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Buick Regal, Future Vehicle, Coupe, Convertible, Hatchback, Truck, Sedan, Wagon, SUV
Nov 09, 2010 (2:01 pm)
I almost drank the kool-aid. I went to the Opel website and configured a German version of what I thought would be pretty much the American Regal GS for 2012.
After so damn many Audis I almost lost count (29), I thought the new GS was a reasonable candidate for consideration with the current Audi A4 2.0T S-Line -- and at a savings likely north of $5,000.
Yesterday I read that Buick has decided to drop the AWD from the GS's spec sheet, but, remarkably, KEEP THE MANUAL TRANSMISSION.
I would bet, now that I approximately know the sales figures for Audi A4 2.0T quattros and BMW 328i x-drives and Infiniti G37x's and so on and so forth, that very few manual transmissions will be sold -- and probably fewer than I would have predicted now that I know that all that torque is going to be routed through the front wheels.
Hmm, if I were asked, I would have said, BAG the stick, KEEP the AWD (in the GS) -- or, do what the other guys do, offer the GS in both 2WD and 4WD variants and make everyone happy.
I don't even plan to test the GS at this point.
#321 of 753 Re: Not for me [markcincinnati]
Nov 09, 2010 (3:43 pm)
So you've decided not to consider the car because it offers the option of a stick, which you wouldn't want? You do realize the automatic will also be available, right?
#322 of 753 Re: Not for me [stephen987]
Nov 09, 2010 (5:14 pm)
No, I would WANT THE STICK, but wouldn't have one without the AWD and I would be fine to have the AWD and only auto as a choice but not the other way around.
I apologize for not being clear on that point -- 180 degress unclear in fact.
I meant by my comparison to ONLY AWD vehicles to suggest that only AWD vechicles need apply (since the quattro, x-drive and x cars were my basis for comparisons.)
I would be OK with a stick or an auto and might even go out of my way for another manual transmission -- it is just so odd to see Buick remain with the stick feature but drop the AWD.
Beats me why, but I have never found a person who has a CUV or an SUV that doesn't cite among their reasons for purchase AWD. You would think that an attractive vehicle like the GS would, first and foremost OFFER AWD as an option, like the LaCrosse, the Cadillac CTS, the Lincolns and Fords (like the Taurus, even). And, given the Regal GS's German parentage, one would think that AWD would not even require much debate. The cost of the eletronics and mechanicals to add the selectable adaptive suspension almost certainly exceed the cost of the addition of two more driven wheels; and, I would venture to guess that folks would "use" the AWD much more than they would use selectable damper and steering turn in settings (at least after the novelty wore off.)
I have ADS on my A4 and my wife just leaves it in auto mode, as I suspect most folks do -- and ADS was a $3,000 option. AWD would be half that at most.
If you need to make a statement with a stick shift, fine -- keep it, I might buy it; but, not with a high torque engine driving only the front wheels.
In GS trim and FWD, this thing might be DOA, unless it is really low bucks.
Pull the other one.
#323 of 753 Re: Not for me [markcincinnati]
Nov 09, 2010 (8:10 pm)
In GS trim and FWD, this thing might be DOA, unless it is really low bucks.
I agree there's not much incentive to buy a GS over the turbo model w/o AWD being offered. The GS needs to be priced well under $35K to find many buyers.
#324 of 753 Re: Not for me [markcincinnati]
Nov 09, 2010 (8:28 pm)
Completely agree. I've owned five BMW 3 series in a row. Just bought a Chevy SUV and am surprisingly pleased with GM. Thought the Regal may be an affordable American alternative for a BMW but the lack of RWD or AWD is a deal killer. ANYONE who can appreciate the dynamics of driving a car with a manual transmission is going to demand power be transmitted via the real wheels (RWD or AWD). Offering a manual with FWD only makes no sense. GM's only other option is the CTS but there you're well in the BMW, Audi, Merc price point so the value proposition is lost.
#325 of 753 Re: Not for me [markcincinnati]
Nov 09, 2010 (9:27 pm)
I'm willing to bet fuel economy was the motivation behind dropping the AWD. The Turbo already gets below average gas mileage and the GS will be worse still. Add AWD and we are talking V6 or even small V8 gas mileage, which would turn off some buyers. The added weight of the AWD may have also taken away the added performance gain of the GS, making the added expense of the GS over the Turbo not make any sense.
#326 of 753 Re: Not for me [carfreak09]
Nov 10, 2010 (8:29 am)
I'll bet the penalty in gas mileage would have been, perhaps 1MPG. And, even that would have been mitigated by simply buying the current transmission set up (for the other fine as wine Germans) -- an 8 speed, like the Audi and BMW offer. Even the Infiniti is now at 7 speeds. Moreover, offering an 8 speed would have been NOT class leading, but CLASS KEEPING UP WITH -- but it could have been spun as class leading (taking into account that you would have to concede the Regal GS was a class below the Audi and BMW it so clearly does rival in Opel trim.)
The final drive ratio with an 8spd, too, could have been set higher (lower numerically) meaning 7th and 8th gear could have been seriously overdriven and 1 -6 could have been used to keep the car pulling strongly in the optimum power RPM range. Remember, as a turbo, in GS trim, the Regal would have had strong torque from low RPMs over a broad range.
My measly 211HP AWD '09 A4 with only a 6speed auto has 258 lb ft of torque from sub 2,000 RPM's -- acceleration is brisk (certainly competitive). The same vehicle, now, with the same engine but with the 8spd auto trans is better at both acceleration and fuel sipping.
Dittos could have been for the Regal GS. Also, the 8speed either weighs the same or less than the 6speed -- Opel would have had no problem with this approach, I am certain. The Opel, too, has the availability of the 2.8Turbo V6 (from Saab and also seen in the Cadillac SRX). I understand not wanting a thirstier engine in this new GS -- and I am confident the torque and HP are more than adequate to hustle the additional 150 or so pounds that the AWD set up would add with aplomb.
Thusly configured (and presumably built in NA) the 2012 Regal GS could certainly have been said to be a NOT UNREASONABLE alternative to the Audi 2.0TQ, the BMW 328i (x-drive) the Infinti G25x and even the odd Acura or IS AWD Lexus. If, fully loaded up it could have been in the mid to high $30's, it would certainly have merited a look-see, especially with a good supporting ad campaign reminding folks of the Buick Performance Heritage.
At that price point, then, I would imagine it would not be a threat to a just south of $50K Cadillac CTS AWD, normally aspirated 300HP V6.
All would be right with the world.
Drive it like you live.
#327 of 753 Re: Not for me [markcincinnati]
Nov 10, 2010 (11:39 am)
They didnt want the added weight of the AWD on this car with the 255hp engine. Perhaps it will be offered later on but the obviously think it can compete with TL, TSX, Maxima, etc. with FWD.
How can you rule the car out without driving it?
#328 of 753 Re: Not for me [markcincinnati]
Nov 10, 2010 (11:43 am)
Audi is the only manufacturer with an 8 speed in a FWD vehicle. The other 8 speeds made by ZF are in RWD vehicles. Most cars in this price range DO NOT have 8 speed transmissions. Not the Lexus IS, not the 3 series, not the TL, not the TSX, etc. GM doesnt even have 8 speeds in Cadillacs yet so the idea of an Opel or Buick having one seems like a stretch- especially when Acura is still using 5 speed autos.
There is no way a loaded AWD GS would be mid to high 30s. I suspect a loaded FWD GS is going to be close to $40k so you can add about $2k to that for AWD, plus another 150-200lbs of weight and probably a smaller trunk and/or gas tank.
#329 of 753 Re: Not for me [dodgeman07]
Nov 10, 2010 (11:46 am)
I would've agreed before seeing test numbers on the turbo. If the GS is a second faster to 60 I would say it may be worth it to some folks. Plus you get the sports seats and nicer rims. I think base price will be $34k-$35k- don't forget the GS has standard 19s and HIDs which are not standard on the $30k turbo model.