New GM Trademark Points to a Production Run for a Recent Sexy Concept
Earlier in April, at the Beijing Auto Show, Buick revealed a new high-tech compact crossover concept, called the Enspire, that featured a huge number of exciting features and design cues. Now, it’s looking like that concept will soon hit the production line, but the question is - what will it bring to the table?
Avenir Name to Serve as Sub-Brand for Buick
Buick says it wants to capitalize on a recent uptick in growth, and in order to do so, it has set about creating a new top-of-the-line luxury sub-brand. Taking cues from the Avenir sedan concept first revealed at the Detroit Auto Show last year, the sub-brand looks poised for release on a global scale starting with the 2018 model year.
Essentially, the Avenir sub-brand will be akin to the Denali trim level currently in place for GMC’s range-topping truck models. Buick hopes the inclusion of Avenir-branded offerings will cement gains made with its changing customer base, which according to a recent press release, includes more female buyers and former customers of competing brands. If all goes according to plan, Avenir will also expand Buick’s reach overseas.
So then – what’ll make the Avenir sub-brand stand out amongst the competition? Buick says the exterior will include “a three-dimensional mesh grille, large-diameter wheels, and unique trim finishes,” while the cabin space will incorporate a “quiet, inviting environment with unique seat details, modern trim materials and Avenir script identification.”
Simply put – a sharp exterior styling with plus-sized rollers and a fancy fascia, as well as upscale materials and lots of badges in the interior. Sounds about right.
Continue reading for the full story.
General Motors has filed two trademark applications that suggest a wagon version of the Buick Regal might be underway. Specifically, GM filed trademarks for "Regal Tourx" and "Tourx," both under the "motor land vehicles, namely automobiles" category. According to AutoGuide, both applications were submitted on December 16th, 2015, and will be assigned to an examining attorney in approximately three months.
While "tour" is usually part of denominations assigned to wagon models — Tourer and Touring are used mostly in Europe — the "x" in the trademark could mean that Buick is also considering an all-wheel-drive version similar to the A4 Avant-based Audi Allroad. As most of you may already know, the Regal is based on the Euro-spec Opel Insignia, which is also available as the Sports Tourer wagon and high-riding Country Tourer on the Old Continent.
Given that Buick has already trademarked the "Regal Sport Touring" name earlier in 2015, both versions are likely to cross the pond to the U.S. should the brand green-light them. If so, don’t expect them to arrive Stateside until the sixth-generation Regal is introduced. In showrooms since 2009, the current Regal is in for a replacement for the 2017 model year.
Buick stopped selling station wagons nearly two decades ago, when both the eighth-generation Roadmaster and fifth-generation Century were discontinued. Although both models were redesigned for 1997, Buick dropped the wagon body styles due to poor sales. As for the Regal, only the second-generation model, built from 1978 to 1987, was offered in this configuration. The wagon was discontinued at the end of 1983.
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Most of the products that were unveiled at the 2015 Shanghai Motor Show have little relevance for car buyers in the U.S., but the debut of China’s 2016 Buick Verano is a look into the crystal ball for Buick showrooms here. After seeing strong sales in its first two model years on the market, last year saw a small drop in sales that put the Verano as Buick’s fourth-best-selling model (out of five products), so an update to the bottom of its lineup is definitely needed. Although branded a 2016 model year in China, there were doubts on whether the new compact sedan will arrive in the North America in time to be labeled as a 2016 model. Turns out, Buick was able to do that, too, as the 2016 Verano has now been announced in the US. Even with most of the major auto shows over in the U.S., Buick was able to squeeze in the announcement of the 2016 Verano in time for the last auto event on the calendar. The timeline looks stretched now but don’t be surprised to see the new U.S.-spec Buick Verano make its official debut at the LA Auto Show in November 2015.
Updated 08/13/2015: Buick announced today the addition of the new Sport Touring (ST) models to the 2016 Verano lineup. They will be distinguished by distinctive exterior cues, like special 18-inch wheels and a rear spoiler, plus additional equipment to the interior.
Continue reading to learn more about the 2016 Buick Verano.
According to a report, Buick has filed a few intriguing trademarks recently, including the Avenir, the Regal Sport Touring, and the LaCrosse Sport Touring.
With Buick managing to survive GM’s purge back in the 2000s, it was clear that there was a future for the brand. In more recent years, the Buick brand has migrated away from the granddad’s-car image to a brand tuned more toward sub-luxury buyers. In addition to adding more luxury, it has also added a touch of youthfulness with models like the Verano and Regal Turbo, and the Cascada convertible. Because of its recent movement, seeing these new trademarks is really no surprise.
The Avenir name is the most interesting of the trademarks, as it could potentially signal the brand’s intentions to move forward with its super-luxurious 2015 Avenir Concept. A model like the Avenir would not necessarily sell well, but it would give the brand the level of prestige it needs for more buyers to consider buying a Buick instead of stretching for the Bimmer.
As for the Sport Touring models, there are a few scenarios. The most likely of these is that they are simply new trim levels that give the two models more sportiness and luxury. The other scenario requires a look across the Atlantic at the Opel Insignia Sports Tourer, which is essentially a station wagon version of the Regal. This points toward the possibility that Buick could be looking to release a pair of wagons based on the two sedans here in the U.S., but that is highly unlikely.
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Buick has been selling its new Envision in China since last year, but it looks like the automaker might be closer to offering its mid-size crossover here in the U.S. GM Authority posted some amateur spy shots that show a Buick Envision testing in Michigan without so much as a single piece of camouflage.
The most intriguing part of this Envision is the Buick logo. Look at the pictures of any China-spec Buick, and you’ll see that the front and rear badges share the same red, white and blue tri-shield logo, but the Envision spied in the States, however, clearly exhibits the chrome-only Buick logo currently used in North America. Other than these minor changes made to the front and rear badging, this spied Envision and the one that debuted last year for China appear to be identical.
Based on the lack of cladding and the production-ready look, Buick could be looking to debut the U.S. version of the Envision sooner rather than later – perhaps even at the upcoming New York Auto Show. There’s no information to back this assumption up, but Buick did manage to do a great job of keeping the Avenir Concept a secret until its debut at this year’s North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
Looking at Buick’s current lineup, the mid-size Envision would fit in nicely between the Encore and the Enclave, and it would be based on the same D2XX platform as some of GM’s higher-volume models like the next-gen versions of the Chevrolet Equinox and Chevrolet Cruze.
Note: China-spec Buick Envision shown above.
Continue reading to learn more about the Buick Envision.
About 10 years ago, Buick showcased the 2004 Velite concept at the 2004 New York Auto Show. It was a roadster study designed by Bertone that followed the Bengal, a much more impressive concept in terms of styling, but one that was never considered to be a viable production vehicle. The Velite was introduced as a more practical version of the Bengal, but it never became a production car. Now a decade later, GM has filed a trademark application with United States Patent & Trademark Office for the term "Velite."
The manufacturer filed the application on November 19th, 2014, under the "Goods and Services" category for "motor land vehicles, namely, automobiles, sport utility vehicles, trucks, vans, engines therefor and structural parts thereof." GM previously applied for the trademark back in 2011 and although it has not been granted, it has received a fifth extension to submit a Statement of Use document. The office allows applicants a total of six extensions to submit the Statement of Use, which means GM is about to use the trademark in real-world product.
So what are we looking at then? First and foremost, the nameplate will likely be used for a Buick vehicle. Then there’s the Velite concept’s roadster configuration, which suggests Buick might introduce a convertible. That being said, there’s only one viable option at the moment, and that’s the rebadged Opel Cascada, a vehicle rumored to cross the pond with a Buick badge since 2013.
Expected to arrive Stateside for the 2016 model year, the U.S.-spec Cascada, or the Buick Velite if we can already call it that, will look nearly identical to its European sibling and feature the company’s trademark waterfall front grille.
Note: Opel Cascada pictured here.
Click past the jump to read more about GM’s latest trademark.
In the past few weeks, a strange-looking Buick crossover was caught out testing. At that point, no one had any idea on what model this could be, but it now looks like the strange crossover will, in fact, be a new addition to Buick’s lineup.
Recent reports suggest that the new crossover will be named "Anthem" and will most likely be reserved for North American and Chinese markets. Buick will place it between the current Encore and Enclave models, and it will be put into production in mid-2014 as a 2015 model.
The Anthem will be built on GM’s global compact architecture, also known as "Delta." As for the engine lineup, the Anthem will carry different engines for each market. For the American market, the most obvious choice of powerplants will be GM’s well-known 2.5- and 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engines.
While it may sound strange to you, Buick’s decision to add a third crossover to its lineup shouldn’t be a surprise, especially when you consider that crossover sales improved by 14 percent this year.
Click past the jump to read more about the upcoming Buick Anthem.
Note: Buick Encore pictured here.
Grand National, T-Type and GNX are three special editions offered by Buick for its second-generation Regal: the Grand National arrived in 1982, the T-Type in 1983 and the GNX in 1987. All three names were dropped once the third-generation Regal debuted. All of you gearheads already knew that, right?
We’re willing to bet that you didn’t know that rumors are floating around that Buick will resuscitate all three nameplates in the upcoming years. All three models will be offered as four-door sedans and will be built on GM’s new rear-wheel-drive Alpha platform, which will be shared with the Cadillac ATS.
Just like in the past, the Grand National and the T-Type will come with the same powertrains and suspension calibrations. The only distinctive feature being the exterior color, as the T-Type will be offered in a full color palette and the Grand National only in a black, staying true to the original. Inside Line reports that the Grand National and GNX will likely be powered by GM’s new twin-turbocharged 3.6-liter V-6 engine with an output in the 350- to 400-horsepower range.
The GNX will be the most powerful version and will likely get a nice helping of LT1 V-8 muscle. We’re not too sure if GM will detune the new LT1 before installing it in the GNX, if it happens, but if not, this would put it at 450 horsepower. We wouldn’t be surprised to see it cranked down to 425 ponies – God forbid, GM step on its precious Corvette’s toes.
All three models are expected to come with six-speed manual transmissions standard with the option of a six-speed automatic.
Muscle car enthusiasts everywhere are now jumping with joy at this announcement, but keep your cool fellas, we don’t expect them to hit the Auto Show scene until sometime in 2014.
Full details on the three models will be revealed in the upcoming month, so stay tuned!
From 1959 through 1990, Buick used the “Electra” name to top off its range of automobiles. It was never an overly powerful or fast car, but in its earlier years, it was known as a full-size ride that moved well and rode like a fine Italian leather sofa. After its downsizing in the mid-1980s, Buick chose to axe the name altogether.
As of late, GM has been on a trademarking binge, with its tagging the SS and ELR, and now we can add another one to the list. You guessed it; GM has officially trademarked the Electra name. This could mean absolutely nothing, but with the huge overhaul that Buick has received in recent years, this does point to a model to come.
With it possibly bearing the “Electra” name, we can only assume that this potential new model would take a slot directly above the Lacrosse, making it the new range-topping car. This is purely speculation, but with the category that GM trademarked the Electra under, 1B , the law requires the owner of the trademark to show true intent to use the trademark for a product in the future.
For now, we only know of the trademark and its category. Maybe OnStar will make another programming boo-boo and post the Electra on its list of qualifying GM cars, so we have a better idea. We will update you the second more information leaks out about the Electra. And yes, given GM’s recent trends, there will be tons of “unintentional” leaks.
Back in 2007, Buick unveiled a cool Riviera Concept which many thought would move on to production form. Nothing has been heard about this concept since then, but on May 3rd General Motors filed a trademark for a Riviera name, citing it for use on automobiles. Although they did not say it would be used for a Buick model, the previous concept makes us consider this as an option.
In fact, last year, it was rumored that GM wanted to produce a sporty coupe, possibly based on the rear-wheel drive Alpha platform. Then, at the 2012 New York Auto Show, the company announced it was considering bringing the Riviera name back, but in a rear-wheel drive form. The concept unveiled back in 2007 was a sporty coupe built on an Epsilon front-wheel drive platform.
So, the Riviera name may be used either for either a production version of the concept which would arrive sometime in 2015, or a new Riviera concept. We’re hoping for the first scenario!
Teaser images in the year 2010 are turning into what brightly colored, mismatched baggy clothes were in the 90’s; widespread and tacky. Jumping on this latest strip tease trend is General Motors with their first teaser image of the 2012 Buick Verano. The teaser reveals a big part of the car’s bonnet as well as a good portion of the front bumper. Are we crazy impressed? Of course not.
The future Verano is a new compact model that aims to customers looking for a car smaller than the Buick Regal and will be built at the at the Orion Assembly Center alongside Chevrolet’s new small car. The choice of venue is simple based on the fact that GM is dropping a sizable amount of cash into retooling the plant. The total cost of investment is approximately $600 million, including both the new small car and the Verano.
"Verano will bring premium styling, performance and content to Buick buyers wanting a smaller car than Regal," said Reuss. "The investment in Orion Assembly also extends GM’s local small car footprint, again increasing the number of U.S.-made small vehicles available in showrooms."
Improvements for the Orion Assembly Center are expected to be finished by summer 2011.
Press release after the jump.
Gas prices won’t stay cheap forever and the automakers have been charged with the duty of making small and fuel-efficient cars. We know that the majority of the public isn’t smart about car buying. The phrase, “bigger is better” seems to play over and over again in the heads of car shoppers. Yet, when the price of gas rises, so do small car sales and, unlike last time, General Motors is ready.
Buick will be introducing the Verano compact car, as well as a LaCrosse hybrid sedan. We have no idea what will be under the hood of this car, or what platform it will get. If we had to guess, we would say the car would be based on the newChevrolet Cruze, as it would be almost the same size.
Cadillac, GMC, and Chevrolet are also working on fuel-efficient vehicles. Cadillac is working on the ATS,GMC has been creating a production version of the Granite concept, and Chevy should have an all-new Aveo to go alongside the Spark. Automotive News is also reporting that GM is planning on shrinking the Impala.
Lots of big things are coming about for the small car market. Let’s just hope these alternative options will offer style as well as function.
During a live webchat, Buick’s marketing chief Rover McCormack revealed some future plans for the company. It seems the automaker is looking into a coupe and a convertible model.
Buick has a big hit on their hands with the new 2011 Regal and it seems the company isn’t done with it just yet. McCormack said that a coupe version of the Regal was receiving “very strong consideration”, according to EgmCartech.
McCormack then went on to suggest that, “We [Buick] are always looking for ways to excite our customers…I think a convertible would do just that.”
If that’s not a sure thing, we don’t know what is. While nothing was officially announced, McCormack’s words were all that we needed to hear.
McCormack also mentioned a wagon variant of the Regal, to finish out the model line. We have seen a few spy photographs of the Regal wagon on the roads.
We look forward to these new models and we hope that they look as good as the four-door Regal.
Back in 2008, there was a buzz in the air about Buick bringing a small car to the U.S. side of the pond. Now, about two years later, the buzz has been spotted and it comes in the form of China’s Buick Excelle. This small sedan, expected to be even smaller than the Regal, is reported to be produced at GM Orion plant which is expected to produce about 60,000 of these puppies. There are plans for the Buick to be sold in Europe, but sources say the main markets will be that of China and the U.S.
The Baby Buick may feature engine options from under the hood of the Chevy Cruze which means we may expect to see a four-cylinder, 1.6, and 1.8-liter gasoline engine and a 2.0-liter turbo diesel. A lithium-ion battery may also be in the running if Buick is seriously considering attracting more buyers. A hybrid or electric vehicle seems to be a good investment to make if auto brands want to take their auto making futures seriously.
Buick has not been able to revive its brand successfully and the move for a smaller sedan over to the states and the elimination of trim-level badging may be just what they need to increase their market share.
The entry-level luxury brand, Buick, is gaining sales momentum and using it to expand its lineup. Following the success of the 2010 LaCrosse (sales up an astonishing 214%) and the Enclave (sales this year have jumped 30%), Buick has revealed at the Buick Immersion Program at the Tech Center a plan to come out with a compact car and small crossover which would round out their lineup. As of right now, Buick models stand at the Regal entry-level luxury/sports sedan, the LaCrosse mid-size luxury sedan, Lucerne full-size luxury sedan, and Enclave full-size luxury crossover. Before we see smaller Buicks driving around, we will get to feast our eyes on the all-new midsize Regal due to come in the next few months. Brian Sweeney, U.S. Sales and Service Vice President for Buick GMC says the new models from Buick will allow them to utilize 47% of the market.
"We are starting to gain some traction in sales," said John Schwegman Buick’s U.S. marketing vice president, Buick-GMC, "but we’re not declaring victory yet."
Hit the jump for the full story.
General Motors announced that the Buick line-up will be expanded with a new coupe model in the next few years. The future coupe will be a "statement, all the design cues and everything would drive themselves down into all Buicks."
"Buick definitely needs more product in the pipeline. My role is really being a zealot for getting Buick more youthful, more spirited and probing ideas [for] coupes, more expressive vehicles. That is really my job," said John Cafaro, director of design for Buick and Chevrolet.
"Buick is kind of going through what Cadillac went through" when it reinvented itself, he said. "Cadillac said: ’What we are doing is not working. Our customers are dying off. We have to carve a new image.’ That is where Buick is right now."
Earlier this week, TopSpeed.com was graciously invited by GM to attend a press event on their famous Detroit test track ’Milford Proving Ground’. In the morning, we completed the safe driving program and test drove several GM vehicles. Later on, we met up for dinner with several other car bloggers and GM’s general manager, Edward J. Peper. Below are the highlights of the event.