• Nov 11th 2009 at 6:12PM
  • 110
2011 Buick Regal – Click above for high-res image gallery

Once up a time in the '80s, it was fashionable in Detroit to create so-called Euro-sedans by taking conventional mainstream grandma-mobiles and painting all the chrome black, dispensing with the white walls and installing overly stiff springs. Fortunately, those dark days are gone and General Motors and Ford at least have gotten their heads around how to build the kind of cars they sell in Europe. Just bring over European cars.

When bankrupt GM decreed that Buick would survive as one of the company's four core brands, it quickly became clear that Buick would need more models to flesh out its showrooms alongside the LaCrosse and Enclave. It wasn't long before it became obvious that the next addition would be a new Regal. The Regal is already available in Buick's biggest market of China and it's coming back to North America in 2010 as a 2011 model. Anyone familiar with the Opel Insignia will immediately recognize the Regal as the same car with the brand's trademark waterfall grille swapped in. Read on after the jump for more information.

  • The new 2011 Buick Regal four-cylinder sport sedan with an estimated 30 miles-per-gallon, will debut at an evening event in the Los Angeles area Thursday, November 12, 2009. The Regal's interior builds on the attention to detail found in the Buick Enclave and Buick LaCrosse. The Regal will go on sale in the U.S. in the second quarter of 2010.

[Source: General Motors]
The new Regal shares its Epsilon II platform with the recently redesigned LaCrosse, but the wheelbase is four inches shorter than and 6.7 inches shorter overall. While the LaCrosse will soon add an available four-cylinder engine, the Regal will launch with only four-cylinders. The base engine will be the increasingly prevalent 2.4-liter EcoTec with direct injection. As an option, buyers can choose a de-tuned version of the fabulous 2.0-liter DI EcoTec turbo that was used in the Pontiac Solstice GXP, Chevrolet HHR SS and Cobalt SS. For the Regal, output has been trimmed to 220 horsepower while torque remains at 258 pound-feet with a peak at just 2,000 rpm. Both engines are paired only with 6-speed automatic transmissions, the normally aspirated motor getting a Hydramatic unit and the turbo using an Aisin unit.

Only the the premium CXL trim will be available at launch, although others will be added later. When the turbo is added to the lineup next summer, it will have an optional Interactive Drive Control (IDC) system available. The IDC will let drivers pick from three different response modes for the suspension, throttle, steering and transmission. The system offers the usual Sport, Tour and Normal modes but even when the car is in Tour mode, the dampers will automatically stiffen up when the sensors detect a sudden evasive maneuver that could be indicative of an emergency maneuver.

The 2.4-liter Regal will be available in the first half of 2010 with the turbo coming by late summer. Our colleagues in LA will be bring you coverage from the live reveal there this evening.



Sport Sedan Blends Sleek Design with European Road Manners for Great Driving


  • A new midsize Buick sport sedan with a European-bred driving experience
  • On sale in the second quarter of 2010
  • Based on the award-winning Opel Insignia and available now as a Regal in China
  • Modern, sleek design with great attention to detail and excellent build quality
  • Efficient, four-cylinder/six-speed powertrain with 30 mpg (est.)
  • Turbocharged model available in summer 2010
  • Driver-selectable Interactive Drive Control System available in summer 2010
  • Available rear-seat thorax air bags
  • Standard 18-inch wheels, leather and heated front seats, XM Satellite Radio, Bluetooth and OnStar.

LOS ANGELES – On Thursday Buick will reveal the 2011 Regal sport sedan to customers in the L.A. area. Armed with turbocharged horsepower, a driver-selectable suspension system and a firm, European-tuned chassis, it delivers a driving experience that rivals the best import sport sedans in the segment.

"The 2011 Buick Regal is like nothing you've ever experienced from this brand," said Susan Docherty, general manager of Buick GMC. "The Regal is the next chapter in Buick's transformation and will expand the portfolio to include a sport sedan."

The new Regal arrives in the second quarter of 2010, with its sights aimed squarely on competitors like the Acura TSX and Volvo S60. It has a longer wheelbase and greater trunk volume than those vehicles, along with standard features – including a six-speed automatic transmission, 18-inch wheels and OnStar – that aren't offered standard on either competitor.

The Regal's development is rooted in Germany, where the globally led engineering team created the award-winning Opel Insignia – the 2009 European Car of the Year. The Insignia has garnered more than 31 prestigious awards and is the best-selling midsize sedan in Europe. Regal will bring all of Insignia's award-winning design, technology and European-inspired performance capabilities to the American market.

The Regal has already been a success on another continent, in China. It went on sale in December 2008 and more than 64,000 Regals have been sold there. Enthusiastic customers cite its sculpted, flowing design and responsive performance as the top reasons for purchase.

Regal at a glance

Regal will initially be offered in premium CXL trim only, with additional trim levels to be offered in the 2012 model year. The well-equipped Regal CXL includes the following as standard or available equipment:

  • Standard 2.4L Ecotec direct injected engine rated at an estimated 182 horsepower (136 kW)
  • Available 2.0L Ecotec turbocharged and direct injected engine rated at an estimated 220 horsepower (164 kW) – available late-summer 2010
  • Both engines have a six-speed automatic transmission standard with driver-shifting control
  • Estimated 30 mpg on the highway with the 2.4L and 29 mpg highway with the 2.0L turbo engine
  • MacPherson strut front suspension and four-link independent rear suspension
  • All-new Interactive Drive Control System (IDCS) available with the 2.0L turbo, offering driver-selectable suspension settings and automatic driver suspension setting adaptability
  • Four-wheel disc brakes with four-channel anti-lock braking system, brake assist and electronic parking brake
  • Standard StabiliTrak stability control system and full-function traction control
  • Standard dual-stage frontal air bags, side-curtain air bags and pedal-release system; rear-seat thorax air bags available
  • Available navigation system, Harmon Kardon sound system, internal flash drive (1GB), hard drive with 10GB for music and USB port
  • Standard 18-inch wheels (19-inch wheels standard with IDCS)
  • Standard 12-way power, leather and heated driver seat; leather and heated passenger front seat; Bluetooth capability; XM Satellite Radio and OnStar.

Design story

The Regal's sleek design blends the sweeping silhouette and proportions of a coupe in a progressive package that suggests motion from all angles. Great attention to detail complements that aggressive styling, with tailored applications of Buick's signature design cues, such as the waterfall grille, select use of chrome trim and superior fit and finish of the exterior panels.

"Regal is all about great proportions," said John Cafaro, design director, passenger car. "For example, with the fenders flared to wrap around the tires. It's an aggressive stance that people aren't used to seeing in recent Buicks."

The car's performance-oriented spirit is also conveyed in sleek, sculpted body-side detail and aggressive headlamps that further suggest motion. At the rear, an abbreviated deck and tucked-in body panels are the hallmarks of a contemporary sport sedan, with bold taillamps and their intricate lighting elements reinforcing Regal's attention to detail. Eighteen-inch wheels are standard.

The sweeping design motif carries over to the interior, where the side panels flow uninterrupted into the instrument panel. The instruments have the look of expensive sport timepieces and are lit with ice-blue LED lights. The center stack, housing the climate and "infotainment" controls, was designed to allow for a lower, driver-centric instrument panel profile. Features such as a thick-rimmed, leather-wrapped steering wheel and firm, highly bolstered and leather-covered seats also support the sport-oriented driving experience.

"There is great design harmony between the exterior and interior," said Cafaro. "The feeling of flow and motion carries through in an engaging manner that makes you want to take the Regal out to your favorite twisting road to see what it can do."

A breakthrough interior

The Regal's finely crafted, sporty and well-appointed interior builds on the exceptional attention to detail found in the Enclave and LaCrosse, blending signature styling cues with contemporary sport sedan aesthetics.

Regal's firm, highly bolstered seats were benchmarked against the top import competitors for comfort and support, while a standard flow-through center console offers plenty of storage for passengers in the front and back.

Smart applications of technology are also hallmarks of the Regal, including details such as a multi-function controller on the center console for operation of the audio system, navigation system and the Bluetooth phone. The faceplate for the "infotainment" screen is set at a 30-degree angle to contribute to the car's flowing interior design.

A new era in Buick design is also seen in the satin metallic, piano black and new, Kibo-patterned interior trim materials. Kibo is a rich, dark, progressively grained wood that lends an international flair to the Regal.

Under the hood

Unique with its all-four-cylinder powertrain, the Regal relies on the excellent horsepower-per-liter ratio of the Ecotec engine family to deliver smart, on-demand performance that is also very efficient.

Both the standard 2.4L engine and the available 2.0L turbo use direct injection technology to optimize performance, reduce emissions and maximize fuel efficiency. The 2.4L is the same engine offered in the Buick LaCrosse, but in the smaller, lighter Regal, it delivers more agile performance. The 2.0L turbo cements the sport sedan credibility of the Regal, with on-demand power comparable to a V-6, but the inherent efficiency of a four-cylinder. To ensure responsive power across the rpm range, the 2.0L turbo uses a twin-scroll turbocharger that builds power quickly at lower rpm.

Distinct, uniquely calibrated six-speed automatic transmissions are paired with each engine. Both offer driver shift control that enhances the sporty driving feel of the Regal.

Driving experience

The chassis and structural systems were developed in Germany and give the Regal the handling and dynamics of a premium European sport sedan, as well as the quiet, refined ride and road manners expected of a Buick. The body structure is one of the most rigid in the segment, which is approximately 25-percent stiffer than the previous Regal. This solid structure supports more precise suspension tuning and a quieter ride.

A relatively long wheelbase of 107.8 inches (2738 mm) gives the Regal refined, well-balanced vehicle dynamics and supports comfortable ride tuning. Additionally, an independent MacPherson strut-type front suspension with single-path mountings and hydraulic ride bushings; a four-link independent rear suspension; hydraulic rack-and-pinion steering; and optimized four-wheel disc brakes are optimized to the capability of the individual powertrains and tailored to the expected use by drivers. Models equipped with the 2.0L turbo engine, for example, feature larger brakes.

Latest-generation electronic stability control (ESC or StabiliTrak), anti-lock brake system (ABS), and traction control system (TCS) are standard with Buick's innovative, Interactive Drive Control System (IDCS) real-time damping system offered on models equipped with the 2.0L turbo powertrain.

Interactive Drive Control System

Regal's Interactive Drive Control System chassis technology (available on models with the available 2.0L turbo engine) offers enhanced vehicle stability and greater driving safety. It is designed to change the personality of the car based on the personality of the driver. A sophisticated driving mode control module continually monitors driving style utilizing yaw rate, lateral and longitudinal acceleration, steering wheel, throttle and vehicle speed. It defines the dynamic vehicle state, including acceleration, braking and cornering, to optimize chassis reactions. It also executes all of the IDCS driver selections.

All four dampers are electronically controlled and continuously adapt within milliseconds to the prevailing road conditions, vehicle movements and individual driving style. Chassis settings are adjustable by the driver, with Normal, Tour and Sport settings.

IDCS allows the driver to choose between three different operating modes that change the suspension settings, throttle response, shift pattern and steering sensitivity through the variable effort steering system. The three modes deliver three types of experiences:

  • Normal – balanced and optimized for all driving situations
  • Tour – optimized for comfort and relaxed driving on long journeys
  • Sport – optimized for road holding; enthusiast driving .

Selecting "Sport" mode optimizes the car for dynamic driving, tightening the suspension and steering response and speeding up the reaction of the automatic transmission. The "Tour" mode is optimal for long-distance cruising or rough road conditions, providing an increase in comfort. "Normal" or Default Mode is the perfect all-around setting for daily commuting and city traffic. The other major benefit of Interactive Drive Control is that it automatically adapts Regal's performance settings to individual driving styles. When a driver begins to drive more aggressively it will tighten the suspension and increase steering effort and change to a more aggressive throttle response. When the vehicle senses that the driver is doing relaxed cruising, it adjusts settings for rolling smoothness and comfort.

Apart from a more rewarding driving experience, IDCS also offers safety benefits in emergency situations. For example, if an obstacle must be avoided when the car is in Tour mode, various chassis sensors convey this to the DMC and the dampers are stiffened within milliseconds, delivering greater body control.

About Buick

Buick is in the midst of a transformation that started with the Enclave luxury crossover and continues with the completely redesigned LaCrosse luxury sedan and Regal sport sedan. Buick is emerging as a modern, premium brand with vehicles characterized by sculpted designs, personal technologies, luxurious interiors and responsive performance. Future new sedans and crossovers are planned and will continue to expand Buick's portfolio both in North America and China. More information can be found at www.buick.com.





Standard engine horsepower
(hp / kW):

182 / 136 (2.4L I4)

201 / 150 (2.4L I4)

208 / 155 (2.5L I5)

Standard six-speed automatic:




Fuel economy with standard engine (city / hwy, estimated):

20 / 30 (2.4L I4)

21 / 30 (2.4L)

19 / 28 (2.5L I5)

Wheelbase (in / mm):

107.8 / 2738

106.5 / 2705

106.9 / 2715

Headroom – front (in / mm):

38.8 / 985

37.6 / 955

38.7 / 983

Headroom – rear (in / mm):

36.8 / 935

37.0 / 940

37.9 / 962

Legroom – front ( in / mm):

42.1 / 1069

42.4 / 1077

42.6 / 1082

Legroom – rear (in / mm):

37.3 / 947

34.3 / 871

33.3 / 846

Trunk volume (cu ft / L):

14.25 / 403

12.6 / 357

13.9 / 393

Rear seat thorax air bags:


Not available

Not available

Heated front leather seats:




Satellite radio




Bluetooth capability




Navigation system






Not available

Not available

Standard alloy wheel:




*2009 models of the TSX and S60 cited.

Bold denotes category advantage.




2011 Buick Regal Premium Sport Sedan

Body style / driveline:

four-door, 5-passenger front engine transaxle. Front-wheel-drive midsize vehicle


steel body frame integral (unibody) with front and rear crumple zones; galvanized steel front fenders, hood, roof, door panels, one-piece bodyside outer panel, thermal plastic olefin (TPO) bumper fascias

EPA vehicle class:


Manufacturing location:

Russelsheim, Germany

Key competitors:

Acura TSX, Volvo S60, Mazda 6 and Volkswagen Passat


2.4L DOHC I-4

2.0L DOHC I-4 Turbo

Displacement (cu in / cc):

145.4 / 2384

122 / 1998

Bore and stroke (in / mm):

3.46 x 3.85 / 88 x 98

3.39 x 3.39 / 86 x 86

Block material:

precision sand cast aluminum

cast aluminum

Cylinder head material:

SPM cast aluminum

cast aluminum


overhead camshafts, four-valves per cylinder, continuous variable valve timing intake and exhaust

overhead camshafts, four-valves per cylinder, continuous variable valve timing for intake and exhaust

Ignition System:

individual coil-on-plug

individual coil-on-plug

Fuel delivery:

high-pressure direct injection and electronic throttle control

direct injection with variable high-pressure rail and electronic throttle control

Compression ratio:



Horsepower (hp / kW @ rpm):

182 / 136 @ 6700 rpm (est)

220 / 164 @ 5300 (est)

Torque (lb-ft / Nm @ rpm)

172 / 233 @ 4900 rpm (est)

258 / 349 @ 2000 (est)

Recommended fuel:

regular unleaded

premium recommended but not required

Max engine speed:

7000 rpm

6350 rpm

Emissions controls:

close-coupled, catalytic converter; variable valve timing; positive crankcase ventilation evaporative system

close-coupled catalytic converter; variable valve timing; 58x ignition system; returnless fuel rail; wide-range O2 sensor

Estimated fuel economy
(city / hwy)

20 / 30

18 / 29


Hydra-Matic 6T45

Aisin AF40


six-speed transverse, electronically controlled, automatic overdrive

six-speed transverse, electronically controlled, automatic overdrive



2.0L turbo

Gear ratios (:1):






















Final Drive





independent, MacPherson strut-type with dual-path mountings, specifically tuned coil springs, direct-acting stabilizer bar (hollow); hydraulic ride bushings; continuous damping control (Interactive Drive Control System) available on models equipped with 2.0L turbo


four-link independent rear; hollow stabilizer bar; continuous damping control (IDCS available on models equipped with 2.0L turbo

Traction control:

all-speed using engine torque reduction and brake intervention

Steering type:

hydraulic, specifically calibrated rack-and-pinion power steering; variable-effort with 2.0L turbo

Steering wheel turns lock-to-lock:

2.68 (18- and 19-inch wheels)

Turning circle, curb-to-curb (feet / meters):

37.4 / 11.4 (18- and 19-inch wheels)

Steering ratio:




four-wheel disc w/ABS (w/ESC)

Brake rotor diameter – front (in / mm):

2.4L: 11.7 / 296 vented; single-piston, cast iron caliper
2.0L: 12.6 / 321 vented; single-piston, cast iron caliper

Brake rotor diameter – rear (in / mm):

2.4L: 11.5 / 292 solid; single-piston, aluminum caliper
2.0L: 12.4 / 315 vented; single-piston, aluminum caliper

Wheels / Tires

Wheel size and type:

18-inch aluminum (std on all models)
19-inch aluminum (opt with 2.0L turbo


Michelin Pilot MXM4 P235/50R18
Goodyear Eagle RSA P245/40R19



Wheelbase (in / mm) :

107.8 / 2738

Overall length (in / mm):

190.2 / 4831

Overall width (in / mm):

73.1 / 1811

Overall height (in / mm):

58.4 / 1483

Front track (in / mm):

62.4 / 1585

Rear track (in / mm):

62.5 / 1587


Seating capacity (front / rear):

2 / 3

Headroom (in / mm):

38.8 / 985 (front)
36.8 / 935 (rear)

Legroom (in / mm):

42.1 / 1069 (front)
37.3 / 947 (rear)

Shoulder room (in / mm):

56.7 / 1440 (front)
54.4 / 1382 (rear)

Hip room (in / mm):

55.4 / 1407 (front)
52.3 / 1328 (rear)

EPA Passenger Volume (cu ft / L) :

96.81 / 2741

EPA Interior Volume (cu ft / L):

111.1 / 3146

Cargo Volume (cu ft / L):

14.25 / 403


Fuel tank (gal / L):

18.5 / 70

Engine oil (qt / L):

2.4L: 5.0 / 4.7
2.0L: 6.3 / 6.0

Curb weight (lbs / kg):

3600 /1633 (2.4L)

Note: Information shown is current at time of publication.

I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.

    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      I'm really liking this.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The engine options are nearly what I expected judging by previous commentary/speculation. I still hope to see a GS level (or other performance trim level) with a bit more power though.
        • 5 Years Ago
        It's already in the works. Rumor is, it'll have optional AWD (the awesome Haldex type), a 6-speed manual, Brembos, and 19" wheels.

      • 5 Years Ago
      Looks hot. Buick seems to be rising from the ashes.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Love the looks and concept of a small mid-size sedan below the LaCrosse but am surprised by the 3600 lb weight. Why is this car over 3500 lbs with an I4 engine.

      I was hoping the Regal would come in around 3400 lbs and offer 35mpg hwy. Doesn't look like that's going to happen.

      Nice car though!
      • 5 Years Ago
      Fantastic. Very nice looking.

      But I don't like how the guy in the video is talking like Buick designed this car. I mean, what did he do other than coming up with a new grill?
        • 5 Years Ago
        • 5 Years Ago
        Fixitfixitstop, we've already been over this.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The GM fanboys will have no excuse if this car doesn't sell well.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I wouldn't be that dissappointed about the 2.0L engine. At least here in Europe, an ECU upgrade is available, that will bring this little engine to aproximately 300hp and 385 lb/ft. Combine that with the AWD and you have a pretty serious car.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I don't like the wheels in the pictures and I think it could use a one inch drop. And that's the only bad thing I can say about this car - coming from a 24 yr old Asian American yuppie driving a GTI.

      To be honest, it looks fantastic - I saw an Insignia when I was on vacation in Spain last month, and it's a good looking car in person, but I was wondering how GM was going to differentiate it from the Lacrosse (small midsize vs large midsize?).

      I'd probably have tried to pull a little more peak power out of the base engine (182 vs the TSX 201 looks like a substantial difference), but a 220-hp turbo 4 sounds fantastic -put that with a sport suspension and we're looking at not only a competent TSX competitor, but even a solid competitor for entry level A4s, as well.
        • 5 Years Ago
        To me, the wheels look cheap. But I won't pass that as a final judgement without seeing this car in person. It isn't always easy to tell by the pics. But I really like this car a lot. Not as much as I like the LaCrosse, but I like it.
      • 5 Years Ago
      First year production from Germany is restricted in models to the most popular CXL and two engine choices. When built here in the Fall of 2010, the options will likely expand. Rather than a manual I would want a 6-speed dual clutch automatic in a sporty version of a car like this.
      • 5 Years Ago
      russell, yaroukh, Buick Astra will be coming soon. there was a blurb on it going to happen since saturn got the steak knife in the heart. it will happen unless GM brings OPEL as the 5th brand....
      • 5 Years Ago
      AMAZING ! GENERAL MOTORS , same ole same ole . Where is the new blood ?
      Obviously they haven't hit bottom yet . Nor cleaned house . Not a whole lot has changed up in the towers of GM.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Hey hey hey. I'm a Ford fanboy, but this is one attractive car, just like the LaCrosse. I can even live with the 4-cylinder only lineup.

        And for some reason, I'd bet the hp is underrated. Just so Buick can say their car is just as fast while having less power.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Another troll comment from a Ford-fan-boy...
        • 5 Years Ago
        Jimbo you are a dumbass.
        • 5 Years Ago
        JIMBO, you are on crack dude.

        GM doesn't offer any car like this on this side of the ocean. The sedan is attractive with good fuel economy and power-- 220 hp and 258 lbs torque should move this car nicely down the road. BTW Audi offers similar power with its 2.0 and it is only a tick slower than the much more powerful 6.

        This car will hit the bulls eye for GM.
        • 5 Years Ago
        daleam: don't go confusing that dumbass JIMBO (aka Brian aka No More Oil for GM aka...) for me.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I completely agree. Bringing the European Car of the Year over here with a fuel-efficient powertrain is exactly the poison that got GM into this mess in the first place. Who needs a visually appealing, quality-made American car, anyway?

        • 5 Years Ago
        JIMBO (not Jimbo)

        You have got to be on serious drugs man. My first reaction to your comment was "alright this guy is cracked out" and then I just had that natural human instinct in me to correct your comment.

        First off, GM is on a serious role, alright buddy? Think about it, the Tahoe, Escalade, Malibu, Enclave, G8, Camaro, LaCrosse, ZR1, CTS-V and the upcoming Chevy Volt?! All these cars are best in class, price, quality, and are built right here in America. And now they are dropping this beautiful gem... this is the best Buick I've ever seen. And you say nothing has changed!!!? Jesus ####ing Christ man get a clue.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Same ole, same ole?

        WTF did you want?

        A unicycle that runs on unicorn pee?
      • 5 Years Ago
      I don't know why they'd start with only the premium trim CXL model. That approach makes sense with a car that is going to have some die-hard enthusiast buyers dying to get it, like a Challenger or a Camaro for example. If it's a have to buy car for those buyers, you might as well soak them for the maximum dollars possible. But for a Regal mid-sized sedan? If they were only going to do one model to start, a middle trim line would have made more sense.

      And what's with comparing the car to Acura and Volvo? Wouldn't the much more obvious direct competitor be a Mercury Milan?
    • Load More Comments