Left without a proper compact after discontinuing the Skylark in 1997, Buick made a comeback to the segment by launching the Verano sedan in 2011. The vehicle quickly joined the Encore and Enclave crossovers in helping Buick’s growth in both the United States and China. In 2013, the Verano accounted for 20 percent of Buick sales in the U.S.
Although the current Verano is only three years old, Buick is already working on a brand-new model. The redesigned vehicle sits atop the same Delta II platform underpinning the upcoming Chevrolet Cruze and the Euro-exclusive Opel Astra . Naturally, the new Verano shares many of its internals with the latter.
What the Verano doesn’t share with the Astra, however, is its styling. Slightly longer and wider than its Opel -badged brother, the Verano benefits from Buick’s trademark front grille — now wider for a more aggressive grin — and borrows a few cues from the larger LaCrosse model. The spy shots that arrived in our inbox straight from Germany suggest the sedan is keeping its sleek profile, while gaining a prettier rear end, with the taillights biting more into the fenders.
Things are changing under the hood as well, where an all-new, turbocharged, 1.5-liter four-pot replaces the old 2.4-liter Ecotec unit. Word has it General Motors is also looking to share the Chevrolet Cruze’s 2.0-liter turbodiesel mill with Buick. The latter delivers 151 horsepower and 264 pound-feet of torque, while returning up to 46 mpg on the highway.
We expect the new Verano to break cover in late 2015 and go on sale for the 2016 model year.
Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 Buick Verano.