'Business As Usual' As Buick About to Reveal Two Products Amidst Opel-PSA Talks

Mark Stevenson
by Mark Stevenson

As politicians and labor unions in Europe reel from yesterday’s revelation of high-level talks between General Motors and Peugeot over a possible sale of Opel, GM’s most European-infused brand on this side of the Atlantic is operating business as usual.

Buick, which is GM’s second-largest brand globally by volume behind Chevrolet, has product in the wings, including the largely rumored but unconfirmed Buick Regal, based on the recently revealed Opel Insignia.

Buick sees no problem with that.

“Our priorities for the brand haven’t changed since Monday,” a Buick spokesperson told TTAC on Wednesday. “It is business as usual until/if something is finalized.”

What is business as usual?

Regardless of an Opel-PSA deal, one debut from Buick will remain unaffected: the next-generation Buick Enclave. While GM has updated all the Enclave’s platform mates in recent months, Buick’s entry has yet to show its sheetmetal to the public, and that reveal is likely safe thanks to its local production and its separation from Opel. The three-row Enclave is rumored to get a New York reveal in April.

The situation is different for the Buick Regal.

While its reveal, similarly rumored for New York, won’t likely be threatened by a purchase of Opel by PSA, it’s been long assumed GM would move Regal production to Germany and away from its Oshawa plant. Should a deal go through, Oshawa still may not be able to keep the model, as Regal production could join Malibu at GM’s Fairfax Assembly facility in Kansas City, Missouri.

And that’s assuming GM bothers.

After its 40,144-unit high mark in 2011, under half that many Regals — just 19,833 units — found homes in America in 2016. If anything, it would make more sense for Regal to become Buick’s second Chinese import, as it sold 69,300 units there in 2016.

Mark Stevenson
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  • TMA1 TMA1 on Feb 15, 2017

    Only 69K Regal sales in China last year? And yet the Verano is the one they killed. Look at the sales for the Buick Excelle (aka Verano) in China for the past 5 years: http://carsalesbase.com/china-car-sales-data/buick/buick-excelle-xtgt/ Excelle XT/GT 2016 370,375 2015 290,213 2014 246,305 2013 204,274 2012 173,312 2011 134,800 2010 81,652 Any auto maker would kill for sales and year-over-year increases like that!

    • See 2 previous
    • NormSV650 NormSV650 on Feb 16, 2017

      ...and Acura still sells the ILX.

  • Varezhka Varezhka on Feb 16, 2017

    Given the current sales number, would the actual Buick buyers in NA even notice if Regal is killed altogether? It may make sense to further consolidate the sedan line to a single model of LaCrosse. Trim the line-up to an easy to choose choice of Encore (sm), Envision (med), Enclave (lg), and LaCrosse (sedan holdouts). Any other non-mainstream niche preferences (RWD sports sedan, coupe, wagon, BOF SUV, etc.) can be taken care of by Johan's Cadillac.

  • 28-Cars-Later "Here's why" edition_cnn_com/2018/06/13/health/falling-iq-scores-study-intl/index.html
  • 28-Cars-Later Seriously, $85. GM Delta I is burning hot garbage to the point where the 1990 Saturn Z-body is leagues better. My mother inherited an '07 Ion with 30Kish otc which was destroyed in 2014 by a tipsy driver with a suspended license (driver's license enforcement is a joke in Pennsyltucky). Insurance paid out $6,400 when it was only worth about $5,800 IIRC, but sure 10 year later the "hipo" Delta I can fetch how much?
  • Buickman styling does not overcome powertrain, follow the money. labor/materials.
  • VoGhost It's funny, until CDK raises their prices to cover the cost. And then the stealerships do even more stealing because they're certainly not taking the hit - why do you think they make all those political donations? So who pays in the end?
  • VoGhost I was talking today to a guy who pulled up in an '86 Camry. Said it ran like a top, got 30 mpg, the AC was ice cold and everywhere he goes, people ask to buy it. He seemed happy.