes selected via the center console. Interactive Drive Control utilizes Buick’s second-generation Continuous Damping Control (CDC), which is able to adjust suspension damping up to 500 times per second.
    Versus a standard 2018 Regal Sportback, the GS also has standard Brembo brakes for more confident stopping power.
    “With the all-new 2018 Regal GS, we set out to make a driver-focused, engaging and entertaining sport sedan without sacrificing the smooth ride and refined character expected of any modern Buick,” said Martin Hayes, chief engineer for the Buick Regal GS. “Our new V-6 and nine-speed transmission, intelligent AWD and CDC all work to deliver excellent driving performance.”
    Outside, Buick’s signature sculptural beauty presents the car’s sporting nature in an understated way with aggressive front and rear fascias, standard 19-inch wheels, a rear decklid spoiler and GS badging front and rear. Full LED headlamps are an option.
    Inside, the Regal features unique perforated GS-specific performance seats with integrated headrests and adjustable lumbar and thigh support bolsters. The seats are heated and ventilated and come standard with a massage function. The interior also features a standard heated flat-bottom sport steering wheel and GS-specific pedals and sill plates.
    The 2018 Regal GS offers a cohesive and connected infotainment experience with an 8-inch diagonal touchscreen and 8-inch diagonal reconfigurable instrument cluster as standard equipment. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility both come standard. A full-color head-up display is available with an optional Driver Confidence II package that also includes several safety features including Front Pedestrian Braking, Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning, Forward Collision Alert and Adaptive Cruise Control with Forward Automatic Braking.

    William Maley

    Good luck trying to find that base TourX

    Buick is hoping to give the likes the Subaru Outback, Audi A4 Allroad, and Volvo V60 Cross Country a run for their money with the Regal TourX goes on sale later this year. According to a new report from CarsDirect, the TourX could be undercutting some of the competition by a significant margin.
    The base 2018 Buick Regal TourX 1SV will begin at $29,995 with destination. The model will come equipped with 18-inch aluminum wheels, active noise cancellation, push-button start, heated side mirrors, a universal home remote, and more. Good luck trying to find a 1SV at your dealer. This is the model that dealers will use in ads to try and draw buyers in. Also, they will only have a small number of them in stock.
    What you're more likely to see at your Buick dealer is the TourX Preferred 1SB which adds an auto-dimming mirror, leather-wrapped steering wheel, power driver's seat with lumbar support, and more. The Preferred also gets a wider color palate than the 1SV. Pricing begins at $33,575.
    Topping the range will be the TourX Essence 1SL. This model comes with leather, 8-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility; and dual-zone climate control. The Essence will set you back $35,945.
    All Regal TourXs will come with a turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder with 250 horsepower, eight-speed automatic, and all-wheel drive.
    Source: CarsDirect

    William Maley

    How much will the 2018 Enclave set you back?

    When the 2018 Buick Enclave hits dealers later this year, it will cost slightly more than the outgoing model.
    The redesigned full-size crossover will now begin at $40,970, almost $1,000 more than the current model. But considering how much standard equipment the new model comes with, it seems quite fair. All Enclaves feature keyless entry, hands-free liftgate, three-zone automatic climate control, eight-inch infotainment system with Buick Intellilink, Rear Seat Reminder, and Teen Driver.
    The Essence comes up next and the option of all-wheel drive. Prices begin at $45,190 for the FWD model and $47,190 for AWD. Premium comes next with prices of $48,990 and $51,290 respectively.
    Topping the Enclave lineup is the new Avenir. Filled with many luxury items such as dual sunroofs, navigation, contrast stitching and piping on the seats, and LED headlights, the top-line Enclave will begin at $54,390 for FWD and $56,690 for AWD.
    Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required), Roadshow
    Pic Credit: Newspress USA

    William Maley

    Buick's upcoming Regal GS makes an appearance in front of a spy photographer

    We know a fair amount about the upcoming Buick Regal GS such as what it might look like and a possible powertrain. Thanks a spy photographer, we have got our first look at what is in store for the U.S.
    The most apparent item that the photos reveal is that the U.S. version of the Regal GS will mostly mimic the one China. Both models feature the aggressive front end with narrow headlights, revised waterfall grille, and large vents in the bumper. The U.S.-spec GS differs from the Chinese one as it will only come in the sportback variant - China gets the sedan. Another key difference is the wheels. Whereas the Chinese-market looks to be sporting some five-spoke wheels with a dark finish, the U.S. model gets one with split spokes.
    There are still a couple of details up in the air. First is how much power the 3.6L V6 will produce. Some outlets believe it will boast 335 horsepower like in the Camaro, though our hunch is around 306 since the Holden Commodore will be using the same engine. Second is when Buick will reveal it. We think it might be later this year as a 2018 or 2019 model.
    Source: Autoblog, Left Lane News

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