Sunday, October 19, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Buick ads are no joke: Regal gets double takes

By
From page C1 | May 02, 2014 |

The television ads where neighbors, friends and family can’t identify a new car as a Buick are true to life.

The attractive styling on a 2014 Buick Regal test car so stumped admirers, many could not believe it was a Buick. The common question was, “What kind of car is that?” — even as they stared at the Buick and Regal badges.

Still others couldn’t believe the 2014 Regal only has four-cylinder engines. In fact, a newly improved, direct injected, turbocharged four cylinder is offered on every trim level for 2014 and delivers a commendable 259 horsepower and 295 foot-pounds of torque.

Subtly restyled with new light-emitting diode headlights and infotainment display for 2014, the Regal can come with front- or all-wheel drive. New safety features, such as cross traffic alert when the vehicle is backing up out of a parking space, are added to the equipment offerings. Plus, every Regal includes two years/24,000 miles of free scheduled maintenance.

Best of all, the 2014 Regal earned top, five out of five stars overall in federal government crash testing.

It’s also a recommended buy of Consumer Reports magazine where predicted reliability is average.

Starting manufacturer’s suggested retail price, including destination charge, is $30,615 for a base, front-wheel drive, 2014 Regal with 259-horsepower, turbo four cylinder and six-speed automatic. The lowest starting price for a 2014 Regal with all-wheel drive is $32,790, or $2,175 more. And the top, Regal GS has a starting retail price of $40,195 for 2014. But it does not include a power moonroof. That’s $1,000 extra.

Competitors include other premium, front-wheel drive sedans with four-cylinder engines.

As an example, the 2014 Acura TSX sedan has a starting MSRP, including destination charge, of $31,620 with 201-horsepower four cylinder and automatic transmission. The TSX, however, is not available with all-wheel drive.

Meantime, the front-wheel drive, 2014 Volvo S60 with 240-horsepower, turbocharged four cylinder and automatic transmission has a starting retail price of $34,225. The lowest starting MSRP, including destination charge, for a 2014 S60 with all-wheel drive is $35,725.

The Regal tester, a top-of-the-line GS AWD model with six-speed automatic, looked good in its tasteful Crystal Red Tintcoat paint and 19-inch alloy wheels. The car had a rich appearance and was visually interesting even on the sides, where door panels have an attractive sculpting line.

Fit and finish on the test car was excellent, too, with gaps between exterior metal body panels small in size and well aligned.

The car impressed with its quiet passenger compartment and overall handling, no matter which of three drive control modes it was in.

In standard drive control, the ride was the most compliant for daily commutes or leisurely weekend drives. It was definitely not harsh but still felt well-controlled.

The GS mode setting — activated by a button near the top of the dashboard — made the throttle more responsive, stiffened the ride and increased the steering effort needed. This setting worked well to manage body lean of the car as it traveled twisty mountain roads. The increased steering effort fit well, too, with the well-sized and tactilely pleasing steering wheel.

In between standard and GS drive settings is a sport mode with its own button on the dashboard. But in the test car, it wasn’t easy to notice much change in this middle setting, and the test car spent much of its time in standard or GS.

The Regal’s 2-liter, direct injected turbocharged four cylinder engine worked so smoothly, some passengers didn’t recognize a turbo was under the hood. Power was strong and steady, with just a hint of a lag as maximum torque of 295 foot-pounds hit by 2,500 rpm. The peppy, yet refined performance is good, considering the Regal GS AWD weighs nearly 4,000 pounds. Buick reports this model has a 6.8-second time from 0 to 60 miles per hour.

The 2014 Regal GS FWD with six-speed manual transmission — yes, Buick offers a manual on the Regal — is fastest, with a 6.2-second time.

Fuel economy isn’t as high as might be expected in this mid-size sedan. The federal government rates a 2014 Regal GS AWD model with automatic at just 19 miles per gallon in city driving and 27 mpg on the highway. The test car averaged 18 mpg in city driving and not quite 24 mpg on the highway with a lot of spirited driving.

Premium fuel is suggested but not required, and the Regal’s 18-gallon fuel tank — which can provide a combined city/highway range of less than 400 miles — can cost nearly $70 to fill with mid-range gasoline at today’s prices.

At less than 16 feet long from bumper to bumper, the Regal feels right sized, and the tester was agile and easy to park.

The back seat, with 37.3 inches of legroom and 36.8 inches of headroom, looks smaller than it is. Smaller stature adults at the outboard seat positions back there found decent space for feet and legs if front seats were moved up a bit on their tracks. The middle spot, however, is tight when three adults are back there. And the middle person has to contend with a sizable hump in the floor.

Trunk space in the Regal is 14.2 cubic feet, just a tad more than the 14 cubic feet in the TSX.

The 2014 Regal with automatic transmission is among the General Motors Co. vehicles recalled this month because a cable in the transmission may disengage from the shift lever. If this occurs, the driver may be unable to put the Regal into “park,” creating the risk the car could roll away.

2014 Buick Regal GS AWD

BASE PRICE: $29,690 for base Regal FWD; $31,560 for Premium I FWD; $31,865 for base Regal AWD; $33,735 for Premium I AWD; $33,760 for Premium II FWD; $35,935 for Premium II AWD; $36,905 for GS FWD; $39,270 for GS AWD.

PRICE AS TESTED: $44,275

TYPE: Front-engine, all-wheel drive, five-passenger, mid-size sedan.

ENGINE: 2-liter, turbocharged/intercooled, double overhead cam, direct injection, inline four cylinder.

MILEAGE: 19 mpg (city), 27 mpg (highway).

TOP SPEED: NA.

LENGTH: 190.2 inches.

WHEELBASE: 107.8 inches.

CURB WEIGHT: 3,981 pounds.

BUILT AT: Oshawa, Ontario, Canada.

OPTIONS: Driver confidence package #2 (includes adaptive cruise control, automatic collision preparation) $1,695; power moonroof $1,000; driver confidence package #1 (includes forward collision alert, rear cross traffic alert, lane departure warning, memory settings for front seats and outside mirrors) $890; Crystal Red tintcoat exterior paint $495.

DESTINATION CHARGE: $925.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

Snakes, superheroes liven up Halloween Howl

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Solano looks at future of freight rail service

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Are your heroes the good and honorable type?

By Perry W. Polk | From Page: C3

 
Alpha Color Blast brings messy fun to participants

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Italian Festival brings out the Italian in everyone

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3 | Gallery

Suisun council to examine zoning changes

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A4, 2 Comments

 
Cover cropping your home garden

By Kathy Low | From Page: C4, 1 Comment

Seven nutritional soundbites for kids

By Kate Land Md | From Page: C4

 
More than planes draws crowd to Nut Tree Airport

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A5 | Gallery

A cut above: Hair-raising time at Locks of Love event

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A6 | Gallery

 
Voter registration deadline is Monday

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A6

 
Pots and pans, patios and more at home and garden show

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A6 | Gallery

Weather for Oct. 19, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: B6

 
Architecture that inspires present for all to see

By Brian Miller and Karl Dumas | From Page: B7

Service members from county complete basic training

By Nick DeCicco | From Page: B10

 
‘Choice card’ doubts swirl as deadline nears

By Tom Philpott | From Page: B10

Suisun City Police log: Oct. 17, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

 
Fairfield police log: Oct. 17, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

.

US / World

First US Ebola victim remembered for compassion

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 3 Comments

 
Another year, another small Social Security bump

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7, 3 Comments

Family identify 4 kids, 2 adults killed in blaze

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Cops: Remains may be those of missing UVa. student

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7, 2 Comments

Police: Another ambush suspect sighting reported

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
Hawaii island hit by winds, rains from hurricane

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

Iraq lawmakers approve interior, defense ministers

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
US, China vow to manage rifts ahead of Obama visit

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Container ship adrift again off Canadian coast

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
9 more bodies push Nepal blizzard death toll to 38

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

.

Opinion

Market week ends on high note

By Bud Stevenson | From Page: B7

 
Why I’m voting for Proposition 1

By Richard L. Wood | From Page: A8, 21 Comments

Time to vote: Do so wisely

By Rod Keck | From Page: A8, 5 Comments

 
Sound off for Oct. 19, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: A8, 1 Comment

Adult education step to future

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8

 
Dodd best choice for 4th District Assembly

By Daily Republic | From Page: A8

.

Living

Dogs welcome at St. Louis museum about, well, dogs

By The Associated Press | From Page: C1

 
Why I don’t breastfeed, if you must know

By The Washington Post | From Page: C2, 2 Comments

Today in History: Oct. 19, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: Oct. 19, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Goshen residents team up to save damaged church

By The Associated Press | From Page: C3

 
Vatican mystery: Where did gay welcome originate?

By The Associated Press | From Page: C3

Mental illnesses are real, treatment is available. Get help today.

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: C4

 
Horoscopes: Oct. 19, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: C4

Seattle woman uses social media against groper

By The Seattle Times | From Page: C8

 
.

Entertainment

New Mencken book features unpublished material

By The Associated Press | From Page: C6 | Gallery

 
PUBLISHERS WEEKLY BEST-SELLERS

By The Associated Press | From Page: C6

 
John Green’s first book to be reissued in 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: C6

TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B11

 
.

Sports

So which Giants Series team is the best?

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B1

 
Bumgarner gets nod for Giants World Series opener

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Goff’s late INT sends Cal to 36-34 loss to UCLA

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Vanden JV football team downs American Canyon

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

Canada helps Montana hold off UC Davis 42-28

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Ben Martin takes Las Vegas PGA lead

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Bruce Bochy has the postseason touch with Giants

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3 | Gallery

Vickers wins pole in strange Talladega qualifying

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Trade for Shields spurred Royals to turnaround

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

.

Business

On the money: Can you go solar? Leases, loans make it possible

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
Flavors fuel food industry, but remain a mystery

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7, 1 Comment

Recalls this week: toy toasters, folding tables

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Federal offshore oil lease sale set for March

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

Review: Stir Kinetic smart desk makes you stand up

By The Associated Press | From Page: B12

 
.

Obituaries

Lawrence Weber

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Larry Lee Stanley

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Chloe Chicko Kenty

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
Billy Raye Carter

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Robert Alton Lauderdale

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
.

Comics