Buick Regal

Buick Regal

2011 Buick Regal CXL - North America
Manufacturer Buick (General Motors)
Model years North America
Body and chassis
Class Mid-size
Predecessor Buick Skylark (1972)

The Buick Regal is an upscale mid-size car that was first introduced by Buick for the 1973 model year. North American production ended in 2004 and began again in 2011. For the 2011 model year, Buick re-introduced the Regal to the North American market, positioned as an upscale sport sedan.[1] Production and sales in China have continued since 1999.[2]

For certain model years between 1973 and 2004, the Regal shared bodies and powertrains with the similar Buick Century. The current model (2011–present) is a badge-engineered version of the Opel Insignia, known as the Vauxhall Insignia in the UK.

First generation (1973–1977)

First generation

1973 Buick Regal coupe
Also called Buick Century Regal
Model years 1973–1977
Body and chassis
Body style 2-door coupe
4-door sedan
Layout FR layout
Platform A-body
  • 112 in (2,800 mm) (coupe)[3]
  • 116 in (2,900 mm) (sedan)[3]
  • 212 in (5,400 mm) (coupe)[3]
  • 216 in (5,500 mm) (sedan)[3]
  • 53.3 in (1,350 mm) (coupe)[3]
  • 54.1 in (1,370 mm) (sedan)[3]
1973 Buick Regal coupe
1976 Buick Regal sedan (front view)
1976 Buick Regal sedan (rear view)

Buick had been the first GM division to bring a personal luxury car to market with its full-size 1963 Riviera, but was otherwise slow to react to the developing lower-priced mid-size personal luxury market, which Pontiac created with the 1969 Grand Prix and Chevrolet with the Monte Carlo the following year, 1970. At the same time, Oldsmobile added a formal notchback coupé to its intermediate line, the Cutlass Supreme, in 1970 and that model soon became Olds' best selling intermediate. Buick did not get its own personal luxury coupe until the GM intermediates were redesigned in 1973, the so-called "Colonnade" cars that eliminated hardtop models completely. In a curious name swap, the Skylark name was dropped from Buick's intermediate line and instead the Century nameplate, last used in the 1950s, was revived for them.

A highly trimmed, notchback coupe, the first Regal shared its front and rear styling with its Century parent with distinctions amounting to differing grilles and taillight lenses. The Regal shared the same "Colonnade" pillared hardtop roofline (a hardtop with center pillar but frameless doors unlike a sedan body) and greenhouse (window area) with the Grand Prix, Monte Carlo, and Cutlass Supreme as well as the lower-priced Buick Century Luxus coupe. Like its corporate cousins, the Regal (and Luxus) featured the newly fashionable opera windows, which were small fixed rear-side windows surrounded by sheetmetal, instead of the traditional roll-down windows.

For the first year in 1973, the Regal nameplate was only used for Buick's version of the GM intermediate personal luxury coupe, but the following year gained a sedan companion (there was no Regal station wagon).

Regal interiors were generally more luxurious than lesser Century models with woodgrain trim on dashboard and door panels, along with door-pull straps and notchback bench seats with center armrests with cloth, velour, or vinyl upholstery. Optionally available throughout the run was a 60/40 split bench seat with armrest. For 1976-77, the Regal coupé was available with the S/R option that included reclining bucket seats with corduroy upholstery.

The model lasted five years with minimal changes, although there was a fairly substantial facelift in 1976 (for the coupe only — sedans stayed with original 1973 sheetmetal through 1977), which incorporated the recently legalized square headlights (horizontally mounted on coupes, and vertically on sedans — much like the mid-1960s Pontiacs). The Regal coupe sold reasonably well, although it lagged behind the Monte Carlo and Cutlass Supreme which had become the best-selling cars in America by 1976. Regal sedans and all Century models had far fewer takers.

The Regal was most commonly powered by Buick's 350 in³ V8, which was standard equipment on all models in 1973 and 1974 and optional on coupes but remained standard on sedans from 1975 to 1977, and the larger 455 in³ V8 was optional in 1973 and 1974 only. Starting in 1975, Regal coupes came standard with Buick's resurrected 231 cu in (3.8 L) V6 engine previously offered on the Skylark from 1964 to 1967; the engine's tooling had been sold to Kaiser Motors for use in Jeep models (Kaiser was purchased by American Motors in 1970 and Jeep became an AMC division) and sold back to GM by AMC in 1974. In 1975 and 1976, the Century and Regal were the only mid-sized cars in America to offer V6 engines. The bolt pattern for this vehicle is 5x4 34 inches (120.7 mm).

The Century designation was quietly dropped from the Regal in 1975.

Second generation (1978–1987)

Second generation

1987 Buick Regal Grand National
Model years 1978–1987
Assembly Flint, Michigan, United States
Lakewood Heights, Georgia, United States
Arlington, Texas, United States
Framingham, Massachusetts, United States
Fremont, California, United States
Pontiac, Michigan, United States
Kansas City, Missouri (Leeds), United States
Body and chassis
Body style 2-door coupe
4-door sedan
5-door station wagon
Layout FR layout
Platform A-body (1978–1981)
G-body (1981–1987)
Related Buick Century
Chevrolet El Camino
Chevrolet Malibu
Chevrolet Monte Carlo
Oldsmobile Cutlass
Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme
Pontiac Bonneville
Pontiac Grand Am
Pontiac Grand Prix
Pontiac Le Mans
Engine 196 cu in (3.2 L) Buick V6
231 cu in (3.8 L) Buick V6
252 cu in (4.1 L) Buick V6
260 cu in (4.3 L) Oldsmobile Diesel V6
265 cu in (4.3 L) Pontiac V8
301 cu in (4.9 L) Pontiac V8
305 cu in (5.0 L) Chevrolet V8
307 cu in (5.0 L) Oldsmobile V8
350 cu in (5.7 L) Oldsmobile Diesel V8
Transmission 3-speed manual
3-speed THM200 automatic
4-speed THM200-4R automatic
Wheelbase 108 in (2,743.2 mm)

A downsized Regal appeared for 1978 with Buick's new 196 cu in (3.2 L) V6 engine as standard equipment and a new version of the venerable 231 cu in (3.8 L) V6 as an option (which became standard in 1980). Initially a 3-speed manual transmission was standard but this was later replaced by an automatic. This model lasted 10 years. The base model was equipped with softer-riding luxury suspension, and did not offer a manual transmission in later years.

1978–1979 Buick Regal
1980 Buick Regal
1982–1987 Buick Regal

The 1978 Regal could be equipped with a 3.8 L Turbocharged V-6 engine with automatic transmission and the sedan model was dropped, once again leaving Regals exclusively as coupes with the Century nameplate applied to bread-and-butter sedans and station wagons. Non-turbo versions were offered with either a 2-bbl or a 4-bbl carburetor. The Buick LeSabre was also available with the turbocharged engine. The only other turbocharged cars available in the U.S. market in 1978 were imports from Mercedes-Benz, Porsche and Saab. The Turbo Regal also included a firm handling suspension with larger tires and sport wheels.

A major facelift in 1981 gave the Regal a much more aerodynamic profile, helping make it possible for the car to compete on the NASCAR racing circuit. The sloping hood and nose of the car made it the favorite of several NASCAR teams. Richard Petty drove one to victory in the 1981 Daytona 500, and the car won a majority of the 1981 and 1982 seasons races and won the NASCAR manufacturers title in 1981 and 1982. V8s for street use were still available, but had shrunk to 265 cu in (4.3 L) (1980 and 1981 only, Pontiac built), and the V6 was rapidly gaining popularity. In 1982, a new Century appeared on the front-wheel drive A-body, but the former rear-wheel drive Century sedan and wagon were not discontinued. These models were simply rebadged as Regals, and for the first time the name appeared on a full model lineup. The wagon was discontinued after 1983, and the sedan dropped from the lineup the next year. From 1986 to 1987, the 5.0 L 307 V8 was available as an option. The 3.8 2-bbl V6 was standard. The 200-4R overdrive transmission was an option with either engine.

Somerset Limited Edition

In 1980, the Regal was offered in a special Somerset Limited Edition trim which featured unique tan and dark blue designer exterior paint, wire wheel covers, sport mirrors, and chrome Somerset badging. The interior had tan and blue plush velour upholstery, brushed chrome trim, and additional Somerset badging.

A Somerset Limited Edition model was also offered on the restyled 1981 Regal. It had unique dark sandstone and camel exterior paint, sport mirrors, and turbine wheels. The interior plush velour upholstery was camel with dark brown piping.

Grand National, Turbo-T, T-Type, and GNX

In 1982, the Regal Grand National debuted, which was named for the NASCAR Winston Cup Grand National Series (the "Grand National" term was part of the Cup series nomenclature until 1986). Buick had won the Manufacturers Cup in 1981 and 1982, and wanted to capitalize on its success: "What wins on Sunday, sells on Monday". These 1982 cars were not painted black, which may confuse those not familiar with them. All started out as charcoal gray Regals that were shipped off to a subcontractor for finishing.

Originally intended for a run of 100 units, Cars and Concepts of Brighton, Michigan, retrofitted 215 Regals with the GN package. Most obvious was the light silver gray firemist paint added to each side. Red pinstripes and billboard shadow lettering proclaiming "BUICK" were applied. The wheel opening moldings and rocker panel moldings were blacked out using black vinyl tape. Finally, a front air dam and rear spoiler were installed. On the inside, special "Lear-Siegler" seats were installed. These seats are fully adjustable and were covered with silver brandon cloth with black vinyl inserts. The front seat had Buick's "6" emblem embroidered onto them. To finish it off, a special clock delete plate was added to the instrument panel which contained the yellow and orange "6" logo and the words "GRAND NATIONAL BUICK MOTOR DIVISION.")

The '82 GN came with a naturally aspirated 4.1 L V6 engine with 125 hp (93 kW) at 4000 rpm and 205 lb·ft (278 N·m) of torque at 2000 rpm. Of the 215 Regal Grand Nationals produced in 1982, at least 35 were based on the Buick Regal Sport Coupe package with the turbocharged 3.8 V6 engine with 175 hp (130 kW) at 4000 rpm and 275 lb·ft (373 N·m) of torque at 2600 rpm. There were only 2022 Sport Coupes produced in 1982, and the number of cars with both the GN and Sport Coupe packages is estimated to be less than 50.

For 1983, there was no Grand National. The Sport Coupe model was renamed the T-Type; 3732 were produced (190 hp (140 kW) at 1600 rpm and 280 lb·ft (380 N·m) of torque at 2400 rpm). The T-Type had been used on other Buicks, starting with the Riviera in 1981 (in 1979 and 1980, it was the S Type). The 1983 Regal T-Type featured tube headers, Hydro-Boost II brakes, 200-4R 4-speed overdrive trans and 3.42 rear axle (7.5").[4]

1984 Buick Regal T-Type

In 1984 the Grand National returned in all black paint. The turbocharged 3.8 L became standard and was refined with sequential fuel injection, distributor-less computer controlled ignition, and boasted 200 hp (150 kW) at 4400 rpm and 300 lb·ft (407 N·m) of torque at 2400 rpm. Only 5,204 Turbo Regals were produced that year, only 2000 of which were Grand Nationals. Because this was the first year production of the computer controlled Sequential Fuel Injection and Distributor-less ignition, this is often considered the year/model that started the development of the legendary intercooled Grand Nationals. The performance of this package was well ahead of its time and the “Little V6” easily kept up with the bigger V8’s. Quarter mile (~400 m) performance was listed at 15.9 seconds at stock boost levels of 10 psi (0.69 bar), while for the same year, the Chevrolet Camaro was listed at 17.0 and the Chevrolet Corvette at 15.2 seconds.[5] Soon, performance enthusiasts determined the modifications that worked and the Grand Nationals easily broke into the 13-second territory. All Grand Nationals for this year had the Lear Siegler-made cloth/leather interior which was only available for this year. An estimated 200 of the 1984 Grand Nationals were produced with the T-Top option which makes these the rarest of the Grand Nationals.

In 1986, a modified engine design with air-air intercooling boosted the performance even further to a specified 235HP @ 4000 rpm and 330lb-ft torque at 2400 rpm. The Grand National (Quantity 5,512) and T-Types (Quantity 2,384) were both produced in 1986. For 1987, performance reached 245 hp (183 kW) and 355 lb·ft (481 N·m) of torque. Buick dropped the T-Type package for Regal in 1987 and opted for a "T" sport package instead. There were only 7,896 Turbo Regals produced in 1986. In 1987, when Turbo Regals reached their peak in popularity, a total of 27,590 Turbo Regals were produced through December, with those models produced between September and December of that year window stickered as "1987½ Buick Grand National" vehicles.

1987 Buick Regal Grand National
1987 Regal Turbo-T Limited with rare blackout trim package

In 1987, a lightweight WE4 (Turbo T) option was offered. Only 1,547 of this variant were produced. The differences between a WE4 and the Grand National were the interior trim package, wheels, exterior badging, aluminum bumper supports, and aluminum rear brake drums as opposed to the Grand National's cast iron, making the WE4 a lighter and faster car. The rear spoiler was only available as a dealer installed option. 1987 was the only year that the LC2 Turbo option was available on any Regal, making it possible to even see a Limited with a vinyl landau roof and a power bulge turbo hood. Turbo Regal Limiteds were one of the rarest models of Turbo Regals produced second only to the GNX at 1,035 Turbo Limiteds. Turbo Regal Limiteds could be ordered with many options with most having chrome external trim but for $35 could have been built with the full black-out trim option making them extremely rare. Limiteds were treated to a very luxurious interior with plush carpeting and optional bench pillow seats and a column shift. The 1987 model would be the end of the manufacture of the RWD "G-Body" Regal, but GM had to extend the build of the Grand National to meet customer demand into December.

For the final year, 1987, Buick introduced the Limited Production GNX "Grand National Experimental" at $29,900. Produced by McLaren Performance Technologies/ASC, Buick produced 547 Grand National with the interior trim Package. They were then sent off to McLaren Performance Technologies and upgraded into the Buick GNX. Buick underrated the GNX at 276 hp (206 kW) and a very substantial 360 lb·ft (488 N·m) of torque (actual output is 300hp/224kW and 420lb·ft/569N·m).[6] This was created to be the "Grand National to end all Grand Nationals." Changes made included a special Garrett T-3 turbocharger with a ceramic-impeller blowing through a more efficient and significantly larger capacity intercooler with a "CERMATEL (Ceramic/Aluminum) coated" pipe connecting the intercooler to the engine. A GNX specific E-EPROM, low-restriction exhaust with dual mufflers, reprogrammed Turbo Hydramatic 200-4R transmission with a custom torque converter and transmission cooler, and unique differential cover/panhard bar included more of the performance modifications. Exterior styling changes include vents located on each front fender, 16 inch black mesh style wheels with VR-speed rated tires, and deletion of the hood and fender emblems. The interior changes of the GNX included a serial number on the dash plaque and a revised instrument cluster providing analog Stewart-Warner gauges, including an analog turbo boost gauge. Performance was measured faster than the Ferrari F40 and the Porsche 930 with a quarter mile time of 12.7 seconds at 113.1 mph (182 km/h) (0.3 and 0.8 seconds quicker, 2.9 and 13.3 mph faster) and a 0-60 mph (97 km/h) time of 4.6 seconds (0.4 and 0.3 seconds quicker, respectively).[7] GNX #001 is the 1986 prototype currently owned by Buick and sometimes makes appearances at car shows around the US. The GNX used a unique torque arm that was mounted to a special, GNX only, rear differential cover, for increased traction. The torque arm rear suspension alters the suspension geometry, making the body lift while planting the rear tires down, resulting in increased traction.

The stealthy appearance of the all-black GNX and Grand National (and the resemblance of its grill to his helmet's mouthpiece), coupled with the fact that the Grand National was initially released during the popularity of Star Wars movies, earned it the title "Darth Vader's Car". Car and Driver covered the GNX model's introduction with the headline "Lord Vader, your car is ready." Due to the six cylinder engine, the Buick make, and the black paint Grand Nationals were sometimes referred to as the "Dark Side". The "Dark Side" contrasted with the more common V8 Mustangs and Camaros that were popular at the time.

Third generation (1988–1996)

Third generation

1988–1989 Buick Regal Limited coupe
Model years 19881996
Assembly Oshawa, Ontario, Canada (GM Canada)
Body and chassis
Body style 2-door coupe
4-door sedan
Layout Transverse front-engine, front-wheel drive
Platform W-body
Related Chevrolet Lumina
Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme
Pontiac Grand Prix
Engine 2.8 L X V6
3.1 L X V6
3.8 L Buick V6
Transmission 4-speed automatic
1988–92: 4T60
1993–96: 4T60-E
Wheelbase 107.5 in (2,730 mm)
Length 1988–89 2dr: 192.2 in (4,882 mm)
1990–91 2dr: 191.6 in (4,867 mm)
1992–94 2dr: 193.6 in (4,917 mm)
1995–96 2dr: 193.9 in (4,925 mm)
1990–91 4dr: 194.6 in (4,943 mm)
1992–94 Custom & GS 4dr: 194.8 in (4,948 mm)
1992–94 Limited 4dr: 196 in (4,978 mm)
1995 4dr: 193.7 in (4,920 mm)
1996 4dr: 194.1 in (4,930 mm)
Width 72.5 in (1,842 mm)
Height Sedan: 54.5 in (1,384 mm)
Coupe: 53 in (1,346 mm)
1988–1989 Buick Regal GS coupe
1990–1994 Buick Regal GS sedan
1991 Buick Regal Limited coupe
1995–1996 Buick Regal coupe
1996 Buick Regal sedan

A new Regal appeared in 1988 on the GM W platform; this generation ran with few changes for nine years. Though the new Regal returned to Buick's original concept in being offered only as a coupe and in being aimed once again squarely at the personal luxury buyer, it departed from tradition in being the first front-wheel drive model, and in having no serious performance option or edition. Neither a V8 engine nor a turbocharged V6 was offered; the only engine offered in 1988 was the Buick 2.8L V6, producing 125 hp (93 kW). In 1990, owing to the declining personal luxury car market, the Regal was again offered as a four-door sedan (as were the Cutlass Supreme and Grand Prix the same year).

The Regal was initially offered in base Custom and upscale Limited trim lines. In 1989, the Gran Sport trim line was introduced, featuring aluminum wheels, body side cladding and a console mounted shifter attached to a 4-speed automatic. For 1990, the Regal gained the option of the Buick 3.8 V6. The 3800 V6 was unique to the Regal, differentiating it from the mechanically similar Chevrolet Lumina, Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme and Pontiac Grand Prix. Anti-lock brakes were made standard on all but the base Custom cars in 1992, and the grille was redesigned again for 1993. Along with the new look came an electronically controlled automatic transmission and LeSabre-like rear lights and bumper.

In 1994, a driver's side airbag was added, along with standard ABS on all models, standard power windows, and 20 hp (15 kW) more in the base engine due to a revised intake manifold and cylinder head. The Limited coupe was deleted; only the Custom and Gran Sport (GS) coupes remained. Dual airbags were new for 1995 along with a new interior. In 1996, the larger 3.8 L V6 engine gained 35 hp (26 kW). Although 1996 was the last year of this model, production of the 1996 model continued into 1997 as the replacement model was late.


Fourth generation (1997–2004)

Fourth generation

1997–2004 Buick Regal GSE
Also called 别克君威 (Buick Regal)
Chevrolet Lumina (Philippines)
Model years North America: 19972004
China: 19992008
Philippines: 20052006
Body and chassis
Class Midsize (EPA)
Body style 4-door sedan
Layout Transverse front-engine, front-wheel drive
Platform W-body 2nd Gen
Engine 3.8 L 3800 Series II V6
Transmission 4-speed 4T60-E automatic
4-speed 4T65-E automatic
4-speed 4T65-E HD automatic
Wheelbase 109.0 in (2,769 mm)
Length 196.2 in (4,983 mm)
Width 72.7 in (1,847 mm)
Height 56.6 in (1,438 mm)
Successor Buick LaCrosse
1997–2004 Buick Regal sedan

In 1997, the Century and the Regal once again became versions of the same car, only offered as a four-door sedan, and sitting on a revised W platform that was shared with the Oldsmobile Intrigue, the Pontiac Grand Prix, the Chevrolet Lumina and Chevrolet Monte Carlo. Differences between the Regal and Century were mostly cosmetic. As the upmarket version, the Regal offered larger engines and fancier trim, and once again boasted a newer version of the 3.8 L V6. While the Century was mainly a reliable, economy-minded car based upon the W-body, the Regal was fitted with many amenities, including heated leather seats (optional on the Century), a Monsoon 8-speaker surround sound system, dual climate control, and expansive interior space. Few changes occurred during this version's seven-year run. It offered 5-passenger seating on all trim levels like the Pontiac Grand Prix and Oldsmobile Intrigue (formerly Cutlass Supreme), unlike their predecessors that had optional 6-passenger seating and the Buick Century (formerly built on the A platform) which had standard 6-passenger seating.

This period held the fastest Buick since the days of the Grand National, the Buick Regal GS. This car was now supercharged instead of turbocharged, and produced 240 hp (180 kW) and 280 lb·ft (380 N·m) of torque. When introduced in 1997, Buick advertised the Regal as the "car for the supercharged family". Buick also released two other model types, the LSE and the GSE. The LSE stayed with the 200 hp (150 kW) engine with upgrades and the GSE stayed with the 240 hp (180 kW) supercharged engine with upgrades. Also, in 2000 Buick came out with a concept GSX that had an intercooled 3.8 L, but was supercharged rather than turbocharged. It had 295.24 hp (220.16 kW)

The North American Regal was replaced in 2005 by the Buick LaCrosse, also built on the W platform. The final 2004 Buick Regal rolled off the assembly line on June 1, 2004.[2]


Regal LS and GS performance

The 3800 Series II L67 Supercharged engine in a 1998 GS

The Regal LS from the factory had a 1/4 mile (~400 m) elapsed time (ET) of 15.8 seconds and could do 0-60 mph in under 8 seconds. The supercharged Regal GS had a 1/4 mile ET of 14.9 seconds, and acceleration to 60 mph (100 km/h) took 6.7 seconds.[8] The Regal GS, equipped with the supercharged 3.8 liter V6 engine (L67) produced 240 hp (180 kW) & 280 lb·ft (380 N·m) of torque. The Regal GS's PCM has programming that activates torque management to reduce wheel spin at launch. The Regal LS was EPA rated at 19/30 MPG city/freeway while the supercharged Regal GS was EPA rated at 18/27 MPG city/freeway.

Regal LSX and GSX (SLP Performance)

SLP Performance offered dealer-installed options and dealer supplied accessories for both LS and GS models.

The three power train packages, referred to as stages, added between 15-30 HP. Performance tires, handling and braking, and lowering options were offered along with interior and exterior cosmetic options.[9]

Joseph Abboud Edition

From 2001 to 2004 Buick offered a Joseph Abboud appearance package on both the GS and LS models. This package included either a solid taupe or two-tone taupe/chestnut leather seats, two-tone leather wrapped steering wheel, leather shifter handle and boot, 16" aluminum wheels; and Joseph Abboud signature emblems on the front doors, floor mats, front seat head rests, and taillights.


1999–2008 Buick Regal (China)

General Motors and Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation (SAIC) established a joint venture in 1997 called Shanghai General Motors Company Limited (Chinese: 上海通用汽車有限公司) and began assembling the Buick Regal (Chinese: 别克君威) in Shanghai, China in April 1999.[10][11][12]

The Regal has sold well in the Chinese market as a large, relatively luxurious model, despite its high price, costing more than the North American version. The Chinese market Regal has slightly different frontal sheetmetal compared to the North American version and different engines including a 2.0 L four-cylinder and a 2.5 L V6. These models also had slightly different names: the entry-level model was the New Century, with more upscale models carrying the GL and GLX names. Later, G and GS models were added. GM has exported the Shanghai-produced Regal to the Philippines, branded as the Chevrolet Lumina. Chinese production of this generation continued through the 2008 model year.

Fifth generation (2010–2017)

Fifth generation

2011 Buick Regal CXL
Also called 别克君威 (Buick Regal)
Holden Insignia
Opel Insignia
Vauxhall Insignia
Production 2008–2017
Model years China: 2009–2017
North America: 2011–2017
Assembly China: November 2008–2017 (Shanghai General Motors)
Germany: 2009–February 2011 (Opel Rüsselsheim Assembly)[13]
Canada: Oshawa, Ontario February 2011–2017 (General Motors Canada)
Designer Mark Adams
Malcolm Ward
Body and chassis
Class Mid-size luxury / Executive car
Body style 4-door sedan
Layout Transverse front-engine, front-wheel drive / all-wheel drive
Platform Epsilon II
Related Buick LaCrosse
Chevrolet Malibu
Cadillac XTS
Saab 9-5
Wheelbase 107.8 in (2,738 mm)
Length 190.2 in (4,831 mm)
Width 73.1 in (1,857 mm)
Height 58.4 in (1,483 mm)
Curb weight 3,600 lb (1,600 kg) (2011 CXL)
3,671 lb (1,665 kg) (2011 CXL Turbo)
Predecessor Buick LaCrosse
See also: Opel Insignia
Buick Regal

The fifth-generation Buick Regal is a four-door, five-passenger, midsize sedan with a front engine, front-wheel drive layout.[14] GM says that the Regal is helping General Motors attract new, younger customers to the Buick brand. According to GM published information, more than 41% of Regal buyers in the US are coming from non-General Motors brands, and more than 60% of CXL Turbo buyers are under the age of 55.[15]


The fifth generation Buick Regal rides on the Epsilon II platform and is the same as the Opel Insignia. It first went into production in Rüsselsheim, Germany, in 2008.[16][17] The Shanghai GM twin of the Insignia was introduced in China as Buick Regal (Chinese: 别克君威) in December, 2008.[18][19]

GM originally planned to sell a modified version of the Opel Insignia in North America as the second generation Saturn Aura, but changed strategy after deciding to discontinue the Saturn brand.[20]

The Regal utilizes unibody construction with galvanized steel front fenders, hood, roof and door panels and thermoplastic polyolefin (TPO) bumper covers.[16]

The North American Regal weighs about 13 pounds more than an equivalent Opel Insignia due to increased structural support in the B-pillar necessary to meet U.S. rollover standards.[21]


GM revealed the fifth generation Regal to North American dealers on October 14, 2009, and introduced the Regal to the public in November, 2009 at the LA Auto Show.[22] Sales of the Regal began in February, 2010.[23] In North America, the Regal is positioned below the larger, more expensive LaCrosse and above the Verano compact sedan which debuted late in calendar year 2011.


Chinese variant of the Regal

Production of the Shanghai GM variant of the Regal began in November 2008.

North American production at General Motors of Canada's Oshawa, Ontario, assembly plant was confirmed on November 25, 2009, and production began at Oshawa Car Assembly in February 2011.[24][25] The initial production for the North American market was done together with its Opel twin the Opel Insignia in the Adam Opel AG's Rüsselsheim, Germany assembly plant from 1 March 2010 to 25 March 2011 (33,669 cars in 2010 and 12,637 in 2011).[26][27]

Regal variants


The Regal debuted in North America with a single engine, the 2.4L Ecotec direct-injected DOHC I4 rated at 182 hp (136 kW) and 172 pound-feet (233 N·m) of torque. The 2.4L engine is mated to a GM Hydra-Matic 6T45 six-speed automatic transmission.[21]

The 2011 Regal produced in North America was offered in one trim level, called CXL, and was offered with two engine choices and seven option packages. Buick had planned to offer a lower-level trim called CX with cloth seats and a higher level trim called CXS, but those trim levels have not yet been offered.[28]

CXL Turbo

The CXL Turbo comes equipped with a turbocharged 2.0L direct-injected Ecotec DOHC I4 rated at 220 hp (164 kW) and 258 pound-feet (350 N·m) of torque, mated to either an Aisin AF40 six-speed automatic or a six-speed manual transmission, making the Regal Turbo the first Buick model in 22 years to be offered with a manual transmission.[21] The 2.0L turbo is the first direct-injected turbocharged production car capable of running on any blend of gasoline or E85 ethanol.[29]


2011 Buick Regal GS

At the 2010 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, GM showed a concept GS version of the Regal based on the Opel Insignia OPC and Vauxhall Insignia VXR. The concept featured a 2.0L, 255 hp (190 kW), 295 lb·ft (400 N·m) high-output DOHC I4 turbocharged Ecotec engine, a six-speed manual transmission and all-wheel drive.

The production GS leaves most of the concept specifications intact, but is front-wheel drive.[30] The GS features Buick's Interactive Drive Control System with GS mode, a choice of an FGP Germany F40-6 six-speed manual or Aisin AF-40 (G2) six-speed automatic transmission, high performance brakes with Brembo front calipers and high performance strut (HiPerStrut) front suspension. 19 inch wheels will be standard and 20 inch forged aluminum wheels will be available. The GS is expected to accelerate from zero to 60 miles per hour in under seven seconds.[31] The production version is equipped with GS-only high-output version of the Ecotec 2.0L turbo engine with 270 hp (201 kW) and 295 lb·ft (400 N·m) of torque.[32] The GM LHU engine used in the GS trim makes 135 hp per liter - Buick’s highest specific output ever.[33] The GS went on sale in fall 2011 as a 2012 model.[30][34]

The Shanghai GM variant of Regal GS went on sale in China on September 15, 2011. This car has been localized. The output of the 2.0L Turbo SIDI engine is 162 kW (217 hp), which is about 40 kW less than the production US-model. The Torque is 350 newton metres (258 lb·ft). and the top speed is claimed as 232 km/h. Only a front-wheel-drive model is offered. There exist also some interior and exterior differences between the American and Chinese models.[35][36]

Sport Touring Edition

For 2016, the Regal added a new Sport Touring Edition which included unique 18" aluminum black pocket wheels and a rear lip spoiler.


2012 Buick Regal with optional eAssist hybrid system

Beginning in 2011, Buick began offering the eAssist system in the Regal, The 2012 model year Regal is the second GM vehicle to offer eAssist after the 2012 Buick LaCrosse. The eAssist system is standard in the LaCrosse, but the eAssist powertrain is optional in the Regal.

The eAssist system adds a lithium-ion battery housed in the trunk, along with regenerative braking, engine stop/start, fuel cut-off, grille louvres that close at speed, underbody panels and low-rolling resistance tires. The eAssist system adds up to 15 hp (11 kW) to the standard 2.4L Ecotec engine during acceleration. Fuel economy for the Regal with eAssist is estimated at 26 mpg-US (9.0 L/100 km; 31 mpg-imp) city, 37 mpg-US (6.4 L/100 km; 44 mpg-imp) highway.[37]

2014 facelift

2014 Buick Regal eAssist

Buick unveiled a revised Regal at the 2013 New York Auto Show. Changes include a revised interior and exterior, a boost in performance for the CXL Turbo up to 258 hp (192 kW) and 295 lb·ft (400 N·m) of torque, and available Haldex all-wheel drive option offered for the 2.0L / six-speed automatic transmission equipped vehicles. Changes for the GS include revised interior and exterior, a drop in power to match that of the CXL Turbo, and available Haldex all-wheel drive option offered for the 2.0L / six-speed automatic transmission equipped vehicles. The six-speed manual transmission is still offered, but only in the front-wheel drive variant. Buick's VentiPorts have reappeared starting with 2014 models, a styling feature unique to Buick dating back to 1949.

Several new safety features were added for the 2014 year, which include forward collision warning, lane-departure warning, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and a following-distance indicator. The foregoing are all part of a Driver Confidence package, while collision preparation, which pre-loads the brake system ahead of an imminent collision, and adaptive cruise control are available separately.[38]

Sixth generation (2018–)

Sixth generation
Also called
Production 2017–
Model years 2018–
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door sedan
5-door wagon[39]
Layout Transverse front-engine, front-wheel drive / all-wheel drive
Platform E2XX platform

An all-new Buick Regal is expected to debut in late 2016 or early 2017 as a 2018 model. Similar to the previous generation, it will be related to the Opel and Vauxhall Insignia sold in Europe. It will grow larger in size and be around 300 to 500 pounds lighter than the current Regal.[40][41] A wagon variant, possibly called the Regal TourX, will reportedly be available as well.[39]

Yearly sales

Calendar year United States China Canada[42]
2009 N/A 79,930[43] N/A
2010 12,326[44] 79,358 820
2011 40,144[45] 78,844 2,846
2012 26,383 85,440 1,767
2013 18,685[46] 86,050[47] 740
2014 22,560[48] 111,245[49] 816
2015 19,504[50] 21,466[51] 968

See also


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