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Found 4 results

  1. Drew Dowdell - Managing Editor, CheersandGears.com December 7th, 2012 Today is the final day of Buick Week. So far we’ve looked at the four new or refreshed vehicles in Buick’s lineup. It is kind of hard to believe that the Buick LaCrosse and Buick Regal are now the two oldest designs, in that order, Buick offers. Buick Week: Day 1 - 2013 Buick Verano Review Day 2 - 2013 Buick Enclave First Drive Day 3 - 2013 Buick Verano Turbo First Drive Day 4 - 2013 Buick Encore First Drive Day 5 - Buick to the Future! What is coming: LaCrosse: The current LaCrosse debuted in 2009 as a 2010 model. At just three model years into its current run, the LaCrosse still holds its own, but the competition is increasing and newer, and sales are sagging. The Lexus ES has been refreshed, Hyundai has a very competent entry with their Azera, the Toyota Avalon is all new, and Lincoln has a new MKZ with a broad range of fuel-efficient power trains. We are expecting to see hints of a heavily-updated Buick LaCrosse during the coming auto show season. Regal: Buick’s German-bred sports sedan typically does very well in reviews, but in a rough economy more consumers are opting for the more economical but almost as premium feeling Verano. Buick and Opel are already preparing a refresh of the current model.What is not coming: GNX/Grand National: Buick laughed off the suggestion of a GNX when asked directly. What we’d like to see: It is no secret that around CheersandGears.com there is a desire for more body styles to be offered by the various GM divisions. Buick has a rich history of coupes, wagons, and convertibles, yet they offer none of those body styles at the moment. We humbly submit these suggestions: Image copyright General Motors - Modifications by Andrew Currie Buick Verano Convertible: Based on the Opel Cascada, this convertible can lower its top in 17 seconds at speeds up to 31 miles per hour. The Opel version is powered by a re-worked 1.4T and the new Opel 1.6T with 200 horsepower and 200 lb.-ft. of torque. Stateside, we hope to see the 1.6T and the 250 hp version of the 2.0T from the Verano Turbo. We would prefer to see Buick add this to the Verano lineup to strengthen that brand within Buick rather than bring the Cascada name stateside. Image copyright General Motors - Modifications by Andrew Currie Buick David: Based on the Opel Adam and in homage to the founder of Buick, David Dunbar Buick. This cheeky little compact would be a premium entry in the segment to go up against the likes of the Mini-Cooper, the coming Mercedes A-Class, and Fiat 500 Abarth. In the Opel versions, though there are three engines available, none generate more than 100 horsepower. A direct-injected and turbo-charged engine is said to be coming. So as not to clash with the Chevrolet Sonic, maintain a premium status, and continue with Buick’s history of turbo-charging, we suggest the Buick David come with the 148 horsepower 1.4T from the Buick Encore as the standard engine with the 200 horsepower 1.6T optional. With a target curb weight of just 2,200lbs, this would be a Goliath entry into the premium hot hatch market. Buick is a brand on the move. It is one of the few brands, especially of premium brands, to lower their average buyer age recently. Buick’s average buyer age has dropped 7 years over the past 5 model years. They have increased their sales conquest rate to over 43%, increased sales while reducing the number of models, and two of their four models currently on sale are in segment leadership positions. Drew Dowdell is Managing Editor of CheersandGears.com and can be reached at Drew.Dowdell@CheersandGears.com or on Twitter as @cheersngears *Both the Buick Verano Convertible and Buick David are wishful thinking on our part. They are in no way "news"; of future Buick vehicles. Images of the Buick Verano Convertible and Buick David are based on copyright of General Motors images under Creative Commons license and are not for commercial use or distribution. View full article
  2. Drew Dowdell - Managing Editor, CheersandGears.com December 7th, 2012 Today is the final day of Buick Week. So far we’ve looked at the four new or refreshed vehicles in Buick’s lineup. It is kind of hard to believe that the Buick LaCrosse and Buick Regal are now the two oldest designs, in that order, Buick offers. Buick Week: Day 1 - 2013 Buick Verano Review Day 2 - 2013 Buick Enclave First Drive Day 3 - 2013 Buick Verano Turbo First Drive Day 4 - 2013 Buick Encore First Drive Day 5 - Buick to the Future! What is coming: LaCrosse: The current LaCrosse debuted in 2009 as a 2010 model. At just three model years into its current run, the LaCrosse still holds its own, but the competition is increasing and newer, and sales are sagging. The Lexus ES has been refreshed, Hyundai has a very competent entry with their Azera, the Toyota Avalon is all new, and Lincoln has a new MKZ with a broad range of fuel-efficient power trains. We are expecting to see hints of a heavily-updated Buick LaCrosse during the coming auto show season. Regal: Buick’s German-bred sports sedan typically does very well in reviews, but in a rough economy more consumers are opting for the more economical but almost as premium feeling Verano. Buick and Opel are already preparing a refresh of the current model.What is not coming: GNX/Grand National: Buick laughed off the suggestion of a GNX when asked directly. What we’d like to see: It is no secret that around CheersandGears.com there is a desire for more body styles to be offered by the various GM divisions. Buick has a rich history of coupes, wagons, and convertibles, yet they offer none of those body styles at the moment. We humbly submit these suggestions: Image copyright General Motors - Modifications by Andrew Currie Buick Verano Convertible: Based on the Opel Cascada, this convertible can lower its top in 17 seconds at speeds up to 31 miles per hour. The Opel version is powered by a re-worked 1.4T and the new Opel 1.6T with 200 horsepower and 200 lb.-ft. of torque. Stateside, we hope to see the 1.6T and the 250 hp version of the 2.0T from the Verano Turbo. We would prefer to see Buick add this to the Verano lineup to strengthen that brand within Buick rather than bring the Cascada name stateside. Image copyright General Motors - Modifications by Andrew Currie Buick David: Based on the Opel Adam and in homage to the founder of Buick, David Dunbar Buick. This cheeky little compact would be a premium entry in the segment to go up against the likes of the Mini-Cooper, the coming Mercedes A-Class, and Fiat 500 Abarth. In the Opel versions, though there are three engines available, none generate more than 100 horsepower. A direct-injected and turbo-charged engine is said to be coming. So as not to clash with the Chevrolet Sonic, maintain a premium status, and continue with Buick’s history of turbo-charging, we suggest the Buick David come with the 148 horsepower 1.4T from the Buick Encore as the standard engine with the 200 horsepower 1.6T optional. With a target curb weight of just 2,200lbs, this would be a Goliath entry into the premium hot hatch market. Buick is a brand on the move. It is one of the few brands, especially of premium brands, to lower their average buyer age recently. Buick’s average buyer age has dropped 7 years over the past 5 model years. They have increased their sales conquest rate to over 43%, increased sales while reducing the number of models, and two of their four models currently on sale are in segment leadership positions. Drew Dowdell is Managing Editor of CheersandGears.com and can be reached at Drew.Dowdell@CheersandGears.com or on Twitter as @cheersngears *Both the Buick Verano Convertible and Buick David are wishful thinking on our part. They are in no way "news"; of future Buick vehicles. Images of the Buick Verano Convertible and Buick David are based on copyright of General Motors images under Creative Commons license and are not for commercial use or distribution.
  3. December 5th, 2012 Drew Dowdell Managing Editor - CheerandGears.com I am running a bit late with today’s Buick Week entry because I spent the day running around the countryside surrounding Atlanta, Georgia putting a few 2013 Buick Encores through the paces. That review will be available for you to tomorrow. In case you missed it, yesterday we went on a First Drive of the 2013 Buick Enclave. On the first day of Buick week I took you on a full review of the 2013 Buick Verano. Today we are going on a first drive of the Buick Verano Turbo. Buick Week: Day 1 – 2013 Buick Verano Review Day 2 – 2013 Buick Enclave First Drive Day 3 – 2013 Buick Verano Turbo First Drive This ain't Buick first time at the rodeo... Buick has a long history with forced induction engines and arguably more experience than any other US brand. Beyond the legendary Buick GNX and Grand National, Buick produced turbo versions of their Riviera and Regal coupes in the 1980s, super charged Regals, Rivieras, and Park Avenues in the 1990s, and recently reintroduced turbo-charging in the Regal with two performance levels of turbo charged engines in that car.But those are all larger luxury cars and this is a story about a compact. Did you know that Buick offered a fire cracker version of their compact, J-Body based Buick Skyhawk in 1984? The Turbo was offered only in the T-Type trim, the 1984 Skyhawk T-Type came with a 1.8 liter DOHC turbo-charged 4-cylinder putting out 150 horsepower and 165 lb-ft of torque in a car that weighed in right around 2400lbs. These are excellent power to weight numbers today much less in 1984, when GM’s V8s could not even wheeze out similar horsepower numbers. In 1987, Buick increased the engine’s displacement to a full 2.0 liters, horsepower was up to 165, and torque wrenched in at 175 lb-ft at 4,000 rpm. Production of the Skyhawk ended in 1989. Though relatively unknown, these Skyhawk T-types were fun little compacts that could provide a swift kick in the pants when asked to. But what's 1984 got to do with me? That brings us to the present day. For 2013, Buick is adding a 2.0 liter turbo engine to their compact Verano. With 250 horsepower and 260 ft-lb of torque on tap from the direct injected engine will give you a swift kick in the pants just like that Skyhawk of old could. Weighing in at about 3,300 lbs, the Verano Turbo runs to 60 in 6.2 seconds. Though the mileage penalty (20 city/31 highway – manual) and (21 city / 30 highway – automatic) is minimal over the 2.4 liter powered Verano, Buick does recommend premium fuel, though it will sip regular if needed with a slight performance penalty.Buick invited me to drive both the manual and automatic transmission versions of the Verano Turbo through the countryside surrounding Louisville, KY. Visually, there is very little external difference between the Turbo and non-Turbo versions, you just get a rear spoiler, dual chrome-tip exhaust, and an extra badge on the trunk. Inside the story is much the same, save for a set of metallic sport pedals. My main complaint inside the Verano continues in the turbo editions: the lack of power seat recline for the driver and complete lack of power seat adjustment entirely for the passenger. For a car that can easily crest over the $30k mark, these are noticeable absences. Buick compacts: Now available in "Faster" The story of the Verano Turbo is entirely about how it drives. By starting with the already excellent handling of the base Verano and adding the thrust of the turbo charged engine, Buick has created a compact premium sedan that is deceptively quick. In the manual version, the shifter throws are a bit long, but they are nice and smooth. Once you’re accustomed to the car, relaxed shifting can be a simple two-finger “snick-snick” between gears. Torque comes on strong at low RPM and is maintained up to 5,500 – 6,000 rpm. You never seem to feel out of breath in this car like I had with the non-Turbo version. Turbo lag is minimal and non-car-nerds could be excused for thinking this is a V6 powered car. The clutch is on the light side and won’t wear out your left foot on long drives. The automatic transaxle is an upgraded version of the same transmission in the 2.4 liter powered car. Designed to take the higher torque load of the turbo engine, it goes about its work with a lot less flare than the manual transmission equipped Veranos. It does have a driver control mode for manu-matic style shifting, but it really isn't necessary to use even during enthusiastic driving. Leaving the car in drive simply lets the transmission do the job GM programmers designed it to do. Still, if you want to tell it when to shift, down-shifts and up-shifts came in a crisp, business-like manner. The extra thrust wouldn't be worth much if the Verano couldn't handle it in the corners. Buick firmed up the Verano’s suspension and steering a bit resulting in a car that feels surprisingly well balanced for being front-wheel drive. On the issue of noise control, Buick actually had to dial back the quiet tuning a little bit because they felt that Verano buyers who opted for the Turbo model would actually want to hear more of the engine while driving. Most of the change comes from exhaust tuning and gives the Verano Turbo a sound that can start the gears turning in a gear head. Overall the Verano turbo is for the buyer who appreciates the comfort of a premium compact but still want to have the that extra trust to experience an exhilarating run down a country road. Buick is reporting over 50% conquest rate for all Verano models with over 50% of those coming from import brands. Additionally, Buick has seen their average buyer age drop by 7 years over the last 5 years. Buick did not share with me the take rate on Veranos equipped with the 2.0t. but the turbo-boosted 2013 Buick Verano should help Buick turbo-boost those numbers even more in their favor. Drew Dowdell is Managing Editor of CheersandGears.com and can be reached at Drew.Dowdell@CheersandGears.com or on twitter as @cheersngears Disclaimer: Buick provided transportation to and accommodations in Louisville, KY for this event.
  4. December 5th, 2012 Drew Dowdell Managing Editor - CheerandGears.com I am running a bit late with today’s Buick Week entry because I spent the day running around the countryside surrounding Atlanta, Georgia putting a few 2013 Buick Encores through the paces. That review will be available for you to tomorrow. In case you missed it, yesterday we went on a First Drive of the 2013 Buick Enclave. On the first day of Buick week I took you on a full review of the 2013 Buick Verano. Today we are going on a first drive of the Buick Verano Turbo. Buick Week: Day 1 – 2013 Buick Verano Review Day 2 – 2013 Buick Enclave First Drive Day 3 – 2013 Buick Verano Turbo First Drive This ain't Buick first time at the rodeo... Buick has a long history with forced induction engines and arguably more experience than any other US brand. Beyond the legendary Buick GNX and Grand National, Buick produced turbo versions of their Riviera and Regal coupes in the 1980s, super charged Regals, Rivieras, and Park Avenues in the 1990s, and recently reintroduced turbo-charging in the Regal with two performance levels of turbo charged engines in that car.But those are all larger luxury cars and this is a story about a compact. Did you know that Buick offered a fire cracker version of their compact, J-Body based Buick Skyhawk in 1984? The Turbo was offered only in the T-Type trim, the 1984 Skyhawk T-Type came with a 1.8 liter DOHC turbo-charged 4-cylinder putting out 150 horsepower and 165 lb-ft of torque in a car that weighed in right around 2400lbs. These are excellent power to weight numbers today much less in 1984, when GM’s V8s could not even wheeze out similar horsepower numbers. In 1987, Buick increased the engine’s displacement to a full 2.0 liters, horsepower was up to 165, and torque wrenched in at 175 lb-ft at 4,000 rpm. Production of the Skyhawk ended in 1989. Though relatively unknown, these Skyhawk T-types were fun little compacts that could provide a swift kick in the pants when asked to. But what's 1984 got to do with me? That brings us to the present day. For 2013, Buick is adding a 2.0 liter turbo engine to their compact Verano. With 250 horsepower and 260 ft-lb of torque on tap from the direct injected engine will give you a swift kick in the pants just like that Skyhawk of old could. Weighing in at about 3,300 lbs, the Verano Turbo runs to 60 in 6.2 seconds. Though the mileage penalty (20 city/31 highway – manual) and (21 city / 30 highway – automatic) is minimal over the 2.4 liter powered Verano, Buick does recommend premium fuel, though it will sip regular if needed with a slight performance penalty.Buick invited me to drive both the manual and automatic transmission versions of the Verano Turbo through the countryside surrounding Louisville, KY. Visually, there is very little external difference between the Turbo and non-Turbo versions, you just get a rear spoiler, dual chrome-tip exhaust, and an extra badge on the trunk. Inside the story is much the same, save for a set of metallic sport pedals. My main complaint inside the Verano continues in the turbo editions: the lack of power seat recline for the driver and complete lack of power seat adjustment entirely for the passenger. For a car that can easily crest over the $30k mark, these are noticeable absences. Buick compacts: Now available in "Faster" The story of the Verano Turbo is entirely about how it drives. By starting with the already excellent handling of the base Verano and adding the thrust of the turbo charged engine, Buick has created a compact premium sedan that is deceptively quick. In the manual version, the shifter throws are a bit long, but they are nice and smooth. Once you’re accustomed to the car, relaxed shifting can be a simple two-finger “snick-snick” between gears. Torque comes on strong at low RPM and is maintained up to 5,500 – 6,000 rpm. You never seem to feel out of breath in this car like I had with the non-Turbo version. Turbo lag is minimal and non-car-nerds could be excused for thinking this is a V6 powered car. The clutch is on the light side and won’t wear out your left foot on long drives. The automatic transaxle is an upgraded version of the same transmission in the 2.4 liter powered car. Designed to take the higher torque load of the turbo engine, it goes about its work with a lot less flare than the manual transmission equipped Veranos. It does have a driver control mode for manu-matic style shifting, but it really isn't necessary to use even during enthusiastic driving. Leaving the car in drive simply lets the transmission do the job GM programmers designed it to do. Still, if you want to tell it when to shift, down-shifts and up-shifts came in a crisp, business-like manner. The extra thrust wouldn't be worth much if the Verano couldn't handle it in the corners. Buick firmed up the Verano’s suspension and steering a bit resulting in a car that feels surprisingly well balanced for being front-wheel drive. On the issue of noise control, Buick actually had to dial back the quiet tuning a little bit because they felt that Verano buyers who opted for the Turbo model would actually want to hear more of the engine while driving. Most of the change comes from exhaust tuning and gives the Verano Turbo a sound that can start the gears turning in a gear head. Overall the Verano turbo is for the buyer who appreciates the comfort of a premium compact but still want to have the that extra trust to experience an exhilarating run down a country road. Buick is reporting over 50% conquest rate for all Verano models with over 50% of those coming from import brands. Additionally, Buick has seen their average buyer age drop by 7 years over the last 5 years. Buick did not share with me the take rate on Veranos equipped with the 2.0t. but the turbo-boosted 2013 Buick Verano should help Buick turbo-boost those numbers even more in their favor. Drew Dowdell is Managing Editor of CheersandGears.com and can be reached at Drew.Dowdell@CheersandGears.com or on twitter as @cheersngears Disclaimer: Buick provided transportation to and accommodations in Louisville, KY for this event. View full article

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