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Drew Dowdell

Buick News: Buick to Look to China for more product

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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


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Chinese Buicks?

Well, if anything, the Chinese admiration for Buick should be considered a positive for us North American Buick admirers  as its the Chinese consumer that has kept Buick's iconic brand image alive.

But, is GM suggesting to rebadge GM's Chinese automotive partners' vehicles and peddle them as Buicks over here?   (correct me if Im wrong but the Chinese Buick sedans are what we got over here too, non? The Velite was the Verano which begat the convertible which is the Chevy Cruze anyway which had its bones be engineered by Opel...the Regal and Lacrosse are on the Epsilon 2 platform...again, Opel which the Lacrosse will die and possibly the Impala too)  

SHYTE!  

THAT is even WORSE than Opel sourced Buicks!

At least Opel was part of the GM umbrella. Since 1929!  Opel had a helping hand in several successful GM engineering demands over the decades...the thing is, Opel was as much a GM brand as Pontiac was.  

Nope! I do NOT approve of this!   I smell 1980s and 1990s Buick FWD mediocre redundancy repeating itself.

 Buick Skyhawk of the 1970s and Buick Somerset of the 1980s and Buick Skylark of the 1990s...

*SIGH*

 

 

Edited by oldshurst442
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I think Buick go all SUVs, they aren't going to keep the Regal past this life cycle, they aren't going to bring the Excelle over from China as a $19,999 price leader.   So I think it is becomes a 3 crossover brand until the day all these crossovers are just cannibalizing each other.

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If it brings quality with tight fit n finish of new auto's that keeps the name plate alive and not just a cheap ass badge engineered job, I am fine with looking to the GM Buick group in China for inspiration.

Hopefully this is BEV3 platform focused EVs for the US market place.

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21 minutes ago, dfelt said:

Hopefully this is BEV3 platform focused EVs for the US market place.

The downhill slide will instantly grow more precipitous if this notion comes to fruition.

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13 minutes ago, ocnblu said:

The downhill slide will instantly grow more precipitous if this notion comes to fruition.

Yes for ICE it is a Slippery slop to the demise of old ways of doing things that have had their time. From Racing to drag racing everyone else can see the exciting future of electric's racing, driving and buzzing around.

Enjoy my friend living in the past.

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Buick getting all of their vehicles made for the Chinese market makes sense given that China is about 75% of Buick sales.  Buick as a three-CUV car marque in the USA makes sense since car sales are so anemic.

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1 hour ago, oldshurst442 said:

But, is GM suggesting to rebadge GM's Chinese automotive partners' vehicles and peddle them as Buicks over here?   (correct me if Im wrong but the Chinese Buick sedans are what we got over here too, non? The Velite was the Verano which begat the convertible which is the Chevy Cruze anyway which had its bones be engineered by Opel...the Regal and Lacrosse are on the Epsilon 2 platform...again, Opel which the Lacrosse will die and possibly the Impala too)  

We didn't get any Chinese sedans. We only got the Chinese Envision.  The Verano was an Opel Astra reworked for the US and Chinese markets to be a Buick.  The Regal was the Opel Insignia and was initially built in Germany for the US, came to Oshawa, and then moved back to Germany for the current version.  The only GM sedan built in China and sold in the US was the Cadillac CT6 PHEV... and that is toast now too. 

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1 minute ago, Drew Dowdell said:

We didn't get any Chinese sedans. We only got the Chinese Envision.  The Verano was an Opel Astra reworked for the US and Chinese markets to be a Buick.  The Regal was the Opel Insignia and was initially built in Germany for the US, came to Oshawa, and then moved back to Germany for the current version.  The only GM sedan built in China and sold in the US was the Cadillac CT6 PHEV... and that is toast now too. 

Yeah. I thought so!

Anyway, my thoughts still stand.

GM's partnership with Chinese automotive brands, like SAIC, well, I do not think they produce good stuff. I googled some of their stuff and even if the quality is up to snuff, which I dont think it to be true,  they arent really appealing anyway.

Their SUVs are very derivative looking and their cars look like cheap knock-offs of VWs and/or Hondas...

I think they own MG automobiles...of former English decent...and some other cars look like MG cars of the 1990s...YIKES!!!

While EVs are important to the Chinese market, GM is engineering their own platforms, and with Rivian, they may not need Chinese platformed EVs for Buick...although good to ease up on the EV costs, but not necessary to use. 

Selling EVs in China is a whole different discussion though. 

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1 hour ago, dfelt said:

a Slippery slop

 

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32 minutes ago, Drew Dowdell said:

@oldshurst442 - I think it is more that they develop a car for the Chinese market first and then decide if they'll sell/build it in the US also. 

Oh...

Got it!

16 minutes ago, Cmicasa the Great said:

I'm not a fan of anything Chinese but I have to say that if Chinese buy Buicks.. to the tune of 1.4 Million last year versus the 206K here.. then GM should care more about that market than here.

Then Casa's post sums it up quite nicely for me! 

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5 minutes ago, regfootball said:

DOES THIS MEAN WE'LL FINALLY GET THE GL6 AND GL8???

 

AVENIR!!!!

 

image.pngimage.png

Would make sense but I doubt it.

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1 minute ago, regfootball said:

YOU DO REALIZE I WAS BEING QUITE SARCASTIC...lol

Been working since 5am PST and still at it, so quickly looked and responded, as you know many of us without the proper Emojii seem to have a hard time reading Sarcastic comments! :P;) :roflmao:

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Mmm..Chinese Buicks.  Makes me think about getting Chinese take out one night this week.  Maybe Kung Pao Chicken or Moo Shu Pork.  Had Indian tonight. 

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3 minutes ago, Robert Hall said:

Mmm..Chinese Buicks.  Makes me think about getting Chinese take out one night this week.  Maybe Kung Pao Chicken or Moo Shu Pork.  Had Indian tonight. 

Just think we could have a Cadillac Pecking Duck! :P 

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5 hours ago, dfelt said:

If it brings quality with tight fit n finish of new auto's that keeps the name plate alive and not just a cheap ass badge engineered job, I am fine with looking to the GM Buick group in China for inspiration.

Hopefully this is BEV3 platform focused EVs for the US market place.

Highly thinking no-though china is the major testing ground for EVs now.

 

If GM plans to focus on EVs, Buick would be the biggest waste to do it on.

 

Better yet, if Buick is just going to be another copycat division- just send the whole brand to China instead....

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On 2/18/2019 at 11:25 PM, regfootball said:

DOES THIS MEAN WE'LL FINALLY GET THE GL6 AND GL8???

 

AVENIR!!!!

 

image.pngimage.png

Well, how much of a market is there for minivans these days?  I thought most just went the CUV/SUV route...

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58 minutes ago, Paolino said:

Well, how much of a market is there for minivans these days?  I thought most just went the CUV/SUV route...

Not much of one. Only the Pacifica, Sienna, and Sedona survive. 

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2 hours ago, Drew Dowdell said:

Not much of one. Only the Pacifica, Sienna, and Sedona survive. 

Honda Odyssey also survives.  These four models aside, minivan models have been replaced (or displaced) by CUVs.

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I don't know why I didn't think of it before, but Buick could be the crossover coupe brand, while GMC is the traditional crossover brand.  Then each can build 4 crossovers that are the same, except for a sloped rear roofline on the Buicks.  Seems like an idea the braintrusts that run most auto companies would come up with.  These companies are so crossover obsessed, pretty soon they will segment crossovers out 9 ways like how GM did it with W-bodies in the 80s.

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Posted (edited)

BMW's wishfully-so-called "crossover coupes" [read: diminished headroom & cargo volume SUV] sell at less than 10% of their standard SUVs (X4 & X6 vs. X3 & X5). They're not the 'next big thing', sorry.

Edited by balthazar
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