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2017 Buick Regal

Buick Regal: Making refined style feel athletic, fun

SHARE Buick Regal: Making refined style feel athletic, fun
SHARE Buick Regal: Making refined style feel athletic, fun

Five years ago, the Buick Regal landed on the American roads with promises of former performance grandeur and memories of the popular mid-size sedan’s unique blend of refinement and V6 performance.

Today, the Regal is still a mid-size machine offering both front- and all-wheel drive, while it equally delivers the goods via bold, athletic styling and German-inspired handling. Based on the GM Europe’s Opel Insignia sedan, the Regal is worth a look if you want five-seat capacity and an optional turbo powerplant.

Choices

The 2017 Buick Regal has an entry price of $27,065, which is higher than many in the class. Offering standard leather seats, power windows and doors, rearview camera, cruise control, power driver’s seat, heated front seats, dual-zone climate control, sound system with XM radio, and infotainment with Bluetooth, the Regal certainly is a nice base package of comfort.

Regal Sport Touring has a base price of $28,615 with plenty of extras and the impressive upgrade to a 2.0-liter turbocharged engine. All-wheel drive is available at $31,465.

Athletic Looks

The Regal is Buick’s most impressive looking athlete. Starting with new 19- and 20-inch rims, this is a classic example of sleek lines and clean running curves making a bold backdrop for the signature design cues – namely the attention-grabbing chiseled swoosh along its sides. My tester stood out in a crowd and had plenty of compliments to boot.

The waterfall grille is still the distinguishing touch that sets Buick apart from other makes and it looks outstanding on the Regal. The 2017 model provides bold LED wings in the headlamps, while my GS tester featured cool vertical air intakes in the nose, smaller rear spoiler and classy exhaust tips.

2017 Buick Regal

2017 Buick Regal

Interior Fit

The Regal cabin is a quiet, calming space. Seating in my tester offered firm and comfortable sport-seat bolstering, while headroom and legroom in front are good, though the rear is much tighter. This sedan is best for four adults, not five.

The Regal GS’ cabin feels very European, with tasteful leather upholstery and two-tone trim. The door panels are touched by sweeping lines and satin metallic trim that suggest a more premium treatment throughout.

I found controls across the console to be very intuitive, with beautiful synergy of design incorporating screens, buttons and knobs. Gauges offer LED lighting that delivers outstanding visibility at a glance. Featuring a Bose audio system, Buick recently upgraded its IntelliLink infotainment system to add capability for choosing up to 60 favorite apps and storing 1000 contacts, as well as integrate smartphone streaming audio and command of the nav system by voice.

Performance/Power

With a tradition of delivering power that for years came from a tried-and-true 3.8-liter V6, new Regals are powered by a base 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine. At more than 3,600 pounds, things can feel a bit strained.

Jump up to the 2.0 turbo, 259 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque, and you get a quick, confident machine that delivers lots of fun in fashionable quarters. My GS tester was a responsive machine that handled turns with crisp authority, though lean was a bit too significant at average speeds for me to completely approve. Look for a 6-speed automatic and all-wheel drive stickiness on the pavement. The AWD system can send 90 percent of the torque to the rear wheels for all-weather traction.

With the heart of a German Opel, and a reasonable entry price, this Buick conjures up likeable images of renown Regals of the past.

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