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2018 Buick LaCrosse Avenir

2018 Buick LaCrosse Avenir

The full-size sedan moves upmarket with new luxury trim

Launched in 2005 as a replacement for both the Buick Century and Lucerne, the LaCrosse was a big success in its first full year on the market, selling close to 100,000 units. Although sales dropped and the sedan rarely moved more than 50,000 examples per year since 2007, it’s still an important car for the GM-owned brand. Redesigned for 2017 with a more elegant design and a more upscale interior, the LaCrosse is now moving higher on the premium ladder with the Avenir model.

Although the Avenir name was launched with a concept car and gave us hope of a new, luxury-oriented sub-brand, it turned out to be just a trim level. This was confirmed when the Enclave Avenir was unveiled earlier in 2017 as the range-topping model of the company’s full-size crossover. Now, it’s the LaCrosse’s turn to get pampered in a move that’s supposed to satisfy market demand, according to Duncan Aldred, vice president of Buick and GMC. “Nine out of ten LaCrosse buyers are choosing one of the top two trim levels — customers are signaling they want more from Buick," he said. Let’s have a closer look at what the Avenir badge brings to the LaCrosse.

Continue reading to learn more about the Buick LaCrosse Avenir.

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2018 Buick Regal GS

2018 Buick Regal GS

Need a V-6? Look no further!

Redesigned for the 2018 model year, the Buick Regal is heavily based on the European-made Opel Insignia and shares most of its features with the German sedan. Featuring a transverse front engine and front-wheel drive as standard (AWD optional), the new Regal has already spawned Sportback and station wagon versions, just like its European sibling. Come 2017 and the Opel Insignia GSi, the brands higher performance version is coming to the U.S. as the Regal GS, a nameplate that Buick has been using since the 1990s.

Described as a vehicle in which "spirited driving meets attainable luxury and sleek, sporty design meets modern usefulness," the GS is a massive improvement over its predecessor. Not only boasting an extra 51 horsepower, it also has all-wheel-drive and all the new technology available in the standard Regal. “The new Regal GS is in the sweet spot of the market: more refined and luxurious than the mainstream, more value for the price with style and premium features on par with higher-end competitors," said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Buick. Let’s find out if this is true in the review below.

Continue reading to learn more about the Buick Regal GS.

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New GM Trademarks Suggest Buick Could Offer Regal Wagon

New GM Trademarks Suggest Buick Could Offer Regal Wagon

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.

Continue reading for the full story.

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2017 Buick LaCrosse

2017 Buick LaCrosse

When Buick introduced the 2015 Buick Avenir concept at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show, most enthusiasts, including some of us here at Top Speed, began fantasizing about a flagship sedan (the Electra and Park Avenue come to mind) that would finally give the brand a weapon for the luxury market. On the other hand, we knew there was a big chance the Avenir would remain just a concept and Buick’s latest announcement about the next-generation LaCrosse confirms just that.

There is some good news though. The 2017 LaCrosse, which made its public debut at the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show, sports design cues inspired by the Avenir concept. The front fascia borrows heavily from the concept car and the company said it’s a face all Buick vehicles will adopt by 2018. This doesn’t necessarily mean that Buick isn’t pondering a full-size sedan, but even if not, the new design language should be exciting.

“The Avenir concept shattered expectations of what a Buick could be and the 2017 LaCrosse promises to do the same. Its expressive design represents a break from convention and highlights the progressiveness in all new Buick models," said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Buick.

Updated 11/18/2015: Buick unveiled the 2017 LaCrosse at the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2017 Buick LaCrosse.

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2016 Buick Cascada

2016 Buick Cascada

The first production open-top model wearing the trishield logo since the 1990 Reatta Convertible, the all-new 2016 Buick Cascada, has just been unveiled at the North American International Auto Show. Europeans and Australians may feel like they are having a deja-vu while looking at the new model, but that is completely understandable since the Cascada has already been selling under the Opel, Vauxhall and Holden badges since 2013. Even though the new convertible was unveiled in January 2015 for U.S. consumption, the production variant will take some time to reach showrooms, with Buick announcing that it will actually go on sale in early 2016, or the same year that its European counterpart may be heading toward a mid-cycle facelift.

Nevertheless, the simple fact that Buick is finally getting a cabriolet model in its lineup again may actually lift some spirits. "The new, 2016 Buick Cascada is a beautiful, engaging convertible that represents the very best of the brand’s global development practices," said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Buick. "It’s a car that will delight customers with its fun spirit and help drive the momentum that’s fueling Buick’s success." Despite being almost as long as the Buick Regal/Opel Insignia, the all-new Cascada is actually based on GM’s Delta II platform, which is shared with the Buick Verano/Opel Astra/Chevrolet Cruze.

Still, the car offers a 2+2 seating arrangement that should prove satisfactory for four adults, especially if they are on the smaller side. Its electro-hydraulic soft-top can be retracted in just 17 seconds and at speeds up to 31 mph, making for a rather classy way of exposing its interior to the sun, while the only engine available so far is a turbocharged, 1.6-liter, four-cylinder that develops 200 horsepower and 206 pound-feet of torque.

Updated 09/23/2015: Buick announced that the all-new Cascada will be put on sale at a starting price of $33,990. According to the company the 2016 Cascada is $3,535 cheaper and offers more standard features compared to German cars like the Audi A3 Convertible.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2016 Buick Cascada

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Buick Envision Spied Testing in the U.S.

Buick Envision Spied Testing in the U.S.

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.

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GM Trademarks "Velite" Name

GM Trademarks "Velite" Name

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.

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2015 Buick LaCrosse - Driven

2015 Buick LaCrosse - Driven

As the largest sedan that Buick sells as of 2014, the LaCrosse has a very important role to fill. Buick has long been a brand associated with affordable luxury and refinement. If the biggest and best sedan it makes can’t make par, there is very little hope for the brand as a whole. When 2014 rolled around, Buick revealed a full-model refresh that had a more modern exterior design and improved interior ergonomics. Now for 2015, Buick looks to build on that platform by enhancing the list of available standard technology and features.

Is the new exterior design and equipment enough to help this Buick stay competitive? Has America finally produced a car that is good enough to go toe-to-toe with the best that Japan has to offer and win? With powerful V-6 engines abd optional AWD, Buick is swinging for the fences with this car.

I took delivery of a top-level 2015 Buick LaCrosse to give it a full run for its money. I think you may be surprised to find out what I thought.

Read on to learn more about the 2015 Buick LaCrosse

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Buick Adds an Ultra Luxury Interior Package to the 2014 LaCrosse

Buick Adds an Ultra Luxury Interior Package to the 2014 LaCrosse

The current-generation Buick LaCrosse just received a facelift for the 2014 model year, but the GM-owned brand is now rolling out a new interior package that’s set to move the sedan up the luxury ladder. Available as the Ultra Luxury Interior Package, the bundle adds extra richness to the cabin and can be fitted on all LaCrosse models powered by the 3.6-liter V-6 engine, save for the base trim.

The first thing that changes when the package is selected is the leather that wraps the front and rear seats, which gain a deep Sangria hue and white stitching. Also present on the console and the door panels, the soft, semi-aniline leather is complemented by the Ebony-painted headliner and door pillars.

Moving over to wood trims, which are mandatory in a vehicle that wants to compete in the luxury segment, the LaCrosse sedan equipped with this special package comes with Shadow Tamo Ash inserts on its dashboard, center console and door panels. What’s fancy about this high-grade species is that it’s usually used to create musical instruments, especially drums, by renowned companies. What’s more, the shade selected by Buick matches beautifully with the Sangria leather.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Buick LaCrosse.

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2014 Buick Regal GS AWD

2014 Buick Regal GS AWD

Buick’s 162-mph performance flagship is back for 2014 with a new AWD option and a revised engine design for quicker turbo boost. The 2014 Regal GS keeps all the styling elements that make it such a showstopper: the polished 20-inch alloy wheels and satin metallic intake/exhaust breathers.

There are new headlights and taillights to mark out the latest model but it will take a real spotter to differentiate the two from most angles. Up front, the projector ball is now toward the outside edge of the headlight assembly and a new LED design brings a much brighter corner graphic. Out back, the chrome trunk bar now runs the full width of the car and a wrap-around LED design brings wider tail lamps.

The GS now shares its engine with the 2014 Regal Turbo but stands alone when it comes to exterior presence, dynamic performance and interior materials. The AWD option is a welcome addition to the GS package but is only offered with the automatic transmission. Relax, the 2014 Regal GS is still available with a manual on the front-drive cars.

This hot midsize sport sedan is clearly a huge visual upgrade over the base Regal but is actually priced with a minimal $2000 jump above the loaded Regal Turbo.

Do the enhanced performance, sophisticated drivetrain and massively upgraded interior make it worthwhile? And how does it stack up versus the Audi A4 and the Cadillac ATS?

Click past the jump for the full review of the 2014 Buick Regal GS with extra information on the extensive engine update and AWD option.

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2014 Buick Regal

2014 Buick Regal

Buick’s midsize sedan benefits from a variety of mechanical, style and tech updates for 2014. The base Regal Turbo is now just as powerful as the GS and can be equipped with AWD for the first time.

It also marks the first time a base model Buick sedan can reach 60 mph in just 6.5 seconds.

The base Turbo and eAssist receive the most noticeable exterior update via new front and rear styling details, but the refinements are still very subtle. All Regals now have new LED running lights up front, a reshaped fascia and new LED taillights out back.

One surprise about the Regal is that it is not very cheap. There are no stripped-out versions and the prices start at $29,000 for this European-designed sports sedan. The Regal competes with other near-luxury sedans, like the Acura TSX and Lincoln MKZ.

This is no Buick LeSabre when it comes to styling but even more so in terms of handling and performance. The old ‘Dynaride’ days live on with the smaller Verano and larger Buick LaCrosse. The Regal takes a far sportier path with firm seating and a well-balanced ride/handling compromise closer to the Cadillac ATS than any previous Buick.

Can the strongest and most-competitive Buick Regal in decades compete successfully versus all these competitors? Is the compact, but premium, cabin a problem versus some jumbo midsize cars, like the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord?

Updated 11/14/2013: GM has just announced that the Buick Regal will come standard with the once-optional 2.0-liter turbocharged engine. It also turns in even more power than before and better fuel economy.

Click past the jump for the full review of the 2014 Buick Regal Turbo and eAssist sedans with highlights on the updates ahead of the car’s arrival in dealers this fall.

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2012 Buick Regal GS

2012 Buick Regal GS

When people think about Buicks, words like old, boring, and grandpa come to mind. Very rarely, if ever, does the word sporty get uttered as an accurate description, but get ready for all of that to change. In an effort to change the stigma attached to the brand, Buick is releasing an all new Buick Regal GS which will arrive at dealerships in the fall of 2011. This new vehicle will target models like the Audi A4 and the Acura TSX with its exclusive Ecotec 2.0L direct injected, turbocharged engine that delivers a total of 270 HP and 295 lb-ft of torque.

The last time a GS model was released by Buick, it was 2004. This model was powered by a 3.8 L L67 Series II supercharged V6 that produced 240 HP and 280 lb-ft of torque. Technology, and the constant need to improve fuel economy, has allowed Buick to pump out more horsepower out of a smaller engine, all while providing an estimated fuel economy of 33 MPG.

UPDATE 08/04/2011: Buick has announced that the Regal GS will be put on sale this fall at a starting price of $35,310, which includes a $860 destination charge. Standard features on the GS model include: push-button start; a leather-wrapped, flat-bottom sport steering wheel with audio controls; metal sport pedals; and leather-appointed, heated and 12-way adjustable sport seating, a Harman Kardon premium 336-watt, 5.1 Matrix Surround Sound system with nine speakers.

UPDATE 05/22/2012: During a recent test drive at Nevada Open Road Challenge, the 270 Regal GS clocked in an impressive top speed of 162 mph - making it the fastest model Buick ever made. The car was piloted by Rietow and Townsend and the only modifications were limited to safety equipment such as a roll hoop and five-point harness seat belts, as well as data collection computers. Check out the new video to see the test drive!

Hit the jump for more details on the Buick Regal GS.

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2012 Buick Regal GS HiPer Strut system

2012 Buick Regal GS HiPer Strut system

How does Buick take a turbocharged two-door coupe and give it the ride comfort and stability for which they have always been known? Well, in the case of the 2011 Regal CXL Turbo, they didn’t. The torque steer was terrible and it just didn’t feel like a Buick. These issues, however, didn’t go unnoticed by the engineers. They knew that coming up with a new suspension for the 2012 Buick Regal GS was imperative, and it was back to the drawing board. They realized that this isn’t just your Grandfather’s Park Avenue. This car is young and sporty.

What they came up with is the HiPer Strut system. Short for High Performance Strut, this unique suspension system is a vast improvement. The added components enable the steering knuckle to rotate independently from the strut tower, creating a better separation between steering and shock absorption. This improves camber control and also maintains ideal suspension geometry. And now with the Buick Interactive Drive Control System, the driver can control the suspension stiffness through the "Sport" and "GS" buttons.

With HiPer Strut, the torque steer that was prevalent in the 2011 Regal is almost nonexistent now, and steering response and control are improved significantly. These enhancements allowed engineers to place a 270 horsepower turbocharged four cylinder in the Regal GS. This advanced 2.0L replaces the old 220 horsepower four-banger and has the highest horsepower-per-liter ratio General Motors has ever produced.

“HiPer Strut raises the limits of how a front-drive car can perform.” said Lead Engineer Bill Rietow.

Buick is not just for elderly ladies and gentleman anymore. They really are appealing to a broader base now and are making the changes necessary to please the younger crowd.

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2012 Buick LaCrosse

2012 Buick LaCrosse

Take a pick among General Motors’ line-up of auto brands when it comes to overall popularity and chances are you’d take a while before picking Buick among them. It’s not the most popular brand by any stretch of the imagination, but thanks to a rejuvenation, Buick is looking like it’s going to be a major player in the mid-size luxury sedan with the 2012 Buick LaCrosse.

Taking the reins from the previous LaCrosse model, the 2012 model looks to take the company to the next level with an all new eAssist system that Buick is proclaiming to improve fuel economy by 25 percent. What’s most impressive about the new LaCrosse is that despite the state-of-the-art system that’s been given to the vehicle, Buick is not giving it an added impetus – separate cost from the vehicle – but rather, is putting the eAssist system as a standard feature in all 2012 models of the LaCrosse.

That, in itself, says a lot about Buick and it’s latest mid-size luxury sedan.

Continued after the jump.

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America's Power Sedan: The Buick Regal GS

America’s Power Sedan: The Buick Regal GS

The Mercedes Benz C63 AMG, Audi S4, BMW M3, Lexus IS-F, and the Cadillac CTS-V are all wonderful machines, but a tad expensive for those of us that don’t make that sort of cash. We’re more in the mid-level range and there isn’t a whole lot of performance sedans on offer. Buick has apparently seen this market gap and decided to exploit it with the new Regal GS.

We have already heard that the GS will be made, but we haven’t had an article go in depth to really examine what it will feature and what it will be like to drive. Let’s just say it should be good, as the normal Regal was pretty special.

It won’t be easy for Buick to create the GS. The base Regal was so good, that anything but perfection would be a bit of a let down. General Motors has been on a roll lately, but can they keep it up?

Hit the jump to find out.

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A New Sort Of Thing: The Buick Regal CXL

A New Sort Of Thing: The Buick Regal CXL

Take a visual trip with us down to Florida. Ignore the hot sun, sticky humidity, alligators, hurricanes, and all the other stuff that makes the state terrible, and focus on the retirees. What sort of car are they driving at 10 miles per hour below the speed limit? If you guessed a Buick, you would be right. We would have also accepted Cadillac and Toyota.

That’s the image that most people get when they think of the Buick brand. Grandparents above the age of 65 driving around in boats dressed up in the shape of a car with a suspension so soft and leather so plush that you could mistake it for a yacht. That is the exact reason why General Motors nearly went belly up.

The message coming from automotive enthusiasts finally sunk in to GM’s thick skulls and they presented us with the new Buick Regal, basically an Opel Insignia with a new badge. So, does this new sedan shake off the old image, or should we leave it at the retirement home when the test is complete?

Hit the jump to find out.

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Buick Planning Coupe, Convertible Regal?

Buick Planning Coupe, Convertible Regal?

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.

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2008 Buick LaCrosse Super

2008 Buick LaCrosse Super

Exclusive Buick Models Elevate Design, Power and Performance
Buick has rekindled a name from its storied 20th-century past to mark the beginning of a new level of refinement: Super. The badge is designated exclusively for Buick’s most premium, powerful models and returns to Buick vehicles after 50 years. It will debut on the 2008 model year LaCrosse and Lucerne sedans.
“We’re bringing back the Super badge to represent our most premium models,” said Steve Shannon, Buick general manager. “Our (...)

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2004 Buick Regal

2004 Buick Regal

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2001 Buick Lesabre

2001 Buick Lesabre

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1987 Grand National

1987 Grand National

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