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2011 Buick Regal



  • kplacerkplacer Posts: 94
    edited August 2010
    I happened to just finish driving a Cruze about an hour ago at a GM event. I drove a Regal 2 weeks ago, so let me compare for you. The Cruze feels a bit smaller, but not by much. It has a huge trunk, as big or even bigger than the Regal. I was more comfortable in the drivers seat of the Regal but perhaps the Cruze has adjustments I did not take advantage of. The Regal is quieter and more refined feeling overall. The Cruze I drove had the turbo engine and it is potent! A little noisy but much more fun than the Regal in that regard. Unfortunately I did not get a chance to drive it on the highway so I cannot comment on passing power. I was unimpressed with the passing power of the Regal with the standard engine. The Regal had a black interior and like you I did not care for the color, though the overall design was good. The Cruse had a red and black fabric interior and was very nicely done for the price point, which I'm guessing is about $7000 less than the Regal.

    I think the Cruze is the better buy right now.

    They are
  • gregg_vwgregg_vw Posts: 2,415
    Thanks! The Cruze is supposed to have soft feel materials on the doors, dash and console--plus, the leather interior puts leather (not vinyl) on the door trim and even a bit of leather trim on the dash. Unheard of in this class. I'd have to compare turbo to turbo to find out whether the Cruze is refined enough to substitute for a well-designed mid-size.
  • dodgeman07dodgeman07 Posts: 573
    Thanks for the review! The Regal and Cruze are two of the cars I'm considering for my next purchase.

    I'm curious regarding your comments about the Cruze being noisier. Was that under acceleration only? I've read a couple reviews that called the Cruze "Lexus-like" quiet.

    I believe your $7K price difference is on the money. Similarly equipped the Cruze should come in $7K less than the Regal. That's why I'm seriously considering it.
  • kplacerkplacer Posts: 94
    Yes, the Cruze interior treatment seems to put sections of whatever material is used on the seats in spots on the doors and dash. I failed to mention the door treatment in my initial post but what you say is correct, as the car I drove had door panels that were nicely done in black and red.

    My noise comment was mostly related to when under acceleration. It was quite raucous when I stepped on it in the Cruze, but only a little less so when I tried to pass on the highway in the Regal. The difference was that the Cruze actually shot forward where the Regal mostly made more noise but didn't seem to go that much faster. In regular driving the Regal did feel quieter subjectively, but I do not mean to imply that the Cruze was noisy like a Civic would be. It was quiet, just not _as_ quiet as the Regal.
  • prigglypriggly Posts: 642
    Hi kplacer!

    I found your comments on the new Regal and Cruze helpful interesting. I also find both of these cars intriguing.

    In my view the Regal is obviously the more upscale of the two but the base engine is inadequate. The upcoming turbo may be adequate. I'd prefer to see a new, high tech six in the Regal as the top-of-the-line engine but that is not an option.

    The Cruze probably is the better buy of the two in view of its quality, energetic turbo four, lower price and better fuel economy.

    GM obviously is turning out more desirable cars now than in previous years but I personally hope they are not developing a corporate culture of anemic engines simply to placate the extreme environmentalists and the government.
  • dash5dash5 Posts: 417
    Yeah the relatively weak engine is keeping me from trying this car right now. I will give the turbo a go though when it's available. I'm guessing GM gave it that engine because that's what sells for the Opel brand in Europe? I dont know really.

    In any case, the Regal is frustrating me because I feel like it's close to being a really solid choice in this segment but it's just shy of it. Less power and lower fuel economy than the new Korean mid sized Sonata and Optima, it's heavier, just as expensive or more so. That said I assume it's very smooth and quiet, so that's a big factor that will come out in test drives. I'm also guessing the interior is very nice as well, not sure how that will stack up against the competition.
  • gregg_vwgregg_vw Posts: 2,415
    edited August 2010
    Opel uses even smaller engines in Europe. They also offer several torque-y diesels, which Europeans prefer. The 2.4 is a very good engine--well rated. This engine is used in many GM models now. GM is using it widely because smaller engines are the way of the world, and at 182 hp from 145 naturally aspirated cubic inches, it is not inefficient. It wasn't very long ago that V8s were putting out less than 200 hp, yet somehow people survived with that in the 1990s.. As Hyundai has shown, however, this size engine can give out even more power without resorting to turbos.

    The problem with it in the Regal and LaCrosse (for some people, but not for me) is that both cars are porky for their size. And 19/30 mpg looks not so good compared to other mid-size 2.0 to 2.5 liter cars. And the 18/29 mpg 220 hp Regal is still not going to look like a great bargain next to the 274 hp Sonata/Optima with 24/34 mpg. Also, though quiet, the Regal is not as quiet as the Lacrosse. The Regal will stand out in this class for its looks, details and handling.
  • gorphilgorphil Posts: 27
    I took delivery of my new Regal, stone with cocoa/cashmere, on July 13, 2010 and have driven it 1500 km. Except as noted below, the car is a pleasure to drive. Build quality is excellent and the powertrain is very smooth. I traded in a 2008 Allure/LaCrosse and the switch from a V6 to an I4 is not a problem. Presumably, the six speed transmission helps. While I have adjusted to most of the undesirable features listed below, prospective buyers may like to check them out before purchase.

    1, The outside mirrors are very narrow and restrict the field of view when they are set to check the blind spots.
    2. The ride is somewhat choppy, not unusual for a midsize car.
    3. The installed tires have a hard ride and transmit road noise to the cabin.
    4. The seats are quite hard and become uncomfortable after a couple of hours.
    5. The front head restraints are poorly designed. When they are set so they are level with the top of the head, as outlined in the owners manual, they touch the back of the head.
    6. The buttons on the console appear to have been setup for a RH drive car. For LH drive cars the commonly used buttons are farthest away from the driver.
    7. An odd rumbling/rattling sound has started coming from the area of the right front wheel when travelling over bumps at low speed. I will get this checked out soon.
  • overbrookoverbrook Posts: 275
    Regal's mileage suffers due to hydraulic steering and tranny programming. some reviews have noted a reluctance to downshift on the Equinox. I can tell you the Regal's transmission is flawless and shifts are barely perceptible.

    Friends of mine have a CC and the base model is really a base model. It does have dual heates seats and 17" wheels but that's it. You have to jump the luxury model to match the regal CXL features and that model is about $34k comparably equipped. That plus the 4 seat capacity make it a deal breaker for me. Even if you dont use the middle seat often there are times when it will come in handy.

    I've been in 2 cruze models so far and the interior is almost as nice as the Regal's. You can get a light interior with wood trim in the Regal.
  • overbrookoverbrook Posts: 275
    No one has seen official weights for the Cruze yet but its expected to be 3000-3300lbs. It's definitely not going to be faster than the Regal since power to weight ratios will be similar. The cruze is almost as large as the regal and it has a larger trunk though. I don't think the price gap will be as large as you think because the LTZ starts at $23k and tops out at $27k. comparably equipped the cruze might be about $4k less than the Buick. You pay less but lose the IRS and some features and get less of a warranty. For the money, the Cruze seems to be a great car though.
  • overbrookoverbrook Posts: 275
    With the new CAFE rules in effect expect to see more "weak" engines offered in midsize cars and crossovers. The Sienna even offers a four cylinder as does the Venza. Again, the regal's acceleration is on par with Malibu, Accord EX and Mazda6. It is slow compared to the turbo four equipped CC but not other naturally aspirated fours.

    The CAFE rules have already been approved, more and more four cylinders will be offered going forward. The turbo 4 is a subsitute for a V6.
  • overbrookoverbrook Posts: 275
    Its interesting that so many have focused on the Sonata as a competitor to the Regal. Both are 2011s and both have DI fours but aside from that the Sonata is no more of a top competitor than a camry XLE or Accord EX-L. The Sonata offers more for your money but I think that's to be expected- it's a Hyundai. If you want the most bang for your buck you arent going to get it in a regal or TSX or CC or even Camry XLE. The regal is worth more to me because its more exclusive, has a better warranty and looks better inside and out. I've been in the Sonata and the interior looks better in pics than it doesn in person. The quality is AVERAGE for the class. No better than Malibu or Accord or Fusion. Lots of hard plastics and the switchgear are not on par with Regal.

    I presume electric steering will be added when production shifts to Canada which will add 1-2mpg.

    I took a road trip and averaged 27.2mpg with AC on all the way and moderate traffic that prevented me from maintaining consistent speeds.
  • ral2167ral2167 Posts: 642
    I find it hard to believe that the Cruze is comparable to the Regal. The Cruze is Chevy's answer to the Civic/Sentra/Corolla. One would think the Malibu in the LTZ mode is more comparable to the Regal than the Cruze is. Is the Cruze bigger than the Malibu? I doubt it. If it was, then what's the point of the Impala?
  • ral2167ral2167 Posts: 642
    not sure that the regal gives more bang for the buck than a camry xle. For 31K MSRP, an xle can be had with such bells and whistles as push button start (does regal have this?), remote car starter (available with the regal?), 6 cylinder with similar gas mileage as the 4 cylinder regal. Heck, for 28K you can get all that with a 4 cylinder XLE. As far as looks, that's all subjective, and I even agree the regal is a sharper looking car. And I'm not knocking the regal, I just think it lacks some of the amenities that should come with it. After all, it originally was going to replace the Saturn Aura until Saturn went bust.
  • prigglypriggly Posts: 642
    Who cares about "push button start?!" How does that enhance any car? It's nothing but a gimmick and in the case of run-away Toyotas, downright dangerous.
  • prigglypriggly Posts: 642
    The new Malibu configured with the 3.6 DOHC six cylinder engine is considerably faster than the new Regal with the turbo four.
  • ral2167ral2167 Posts: 642
    Just watch-- push button start will be on more and more cars in the coming years. No more fumbling with keys as much. In fact, when I was at Buick dealer, he said the push button start will be on the 2012 regal. It's one of those features that-- once you get it, you won't ever go without it on future cars you own, as opposed to, say, dual zone climate control which I can take or leave frankly.
  • gorphilgorphil Posts: 27
    Further to item #7 of my post #90, after reviewing forums for other epsilon GM cars, Malibu, Aura, etc. it appears the knocking/clunking noise coming from the suspension when driving over bumps/washboard at slow speed is a common problem that affects some cars and may or may not be repairable. If I had known this in advance, I would not have purchased the car. However, I will discuss this with my dealers service department tomorrow.

    With the thousands of Insignias/Regals sold in Europe and China over the past year or so I find it very strange the problem has not been resolved. I suspect this problem will affect future sales in North America.
  • gregg_vwgregg_vw Posts: 2,415
    I don't think anyone was saying the two are directly comparable. The Cruze is compact class. The point we were trying to make is that the Cruze has a big trunk for its size, a roomy interior for its size, is quieter than one would expect of a compact, and has interior appointment quality usually not seen in this class. Given all that, saving a few thousand by buying Cruze vs. Regal may not mean giving up very much. Your choice of course.
  • kplacerkplacer Posts: 94
    It's funny how things go. You can easily fall in love with a new model and then after a while you begin to wonder if you made the right move. I have a 2009 Allure/Lacrosse and every now and then I get discontented with it. Then I look at new models and find all sorts of things I like about them. Then I go home and think about the paltry sum I owe on the Buick and compare that to the financing schedules on the new cars and I like mine all over again. I love my car for the seats, the quiet, the ride, the look, and all sorts of good features it has. I would love another car for different reasons no doubt. But, I have yet to own a car I loved unconditionally and which was so perfect that it had no things about it that I did not like.
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