- Nov 13, 2009
Buick Regal likely to be launch platform for next GM hybrid system
2011 Buick Regal – Click above for high-res image gallery
Last night, General Motors publicly unveiled the 2011 Buick Regal that goes on sale in North America in the first half of next year. The Regal will be Buick's new mid-sized sedan entry and is essentially just a re-grilled version of the Opel Insignia that went on sale in Europe last year. The North American Regal will be built at the Oshawa Ontario assembly plant in Canada beginning in calendar 2011 and will only be offered with a choice of direct-injected four-cylinder engines. However, the Regal is actually slated to go on sale in calendar 2010, and some are suggesting that the sedan will be sourced from Germany for 12 to 15 months.
The base engine will be the 2.4-liter normally aspirated unit that debuted earlier this year in the Chevrolet Equinox, among other models. With a six-speed automatic transmission, the Regal should hit 30+ mpg on the highway. The optional unit will be a 220-hp version of the 2.0-liter turbo, but that powertrain likely won't come on-line right away.
Earlier this year, documents were leaked that listed the Oshawa plant as building a new mid-size hybrid sedan in 2011. It looks like the Regal will be that car with GM's new second generation mild hybrid system that was announced in 2008. The new system uses a more powerful motor/generator and a lithium ion battery. According to Ward's Auto World, the Regal could also get GM's plug-in two mode hybrid system, but that likely won't appear before late 2011 at the earliest.
[Sources: Ward's Auto World - sub req'd | GM-Volt.com]