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William Maley

New York Auto Show: 2014 Buick Regal: Comments

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By William Maley

Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com

March 26, 2013

Alongside the 2014 LaCrosse, Buick is also showing the new 2014 Regal at the New York Auto Show this week.

The 2014 Regal's exterior gets minor changes including a reworked front fascia, scalloped headlights, and a full-width chrome strip spanning between the new LED taillights. Regal GS models get a more agressive front and rear end treatments, and nineteen-inch alloy wheels as standard equipment.

Inside, Buick got rid of the button-laden center stack and in its place is a eight-inch touchscreen housing Buick's IntelliLink infotainment system and and capacitive-touch controls for the Regal's climate control. The Regal and Regal Turbo models get a 4.2-inch color screen in the instrument cluster, while the Regal GS gets a eight-inch configurable gauge display.

One of the Regal's powertrains has been revised for 2014. The base 2.4L eAssist mild-hybrid system carries over. The Turbo and GS get a revised 2.0L turbo-four producing 259 horsepower and 295 pound-feet. The Regal Turbo and GS will also get all-wheel drive as an option. The system will be able to send more than 90% of the engine's torque to the rear wheels.

Like the 2014 LaCrosse, the 2014 Regal will have a list of optional safety equipment including forward collision alert, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, blind spot warning, rear cross-traffic alert, Following Distance Indicator, precollision warning (with collision mitigation braking), and adaptive cruise control.

The new Regal arrives at Buick showrooms later this fall.

Source: Buick

William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

Press Release is on Page 2


2014 Buick Regal Infused with New Technology

-Exterior design with signature wing-shape LED lighting; revised interior designed around next-gen IntelliLink infotainment and new advanced safety features

-More efficient and more refined 2.0L turbo engine delivers 18 percent more power in Regal Turbo

-New all-wheel-drive system incorporates electronic limited-slip differential to help optimize traction in all driving conditions

NEW YORK – Buick revealed the new 2014 Regal today, designed to be a sportier and smarter evolution of the brand's dynamic midsize sedan. New purposeful technologies enhance safety and the driving experience with a more refined turbo engine – along with the introduction of all-wheel drive.

The new Regal also introduces new radar- and camera-based safety features – including Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Lane Change Alert, Side Blind Zone Alert, Lane Departure Warning, Forward Collision Alert and Collision Mitigation Braking – for surround protection. In-vehicle connectivity is enhanced with next-generation IntelliLink, featuring simpler, more intuitive controls and natural speech recognition.

Adaptive Cruise Control is also offered. It senses traffic in front of the Regal to adjust vehicle speed, including stopping the vehicle in heavy traffic and accelerating again.

"The new 2014 Regal is more expressive, more connected and more technologically advanced," said Tony DiSalle, U.S. vice president of Buick Marketing. "Nearly half of new Regal buyers are conquests who are new to Buick and they represent the youngest median age among the brand's lineup.

"The new Regal gives those discerning buyers more of the technologically advanced features they want in a modern luxury sedan, all with the style and refinement they expect from Buick."

New front and rear styling, with bold, signature wing-shape LED daytime running lamps and LED taillamps were designed to give Regal a more contemporary and premium presence. The interior features a redesigned central instrument panel and console along with a new fashion interior trim combination.

The new 2.0L turbo engine delivers 18 percent more horsepower in the Regal Turbo, for a greater feeling of on-demand power The available Haldex all-wheel-drive system helps make the most of traction in all driving conditions and also enhances the cornering capability of the Regal GS when driven in the GS mode of the Interactive Drive Control System.

A 2.4L engine with eAssist light electrification technology is also available on the 2014 Regal. Six-speed automatic transmissions are matched with both engines and a six-speed manual is available in the Regal GS. Electric power steering is now featured on all models.

The new Regal makes its public debut at the New York International Auto Show, where it will be on display March 29-April 7. It goes on sale this fall.

More expressive, inside and out

New exterior styling evolves the Regal's appearance with cues that enhance a low, wide proportion and were made to convey a more upscale and contemporary presence. New headlamps with standard LED daytime running lamps and a revised grille show the new "face" of Regal, while at the rear Enclave-inspired LED wing-shape taillamps give the car a familial look. A new chrome accent bridges the taillamps to further enhance Regal's wide stance.

The new headlamps are available in two versions, including halogen projector beams and xenon high-intensity discharge. The available LED daytime running lamps form a distinctive wing profile above the headlamps, designed to give the Regal an unmistakable signature on the road.

Inside, the new Regal's interior blends sculptural beauty and refinement with technology, centered on Buick's next-generation IntelliLink infotainment system. A new instrument panel "center stack" houses a new, larger eight-inch color touch screen. There's also a new steering wheel that includes controls for the new safety and infotainment features.

The instrument cluster is also new, with a high-resolution, 4.2-inch color display that delivers vehicle information, navigation, audio system functions, phone features and more. In Regal GS, an eight-inch configurable color instrument cluster screen is standard. It allows the driver to customize the displayed information with adjustments via steering wheel controls. This premium instrument display is framed with chrome accents and delivers chronograph-style graphics in two modes: Touring and Sport. It is also complemented with a pair of semicircle mechanical instruments for the tachometer and other vehicle functions, befitting of the GS's driver-oriented mission.

While the Regal's new interior brings more amenities and enhanced personal technology, it does so with greater simplicity. The new center stack radio controls have only seven buttons vs. the previous 17. The large, eight-inch color touch screen is designed for easy operation with intuitive controls and smartphone-influenced swipe recognition for easier navigation. Dual-zone climate controls also feature capacitive-touch operation and are framed in chrome.

"The advanced technologies in the 2014 Regal complement its flowing passenger environment, with integrated elegance," said Ven Lai, Buick creative designer for color and trim. "The cabin's rich, tailored elements are executed in warm tones and soft-touch materials that enhance the premium ambience in a thoroughly contemporary manner."

Four interior color/trim combinations are available for 2014, including a new, high-fashion two-tone leather combination:

-Light Neutral seating with Cocoa accents is offered with cloth or Soleil Keisel leather seats and Rhythm wood décor

-Ebony, offered with cloth or Soleil Keisel leather seats and Echelon Warm décor

-Saddle seating with cocoa accents, offered with two-tone Soleil Keisel leather seats and Rhythm wood décor

-Ebony – exclusive to the GS – is offered with Soleil Keisel leather seats with contrast stitching and Diamond Black décor including a black headliner.

"It's an inviting environment, with the warmth and expressive style that is attracting more customers to the brand," said Lai. "With new choices, such as the Cocoa/Saddle combination, we've increased the style quotient for Regal."

Next-generation IntelliLink

Buick's next-generation IntelliLink infotainment system is available on the 2014 Regal. It offers more features designed for intuitive, easy-to-use functionality with a higher level of wireless connectivity and customized options. All build on the safety and security of OnStar.

In addition to easily identifiable icons covering everything from navigation to phone to music apps such as Pandora, next-generation IntelliLink is designed to accommodate new features and enhancements and be highly customizable. It also features natural language voice recognition, which allows customers to more safely place calls, enter destinations, browse media, play music and control other functions simply by telling the vehicle what to do.

The IntelliLink system can store up to 60 favorites, including radio stations (AM/FM/XM), contacts, destinations, music and other media. This feature is convenient for those who travel to the same destination regularly and want to save locations such as hotels and restaurants.

On its eight-inch screen, customers can "fling" through lists, swipe and drag just as they would on a tablet or smartphone. In fact, users with compatible smartphones can pair them with IntelliLink using Bluetooth or a USB connection. That gives customers the ability to play passengers' music or other media through the vehicle.

Another feature allows customers whose Regals are equipped with available embedded navigation to enter destinations in a single step, without having to enter the state, city, street number and street name in successive efforts. City-by-city weather reports are also provided.

OnStar can be accessed via the screen display as well as by the traditional Blue button.

A new, nine-speaker Bose sound system is available and projects the music and radio selections made with IntelliLink. It includes strategically placed tweeters and a subwoofer that complement the Regal's acoustically optimized interior.

Regal GS offers a driver-centric experience

The Regal GS is designed to deliver a dynamic driving experience through sophisticated suspension technologies, premium amenities and a more expressive presence. Along with its standard turbocharged powertrain, the GS features the exclusive application of Buick's Interactive Drive Control system, which allows the driver to select different drive modes – including the GS mode and its track-oriented competitive setting.

In GS mode, the Regal increases steering efforts for more direct feedback to the driver. Increased damping levels ensure ultimate wheel control and reduced body roll for better agility. GS mode also is designed to alter the shift feel of the six-speed automatic transmission.

The GS's HiPer Strut front suspension – standard on FWD and AWD models – enhances ride and handling by reducing torque steer; more linear and communicative steering through improved camber control; and improved impact isolation on bumps and rough surfaces. It is complemented by a four-wheel-disc brake system featuring front Brembo four-piston front calipers and larger rotors.

A four-link independent rear suspension is designed to minimize unwanted toe and camber effects during spirited driving maneuvers, enhancing vehicle stability. Both front and rear dampers incorporate active Computer Damping Control, continuously changing damper characteristics' to make the most of vehicle ride control over varying road surfaces and profiles. More aggressive, performance-oriented damping characteristics can also be selected by the driver through the Interactive Driver Control system.

Additionally, the Regal GS features a lowered ride height and 19-inch aluminum wheels to project a sporty, purposeful stance. Twenty-inch wheels with summer-rated performance tires are available.

Unique front and rear fascias distinguish the GS. The front fascia incorporates prominent, vertical air intake slots. The rear fascia features a pair of integrated, satin-metallic trapezoidal exhaust outlets. Rocker panel extensions and a rear spoiler extension are also part of the package.

More refined, efficient 2.0L turbocharged engine

A new 2.0L turbo engine debuts as the standard powertrain in the 2014 Regal Turbo and Regal GS, advancing the legacy of an engine recognized as one of Ward's 10 Best Engines in 2012. Although it shares the same displacement as the previous turbo engines offered in the Regal, it is a next-generation architecture with friction-reduction technologies designed to enhance refinements on a variety of levels.

Along with its estimated 259 horsepower (193 kW), the new 2.0L turbo's torque curve has been enhanced, delivering 90 percent (260 lb-ft / 353 Nm) of its peak torque from 1,700 rpm to 5,500 rpm and the full 295 lb-ft of peak torque (400 Nm) from 3,000 to 4,000 rpm. That torque band is supported by boost levels as high as 24 psi (1.65 bar) in the speed range, engineered to give the Regal an assuring, exhilarating feeling of immediate power on demand.

The turbocharger features a twin-scroll design that uses exhaust tuning to generate balance between maximum power and excellent turbo response, enabling the engine to deliver a broad torque band. It also supports the responsiveness associated with larger-displacement, naturally aspirated performance engines. Boost is controlled electronically with a pressure-actuated wastegate and the airflow is controlled during transients with an electronic bypass valve. Those controls enable optimal performance, throttle response and efficiency.

Additional engine features include:

-Pistons with jet-spray cooling

-Rotocast 356T aluminum cylinder head

-Sodium-filled exhaust valves

-Dual Overhead Camshaft with continuously variable valve timing

-Direct injection with cam-driven high-pressure fuel pump

-Two-stage variable-displacement oil pump

-Air-to-air intercooling system.

A number of features were added to the new 2.0L turbo to reduce noise and vibration, enhancing engine smoothness and contributing to Buick's signature quietness:

-Balance shafts located in the oil pan

-A forged-steel crankshaft

-Inverted-tooth chains for the camshaft and balance shaft drives

-Two-piece oil pan design, with an aluminum upper section to provide structural support and a stamped steel lower section to dampen overall noise

-Cast iron bearing cap inserts in an aluminum bedplate

-Integrated sound cover on the intake manifold

-Structural engine covers

The 2014 Regal is also available with the 2.4L with eAssist light electrification technology, using a lithium-ion battery system and electric motor-generator to enable regenerative braking capability. Instead of providing all-electric propulsion, the system provides power assistance to the internal combustion engine. The eAssist system also allows the engine to shut down fuel delivery in certain deceleration situations, which saves additional fuel.

All-wheel-drive system offers optimized handling

The 2014 Regal is offered with a new, all-wheel-drive system designed to make the most of handling and stability in all driving conditions. It is an advanced, fully automatic and on-demand system that includes developments in wheel-slip management and an electronic limited-slip rear differential.

Input from a variety of sensors – wheel speed, steering angle, etc. – automatically tailors the torque distribution between the front and rear wheels, for maximum traction. The eLSD enables adjustment to the torque split between the rear wheels to optimize vehicle stability and cornering capability.

If the vehicle's front wheels lose traction, the AWD system is capable of sending more than 90 percent of the engine's torque to the rear wheels. Fine balancing of the drive torque between the axles raises the threshold at which StabiliTrak's throttle and braking interventions are triggered, enabling closer driver interaction.

While engineered to offer sure-footed handling in low-grip conditions, Regal's new AWD system also alters its characteristics to support performance-oriented driving when the Sport or GS driving modes are selected on Regal GS. The AWD system also comes with the HiPer Strut front suspension standard, offering more linear and communicative steering through improved camber control and improved impact isolation on bumps and rough surfaces.

Regal's AWD system also contributes to a quieter and smoother ride with minimal torque transferred to the rear wheels when all-wheel drive traction isn't required.

Advanced safety features

For 2011, 2012 and 2013, the Regal was named a Top Safety Pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. The 2014 Regal builds on the safety commitment with new features that use carefully developed visual and audible alerts to help drivers quickly identify and react to potential crash situations. Radar- and camera-based features are offered in two Driver Confidence packages:

-Driver Confidence 1 package includes camera-based Forward Collisions Alert, Lane

-Departure Warning, Lane Change Alert, Side Blind Zone Alert, Rear Cross-Traffic Alert and Following Distance Indicator.

-Driver Confidence 2 package adds Collision Preparation (with Collision Mitigation Braking) and full-speed-range Adaptive Cruise Control that conveniently works in stop-and-go traffic.

The Collision Mitigation Braking feature can intervene in certain crash-imminent situations, automatically triggering emergency braking if the driver fails to respond to a previous alert. With Lane Change Alert, the driver is alerted to vehicles in the blind sport during a lane-change or merging maneuver.

Regal's standard safety features also include six standard air bags – with optional rear-seat thorax air bags bringing the total to eight – along with a rear-vision camera, StabiliTrak, traction control and four-wheel disc brakes with ABS and Intelligent Brake Assist. Front and Rear Park Assist is standard on GS.

2014 BUICK REGAL PRELIMINARY SPECIFICATIONS

Overview

Models: 2014 Buick Regal Luxury Sport Sedan with eAssist, Regal Turbo and Regal GS

Body style / driveline: four-door, five-passenger front engine transaxle. front-wheel-drive midsize vehicle

Construction: steel body frame integral (unibody) with front and rear crumple zones; galvanized steel front fenders, hood, roof, door panels, one-piece bodyside outer panel, thermal plastic olefin (TPO) bumper fascias

EPA vehicle class: Midsize

Manufacturing location: Oshawa, Ontario, Canada

Key competitors: Acura TSX, Volkswagen CC, Volvo S60, Lexus IS 250, Audi A4

Engines

2.4L DOHC I-4 2.0L DOHC I-4 Turbo

Application: Regal eAssist Regal Turbo and Regal GS

Displacement (cu in / cc): 145 / 2384 122 / 1998

Bore and stroke (in / mm): 3.46 x 3.85 / 88 x 98 3.39 x 3.39 / 86 x 86

Block material: precision sand cast aluminum cast aluminum

Cylinder head material: SPM cast aluminum cast aluminum

Valvetrain: DOHC, four-valves per cylinder, continuously variable valve timing DOHC, four-valves per cylinder, continuously variable valve timing

Ignition system: individual coil-on-plug individual coil-on-plug

Fuel delivery: direct injection and electronic throttle control direct high-pressure fuel injection

Compression ratio: 11.2:1 9.5:1

Horsepower (hp / kW @ rpm): 182 / 136 @ 6700 rpm* 259 / 193 @ 5300 (est.)

Torque (lb-ft / Nm @ rpm) 172 / 232.2 @ 4900 rpm* 295 / 400 @ 1700 (est.)

Recommended fuel: regular unleaded premium recommended, but not required

Max engine speed: 7000 rpm 7000 rpm

Emissions controls: close-coupled, catalytic converter; continuously variable valve timing; positive crankcase ventilation evaporative system; supplemental air injection system, partial zero emissions vehicle capable (eAssist) close-coupled catalytic converter; continuously variable valve timing; 58x ignition system; returnless fuel rail; wide-range O2 sensor

Fuel economy (city / hwy): TBD TBD

Transmissions

Hydra-Matic 6T40 Hydra-Matic 6T70 GM F40-6

Type: six-speed transverse, electronically controlled, automatic overdrive six-speed transverse, electronically controlled, automatic overdrive six-speed manual

Application: std w/ 2.4L eAssist std. Regal Turbo / GS opt. Regal GS with FWD

Gear ratios (:1):

First 4.58 4.48 3.92

Second 2.96 2.87 2.04

Third 1.91 1.84 1.32

Fourth 1.45 1.41 0.95

Fifth 1.00 1.00 0.76

Sixth 0.75 0.74 0.62

Reverse 2.94 2.88 3.75

Final Drive 2.64 2.77 3.76

Electric Drive System (Regal With eAssist)

Type: belt-driven, liquid-cooled motor/generator unit and lithium-ion battery system; air-cooled power electronics and battery pack

Maximum electric generating power: 15 kW @ 1570-3180 rpm

Maximum electric motor torque (cranking): 110 lb.-ft. / 150 Nm

Maximum electric motor torque (electric assist): 79 lb.-ft. / 107 Nm @ 1,000 rpm

Maximum electric motor power (electric assist): 15 hp / 11.2 kW @ 1,000-2,200 rpm

Lithium-ion battery: 115V, 0.5-kWh, 15 kW peak power

Chassis / Suspension

Front: independent, MacPherson strut-type with dual-path mountings, specifically tuned coil springs, direct-acting stabilizer bar (hollow); hydraulic ride bushings; continuous damping control; HiPer Strut suspension standard on GS and AWD models. Interactive Drive Control System standard on GS

Rear: four-link independent rear; hollow stabilizer bar; continuous damping control (FWD models); Interactive Drive Control System standard on GS. H-arm suspension standard on AWD models

Traction control: all-speed using engine torque reduction and brake intervention

Steering type: electric rack-and-pinion power-assisted (dual-pinion design) with eAssist and Regal Turbo with FWD; belt-driven electric power steering standard on GS and AWD models

Steering wheel turns lock-to-lock: 2.68 (18- and 19-inch wheels)

Turning circle, curb-to-curb (ft / m): 37.4 / 11.4

Steering ratio: 15.2:1

Brakes

Type: four-wheel disc w/ABS and electronic stability control

Brake rotor diameter – front (in / mm): 2.4L: 11.7 / 296 vented; single-piston, cast iron caliper

2.0L (Turbo): 12.6 / 321 vented; single-piston, cast iron caliper

2.0L (GS): 13.6 / 345 vented; four-piston, aluminum Brembo caliper

Brake rotor diameter – rear (in / mm): 2.4L: 11.5 / 292 solid; single-piston, aluminum caliper

2.0L (Turbo and GS): 12.4 / 315 vented; single-piston, aluminum caliper

Wheels / Tires

Wheel size and type: 17-inch machined alloy (eAssist)

18-inch 13-spoke painted alloy (std. on Turbo)

18-inch chrome alloy (avail. on Turbo)

19-inch alloy, 5-Twin Spoke (std. on GS)

20-inch polished alloy, 5-Twin Spoke (avail. on GS)

Tires: Michelin Energy Saver P235/50R17 low rolling-resistance all season (std. on eAssist)

Michelin Pilot MXM4 Primacy P235/50R18 (std. on Sedan and Turbo)

Goodyear Eagle RSA P245/40R19 (std. on GS)

Pirelli P-Zero P255/35-ZR20 summer rated (avail. on GS)

Dimensions

Exterior

Wheelbase (in / mm) : 107.8 / 2738

Overall length (in / mm): 190.2 / 4831

Overall width (in / mm): 73.1 / 1857

Overall height (in / mm): 58.4 / 1483

Front track (in / mm): 62.4 / 1585

Rear track (in / mm): 62.5 / 1588

Interior

Seating capacity (front / rear): 2 / 3

Headroom (in / mm): 38.8 / 986 (front)

36.8 / 935 (rear)

Legroom (in / mm): 42.1 / 1069 (front)

37.3 / 947 (rear)

Shoulder room (in / mm): 56.7 / 1440 (front)

54.4 / 1382 (rear)

Hip room (in / mm): 55.4 / 1407 (front)

52.3 / 1328 (rear)

Capacities

EPA passenger volume (cu ft / L) : 96.8 / 2741

EPA interior volume (cu ft / L): 111.1 / 3146

Cargo volume (cu ft / L): 11.1 / 314 (2.4L eAssist – estimated)

14.2 / 402 (2.0L – estimated)

Fuel tank (gal / L): 15.8 / 59 (2.4L eAssist)

18 / 70 (2.0L)

Engine oil (qt / L): 2.4L: 5.0 / 4.7

2.0L: 6.3 / 6.0

Curb weight (lb / kg): 3600 / 1633 (2.4L)

3671 / 1665 (2.0L Turbo)

3710 / 1683 (2.0L GS)

*SAE certified.


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I like the new steering wheel, and i admit the new stack will be more functional, but to be honest, I really liked the Regal's current center stack and mess of buttons. It's not too confusing....plus the knob on the console. I really like the look of the GS current center stack maze of buttons.

AWD is something a lot of folks expect and the turbo option going to 260hp will make big sales jump I think. I am sure the lack of AWD manual GS will generate tons of bitching. TO be honest, I think that is a valid complaint. I would offer a manual turbo FWD non GS and make the GS manual option AWD only.

I think the eAssist either needs the 2.5 and a defeat switch, or just make the 2.5 the new standard mill. 2.4 plus eAssist, meh.

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So the Turbo and the GS will now use the same engine? And they will both be available with AWD also? What will seperate these two models I wonder? And the AWD system having a RWD bias could be a good hint that the next genoration Regal will be based on the Alpha platform and in turn return to a proper RWD model!

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So the Turbo and the GS will now use the same engine? And they will both be available with AWD also? What will seperate these two models I wonder? And the AWD system having a RWD bias could be a good hint that the next genoration Regal will be based on the Alpha platform and in turn return to a proper RWD model!

The GS will still have the Hi-Per strut suspension and Brembo brakes.

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So it gets the new 2.0 turbo, modern tech/entertainment, and AWD availability, sounds good, hopefully pricing doesn't jump.



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I'm sure pricing will jump. I'm really digging the fangs on the GS. I know the laet one had them, gut they look better here.

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rear end is an improvement.

one of my peeves, the Regal had at least a pittance of German aura to it inside. Now it it seems to be getting the flowing mush look inside more like the LaCrosse.

Not saying the LaCrosse is bad, but both cars have gone in an interior direction that is less youthful.....more chrome and more akin to Lexus a few years ago. Mushy and soft.

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Nice looking updated ride. I really like the center stack better than the old one. I like Drew dig the fangs on the GS. I actually like the two tone brown interior better than all black.

WHY WHY WHY in regards to the 2.4 e-Assist system??? This must be to satisfy some moronic Gov requirement for a hybrid as it is pathetic.

If they really wanted to give the Hybrid a jolt, then they should have rolled out the VOLT system on this car. That would have gotten peoples attention.

Course better yet would have been to roll out a Volt powertrain CUV for Buick.

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So they copied the Chrysler 200 rear end? And the scalloped headlamps? Why?

Because they are more visually interesting.

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Boring, looks like a Crysler 200. Still less powerful than a Sonata and not as fuel efficient. If the Regal were priced like a Malibu it would be a good buy, but it costs too much, that is why it doesn't sell.

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After living with a Sonata for half a week it isnt in the same league as the Regal. The Sonata is a tinny buzz bomb by comparison. Compare the Regal to the VW CC. That is the target market, not some value leader family sedan that leases for $99 down $99 a month. Sonata does nothing class leading except provide the most passenger cubic inches for your dollar.

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Boring, looks like a Crysler 200. Still less powerful than a Sonata and not as fuel efficient. If the Regal were priced like a Malibu it would be a good buy, but it costs too much, that is why it doesn't sell.

Plus is will never sell to you as it is not a MB. ;)

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I love the Haldex system but I hope they keep the price in check.

Some how I suspect we may see some other engine option here for the GS once it is available. The Regal is in the squeezed middle and once they Lacrosse moves up it will give the Regal more room in 2 years. I just suspect the Lacrosse will make way for a Alpha RWD.

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Nice updates on this one. I like the new rear end and interior. Front is different, I like it, but it seems just a change, not an improvement.

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I wish I could see a cashmere interior with woodgrain. Wonder if this will get ambient lighting as well (as far as I know, the current doesn't have it). LOVE the update, inside and out.

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It was probably the spokesmodel chick.

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      "Our product plan is what I would call a work in progress."
      The current focus for Lexus is the upcoming launches of the ES and the subcompact UX crossover. The ES is expected to keep current Lexus owners happy, but the new F-Sport package will hopefully bring in younger people - Lexus expects a quarter of ES sales to be the F-sport. The UX though is seen as what will bring the majority of young buyers to the brand.
      But this focus has Lexus doing "a strategic look" at two of their older models, the IS and GS. Both models are late into their lifecycles: IS was launched in 2013, while GS dates back to 2011. The two aren't big sellers either. In 2017, Lexus only moved 7,773 GS models and 26,482 IS models. Rumor has it that the GS could go away if the ES gets all-wheel drive. Christ wouldn't comment on that.
      "We can't do it all at once, but we're certainly evaluating both vehicles," said Christ.
      Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      Lexus finds itself in a bit of a bind. With demand for crossovers growing, Lexus is doing a serious look at its product lineup and deciding what needs to be added and what needs to taken out.
      "We're more focused on maximizing the opportunities we have than comparing ourselves," said David Christ, the new general manager for Lexus to Automotive News.
      "Our product plan is what I would call a work in progress."
      The current focus for Lexus is the upcoming launches of the ES and the subcompact UX crossover. The ES is expected to keep current Lexus owners happy, but the new F-Sport package will hopefully bring in younger people - Lexus expects a quarter of ES sales to be the F-sport. The UX though is seen as what will bring the majority of young buyers to the brand.
      But this focus has Lexus doing "a strategic look" at two of their older models, the IS and GS. Both models are late into their lifecycles: IS was launched in 2013, while GS dates back to 2011. The two aren't big sellers either. In 2017, Lexus only moved 7,773 GS models and 26,482 IS models. Rumor has it that the GS could go away if the ES gets all-wheel drive. Christ wouldn't comment on that.
      "We can't do it all at once, but we're certainly evaluating both vehicles," said Christ.
      Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
    • By regfootball
      Driven: 2018 Buick Regal Sportback Essence 2.0t
      (the original review is in this post.  A revised review is further down, in this post)
      HIGHS:
      -Nice understated shape conceals a cleverly integrated hatchback design
      -'Decent' propulsion from 2.0t engine
      -Nicely shaped upper dash with touchsreen oriented slightly to driver.  Interesting at least from a design standpoint.
      -Sporting driving position and good room in both rows, mostly, plus the biggest benefit being improved leg room over previous model
      -Really nice cargo space, with seats up, or seats down, the cargo area of this vehicle and the flexibility of it in a car like this IMO is a major draw
      -View outside of this vehicle is improved over its platform mate (Malibu, my daily driver) due to the rear door glass being longer and taller.  View out the front and rear is essentially the same.
      -AWD availability is a nice plus, thanks Buick.
      LOWS:
      -I can't recall any of the GM vehicles I have driven with this ubiquitous 2.0t engine, where i have actually been wowed or impressed by it.  It has decent thrust, but honestly you gotta spool it up a bit, the tranny doesn't respond instantly, it's not a five star smooth tranny, and it's kind of rough and noisy overall as a powertrain (AT LEAST FOR IT'S PRICE / CLASS).  I was hoping the 2.0 would make the car match the near luxury description but I don't think it's overall a smooth enough powertrain to meet that claim.  It's neither smooth, nor sporting or exciting.  And this is with front wheel drive.  I will reserve final judgment until i get in the GS with the v6, which is the engine I think most people will really end up liking in this car.
      -Heavier than it's Malibu platform mate.  No doubt acceptable due to the larger engine, but the benefit of the extra weight doesn't manifest itself in any real tangible way anywhere in the ride and drive of the car.
      -Not really any quieter inside than my Malibu.  Strange, because this Buick is supposed to have quiet tuning, and goo in the tires to help make it quieter.  The ride isn't really any more plush, either.
      -Steering is sort of dead and mushy.  That's not GERMANIC now, is it.
      -NEED TO BE ABLE TO TURN OFF THE AUTOSTOP WHEN YOU WANT TO.
      -Not really much nicer inside than in my Malibu.  The lower dash is the same 'less expensive' plastic you see in cheap Chevy's.  The door panels are a little nicer, but not that much more.  Many switches and buttons are the same.  The console is nicer (I don't like the shifter centered in the console now actually, it's quite a reach) I guess...except for cupholders in front of the climate controls.  The upper dash material is an upgrade over the Malibu, but it's not a PREMIUM dash material either.
      -I can't really tell for sure if the seats are better.  My Malibu seats are poor.  The Regal seats seemed to hug me more, but they still felt thin and insubstantial.  The leather quality was slightly better, but still nothing to write home about. 
      -Rear head room suffers a bit with the hatch design.  I don't mind the tradeoff personally, but the Malibu retains a bit more headroom, and the Regal TourX really has much more....so get the wagon if rear head room matters.
      -Sunroof was nice to have considering how bunkerlike the Malibu can feel....but again the hatch design limits the size of the sunroof here compared to the Malibu's BAMR.  I can live with the compromise here myself, and again, the wagon will satisfy your urge for BAMR if you need it.  I would encourage GM to develop a way to integrate a larger moonroof with the hatch design.  I think it could be done, but would require time and money on a redesign effort.
      -Options / packages on this car are, simply put, stupid.  But that merits its own post.  At least in this car, the heated steering wheel and leather heated seats were both included.  You can actually get this car with heated steering wheel but without heated seats.  How f-cked up is that?  In 2019, Fusion, Toyota, and others will have things like blind spot and cross path detection as standard equipment.  And those are not 'premium' makes.
      -I'll let others decide if they think the styling is too tepid.  I don't mind the understated styling but do admit that the color selections that are available on this car leave me wanting.  I like the red on the GS, and the smoked pearl metallic is nice.  And Buick seems to think they should charge extra for paint colors when they don't make the ride and drive anything special.
      -pricing.  I think the average nature of this car would be easily forgiven if the pricing were in line with being an average car; not priced for a premium marque.  Like the LaCrosse and Envision, it is best to wait out the model year if you are buying and wait for the inevitable 7,000-10,000 or more in discounts...which might bring the pricing in line with what the vehicle really is.  You can't say this vehicle is appealing at the prices it is at now.  
      SUMMARY:
      This probably seems like a negative review, but you should consider it more of underwhelmed and let down.  This car as I drove it just doesn't have any kind of endearing personality to speak of!  At the end of the day, it took Buick two extra years to bring to the US it's own Malibu clone, which doesn't have much more to show for it.... apart from the clever hatch and base 2.0 engine upgrade over the 1.5.  I actually am very curious now to be among the first to try the 2019 Malibu 1.5t + CVT combo.  But that's an aside for another discussion.  The 2.0 that general motors puts in so many vehicles has never impressed me, and that's due more to it's character than anything.  I had hopes this would be the ONE CAR that it would feel sporting in; one that would make the car feel at least a little, like a SPORTS SEDAN.  Nope.  I will wait with baited breath to someday find a v6 GS to test, as i think it will be the only Regal worth anything.  At least worth anything more than just being another option in the midsize, genericar class.  And I hope Buick is working on a twin turbo six option as well for the GS (GSX?).  I tend to think this car won't move the needle in marketplace excitement until it has a tire shredder under the hood to brag about...The v6 will promise smoother revs and deeper lungs at least......... Still, as a replacement in the bottom end of the Buick lineup for the Verano, I am ok with this.  Just please, sex it up!
       
       
       
       
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