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2018 Buick Regal Preview

2018 Buick Regal Preview

By Christian Wardlaw, April 05, 2017

2018 Buick Regal Sportback front quarter left photoFast Facts:

  • Redesigned Buick Regal lineup drops 4-door sedan
  • Regal Sportback is a 5-door hatchback, like an Audi A5 Sportback
  • Regal TourX is an all-wheel-drive station wagon, like a Subaru Outback
  • Lighter, stiffer, more fuel efficient than outgoing model
  • Improved rear-seat space
  • New safety technologies
  • Built in Germany
  • On sale by the end of 2017


Introduction
A redesigned 2018 Buick Regal arrives at the end of 2017, designed, engineered, and built in Germany because it is based on the new Opel Insignia. However, Buick is taking a different approach with the new Regal, cancelling the 4-door sedan in favor of a 5-door hatchback and a wagon that gets a Subaru Outback-style crossover SUV treatment.

Why is that? The midsize sedan market is shrinking, and it is full of major players like the Chevrolet Malibu, Ford Fusion, Honda Accord, Hyundai Sonata, Toyota Camry, and more. Americans don’t need one more midsize sedan from which to choose. Therefore, Buick is boldly trying a new approach.

With regard to the new 2018 Regal, Buick describes the car’s positioning as “attainable luxury.” The Regal Sportback is “aimed at those who possess a passion for driving,” while the Regal TourX is “a crossover in the truest sense of the word, with the drive dynamics of a car and utility of an SUV.”

Both versions of the new Regal will be offered in standard, Preferred, and Essence trim levels. Additionally, the Sportback comes in a Preferred II trim.



Exterior Features
Thanks to a stiffer and stronger vehicle architecture, the 2018 Regal Sportback weighs 200 lbs. less than the outgoing Regal sedan. The wheelbase is also stretched 3 ins., adding more rear-seat room compared with the retiring Regal.

The Regal TourX is several hundred lbs. heavier than the Sportback due to its station wagon body style and standard all-wheel-drive (AWD) system. It also has more rugged exterior detailing, a higher ride height, standard roof rails, and heated side mirrors. The TourX is 3.4 ins. longer than the Sportback, too.

Interior Features
Characterizing the 2018 Regal’s cabin as “driver-centric,” Buick says it reflects “clean lines” and “uncluttered surfaces.” Naturally, the car benefits from Buick’s QuietTuning efforts, which are designed to provide a quiet ride on the highway.

2018 Buick Regal Sportback interior photoThe Sportback model boasts 31.5 cu. ft. of cargo space with the rear seats in use and 60.7 cu. ft. with them folded down. Buick says that is more than an Audi A5 Sportback and a BMW 4 Series Gran Touring. The car has a standard 60/40 split-folding rear seat that can be upgraded to an available 40/20/40 split-folding rear seat.

The TourX model holds 32.7 cu. ft. of cargo behind the rear seat and 73.5 cu. ft. of cargo behind a hands-free power liftgate. By Buick’s measurements, the Regal TourX is roomier than the Audi A4 Allroad, BMW 3 Series Sports Wagon, and Subaru Outback.

Optional Features
Buick has announced that it will offer a range of accessories for the 2018 Regal TourX, including a variable roof rack, portable Bluetooth speaker, and a keyless keypad entry system so that you can leave the key fob inside the car while engaging in your active lifestyle.

Under the Hood
The Regal Sportback comes with a front-drive powertrain and offers an active dual-clutch AWD system as an option. The Regal TourX features standard AWD.

A turbocharged, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine powers both versions of the new Regal. With front-wheel drive, the engine makes 250 horsepower and 260 lb.-ft. of torque. With AWD, the engine makes the same amount of horsepower and 295 lb.-ft. of torque. Automatic start/stop technology is standard.

A 9-speed automatic transmission is charged with delivering power to the car’s front wheels. Versions with AWD have an 8-speed automatic.

Buick says the Sportback’s lighter weight and stiffer structure translate into improved fuel economy and better ride and handling qualities. Both versions of the new Regal get electric rack-mounted steering, MacPherson strut front suspension, and a multi-link rear suspension.

Every 2018 Regal is equipped with aluminum wheels. On the Sportback, they’re sized 17 or 18 ins. across, depending on the trim level. The TourX has a unique set of 18-in. wheels as standard equipment.

Safety
In addition to 10 standard air bags, a reversing camera, and several safety-related OnStar subscription-based services, the new Regal comes with an active hood pedestrian safety system.

2018 Buick Regal TourX rear quarter left photoAdditional safety technologies are offered in the Driver Confidence I package, which includes blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, lane-change assist, and rear park assist. A Driver Confidence II package equips the Regal with adaptive cruise control, forward-collision warning, pedestrian detection, automatic emergency braking, and lane-departure warning with lane-keeping assist.

Technology
Buick’s IntelliLink infotainment system is standard in the new Regal, equipped with a 7-in. touch-screen display, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone projection, myBuick smartphone app with Smart Driver technology, and OnStar subscription services including a 4G LTE Wi-Fi connection.

As an option, an upgraded version of IntelliLink is available with an 8-in. display screen. Upgrades include an embedded navigation system and a Bose premium sound system.


Additional Research:


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