Based on the Opel Insignia from Europe, the five-seat Regal entry-luxury midsize sedan has a striking resemblance to that model. It's offered with a choice of mild-hybrid or turbocharged drivetrains, and its competitors include the Volkswagen Passat and Acura TSX.
(Skip to details on the: Regal eAssist, Regal GS)
New for 2013
For 2013, Buick's IntelliLink system, which uses Bluetooth or the USB port to pair a smartphone to the touch-screen stereo and stream music from Pandora Internet Radio or Stitcher SmartRadio, is now standard. The base four-cylinder engine has been dropped, and a heated steering wheel is available.
While the Regal's styling is definitely understated, the sedan has clean lines and a nice stance. The rear-quarter view is one of its best angles, and the car has one of the most stylish trunk lids around. Exterior features include:
- Standard 18-inch aluminum wheels
- Available 19- or 20-inch alloy wheels
- Available sunroof
- Heated power side mirrors with integrated turn signals
The five-seat cabin utilizes premium materials, and there is an optional navigation system. The Regal has a sizable trunk that measures 14.2 cubic feet (11.1 in the eAssist hybrid), and there is a wide opening to both the cargo area and into the cabin when the split backseat is folded. Interior features include:
- Standard leather upholstery
- Standard heated front seats
- Standard power driver's seat
- Standard Bluetooth connectivity
- Standard satellite radio
- Optional Harman Kardon stereo
Under the Hood
The Regal's base engine is a 2.4-liter four-cylinder with eAssist that makes 182 horsepower. Buyers looking for more power can select the optional turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder that's rated at 220 hp. The engines work with a six-speed automatic transmission to power the front wheels, and sedans with the turbo engine also offer a six-speed manual gearbox. Mechanical features include:
- eAssist uses regular gas
- Turbo engine prefers premium gas, but it's not required
- Available Interactive Drive Control System equips the car with an adaptive suspension and automatically tailors the car to road conditions and driver behavior
Safety features include:
- Standard antilock brakes
- Standard electronic stability system
- Standard traction control
- Standard side-impact airbags for the front seats
- Standard side curtain airbags
- Optional backseat side-impact airbags
The Regal eAssist combines a 2.4-liter four-cylinder and a six-speed automatic transmission with a 15-hp electric motor to provide more acceleration. The motor uses power from a lithium-ion battery, which draws a charge off regenerative braking. The engine shuts off at a stop and during deceleration, helping render an EPA rating of 25/36 mpg city/highway.
The lithium-ion battery pack sits behind the rear seat, cutting trunk volume, as the case is in many hybrid sedans. Folding rear seats are standard, but the battery pack blocks the passenger-side opening.
Other changes include unique 17-inch light-alloy wheels with low-rolling-resistance tires, an air-conditioning system with a more efficient fuel-economy mode, an Eco gauge in the instrument cluster and a screen that shows hybrid-system energy flow. Back to top Regal GS
A higher-performance version of the turbocharged Regal, the GS benefits from higher turbo boost and reduced exhaust backpressure to generate 270 hp and 295 pounds-feet of torque. The power runs through a six-speed automatic transmission or an optional six-speed manual to the front wheels, and Buick says the GS' front suspension has specialized struts to mitigate torque steer. The front and rear shocks are both adaptive, with driver-changeable settings to alter their stiffness as well as power-steering assist. Drivers can choose from three settings -- Standard, Sport and GS Mode -- by using dashboard controls.
Visual cues include a lower ride height, deeper bumpers, faux hood vents and 19-inch alloy wheels. Twenty-inch wheels with summer tires are optional. Inside, the GS has a flat-bottom steering wheel, metal pedals and unique leather seats with larger side bolsters. Back to top
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